It’s 1:30 AM in Mounds, and you’ve just turned off West Sycamore Street into the semi-isolated wilds northwest of town. Darkness in rural areas has a peculiar thickness, and your headlights aren’t making a dent in this early morning void. Suddenly, you hear the dreaded sound of repeated thumps from the driver’s side wheel well. You pull over, but there’s no need to look; There’s no mistaking the distinctive music from a newly flat tire.
The One Who
Always Has Your Back
You’re got no spare. On top of that, you might as well be in the middle of nowhere. Who do you call? If you’re one of Chaz Ley’s friends, it’s a no-brainer.
“I’m always there when [my friends] need me,” Chaz tells us. He’s helped with many of his friend’s proverbial flat tires in his day. When you’re friends with Chaz, loyalty and trust come with the package.
Chaz, a Senior this year, has switched schools a few times but has always called Mounds home. He doesn’t want to linger long after high school, though. Chaz has dreams of the open road, and after he obtains his CDL from Shawnee, he plans on trucking his way to wherever the work takes him. It might be local or a few towns over, but he doesn’t rule out Florida or California, either.
He’s been fascinated with truck driving since the summers he spent beside his dad in the cab of his truck. Family is of the utmost importance to Chaz. He talks enthusiastically about how his grandparents show him how to do things but don’t do them for him. For instance, he and his grandpa often do automotive work together, and Chaz appreciates the tutorials. He tries to help his grandparents as much as possible, and does custodian work at Meridian to help with the bills.
We can tell he’s the kind of guy you would always want in your corner. He can help with your math homework, since it’s his favorite subject (for some reason). Catcher is his current favorite position when playing baseball, and we could see where he could be a pitcher’s best friend when the heat is on.
Chaz lives by the motto, “Think smarter, not harder.” As a catcher, he can view the entire field in a way other players cannot, but we also think this applies to his life outside baseball. He sees no need to struggle with cumbersome solutions when you can rely on clear, practical strategies for living. For instance, he shares that it's important to “watch what you say to others, because they may take it the wrong way.” In a world where too many people claim to be experts and insist on filling the air with nonsense, it sure would be refreshing for us to take a page out of Chaz’s playbook.
Winding down our conversation with Chaz, we arrive at the famous “magic wand” question we ask all our subjects. If he had access to magic, what he’d do with it is once again reflective of his allegiant character: He’d bring everyone back to life who has been lost. We don’t know about you, but we’d say that goes above and beyond fixing a flat tire. That’s Chaz for you, though – trustworthy, kind, and always around to help for the better.