Boot camp makes men of deadbeat dads

Class No. 89 graduate Nathaniel Lewis can attest to the benefits of a change in priorities.

Lewis — a 41-year-old former Marine Corps infantryman who served in the first Gulf War — left the service in the early 1990s and joined the drug trade. He wound up in federal prison for four years on conspiracy charges to traffic cocaine but recently got out and headed straight into the program.

He says his perception of manhood changed while in prison, and that change accelerated during FSC's boot camp.

Fathers’ Support Center staff: Founder Halbert Sullivan, managing director Cheri Tillis, and facilitators Sister Carol Schumer and Charles Barnes Jr.
Jennifer Silverberg
Fathers’ Support Center staff: Founder Halbert Sullivan, managing director Cheri Tillis, and facilitators Sister Carol Schumer and Charles Barnes Jr.
Nathaniel Lewis of class No. 89 addresses his fellow FSC graduates on May 31.
Alexis Hitt
Nathaniel Lewis of class No. 89 addresses his fellow FSC graduates on May 31.

When he was slinging drugs on the street, he says, he adhered to "the code," which meant: "Getting it any way you can; buying stuff we don't really need to impress people we don't even like; the more women you have validates your manhood; it doesn't matter what you do to the next man as long as you get yours. Man, that's bullcrap."

Especially harmful, he believes, is the notion among ex-cons that "it's cool that our kids do what we did because we did it. I've seen plenty of fathers and sons hanging out in prison. That's one thing in the program I really learned: You have to have courage to stand up and break the cycle."

The FSC's Halbert Sullivan, it appears, has taught him well.

Lewis continues: "A lot of times in society, and especially with our people, we have a lack of courage as men, and what we think is manhood and strength is really false," he says. "We have to have some courage to stand up and do the right thing. They say a lot of negative things about us, but I know we can win. It's just gonna take some hard work."

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16 comments
GAA
GAA

The programs should be expanded with funding .

Alzari
Alzari

How about we stop these guys from popping out kids just because they can so they won't have this problem? And while you're at it, how about teaching women to keep their damned legs closed until they're married? Or do these ideas make too much sense?

Leola
Leola

my neighbor's sister-in-law made $12565 the prior week. she makes money on the internet and moved in a $438800 house. All she did was get fortunate and use the tips revealed on this web site lazycash42.c()m

3rDegr33
3rDegr33

This looks like a very promising program. Great to see people working hard to change some of the ills taking place in our communities and make real men.

Leola
Leola

as Hazel answered I am inspired that a student can profit $8394 in four weeks on the computer. did you look at this link lazycash42.c()m

El
El

I love to hear about positive news in the community.

Oliver Philip
Oliver Philip

as Hazel answered I am inspired that a student can profit $8394 in four weeks on the computer. did you look at this link lazycash42.c()m

MR MO
MR MO

Military style training does not make a man. There are other components that must be there if you seek to make a man. You do not manufacture a man, you nurture a man. This is a great idea, however it is tagged as the magic answer, which it is not.

MR MO
MR MO

Great idea, however it takes more than military style physical training or marching to make a real man. The heart, body, and soul have to all be there. This all works in concert to have the correct ingredients for the real desired result,

Smdyb45
Smdyb45

Wow! We need more of this.

Smdyb45
Smdyb45

Congratulations! Hope things continue to go well for you.

BRAD MCGHEE
BRAD MCGHEE

I don't know what the long term outcome is, but I have to commend him for creating a place where men who have a desire to better themselves can get help. It is not always easy to know what to do to help yourself, he shows them the way. Good work Mr. Sullivan.

Rickjames5758
Rickjames5758

Way to go team F.S.C. I know the program works because they changed my life. Not only did they change my life for the better they made me apart of the team as a facilitated an for three years I helped change lives as well. Keep up the good work

Paythepriceasyougo
Paythepriceasyougo

Largest population of criminals, YES; but not as you have falsely stated!!!!

Klsyanderson
Klsyanderson

A positive story about St. Louis' largest population and no comments?

Anonymous
Anonymous

Yes, it's just that simple! Wait, how do we do this?

 
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