What is your lasting legacy? You will have one whether you choose to or not so you might as well think about what it might be.

In other words, what will people most remember about you? Will they remember how tall you were, how short you were, how fat you were or how thin you were? 

Will they remember how you used to whine a lot about too many things or drink too much or how you used to go to church every day and constantly help your neighbors?

Maybe they’ll remember that you used to send your food back at restaurants all the time. Or that you used to steal your neighbor’s newspaper, eat ketchup on your ice cream or smell as though you’d not showered since this time last year.

Perhaps they’ll remember that you chewed your fingernails, always drove 10 miles per hour over the speed limit or wore ties with food stains on them.

Dick Nixon will be remembered for Watergate, Dick Chaney for shooting a hunting partner, Bill Clinton for defacing the Oval Office and Don Trump for shaking things up in Washington, D.C.

Roger Maris will be remembered for hitting 61 homeruns, Lawrence Welk for his champagne bubbles, Brad Gjermundson for four rodeo titles, and Louis L'Amour for writing Western thrillers.

Everyone has some kind of lasting legacy or legacies that they will become attached to during their life which will then follow them from that point forward, throughout eternity because, you see, legacies don’t die and thus, in some ways, neither do you.

Some legacies are good, some bad, some true and some sad.  Often, your legacies are much more important long after, rather than during your lifetime.

Abe Lincoln was a much disliked and controversial politician in life and now he is considered our best president ever. 

According to Mr. Dictionary, a legacy is anything that is handed down from the past, as from an ancestor or predecessor. In this case, you are the ancestor or predecessor. So what is it you are handing down?

You might be proud of what you think your legacy is going to be and then, once you get to the other side of the Pearly Gates you begin to wonder why you wasted so much time on something that by then seems so minuscule. 

My grandmother died on her 99th birthday 17 or so years ago. Since that day, there have been very few days that I have not thought about her because of the little legacies she left behind, like a quilt, a story or some advice that she gave me. 

This is true about many members of my family who have shown me that even if you are penny poor you can still be legacy rich and, if given the choice, choose the latter.

Dramatist William Shakespeare said that no legacy is so rich as honesty.  And Benjamin Franklin said that, if you want to be remembered after you die, you should either write something worth reading, or do something worth writing about. Or do both.

Kevin Holten is the executive producer of "Special Cowboy Moments" on RFD-TV.

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