Our member of the month for July, Bill Watson, has played multiple roles at the Y: member, employee and volunteer. When asked why he started coming to the Y, Bill says “I was getting old and out of shape, I was the original Pillsbury Dough Boy when I started coming to the Y. I knew I wouldn’t work out well by myself and that I would need a group environment. I also didn’t know what I was doing; I was starting brand new at 68 years old. When I started out I was just searching, I had no goals and no expectations. I met people and all the old hands showed me the machines and how to approach lifting. I made some good friends.”
When asked why he started lifeguarding at the Y, Bill says, “When I started swimming at the Y, I almost had to learn all over again. The first time I jumped in the pool, I could only do 3 lengths and I was done. I thought they were going to have to pull me out. Now I can swim 120 lengths of the pool with no problems. The Aquatics Director at the time asked me about becoming a lifeguard since I swam so much, and I decided to do it just to see if I was a good enough swimmer to pass the test. I opened up the pool for two or three years and met a lot of other swimmers while I was guarding.”
Bill also volunteers with our maintenance department. “I’ve always been a do-it-yourselfer and good with my hands. And because it has so much use, the Y needs a lot fixed!” Bill also takes our recycling to the Recycling Center several times a week.
Bill says his favorite thing about the Y is the camaraderie. He says he’s set in his routines working out with people, the friends he’s made here. He also enjoys watching others learn. At 76 he swims Monday, Wednesday and Friday and lifts weights and runs on Tuesday and Thursday. Bill says, “The YMCA philosophy makes it a good Christian environment and an easy place to come and work out in because you’re with very good people.”