They called him “The Junk Man” because his hobby was to pick up junk and restore it. For Robert Godwin Sr., the satisfaction of restoring all things junk was married into the life of leisure that retirement brings, which often found the former foundry worker sitting behind a fishing pole at his favorite spot. What comes to the fore as the stories continue to surface of this man is that above all he was a man of unparalleled devotion to God, his family, and his fellow man.
It is said the one man’s junk is another man’s treasure. In an instant this past Easter weekend, one man’s junk senselessly snuffed out the treasure of the Godwin family, their Father. As a Nation watched in horror as the ever burgeoning evil of our society retched itself once again upon the innocent, somehow in the midst of the rage a flicker of hope has emerged.
Robert Godwin Sr. has left behind the greatest treasure a man could hope for, the legacy of a God-fearing family. A family who inexplicably could love the junk that destroyed their Father and in his example seek to restore it. To love the unlovable and forgive the unthinkable is the message of Easter in that while we were yet sinners, junk, Christ died for us so that we could be a treasure to a King.
In all that is darkness around us, our foundations crumbling to dust a midst the disdain of future generations and as we arm ourselves against the ever encroaching night, let not despair overwhelm us for I have seen a beacon of hope on the streets of Cleveland in a junk man’s treasure. If there still remains a people who can love in the face of hate then perhaps the America of old still lives. I hold up Robert Godwin Sr as the standard for all that is good still in my beloved Nation. I hold him up perhaps, yes, in desperation as the shining example of the greatest treasure a man can have, a Godly legacy.