Judge is profile in courage

Published 9:46 am Thursday, February 4, 2016

In the 1960s there was a Pulitzer prize-winning book by President John Kennedy called “Profiles in Courage,” detailing the political courage of individuals who put their careers on the line to uphold their convictions.

In fact, the Kennedy Library gives out a Profiles in Courage award each May to honor those living by those standards today.

Lawrence County has its own Profile in Courage in the person of Lawrence County Common Pleas Judge D. Scott Bowling. Not for political courage. But for the day-to-day showing up at the very toughest of times a person could endure. And doing it with grace and intelligence.

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That is because Judge Bowling has ALS, or what is more commonly called Lou Gehrig’s Disease. That is a progressively degenerative disease that hits the cells in the brain and spinal cord. The disease can hit randomly or it can be inherited.

Its effects are debilitating. In the judge’s case, he can no longer lift his arms. An experience that would cause most people to cave.

But not the judge, who, although needing considerable help in accomplishing basic activities, not only shows up each day to work, but seemingly has the attitude that nothing is really wrong.

Recently he wrote a book about his belief in God and his illness entitled, “Does God Want Me Dead?” What could be a self-pitying autobiography is remarkably upbeat showing how strong faith can get one through practically anything.

Judge Bowling, you are the example we all should emulate.