Forty years sober

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Chico, Calif., ARP honors George Walker.

Left to right: Captain Darren Stratton, George Walker and Captain Courtney Stratton.

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build…I have seen the burden God has laid on men. He has made everything beautiful in its time (Ecclesiastes 3:1-3, 10-11).

Forty years of sobriety was cause for celebration at the Chico, Calif., Adult Rehabilitation Program (ARP) when George Walker commemorated his 40th year of being clean and sober.

Walker—namesake to the George Walker Rehabilitation Program—is not only a celebrated graduate, but also a life member of the Chico Corps Advisory Board.

During a Veterans Day tribute, Corps Officer Darren Stratton honored Walker for his service to the country.

Walker’s testimony also acknowledged the holiday.

“When I was a young man, this was celebrated as Armistice Day, marking the end of World War I [when] the German army surrendered to the Allies in 1918. To me it marks the day in 1969 that I surrendered from my alcoholism and turned my life over to God, asking him to help relieve me of my shame to family and friends.”

He continued in typical Walker modesty.

“For my part and the over 36 years that the Army has allowed me to tag along and be a part of the great work that they do, I am deeply grateful.”

Walker closed with advice from his father.

“The only thing that you will take out of this world is that which you leave behind.”

Addict or not, Walker’s spirit is encouraging to all.

“Before leaving this good place, choose carefully whom you associate with, give of yourself to others, keep God always in your life, live well and enjoy the sobriety he has given you.

“God bless you my friends.”

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