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  • Writer's pictureSamantha Alcaraz

Dean Spencer – Shorewood Senior Living

Updated: Dec 2, 2019

Dean Spencer at Shorewood Senior Living

Dean Spencer - Education and Work

“What would you like to know? I grew up in Eugene and I stayed there until I was 19 and graduated from high school. And I was five years in Portland getting my B.A. degree and then four years in Oregon State getting my Masters. All those years I was working and taking not a quite full load of hours at school. And of course, a lot of different work experiences took me into manufacturing and then one time one of my school mates said, “Hey Spence! Come with me and go logging this Summer.”

Dean Spencer - Education and Work Part 2

“I thought okay, yeah alright that sounds good it pays good! I might lose my life but it… so I did a 10-hour day job and one Summer of logging that would be choker setting and blasting. I blasted stumps and shot up 2 tons of powder that summer and I discovered what choker setting and logging was all about. I guess I’ve always has just a curiosity about how things work. When I find out I just want to move on and find out about something else. I’ve never had a burning passion to do or to be anything in particular.”

Dean Spencer - Human Nature

“I’ve done a lot of things in life from being a teach in a school for secondary students in Sierra Leone (West Africa) to a lot of construction work in concrete, industrial arts and education. So, I enjoyed immensely my ten years in Sierra Leone. Learned a lot about people, you know. Even though people may seem to be quite different. I discovered in village setting that there is always the entrepreneur, always the village drunk, and the village thief and always people who are mentally ill. A revelation to me. Human nature Is pretty locked in.”

Dean Spencer - Mission Work in Sierra Leone, West Africa

“I had a great time in Sierra Leone in discovering another culture and the Methodist Board of Missions assigned me. They needed a teacher to really tear down an old shop and put up a new one and to do something for the print shop that had been there at the high school for many years. It was all hand set type and the type cases were all eaten up by termites. It was in a sad state of disrepair. The first three years that we were there was pretty much trying to figure out what comes next and making requests to the board of missions for funds to buy equipment and to get building materials.”

Dean Spencer - Sierra Leone Boarding School and My Children

“The laboring man, which was most of them, was making a dollar a day. So, school fees, say $10 for term was a huge burden. It was easier for our daughter who was older to get in high school than it was for our son to get into middle school. He has all of his boyhood friends were there in Sierra Leone because he had been in a missionary boarding school about 220 miles from us. We didn’t see him very often, maybe once a term. Our son really missed all of his boyhood friends. When we came back, we would do 3 years in Sierra Leone and then we would come back for the school year. We could get our kids in a whole school year in the U.S.”

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