I always like a good story of success and positive results in a person’s daily battle to succeed in life.
Enter one Tom Smallwood.
Two days before last Christmas, Tom Smallwood found himself, like millions of Americans, jobless and wondering how he would support his family.The General Motors plant Smallwood worked at closed down, and the Saginaw, Mich., native was suddenly out of a job when he needed it most.
Michigan’s struggling economy didn’t leave the Smallwoods with many options, but “we didn’t panic,” he says.
Smallwood, 32, has always been a good bowler, even supplementing his income in some local tournaments, and he saw there was a Professional Bowlers Association qualifying tournament in Detroit.
So, with the blessing of his wife, Jennifer, Smallwood set out to chase his dream.
“I always felt I could compete out there (on the Tour), but I was also content with working and staying with my family,” Smallwood says. “I have a 2 1/2-year old (Hannah Rose) and she’s my life.”
Smallwood qualified, gained a one-year exemption, and nearly a year after being laid off, finds himself in a dream scenario — ranked seventh in the world and one of four semifinalists in the PBA World Championship, which will air Sunday (ESPN, 1-2:30 p.m. ET) in Wichita.
I wish Smallwood much success this Sunday. It’s always easy to be negative when bad things happen, but it’s always such a delight to see someone make lemonade out of lemons.