The Men of Iron Minute

by Chad Zueck | Director of Content Creation

Faded Paint and Lasting Memories

I knew the world’s most interesting man. He was tall, strong, and commanded respect. His word was his bond. He was my grandpa. Grandpa could work on anything or do just about anything, and he was never afraid of a challenge. From paragliding into the islands of Japan in World War II or as an entrepreneur, his blood ran thick with strength and courage. However, growing old gracefully wasn’t in my grandfather’s DNA. His John Wayne demeanor made his hard exterior even harder as he lost his mind. This placed a heavy burden on the family, but we rallied to his aid. That’s what family does. We were beaten up by dementia but not defeated by this unwanted enemy.

Dementia didn’t stop grandpa from working in his woodshop, though. He had spent so much time in there that it must have created some deep neuropathways. During his last days, he would invite us grandkids into his shop to marvel at his creativity. The dust and dirt made it hard to breathe, and the mess made it hard to move. You never knew if you were going to step on a rusty nail or into a pile of grease, so just walking around was an adventure. Even so, when he invited you into his sanctuary, you went! The last time I walked into his sacred space was in 2015, shortly before he left this earth. He and I talked like old friends, and he invited me to take home one of his last creations, a birdhouse. The birdhouse was painted with old white paint that looked like it had lost its sheen decades before grandpa lost his memory. I walked away with a birdhouse, and most importantly, I walked away with a lasting memory. Dementia took a lot, but it gave something. Dementia gave me a better appreciation for every day I have with those that I love the most.


Every conversation matters. Every memory matters.
Every day matters. Make them count.


I will end with this quote from Theodore Roosevelt.
“People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”


Become a mentor.
Find a mentor.
Be a better man.

Contact our team today to find out how you can become a mentor, find a mentor and be a better man! And DO NOT forget to check out The Men of Iron Podcast – High Performance Living Feat. Dr. Erik Korem (EP. 82)