Your Neighbors & Friends: Bob Cusick, South Beach

An occasional series about the people at Central Lincoln who strive to provide you with reliable and affordable electricity in the spirit of publicly-owned power.

On weekdays, Bob Cusick cares for our fleet of bucket trucks, “digger derricks” (trucks with an auger to dig holes for utility poles), equipment trailers, and even a boat– to serve  customers who live on a lake.   Nights and weekends, though, he is caring for people – from youngsters needing direction, to fellow church members who love how his guitar playing enhances their worship.

“I work with middle schoolers and teenagers to help them  see how their lives are important,” Bob says.  “I talk to them about how it is crucial not to cheat, lie, or steal, and the importance of forgiveness.  It’s a blessing to be able to do that, to show them their lives have purpose and meaning.  They tell me, ‘You talk to us like we’re people, not kids’ and they’re right.  I show them I respect them.”

Bob plays guitar on Sundays, and again on Tuesday nights at services for Spanish-speakers.  “It’s a good thing musical notes are universal, because I can’t read a word of Spanish!” he laughs.  “The fun part is we have an amazing 13-year old interpreter who translates English into Spanish, and Spanish into English, so English speakers are coming on Tuesday nights, too, because they appreciate what they’re hearing and learning.  Sometimes those services go late because people are so into it, and I don’t get home until after 11 p.m. on a work night, but it’s worth it.”

Another volunteer passion of Bob’s is leading an annual fundraiser recycling old Christmas trees.  Thanks to his leadership, thousands of dollars have been raised to help needy families and seniors with winter heating bills:  “I was raised to believe ‘it is better to serve, than to be served.’  My mom was a nurse; she taught me that,” he says.  “And I try to follow her example.”

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