orangeleader.com (Orange, Texas)

Local News

June 15, 2014

Guillory: The man, father, provider and volunteer

ORANGE — Charles Guillory Sr. is a man who believes being a father takes hard work, dedication, love and respect.

Charles Guillory Sr. is a well-known individual within the community of Orange. He has served as a city councilman, an educator, a volunteer and, most of all, a family-man.

“Family is history,” Guillory said. “And family is important. A father’s job is to not only be a provider, but a trainer too. Even the Bible says you train up a child.”

Family is important for Guillory, 62. Along with his wife, Marsha, he enjoys his time with his 29-year-old son, Charles Wayne Guillory, Jr., and his 89-year-old father, Herman Guillory.

He knows every person’s circumstances are different, but that is part of the challenge every man must face on the road of life, whether as a child or an adult.

“I had a good childhood and learned a lot of things, but I took a lot of negative things and turned them into positives for my family,” he added. “I want my son to be able to do the same and turn his negatives into positives. Every father wants their child to do better for themselves and their own family.”

Guillory believes part of being a good father and provider is doing things which help your neighbor and your community. Although Guillory lost his bid for re-election to the Orange City Council this past May, he knows good things are on the horizon for the city he loves.

“I love Orange,” he said. “I appreciate the steady growth Orange is doing and I liked being part of that on council. We don’t have the hustle and bustle of major cities, but we are close enough to other cities to do what we need. There is a lot happening here in Orange and the future looks bright.

“The children are our future and we need to incorporate things here to keep them in Orange or to bring them back,” he added. “I’m looking for big things in Orange.”

Guillory occupies much of his time during the school year as a substitute teacher in the West Orange-Cove Consolidated Independent School District and typically works at West Orange-Stark Middle School.

“My ground rule with all students is respect,” Guillory explained. “I respect you and you respect me, and we will have a great day.”

Along with the typical school work each student must learn in class, Guillory often provides a life education as well by having discussions with those in his class when warranted.

“We talk about life lessons,” he said. “If you don’t like the life you are in, then get out of it and start your own cycle and make it a positive. I tell them I wasn’t born with a silver spoon in my mouth and its up to them on how they want to live. There’s only two choices they have to know how to make. The right choice and the wrong choice.”

Guillory knows he has made a positive impact on many of the children because when he randomly runs into the students in town or at a store, they always want to come up and talk to him.

“To me, they are my children,” he continued. “If I see them in Walmart, they come say hi. That is where the respect comes from. I like to give back and I feel I have been very blessed.”

Another way Guillory likes to give back is through his volunteer work with the Julie Rogers Gift of Life program. He has volunteered with the organization several years at the free prostrate cancer screenings in Orange, and, through this volunteer work, his life was saved in the process.

“It was ironic how it was detected,” he said. “I got checked while I was volunteering and discovered it. I had no symptoms. None. I couldn’t believe it. I never worried about getting checked. Now I’m a strong volunteer.”

Guillory’s doctor in Orange referred him to a specialist in Nederland, who, in turn, referred him to another doctor at M.D. Anderson Hospital in Houston who was the top person in his field in robotic surgery.

“I’ve been cancer free for three-and-a-half years,” he stated. “The life saver is early detection. Just go get checked starting at age 40. The numbers of men who are getting checked every year is going up, and that’s a great thing. It’s not a man thing either. It’s a life and death thing.”

Always with a kind word or a thoughtful suggestion, Guillory offers anyone who will listen some helpful advice he learned and followed at a young age.

“Build yourself a foundation,” Guillory explained. “A house without a good foundation will fall. Acquire a good education and get a good job and start your retirement savings early. You don’t get everything overnight, it takes time. When you obtain one goal, set yourself a higher goal. You will be surprised what you can do.”

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