If you’re like me you have been born and raised in Rockford. I went to Barbour Elementary School, Flinn Middle School, Auburn High School and Regional Learning Center. I am a product of District 205. I am a product of the southside of Rockford. My first job was at One Stop Pharmacy on Marchesano Drive. With all that being said, why when I go out of town and tell people I’m from Rockford, they like “you are really from Rockford?”.
A month ago I attended a charity basketball game in Harvey, Illinois. As I drive though this city, all I was thinking that this town makes Rockford look great. I felt like I was on the westside of Rockford with nicer streets. Then I come to hear that alot of people from Chicago won’t step foot in Harvey. As bad of a reputation that it has, the people from there have pride. All the former professional athletes from there represent there city.
What does Rockford represent? That is the million dollar question. Are you proud to say your from Rockford? Be honest. Chances are your not because when I was recently went to appear on the Steve Harvey Show, I was almost ashamed. All people talked about were all the shootings and crime. I live in this city but yet when your on the inside, it doesn’t stick out that much. Someone brought up how “we can never have a place to have some fun and casual drink without the place getting shot up.”
What does Rockford need to improve? More leaders, more positive reinforcement and becoming united.
Let’s think about the kids. “I believe the children are our future, teach them well and let them lead the way” as the late great Whitney Houston said. It starts with all of us over 18 years old and trickles down. How can we expect are kids to care if we don’t? They follow our lead you know. The last generation had manners and quite frankly that’s what we need. We need a blast from the past. Kids were afraid to disappoint their parents or having to grab a switch of the tree! My dad always told me when I was wrong and I thank him for that. He wasn’t my buddy nor best friend, he was my FATHER!
I challenge you reading this article and you reside in Rockford to help make a difference in your community because at the end of the day it represents you for the rest of your life. I dare you to hold yourself more accountable to your city and with more class. I double dare you to think about your kid’s future because at this rate, Rockford will be in the top 5 in the U.S. in crime. I wanted had thought long and hard about what I could do to help…..