Get to Know John Fogarty

In this edition of Get to Know, we are pleased to introduce John Fogarty, a member of ASPE’s Phoenix Chapter, a former member of ASPE’s Los Angeles Chapter, and a founding member of ASPE’s Orange County Chapter.

ASPE: What book do you recommend everyone should read? 
John: Flags of our Fathers, by James Bradley. This book is about the six United States Marines who raised the American flag on Iwo Jima who would be made famous by Joe Rosenthal’s photograph. The book tells of the boyhood stories of each of the men involved, their training, and the war bond drive back in the U.S. It is a story to me that gives real meaning to the photos of this event. I found the book to be very interesting and enlightening for a very important part of modern American history.

ASPE: If you could travel anywhere, where would it be? 
John: I have visited Ireland in the past but only saw a small portion of the island. I would really like to go back and spend some time exploring my family roots. Ireland has a great mixture of history, beauty, architecture, music, and, most of all, their friendly people. Many of the people are very interested in America and always have time for a good story with their tea.

ASPE: Do you have a favorite vacation spot? 
John: My family and I love Coronado Island in San Diego. Beautiful views of downtown San Diego can be seen from all over the island. It has many choices of really good food, with outdoor seating and great views of the ocean. You can easily take a ferry over to downtown San Diego and enjoy walking the decks of the USS Midway aircraft carrier or take a boat ride inside the inner harbor to view the U.S. Pacific fleet with quite a few ships of different classes. During your visit, I recommend visiting the San Diego Zoo. In my opinion, it’s one of the best zoos in the U.S. Be sure to bring your walking shoes as part of the zoo is built into the side of a hill.

ASPE: Which historical figure would you most want to meet?
John: I probably am very boring with this response, but I have always thought that Abraham Lincoln was very interesting. From childhood we read about Honest Abe, all the way up to the civil war. Had he not had a passion for the Union, we could have a very different country today. Many have tried to guess what would have happened if the South had won the Civil War. He kept the country together and made us what we are today.

ASPE: What is your proudest accomplishment? 
John: When I was 15 years old, I received my Eagle Scout Award from the Boy Scouts, which involves many years of hard work learning different skills and making you a better person. This is a small fraternity, and I will never forget that the first man on the moon, Neil Armstrong, was an Eagle Scout. Today, I proudly display my Eagle medal above my desk.

ASPE: What do you do to relax? 
John: I have always enjoyed being outdoors. My best and most rapid way to do this is in my own backyard. I enjoy planting things and watching them grow. At one time, I bought a book on perennial plants and planned a garden based on height and colors. This was quite an accomplishment as I had three levels of plants, with different colors at different times of the year. The garden always kept my attention as something new was always happening so I had a great sense of accomplishment, and it allowed me to relax with nature.

ASPE: Who would you want to be stranded with on a deserted island? 
John: I do not know a particular person but they must have the following skill sets: how to build a bonfire, how to catch different types of fish, a gourmet cook, navigate by using the stars, have knowledge of boat building, a survivalist, tell great jokes and stories, always upbeat, speak many languages (just in case any native people stop by), know how to flag down a passing ship… have I forgotten anything?

ASPE: What is your favorite meal? 
John: I really like sushi and, in my travels, have eaten at many good Japanese restaurants. I have also done many good business deals while having a sushi meal with customers and contacts. Sushi is a great social meal that encourages conversation and opinion. A great way to get to know someone is to take them out for sushi.

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