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Going GreenHouse Gives Back – Episode 3

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Going GreenHouse Gives Back – Episode 3

Welcome back to “Going GreenHouse Gives Back.” We’re stepping into 2024 with a heart full of warmth and a brand new story to unfold. Today, we introduce you to a remarkable individual in our community, a man with a captivating background, an emotional support cat named Dog, and a birthday wish that’s far from ordinary.

In this series, we delve into the lives of inspiring individuals
who will be recipients of a free house cleaning service from Going GreenHouse,
all in exchange for a brief interview. Today, we are privileged to have Gregory
“Mr. Hook” Shoemaker with us, ready to share his journey of resilience—a
journey that feels like a tale of survival, akin to nine lives.

I’m your host, April Prothero, and today, I have the pleasure of
getting to know Hook. He reached out to us this morning, seeking assistance
with deep cleaning and laundry, tasks he’s unable to manage on his own. Hook is
the kind of person who wakes up each morning with a genuine desire to help
others, often neglecting the same kindness for himself. Today, the tables are
turned. When Hook called, we quickly realized he was the perfect fit for our
January Going GreenHouse Gives Back Campaign. As I’ve had the privilege of
getting to know him, his big heart and the love he holds for his children and
his emotional support cat, “Dog,” became apparent.

Join me as we embark on this journey with Mr. Hook, exploring
his resilience and the unique chapters that make up his life—a life that, in
many ways, feels like a testament to surviving nine remarkable lives. Let’s
dive into his incredible story and learn about the man behind the name.

April: Mr. Hook, can you tell us a bit about how you acquired the name “Mr. Hook”?

Mr. Hook: When I was born, they
called me “fish bait” because I was small. As I grew older, I wasn’t
so fond of the name I was given so I dropped the “fish” part and
became “Mr. Hook.”

April: That’s an interesting origin. Now, let’s delve into your past. You’ve lived in various places. Could you share a snapshot of your life journey?

Mr. Hook: I was born in Texas,
then moved to Payson and Clay Springs, AZ, and later lived in Indianapolis and
California. Despite my wanderings, my heart stayed in Arizona, mainly because
of my kids. My life took a dramatic turn in 2005 when I was hit by a car,
resulting in 122 broken bones and a month-long coma. I’ve owned a construction
company, “Hooks Construction,” for two decades, and I’ve worn many
hats—mechanic, drummer, carpenter. Life’s thrown quite a few challenges my way,
from rolling an 18-wheeler to avoid a collision with oncoming vehicles to being
shot twice on separate occasions. 

April: Your resilience is
truly remarkable and I get the sense that your kids are what has been a
motivating force for you during tough times. 
Tell me a little bit about them.

Mr. Hook: My son Charlie passed
away in May 2019. I always called him “Homie”. I got my support cat, “Dog” the
day after he passed away and he’s been a tremendous help to me. I have two
other children, one whom I fondly call “Buddy,” living in Globe.  He is a Realtor and a film producer.  He’s even been interviewed by Fox 10 news
about his upcoming independent film “The Dog Bite Murders”!  Last but certainly not least, my daughter Kristi,
also known as “Buger,” resides in Phoenix and builds electrical
converters.

April: I’m sorry to hear of
your loss and can see your pride when you talk about your kids. Let’s talk
about your interests, what activities or hobbies do you enjoy?

Mr. Hook: I started playing
drums in kindergarten and had my first gig at a 104-year-old’s birthday party
when I was 12. I’ve recorded two CDs with the band Nova Scotia and played with
various others. Fishing, hunting, and exploring northern Arizona in my 4-wheel
drive Jeep are some of my favorite pastimes. I believe in doing something to
help others every day. Music, especially the band Triamp, holds a special place
in my heart. I’m a proud Cardinals fan, and my last concert was George
Thorogood.

April: It’s clear that music
and a spirit of helping others play a significant role in your life. Now, let’s
talk about the impact of our cleaning service. How do you think it will make a
positive difference in your daily life?

Mr. Hook: This cleaning service
is a tremendous help.  It’s going to make
my world brighter. I’m so grateful that someone was able to lend a hand. A
cleaner home and clothes will make me more comfortable in my own space, and I’m
truly thankful because, frankly, I can’t do it myself.

April: Your gratitude is
palpable, and we’re honored to be part of making your daily life a bit
brighter. We look forward to the positive impact our cleaning service will
have.

Mr. Hook: Tremendously. It’s a
game-changer.  In fact my birthday is
coming up and all I really want is some clean underwear!

April: As we wrap up,
we’ve learned about Mr. Hook’s unique journey, his love for family and music,
and the meaningful assistance our cleaning service is set to provide. Thank
you, Mr. Hook, for sharing your story with us.

As we conclude this edition of “Going GreenHouse Gives
Back,” we’ve had the privilege of stepping into the world of Mr. Hook, a
man with a heart as resilient as his spirit. His journey, marked by challenges
and triumphs, is a testament to the strength within us all.

Hook also received some additional assistance through the Senior Help Line at (602) 264-4357 and I was lucky enough to meet his lovely case manager, Jenny while I was there for this interview.  If you are or know a senior in need, calling the help line or looking online at the resources of the Area Agency on Aging would be a great start. 

Mr. Hook’s story is one of survival—of overcoming adversity with
a tenacity that seems to echo his sentiment, “too ornery to die.” His
love for his children, his passion for music, and his unwavering commitment to
helping others showcase a life well-lived, despite the odds.

As we embark on this year’s series of inspiring tales, we extend
our deepest gratitude to Mr. Hook for allowing us a glimpse into his world. We
look forward to the positive impact our cleaning service will bring to his
daily life, making it a bit brighter, and a bit more comfortable.

Join us in our next episode as we continue to uncover the
remarkable stories of individuals within our community. Because in every story,
there’s a thread of resilience, a tapestry of strength, and a reminder that
we’re all in this together. Until next time on “Going GreenHouse Gives
Back.”

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