Written by Phil Cerroni
By Phil Cerroni
If you read the news with any regularity, it is easy to be caught up in the scandals and escaped convicts that crouch on the front pages. No matter how compelling these stories may be, however, our fascination soon turns to dread.
But all is not doom and gloom, for there are American heroes of the old breed living among us; although you'll never read about them in the paper, and they are seldom talked about except around the dinner table and at select gatherings of the Freemasons or Knights of Columbus.
everyday heroes by presenting the Community Builder Award annually since its institution in 1991. The award honors those who, although they are not Freemasons, are shining examples of Masonic principles, striving far from the reach of the limelight to improve the lives of their neighbors.The Freemasons make it a point to honor these
One such man is thirty-year IPD veteran, John Schingle, who on Feb. 9 received the Community Builder Award from the John V. Callan Dalite Lodge for his record of service on the police force and his zealous efforts with local charities. Here are just a few of the stories in which Schingle went above and beyond the call of duty to make a significant impact on the lives of Metroplex residents.
For years, Schingle was heavily involved in Irving’s Special Olympics team. Besides coaching and traveling with the team, he spent his spare time working at Red Lobster, serving an unending flow of conventioneers their endless shrimp scampi and using the money he earned to help support the team.
Billy Davis related a story that had a significant impact on the Masons’ decision to select Schingle for the award. While participating in Make-A-Wish, Schingle came across the case of two children who had been promised by their father, before his murder, that he would take them to Six Flags. Although a relatively simple request to grant, it was financially impossible for the family to do so. Because neither of the children was terminally ill, Make-A-Wish was unable to provide them with tickets. Undeterred, Schingle enlisted the help of the Irving Police Association in order to procure tickets for the siblings.
During the Christmas season, Schingle makes it a point to visit the Scottish Rite Hospital and raises money to buy the children gifts. Besides visiting sick children, Shingle also participates in the Fire Department’s Blue Christmas, this past year raising funds to feed over three hundred families who would have otherwise gone hungry during the holidays.
Lastly, Schingle continues to be heavily involved in Irving’s Little League, coaching, fundraising and even playing an instrumental role in bringing international teams to North Texas for competitions. Schingle is not resting on his laurels, however, and is actively working to integrate little league teams into the public school system. His service is not flashy, aimed at winning gold plated medals, but it untiringly strives to make our community a better place in which to live.
Even if they don't want the accolades, we seek out red-blooded bastions of American virtue like John Schingle in order to give them the recognition they deserve. Because, even if they are too humble to accept it willingly, it still makes us feel a wee bit safer.