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Jesse Swanagan smiles and carries his son, Jesse III, on his back in front of City Garden Montesorri School in St. Louis.
Jesse Swanagan with his son, Jesse III, at City Garden Montesorri School in St. Louis.

Celebrating five fathers who inspire us

In honor of Father’s Day, here are some of the inspiring fathers we’ve featured on Wells Fargo Stories.

June 13, 2018

They’ve supported their children, gave us all baseball, fought for civil rights, and more. Meet some of our favorite featured fathers.

Single dad is saving up for his son to go to college

Jesse Swanagan didn’t know what to expect when he walked into his son’s charter school in St. Louis a few years ago.

After all, his son Jesse III was just a kindergartner; college was the furthest thing from his mind.

But something happened that night at City Garden Montessori School. Wells Fargo Advisors was hosting a college savings workshop for low- to middle-income families. And, by the end of the night, Swanagan had taken action to help his son achieve something he’d never achieved himself: a college degree. He opened a state-sponsored college savings plan for his 6-year-old son, and began depositing money from each paycheck.

Jesse III has a better chance of getting a college degree now that his dad, Jesse Swanagan, a single father in St. Louis, has opened a 529 college savings account for him. (2:32)

Veterans overcome mental, physical, and emotional barriers for their kids

Kyle Miller is determined to live a life filled with purpose, despite his struggles with post-traumatic stress disorder. It was on his descent from Wyoming’s Gannet Peak that he found the clarity he needed to move forward.

“Coming down from Gannet Peak, I knew that my kids had to be at the forefront of everything I do,” said Miller, a U.S. Army veteran who served in Iraq and now lives in Billings, Montana. “I’ve made a lot of changes in my life to be a better father and to be more present.”

Miller is one of several military veterans with disabilities — and fathers — to participate in Warriors to Summits, a No Barriers Warriors program that uses mountains as a metaphor for mental, physical, and emotional barriers.

David Inbody, a former Warriors to Summits participant, is one of several veterans who overcame barriers for his children. (3:44)

‘Father of baseball’ creates national pastime for American families

Black-and-white portrait of Alexander Joy Cartwright Jr., looking to the right.
Alexander Joy Cartwright Jr. was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1938.

The crack of the bat and the roar of the crowd return each April as baseball teams everywhere open their new season.

While the national pastime has a complex — and sometimes murky — history, it is generally agreed that Alexander Joy Cartwright Jr., once a Wells Fargo team member, helped create the game that generations of fans have enjoyed. Abner Doubleday was once promoted as the inventor of the game, but this myth was debunked by the Mills Commission in the early 1900s. Cartwright is often labeled the “father of baseball.”

Born in New York City in 1820, Cartwright worked at the age of 16 for a Wall Street brokerage firm, and then as a clerk at Union Bank of New York.

It was during his work as a volunteer fireman that he made baseball history.

‘I hustle hard’: Restaurateur credits her father for her work ethic

After learning the restaurant business from her father, Ali, Sadaf Salout opened her own restaurant in Encino, California, with a vision of modernizing Persian cuisine. (2:31)

Here’s a top chef and entrepreneur who’s a voracious learner, too.

At 33 years old, Sadaf Salout has already bought and sold a business. She’s also the chef and owner of Sadaf, her self-named Persian restaurant in Encino, California. And, oh, by the way, she has two master’s degrees and just earned her doctorate in clinical psychology.

“I would have to say I get my work ethic from my father,” said Salout. “I hustle hard.”

Dad’s small-town newspaper becomes a leader in packaging

W. Horace Carter, seated at a desk full of newspapers, examines a long scroll of paper.
W. Horace Carter published the first edition of The Tabor City Tribune on July 6, 1946. His family continues to own and operate the weekly newspaper today as part of Atlantic Packaging Corp.    

When W. Horace Carter began publishing The Tabor City Tribune in 1946, he was hoping to create a platform to keep the community connected through a weekly newspaper. A few years later, unfortunately, he found that his small, North Carolina community was increasingly subjected to the outlandish and violent acts of the Ku Klux Klan.

The 29-year-old editor used the greatest tools he had to combat the Klan’s actions against local citizens: his words and his newspaper. The paper won the Pulitzer Prize in Public Service in 1953.
 

During its 70-plus-year relationship with the community of Tabor City, his company, Atlantic Packaging Corp., has taken on many roles: weekly newspaper, furniture seller, commercial printer, and, most recently, a national leader in packaging.

Atlantic Packaging Corp.’s new Packaging Solution Center in Charlotte, North Carolina, provides packaging innovations and more for e-commerce businesses. (2:54)
Contributors: Elisa Tomich, Kathleen Llewellyn, Marianne Babal and Matt Wadley
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