Reading the story of Thomas L. Martin brings to mind the famous quote of Isaac Newton about "standing on the shoulders of giants."1
Though physically small, Dr. Martin was a giant in intellect, a giant in enthusiasm, a giant in encouraging others, and a giant in example. He rose slowly and steadily from humble beginnings to become a force that helped many achieve success.
Thomas Martin followed the same route traveled by most who become giants, "in the fact that their faculties have been developed along a certain line, never swerving from the course marked out, but continually putting their shoulders to the wheels and rolling up the Hill of Success, inch by inch, step by step, until the goal is reached and their efforts are crowned with success."2
This pattern is available to everyone willing to exert the effort it requires. Many miss the goal by leaving out important ingredients from the recipe things like "never swerving" or "continually".
It is worthwhile recognizing the giants in each of our lives, on whose shoulders we stand. Perhaps we could become giants in others' lives. If thinking now and then about Thomas Martin helps us to do so, he would probably be pleased.
1Isaac Newton, Letter to Robert Hooke, February 5, 1675.
2George D. Kirby, What is Success? Improvement Era, June 1908.