The Bond

Listen to this 'Talk of the Nation' topic

Drs. Sampson Davis, George Jenkins, and Rameck Hunt are "The Three Doctors", an inspiring blend of foresight, hard work, and perseverance. These character attributes were rare in their childhood neighborhood of Newark, NJ, where drugs, theft, and even violence were the rule of the land. But in high school, they made a promise — which they called "the pact" — to support one another through college and medical school, in an attempt to escape their roots. The road to success was arduous, but they got through it by leaning on each other. Now they're out with a new book, called The Bond, which chronicles their experiences growing up with absentee fathers. It underlies the importance of a father figure in a child's development. And they've started a foundation. Are you inspired by their story? Did you grow up in a similar situation? How did your childhood define who you are today?

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.

I wasn't estranged from my father as a youth, but I moved away after I got married and I could feel the emotion in this story after the boys reconnected with their father. Now that I have children of my own and live in a different state, I have found a creative way of reconnecting mith my father. We have started a blog together, www.thefireside.wordpress.com, and we talk about current events, recipes, family, whatever comes up. I urge everyone to do what works for them but find a way to either stay connected or get reconnected with their fathers.

Sent by bryan | 3:39 PM | 10-8-2007

I want to thank these gentleman, for raising issues I've been dealing with in recent years. I'm now 29, but I was the child of a teenage pregnancy raised by my loving, dedicated mother and without my paternal father. Her only mistake, as I can see, is trusting in an abusive husband for 12 years in my life, my example of what not to be. I knew this because of the male figures that always stood out to me, my three extraordinary uncles and loving grandfather. I was fortunate enough to grow up with these examples of both spectrums of fatherhood. Now that I am recently married, inheriting a nine year old daughter, I am left with these lessons face to face and how to apply them and how to learn from them. I also find the parenting of my strong-willed mother shining through. As I stand now, with eyes on me, fatherhood becomes a mix of whats learned and instinct. It is a roller coaster of emotions that has led to personal growth and a profound appreciation for my wife, my mother, and my uncles/grandfather. Life teaches us our needed lessons in such strange ways, I guess we all just need to keep our eyes open and we'll all find what we really need in life. Peace be with all of you.

Sent by Will Sandusky | 4:03 PM | 10-8-2007