My inspiring grandparents

Eric Zelezniak, EMC Guest Writer

Growing up, my parents worked long hours at the hospital and at the police station, so as a result I spent most of my childhood with my grandparents. My grandparents have taught me most of my life lessons and continued to shape me into the man I am today. They are my inspirations and that’s the simplest way to say it. 

My grandfather was in the National Guard for 20+ years and worked his way up the ranks becoming sergeant major. He was in charge of feeding all the soldiers, which can be seen in his civilian life now when my whole family has leftovers after family dinners. My grandfather is one of the few people in my life that I admire because even after all the years of working he still enjoys volunteering at different places of need. Growing up my grandfather lived in a small town in Binghamton where he shared a home with many brothers and sisters so when I complain about not having the latest baseball equipment he chimes in with “When I was younger we had one bat and a few gloves that the whole neighborhood shared.¨ My favorite classes in school have always been business classes and one of the reasons that I never realized was because my grandfather graduated from college with a business degree so I´ve been around business my whole life. 

Now you might think, well your grandfather is so amazing so your grandmother must be incredible!  Honestly, there isn’t a word strong enough to describe her. My grandmother is nothing short of a saint and growing up, everyone in the community knew it. If I don’t wear a coat to school on a cold day she gets so worried, and the next night she’ll stay up thinking about it.  During the winter my grandmother will constantly ask if I’m wearing a coat. My grandmother worked many jobs but if you asked I bet she would say her favorite ones are currently volunteering at the City Mission and Sunnyview in Schenectady. She loves being able to help people. My favorite part of summer was getting to spend everyday with my grandparents because my grandmother was my best friend. One of my favorite memories is in Little League I would hit so many homeruns, but my grandmother never saw one even though she was at every game. She would either be in the bathroom or getting my brother something to eat. So after all the homeruns missed when I was 11 years old, I was playing a game against the Devil Cats in Troy when I sent one over the left field fence with my grandmother sitting in the front row watching. No one ever came close to my grandmother growing up and honestly still no one does. She has taught me so much and has engraved school first in my head. One of her favorite sayings throughout my many achievements in baseball was “Remember the song ‘Be Humble and Kind’ by Blake Shelton.” She never wanted my head to get too big.

My grandparents are my favorite people in the whole wide world especially because I didn´t ever see my Dad’s side of the family. I try to spend all the time I can with them so during Covid, I picked up golf.  For the past two years I played over 100 rounds with my grandfather. We are planning a golf vacation for February break. I do everything I can to see my grandmother which includes going to her dog’s obedience training. Even if  I’m not having fun, I’m thankful for any time spent with my grandmother. My grandparents taught me one of the most important lessons you can learn in life and that is to believe most people are good and keep your friends close. 

I could go on and on about how amazing my grandparents are because they truthfully really are the best. They are truthfully angels put on this earth to try and make the world a little better and that they have. The lasting impact my grandparents leave on anyone they meet is truthfully amazing. To see the way they treat my friends like family just shows how caring they are . So I’ll leave you with a few words that my grandparents engrave in my head, which is to treat the world the way you want to be treated, stay humble and kind, and make lifelong friends. (Also, Pops if you’re reading this I can’t wait for our trip, and yes Grandma I wore a coat to school today.)