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Interview with James Gilliam [10/16/2006]

Videographer1:

Okay. Please go ahead. Now, just say your name again, and then tell me where you were born and where you were born and who your parents were.

James Gilliam:

Okay. I'm James H. Gilliam, Sr. I was born in Baltimore in 1920, which means, in effect, that I'm 85 years of age as of August the 6th.

Thomas Healy:

Okay. And who were your parents?

James Gilliam:

I was named after my father with the exception that he was James E. and I'm James H. And my mother was Pocahontas Lipscomb (ph). Both of them were born in Virginia, my father in Blackstone, and my mother in a small community known as Judasville (ph).

Thomas Healy:

What did your dad do?

James Gilliam:

He worked at Baltimore Steel. And in effect, he was a -- because of the culture, the company at that particular time, he led a crew. But actually, he was a laborer. He was a laborer there.

Thomas Healy:

And your mom stayed home?

James Gilliam:

Oh, yeah. She stayed home, and she really was the enterprising one. My father was a man about town, let's put it that way. And that didn't make him a favorite of my mother either. And when I was six years of age, she made a decision that life would be a little more pleasant just with the two of us. And I didn't see much of him. He -- we left the Baltimore area and went to New York City, and that's where he lived until he died.

Thomas Healy:

Now, tell me a little bit about your school. You grew up in Baltimore.

James Gilliam:

Yes.

Thomas Healy:

Where did you go to school, high school-wise, and then where did you go from high school?

James Gilliam:

Okay. I grew up in Baltimore, and Baltimore was very much like the state of Delaware. When I came along, there was only one high school that you could go to, Douglas High School. The educational system was a very segregated system. And -- but I would have to say that that was the fact of life, but it really worked to my benefit. I think that I got one of the best educations in the world for all the wrong reasons. And I say wrong reasons, black teachers couldn't teach in white schools and vice versa. White teachers couldn't teach in black schools. But I had some of the best teachers in the world. For example, the principal -- one of the principals at that -- that I had to deal with at Douglas High School was a gentleman by the name of Dr. Mason Hawkins, who, as I understand it, was the first Ph.D. graduate in education from Harvard University. And that shows you how limited his choices were. He -- he was the principal there at Douglas. And because the pattern of segregation was such, it was almost like being a superintendent of the black schools there in Douglas. And as a result, we got some of the finest teachers in the world. For example, you've heard of W. E. DuBois. Well, his daughter, Yolanda, was one of my teachers in junior high school, and it was a great experience. The thing that I think keynoted that experience was the fact that there was a level of care and caring, and that is just hard to come by. And it's something that I've heard many people say they wished that they had a similar kind of circumstance today. In fact, our teachers served as mentors for us. So much so that they knew more about our personal lives, sometimes, than even we knew about them. And we enjoyed being with them so much that if I got home before 5:00 o'clock in the afternoon, my mother would say, what did you do wrong? Did the teacher make you come home? But it was that kind of experience of real good caring group of folks. The men, for example, were actually role models. I never saw one of the teachers come to school without a shirt and tie on. It was just a good experience, that's all. And what happened after that, I -- when I finished high school, I made a decision to go to Morgan State College then. It's now Morgan State University. And I made a decision to take a course in sociology and economics with the idea of being that I would be in the human services area. And that, in and of itself, is another brief story because I always wanted to be the director of an Urban League because the guy that was the executive director of the Baltimore urban renewal -- that is not correct -- the Baltimore urban union was a gentleman by the name of Herman Templeton. Real smooth. The ladies liked him a lot. And I wanted very much to be like him. And so that's the reason I took some of the courses I did. And I made a decision to further my education in social work. And that's when I went to Hyde University School of Social Work after about a year or two years working with the Merlin Tuberculosis Association. And I did this as a health educator for about two years. And then this opportunity came along for me to get a scholarship from the tuberculosis association to go to the school of social work. And the person who was the president or chairman, he was the president of the Merlin Tuberculosis Association. There was an older gentleman by the name of G. Canby Robinson who was a staunch Quaker who believed what he believed in. He was an M.D. He was a doctor. And he made a decision to give up the medical profession to get into medical administration. And he was one of the people who initiated the blood program, blood donors program for the Red Cross. And that was a good experience. And very unselfish person. Because when I went to school of social work, I had to have an on-the-job mentor, and he made the decision that he would do it, and he did it and never missed a training session when we had to commute to Washington D.C. He was absolutely a great person, and I think about him often. G. Canby Robinson. He wrote a book that was used in many schools of social work. The title of the book was The Patient as a Person. And you would expect something like that to come from a guy like G. Canby Robinson.

Thomas Healy:

Okay. When you finished school, college, was that during or before the war, right before the war, or right --

James Gilliam:

No. No. I didn't finish college until after the war.

Thomas Healy:

Okay.

James Gilliam:

When I went in the Army, the -- I had about a year and a half to go. But then you had the classifications, the draft and these classifications. And I made a decision not to go to school because I knew I was going to be drafted and --

Thomas Healy:

Well, do you remember -- let's stop.

James Gilliam:

Sure.

Thomas Healy:

Let's go back to Pearl Harbor day, December 7, 1941.

James Gilliam:

Okay.

Thomas Healy:

Do you remember that day? Do you remember what was going on that day?

James Gilliam:

Yes. But answer to your question, yes. Pearl Harbor, oh, yes. I remember that vividly over the radio, no TV, but the radio and the paper. And the interesting thing about that, I don't get the feeling that that incident, as important as it is to history, I don't really get the feeling that it impacted the people of color community to the same degree that it affected the Caucasian community. Because it was at that time you had a real segregated military force, which there was some breakthroughs after World War 1 when they came up with a black division known as the Blue Helmet Division, the 93rd Infantry Division. And I don't know what that nomenclature was at that time. And these troops went to France. And it was while they were in France that the nomenclature was changed to the Blue Helmet Division, the 92nd Division, as I recall. It didn't occur until a period after. And I'm not sure of this period after World War 1. And they pulled together soldiers from the 9th and 10th Calvary. And the name Buffalo Division was given to them. And it was -- it was an identification thing that came from the Indians who looked upon the buffalo as something that was -- that symbolized the strength and the courage of the black soldiers in the 9th and the 10th calvary, who, incidentally, really helped pretty much to settle the West. The -- they helped to -- they fought the Indians. And those that were out in the Midwest, some of the -- even for people like Pancho Villa in Mexico. And the interesting experience there was the 92nd Infantry Division was located in Fort Huachuca, Arizona. And a ________ we talked about was a part of our training program up in the Huachuca Mountains. And that was an interesting experience too, being out in the middle of nowhere in Fort Huachuca. And when you -- many of my friends have gone back there and they say you wouldn't resemble the place. They had two trains a day into Fort Huachuca; one in the morning and one in the evening. And that was it. It was so isolated that we couldn't -- I think we only got one leave a year because they didn't have transportation for that. And here you were with a division of soldiers. And believe me, very much like prison in the sense that it wasn't co-ed because they had to actually transport people, ladies for the dances they had on the post. And then somewhere along the line too, they had nurses in the hospital there. And then they -- they had -- I think two companies of WACs, female soldiers there. And incidentally, they had a good time. They had a very good time. And -- but that was the experience, and this was in 1942.

Thomas Healy:

So you just felt that -- you just felt -- what I was going to ask you was the black community in those days, what kind of -- after -- after the start of World War 2, Pearl Harbor, if it had the same effect as on the Caucasian community because you were saying it didn't really. It was --

James Gilliam:

Well, I think part of the problem was that the black community kind of felt this rejection very keenly. But that was pretty much the pattern of life at that time. And interestingly enough, I was not drafted into the -- into the military. I went there as a result of a fit of anger about my treatment there with the old age and survivors insurance, which is now a key part of the Social Security Administration which was located at the Candle Building. And downstairs in the Candle Building was a restaurant, and no black folks could go in there to eat. And I became an active member of the union. And so they -- the Caucasian members of this union joined with us black people to protest the segregation down there in this restaurant. And they got dragged out by the police just like the black protesters did. And it was after one of these episodes that I got so annoyed, and I went out to lunch. And I just went right over to the recruiting station and joined the Army.

Thomas Healy:

Well, tell me this story about you with the -- when you were there and the guy you were working for and just because you were black you got this job. The other guy got the other job. That's why you really went downstairs because you were doing all the work and he was taking all the credit.

James Gilliam:

And he was taking all the credit and getting all the promotions, and this is true. And interestingly enough, the -- what was happening was brought to the conscious level by a young white worker from West Virginia who looked at me and said, Jim, why are you helping this guy to look good? Let him go for himself. And so she had a real impact on me. And when I stopped doing things, the overall supervisor called me over to his desk and told me that I wasn't being cooperative. And I said, oh. He said, no. You're not being cooperative. You have no team spirit. So I told him to go to hell.

Thomas Healy:

And that's when you --

James Gilliam:

And that's when I went downstairs and went over to the recruiting station and joined the Army.

Thomas Healy:

So tell me a little bit about that, joining the Army, what you did, why you didn't join the Navy.

James Gilliam:

Well, the only branch of service where you had a -- what I would call a reasonable chance of advancing was the Army. At that time I was not aware of any people outside of the mess department. And if you got a promotion, you might go to the top of the enlisted ranks by acting right and acting good. Certainly nothing in the Marine Corps. And also, at that time, you had the United States Army Air Force. And it was around that time there was some ripples going. I would --

Thomas Healy:

You want some water?

James Gilliam:

No. I'm fine. About this group in Tuskegee becoming regular Army people. And it was at that time I was still in college. And they had a -- to promote that, they had a road interview team. And this interview team came to Morgan College and interviewed those people who indicated an interest in becoming affiliated with a union -- I mean, with a unit like that. And I was one of the people selected. But I never went beyond that point simply because they discovered I was color-blind, you know. Then they took -- they sent me to Jefferson Barracks, Missouri. And I didn't discover until I got to Jefferson Barracks, Missouri that I was still in a very selected group, a group of a selected based on your intelligence tests, and so forth. And these people were supposed to be the first technicians, airway traffic controllers, mechanics, et cetera, et cetera in the Air Force. And so for whatever reasons they had, they didn't select me to go to Tuskegee and probably -- and I'm not sure if they even knew I was color-blind. I think it was a -- issued a _______ test, which was a test that here, with a lot of little dots in it, all of which if you're not color-blind, formed a number like a nine or a six or whatever the case. But I couldn't pass that. But they offered me an opportunity to still become an officer. And at that time I was a staff sergeant. And I was offered an opportunity to go to Fort Benning, Georgia and to become commissioned _______ into the office of which I did and which was a rather difficult experience, you know, to see all of the people in your class, whites going out in the evening and socializing, doing what needed to be done, and you couldn't go. And the clubs on the post were highly segregated, and so that wasn't easy. It wasn't easy at all. And it was at that time that they were forming the 92nd Division. And I can recall graduating one of three black candidates in the class. They took us in the dormitory. The three of us lived together in a room upstairs. All the whites just lived downstairs. And my recollection it was Class 289. And it really did us a favor, in a way, because the three of us really bonded. We became lifelong friends. And actually, we all finished, but easily about one half of the other classmates of mine who happened to be white never did it, never made it. And this pattern of segregation showed itself right on just about everywhere that you could look around and see at that time, and it wasn't subtle. It was very obvious. For example, when I finished officers candidate school, a young guy by the name of Jack Nash, he was a great football player from University of Indiana. Said, Jim, when we go up to Atlanta to get the training, why don't you go with us? Because we needed five people to really reduce the cost of the taxi cab at that particular ____________ Atlanta. And when I came out with the other four guys, the cab driver said, uh-uh. You can't ride in my cab. And so Jack Nash and the other guy said, well, if he can't ride, we're not going. And so the guy said, well, okay. What the hell. Let's go. And I got in the cab with him. And going up to Atlanta the guys wanted to stop and get something to eat and what have you. And me, knowing what the story was, I would sit in the taxi cab until the cab driver one day had wanted to stop. Said, hell, come on. You can go in and eat with us. And I looked at him. He said, no. It's okay. And we went in there, and I sat down. And it just so happened that the owner of the restaurant was his girlfriend. And so I went in to eat. And at that time, that was a good experience. And at that time when we got to Atlanta, there was a door for whites and a door for black folks, coloreds -- excuse me -- was the terminology. And so here we were going to fight a war. And we get there to the railroad station and we were separated. And then the other part of the thing too, the trains at that time was segregated. And the car that the people of color rode in was right behind the engine. And -- but that's -- that's -- that's the way life was at that time. Incidentally, that was one of the driving forces for me doing some of the things that I do right now. And I don't intend to change it. It was a good experience for me, a good learning experience.

Thomas Healy:

Okay. So tell me, now you're an officer's candidate. You got in -- you got into your outfit, right? Then did you go overseas?

James Gilliam:

Oh, yeah. The -- the -- I was assigned to go to Fort Huachuca, and I went there in -- I was assigned to H Company of the 365th Infantry, and that was a story in and of itself. I had a company commander who was black, which at that rank was really unusual as far as even the 92nd Division was concerned. The story I've heard, which I don't know if it's completely accurate, but based on what happened, the story was that General Allman (ph), E.M. Allman, a major general who was commander general of the 92nd Infantry Division is alleged to have put the word that -- that no black officer would get promoted as long as there was a white officer eligible. And that was the history of the 92nd. The enlisted personnel, all black, the officers calvary was missed with all of the highest -- high ranks made up of white officers. And the -- you had -- in Fort Huachuca, you had a black officers club and a white officers club. And the thing we laugh about is the fact that a group of black officers, after a couple of drinks, decided that evening that they wanted to go swimming, and the only pool there was at the white officers club. And so they went swimming at -- in that pool. And the next day they had the pool drained. But that's the way it was. The living accommodations were very much segregated. The -- you had a few black officers living up on the old post, but for some reason that I'm not very clear about were assigned to the post command, and they _______ live up there. And incidentally, when we got there, there was a table for -- in the mess hall that was -- there was tables; one table where the black officers would sit and eat and another table for the white officers until a few brave souls, and that included me, said this ain't gonna work. So we all went in there and sat at the white table and that broke it up. That ended that kind of behavior pattern. I guess, if I had to say what problems I had as a military person, the problem was I had two wars to fight. I had the traditional war to fight as a soldier would, and then I had the race war, which was very, very interesting. And as I reflect back on it now and compare the two experiences, my experience in World War 2 and my experience in the Korean War, quite different, but still in many ways very similar. And this was -- in the Korean War when I went in, it was 1950. And patterns of segregation still existed. So much so that when I got out of the military for the Korean War and I went back to Baltimore, I was a member of the National Guard then. And the ______ general of the state of Maryland at that time was a guy by the name of Reckon (ph), General Reckon. And he refused -- even though the Army said that there would be no more segregation -- he refused to integrate the Merlin National Guard. And then I wouldn't join the National Guard anymore, and I just boycotted it and called the preliminary officers to have a strike, which we did. And it was shortly after that that the Merlin National Guard became integrated. But I just wouldn't want to do it. And one thing that was for sure at that time because I resigned my commission as a tactic, they couldn't put me in jail. They couldn't court martial me. And to be perfectly honest with you, I wasn't going to do it anyway.

Thomas Healy:

What year was that?

James Gilliam:

This was in 19 -- 1953. 1953.

Thomas Healy:

Tell me a little bit about when you went overseas.

James Gilliam:

A great experience. I'll never forget my -- my first R and R leave. R and R stands for rest and recuperation. And when I came in off the front lines, and I made the decision that I would go to Rome. And when my driver brought me up in front of this hotel, which, incidentally, reminded me of the Belvedere Hotel in Baltimore where I used to wait tables and where I could never come in the front door. And when my jeep came up to the front door, I got out. And this doorman, who happened to be Italian, took my bags, took me in the hotel. And when I got there, the assistant manager on duty told me, I'm sorry, sir, but your room is not ready. But in the meantime, why don't you just go over to the bar and get a drink. And I looked at him, and I said, this is a hell of a new experience. And so I went in the bar and got me a -- not one drink -- I got me several drinks. And I made my mind up right then and there that this would be my life. So it was a good experience, which, once again, was very instructional and very motivational for me. And I often tell that story a lot. The same kind of experience happened at the -- it was a hotel in Ocean City, Maryland that I used to work at when I was in college getting myself through college, Mayflower Hotel. And we couldn't come in the front door and what have you. And I'll never forget my experience with the Merlin Tuberculosis Association. I became president of it, and we had a convention, and of all places at the Mayflower Hotel. And this fellow walked through the front door. So I've had a lot of good -- what I call -- front door experiences, which are pretty good.

Thomas Healy:

How do you think it is now?

James Gilliam:

Huh?

Thomas Healy:

How do you think it is now? The service.

James Gilliam:

The what?

Thomas Healy:

How is the service now?

James Gilliam:

Well, I think the service right now is, of course, much improved. In fact, anything is better. But I think the service right now, if anything, is pretty much reflective of the kind of society we live in today. And it's helped me to develop an opinion that -- that racism, which still exists today in many instances is cultural too. And the thing that's very frightening of anything of a cultural nature, it takes a while for that to occur, which means that as far as the future is concerned, it's going to take a while to get rid of. But the one thing that I have learned is the way to combat that is to be in charge. I know I've learned that a long time ago, is to be in charge. And if you're in charge like this, people will be less prone to jerk you around.

Videographer1:

How we doing?

Videographer1:

Good.

James Gilliam:

He was over there asleep. No. I was just kidding.

Videographer1:

It was so interesting to listen to somebody from your perspective and what you went through. I think it's very touching to listen to. I mean --

James Gilliam:

Thank you.

Videographer1:

In Italy they were, like, okay. So why don't you have a drink at the bar.

James Gilliam:

And I got news for you.

Videographer1:

Somebody from my generation, that's unbelievable.

James Gilliam:

But I can tell you, that built kind of a motivational thing to me. I think it's the thing that motivated me to want to be a founder of an Urban League here. And I'm saying this to you, that I've been asked to be the chairman of the diversity commission ________. And the good feature about that was there wasn't a damn _______ because can't nobody fire me anymore. That means a lot.

Videographer1:

That's unbelievable.

James Gilliam:

Huh?

Videographer1:

The black soldiers that were sent into World War 2 had to travel in different trains, had different accommodations, different sort of things. Isn't it amazing? And then they came back and they still didn't have voting rights and all.

James Gilliam:

Let me ask you this: How many -- how many other black veterans have you interviewed for this?

Videographer1:

Probably five.

James Gilliam:

Were they as graphic as me?

Thomas Healy:

Oh, yeah.

James Gilliam:

Were they?

Thomas Healy:

Yeah. Doctor -- the guy that was in Tuskegee who was from Prompton (ph) downstate. He's a teacher.

James Gilliam:

Okay.

Thomas Healy:

It was good because that's all part of it. That's what these kids don't know. I mean, you don't --

James Gilliam:

Oh, yeah.

Thomas Healy:

I mean, I'm 60. And I can remember right here when we started, colored, white, drinking water, white drinking fountains, bathrooms --

James Gilliam:

That's correct.

Thomas Healy:

I mean, I can remember that and always wondered why. Because, you know, my dad, the way we were raised it was like everybody -- it was everybody was the same. I mean, it was just your skin was darker than my skin or whatever else. But we were always -- we were always -- had respect and respect for everybody.

James Gilliam:

Well, you had people, a lot of people like that. But in a way, they were powerless. They were powerless to do anything. And in many cases, they knew what side of their bread was buttered, and they responded accordingly. I think that the union movement helped a lot. The union movement helped an awful lot. This group of folks that came to the Candle Building and joined forces with those black militants were strong unionists from New York City, and they were -- they were very serious about that. A lot of them picked up the title of being communists. I remember that. But they also introduced me to the labor movement, the very meaningful constructive way. We would have social events, parties, and what have you, and everybody with whoever they were because they liked them. They were friends. It wasn't one of those things where it was arm's length and what have you. And -- but a good experience. And I think this is a -- in spite of the pain that existed at that time, as I reflect back on things, it actually made me stronger. It didn't make me weaker. It made me stronger. And, in other words, I developed an, I ain't gonna let the bastards get me down type of attitude, and it's paid off for me. I have found that -- that it's better sometimes to have respect than for people necessarily to like you. And that's the way I am, and that's the way I'm going to be all the time. And I just didn't become that way. A little lady by the name of Pocahontas Lipscomb was the person who taught me a lot, you know. She -- when I would come home moaning and groaning about something that happened, she would look at me and say, well, what did you do about? And I said, what do you mean? She said, what did you do? Did you take it or what did you say? And she insisted she would not talk to me if I didn't do anything. And at the age of six, I would go with her on marches, on marches against discrimination -- excuse me. That's right. Marches against segregation. And she would take me by the hand and say, come on. We're going to take a walk. And it's very, very vivid in my mind, these walks. The first one was with a five-and-dime known as Tommy Tuckers on Pennsylvania Avenue which was located in a black community. But they would only hire whites to work at Tommy Tuckers. And then this black minister came down and his name was Castoni (ph). And he would put a tent up at the corner of Pennsylvania Avenue and MacMatthew (ph), which was a half a block from Tommy Tuckers. And he came down there for two years only. And on the second time down he said, this is not right. And he rallied the people in that community to go ahead and boycott the store. And we weren't able to. But I think it developed a bond there with the churches and other leaders there to know what their potential could be. And so we all learned from somewhere. But the person who meant the most to me in terms of the learning thing was Ms. Pocahontas.

Thomas Healy:

All right. Tell me what you would say -- what's your message to the future generations?

James Gilliam:

Which generation? Which generation? Black, white, or both?

Thomas Healy:

The generation --

James Gilliam:

Well --

Thomas Healy:

Everybody.

James Gilliam:

I think the message here is that it's very important that there by equity. That all people ought to be treated alike and be left to rise to whatever heights their capacity tells them to be. And don't block anybody. Don't -- don't -- don't block anybody. I personally refused to be blocked. You know, I'm not going to take it. But the people got to realize that there is some _________. Unfortunately, I detect among the young people a kind of a me first syndrome. And this seems to be especially true in the white community, and it's the me first syndrome. And it can work to everybody's disadvantage, and in particular, their disadvantage. In other words, they're not going to go any further in doing the things that needs to be done unless they pull somebody else along. That was one of the reasons why, you know, I became very interested in forming an Urban League, was that these kind of disparaging situations in education and you name it, were too pronounced on a racial basis. And I said, it ain't gonna be this way. And the only thing I know how to do is what Ms. Pochy said when she asked me the question, what did you do about it? Well, I got some pretty good examples of that. The housing community, housing, the fair housing thing. Well, I think there's some pretty good examples, the Urban League with what it's trying to do. And I feel so much the better for having done these things. And I hope that the clock doesn't run out before I get a couple of more under my belt.

Thomas Healy:

Well, you've always -- you've always been -- I've always phrased it as you always speak softly but carry a big stick. And you're not -- you've always -- and I've seen you in negotiations and whatever. You're fair to both sides. You see both -- you talk both sides, and you try to find a good way, a good middle of the road for everybody. And, I mean, you've been noted for that forever and ever and ever and ever.

James Gilliam:

You get a good feeling from winning too. And you sometimes have to use whatever technique works best.

Thomas Healy:

But you're smooth. You're -- you're not -- you're not screaming, yelling, hollering we got to do this, we got to do that. You work -- you just keep working. You just like to, you know, you just work and keep working and keep working until they'll come around your way, and you know that. And you've done it a number of times.

James Gilliam:

Well, let's put it this way. I've been lucky. I've been lucky in I've had good people who believe in what I believe in irrespective of race, color, creed.

Thomas Healy:

Absolutely.

James Gilliam:

And I'm going to tell you something, and this might be a harsh way to put it. But the white community better wake up because it ain't gonna be too long where they're not going to be the majority. If you stop and think about the Hispanic community, and the thing that I really hope is that this bond between the Hispanic community and the black community become very real. And if that happens, some changes are going to be made. And I hope I live long enough to be a part of it. That's it.

Thomas Healy:

That's it.

James Gilliam:

What else you want me to --

Thomas Healy:

What else?

Videographer1:

I think it's very good what we've got today.

James Gilliam:

Huh?

Videographer1:

It's very good. What we have, it's something that we haven't heard that well before.

Videographer1:

It hasn't been -- he's --

James Gilliam:

I don't hear good. No. I really don't.

Videographer1:

You're like I said before. You're -- you sort of smooth things out. But you explain it out.

James Gilliam:

Okay.

Thomas Healy:

They're just not a lot of words. There are a lot of meanings. And sitting and listening to you, as I have for years, you're -- it's you. I mean, it's no bullshit. I mean you are not bullshit. It's like you say what's on your mind. You speak what's on your mind. You're fair about what's on your mind.

James Gilliam:

I like to think so.

Thomas Healy:

I -- you are.

James Gilliam:

Okay.

Thomas Healy:

You are. And I think -- I mean, I think the whole community is like that with you. The people are your real friends in the community --

James Gilliam:

Thank you.

Thomas Healy:

-- they are.

James Gilliam:

But you know, the -- you get rewards in strange ways. This recent experience of things being named after me, that's really nice. But the thing that is even nicer was the process. This was a choice of the people. It was a choice. And I mean, I feel very, very blessed by having sent out messages that made that possible. And these are people that work with me and for me.

Thomas Healy:

Right.

James Gilliam:

It makes me wonder sometimes that in the _______ if you find too many people liking me, it means -- it means you're not doing your job.

Thomas Healy:

No. No. Because you work with people. You don't work -- you work like my dad did. I mean, my dad, he worked with everybody, and, I mean, with the laborers, with the carpenters to whoever, government, to everybody. And he just wanted to be a part of it, and that's the way you are. You're the same way. I mean, it's --

James Gilliam:

Well, that's -- that's good. He was a good guy.

Thomas Healy:

Dad was always fair.

James Gilliam:

That's -- but that's the only thing that everybody really wants is to --

Thomas Healy:

As far as you knew -- but you knew with dad, there wasn't any bullshit he was putting out. You know he was _______ bullshit. But when he got serious, I mean, he meant -- you knew he meant what he said. I mean, it was going to be -- if he said I'm going to be in that corner of that room tomorrow at 3:30 and we're going to settle it, he was in that corner of the room tomorrow morning, you know.

James Gilliam:

Right.

Thomas Healy:

And that's the way you are too. So --

Videographer1:

Is that all right?

Videographer1:

Okay.

Videographer1:

Okay. See how easy that was?

 
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  October 26, 2011
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