Here I sit at my computer thinking about Episode 43 of HatRadio! with my guest, Jeff Budd……a really important show!
What to write? How to approach it?
After all Jeff went through, as a kid, the stuff we fear the most – sexual abuse from a teacher. So, I’m mulling this over and thinking, ya he did, and we talked a lot about that time in his life, but you know what, like he told me, he doesn’t let that define him as a person. And I love that about Jeff because he means it, and you can just see he’s worked arduously to make that a reality.
So ladies and gent, let me introduce to you Jeff Budd, a beautiful person who speaks candidly about pretty much mostly everything including: coaching hockey in Israel and working with hockey’s greatest coach ever, Roger Nielson; standing proudly when Hatikvah, Israel’s National anthem was played in Belgrade after his team’s victory; working with children in Kitchener ensuring their environment is safe and loving….and a lot more.
And folks, meet my dear friend Jeff Budd who is from my hometown, Kitchener and who adored my parents, his Rabbi and Rebbetzin who were his mentors and teachers. Today Jeff is a stalwart leader in the synagogue responsible for many things including taking care of families who have lost a loved one, and participating in the Jewish rituals required to prepare a body for burial.
That’s Jeff Budd!!!
And yes listeners, Jeff’s grade 5 teacher sexually abused him. At 35 Jeff had him arrested and the judge, “a poster child for judicial malpractice” let the guy off for a damn stupid reason. Of course, this time is crucial in Jeff’s life, and he speaks openly and at length to describe the tribulations he went through, how his parents and family saved his life, but he’s says with confidence: this time in his life does not define him, at least not in whole.
I loved this schmooze with Jeff, and I did because he’s a marvelous story teller who laughs a lot (as I do) and he can take and give a joke. I loved this talk we shared because it’s clear Jeff appreciates life in only a way people do who have gone through great heartship and then later on dance to the music life plays for us.
When the interview was done I thought about splendor in our world in the guise of a human being, a guy who lives a quiet life today in Southern Ontario, who rose up from the stomped flora of a toxic garden to blossom into the most splendid of flowers one could imagine, standing tall, proud, handsome and inspirational.
Thanks Jeff and God bless you always. This Budds for you!
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