CRANFORD, N.J. – Chris Donaghy, president and CEO of Residex, LLC, has a passion for history. As such, he understands the significant sacrifices that have been made by America’s service people over the years to defend and protect our nation’s freedoms.
Chris Donaghy (left) and Roland Rhodes.
And because he appreciates what’s at stake, Donaghy has made it his personal mission to honor the nation’s military through such corporate initiatives as the Achilles Project, which provides custom-designed bicycles for disabled veterans. “I’ve always felt a debt of gratitude to those who have served our country, particularly those who have given the last full measure of devotion by laying their life on the line for our country,” he said. “People aren’t always aware of what our veterans and their families have sacrificed to protect our freedoms because they tend not to talk about it very much upon returning home (from military service).”
Typical of this generation of “silent veterans” is Roland Rhodes, president of Rhodes Chemical Co., Kansas City, Mo. Three years after the attack on Pearl Harbor, Rhodes joined the U.S. Navy, serving at a naval hospital in Seattle, Wash., where he helped treat wounded veterans from the Pacific Campaign. “Roland is representative of an entire generation of Americans whose character was formed during World War II,” Donaghy observed. “They went overseas, did the job they were asked to do, and returned home – if they were lucky – never talking much about their war experiences.”
That didn’t make their stories any less remarkable, however. It just meant the world was deprived of first-person accounts of their war experiences, according to Donaghy, experiences that shaped the values of an entire generation of Americans.
So, 11 months ago, Donaghy set out to “give voice” to an entire generation of Americans who have been silent for too long by embarking on a multi-volume book project that recently culminated in the publication of Core Convictions: A Service Legacy. The 80-page book chronicles the life of Rhodes, an 82-year-old industry icon and treasurer of UPF&DA.
“I started with Roland because he is a World War II veteran with a remarkable story that I wanted to share with others in the industry,” Donaghy said. “I weave together Roland’s personal history with the history of the country, presented in a creative, yet non-revisionist fashion.”
The book chronicles Rhodes’ family struggles during the Great Depression; a youth spent delivering newspapers and watching newsreels at the Tivoli Movie Theater in Kansas City; and his decision to join the Navy at 17 rather than attend college and study medicine, a lifelong dream. Rhodes ultimately served in the U.S. Navy as a Hospital Corpsman and Pharmacist Mate before being honorably discharged and returning home to marry his high school sweetheart, Winona, in 1947.
“(I) Went in (the service) as a 17 year old kid and came out as a 19 year old man,” Rhodes told Donaghy during more than seven hours of interviews at NPMA PestWorld 2008.
“Roland was glad to serve our Nation,” Donaghy said, “but didn’t feel that he made a significant contribution to the war effort. As with most surviving veterans of WWII, they never saw their own actions and role in the war effort as being heroic or significant, and the only veterans they recognized as heroes were the ones who lost their lives or limbs in the effort.”
However, Donaghy says the so-called “Greatest Generation” has important lessons to share with future generations of Americans. “As another decade nears an end,” he wrote in the Epilogue to his book, “some 64 years after the end of WWII, there are only 2.5 million American WWII veterans remaining out of the 16 million who served the world in a time of great need. These remaining veterans have stories to tell, and their voices need to be heard. More importantly, these veterans have values to impart on younger generations so that Americans always remain free, and they understand why we must take a stand against world tyranny.”
Upon being presented a copy of the book at the recent RISE Convention, Rhodes said he was proud to be a part of the project. “It brought back a lot of memories,” he said, memories Donaghy hopes will inspire future generations of Americans.
To learn more about Core Convictions: A Service Legacy or to order a copy of the book, call 800/526-4222 or visit www.residex.com. Cost of the book is $30 and all proceeds go to the Achilles Freedom Team.
Residex Introduces Online Continuing Education to PMPs
Residex recently announced a partnership with Pested.com to bring online educational services to pest management professionals. “We are always looking for solutions that help our customer base run their business more efficiently,” said President Chris Donaghy. “We felt that Pested already had an excellent reputation for their online training as well as their customer service and this partnership made sense.”
Residex customers can take advantage of online training at a 30 percent discount by visiting www.shop.pested.com, according to a company press release. PMPs will be asked to input their Residex account number to receive the discount.
Pested.com offers a number of cutting-edge features for PMPs interested in online training including optional narration, the ability to pause and restart the program where the user left off, and 24-hour turnaround when mailing credits.
Kevin Hurley, owner of Pested, is a Board Certified Entomologist with more than 20 years experience in the urban pest management industry. He has instructed thousands of applicators across North America and currently serves the Westchester County Board of Legislators as the IPM Coordinator for all county-owned properties. The courses and resources offered by Pested.com have been developed by Hurley and enhanced by state regulators nationwide and a network of professional entomologists and business owners, according to Residex.
Courses are currently available in Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania. Pested has plans to add Virginia, Florida and other states in the future.