Volunteer shares his time with youngsters

March 20, 2009 8:13:52 AM PDT
Charles Schroeder is a retired executive.But at the age of 98 he still has something to share with younger generations.

Schroeder uses his spare time to help children with challenges.

Mondays and Wednesdays are special days at the Westbrook School in Arlington Heights. That's when Mr. Charles comes calling to spend time with the kids.

For the past seven years, Charles Schroeder has visited the school for kids with behavioral problems as a volunteer tutor.

"I had spare time. I felt I had enough background and talent to do what ever I could," said Schroeder, volunteer.

A retired Exon executive, Schroeder celebrated his 98th birthday just a week ago. At the school he tutors in the classroom of Peter Clark.

"He was placed in my room five years ago and he keeps coming back and I love the fact that he keeps coming back because he's an inspiration to me as much as he is any of the students?he's an inspiration to the entire staff," said Peter Clark, teacher.

When he isn't here at the Westbrook School he can be found at the Arlington Heights social security office where one day a week he volunteers as a greeter.

"They always give him a great deal of respect sort of honoring an elder...I don't think it's just his age. I think it has to do with his personality, his demeanor the fact they realize he comes here in his own will and time to give something to them," said Dr. Dennis Simon, Westbrook's principal.

"I'm encouraged by these boys," said Charles Schroeder. "I feel that I'm needed and I'm helping these boys build a better life so they can get along in life because they have a lot of problems."