If you were a kid in 1952, you were faced with the fact that there was a bogeyman and his name was polio.

Polio was a killer who infected 58,000 people that year, with 21,269 of them, mostly kids, ending up with paralysis and more than 3,100 of them dying.

Experts think polio was born around 1835, and, in the ’50s, he scared people almost as much as the thought of an atomic blast. In fact, he was a medical oddity that baffled researchers for years until one of them, Jonas Salk, came up with a vaccine that didn’t kill polio but, like a restraining order, stopped him from coming around.

So if you take 60,000 people a year times 50 years, that calculates out to almost 3 million lives Jonas Salk probably saved going forward. That’s a nice thing to have on your resume.

In the mid-1980s, Salk also engaged in research to successfully develop a vaccine for another more recent plague, which we call AIDS.

In the process, he co-founded The Immune Response Corporation to search for a vaccine and ultimately patented a drug named Remune, which is an immune system-based therapy designed to fight and ward AIDS off. He died before he could find a cure.

Have you ever thought about how you’d like to spend your lifetime? If you’re like me and you might feel like you’ve wasted plenty of time watching football games that your favorite team lost, going to events that you didn’t really want to go to and ordering steaks that turned out to be less tender than shoe leather.

You meant well but, in the end, the years went by too fast and eventually you began to feel like you had less of that time to waste.

I read in a book recently that said it’s not about what you’re doing or going through, it’s about what you’re going to do.

Long ago, a Roman emperor by the name of Marcus Aurelius said that you should adapt to the things among which your lot has been cast and love sincerely the fellow creatures which destiny has ordained that you shall live.

In other words, make the best of the situation, love the people you are in those situations with and you’ll have fulfilled your destiny and lived a full and complete life.

A woman named Rhoda Blecker once wrote a prayer and in it she said, “Thank you for today’s blessings and for yesterday’s and, in advance, for tomorrows.”

It’s nice to know that tomorrow is going to bring us blessings, things to look forward to and give us another person like Jonas Salk who will help to heal diseases and make life better.

Perhaps Steve Maraboli, a speaker, bestselling author and behavioral science academic, summed it up best when he said, “Live your truth. Express your love. Share your enthusiasm. Take action towards your dreams. Walk your talk. Dance and sing to your music. Embrace your blessings and make today worth remembering.”

That’s good advice.

Kevin Holten is president of the North Dakota Cowboy Association and executive producer of "Special Cowboy Moments" on RFD-TV.

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