By Maggie Martin
[The Times, Shreveport, Louisiana – September 13, 2016]
Gary Lash is CEO of the YMCA here.
His duties spread all over the area from overseeing operations at Camp Forbing, Broadmoor YMCA and the downtown YMCA and fundraising for a new $17.5 million YMCA on 200 acres on Preston Avenue. So, Lash’s time is pretty much tied into work and doing things with his family, which includes wife Renee and sons Dr. Tyler Lash and his family, of Winston-Salem, N.C., and Dr. Austin Lash and family, of Tyler, Texas. The unit includes four grandchildren, ages, 7 months to three years.
When he had a few minutes, Lash sat down to talk about his necessary luxuries.
“Growing up in a small town, my life revolved around church and school and that has carried over in my adult life. Psalm 50:15 means a lot to me. It says: ‘Call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver In time of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.’ It has rescued me in times of trouble. “My Utmost for His Highest” by Oswald Chambers is a devotional book which gets me started for the day. (An aside: In World War I, the book was used in YMCA tents in Zeitown, Egypt.) We go every year to a friend’s cabin in Montana. One day while walking on a trail, we ran across this piece of birch bark lying on the trail. I brought it home and when things get tough, this bark reminds me, of the trail and how close it is to God. This key on an orange Kubota keychain fits a Kubota mower. I get on the mower sometimes to mow grass for the YMCA and to get away. There is no phone to answer and I can clear my mind and do a lot of planning. I keep this silver and red level, which belonged to my dad, the late J.T. Lash,of Cotton Valley, in my truck and it reminds me that he taught me to keep all this — family, work God — in balance. Not too much of any of it.”