Americans have a short attention span. Already many of them are getting bored by the constant news reports concerning the Persian Gulf crisis.

Not much seems to happen. The situation just drags on and on.

But one county teacher and coach who is still following the situation with a keen eye is Earl Lauer. He is a major in the Maryland National Guard whose unit specializes in reconnaissance.

That means it travels on foot and by helicopter 30 or 40 kilometers in front of the main battle line to assess the capabilities of the enemy.

Obviously, fatality rates can be pretty high in these units.

Lauer is second in command of 296 soldiers whose motto is, "First to the front."

Lauer, who teaches at Clarksville Middle School, is a family man. His wife, Ellen, and he have two sons, Brandon, 8, and Ryan, 3.

He's 43, and has spent 20 years in the Guard. He's proud of that. And during that time he's also been a highly successful cross country, wrestling and track coach at Atholton High. And he's proud of that.

Both his girls and boys teams won state cross country championships last year, and the girls look like a winner again this year.

Lauer may not get to see them win this year. But he takes life one day at a time, and so far he's still coach.

Copyright © 2020, The Baltimore Sun, a Baltimore Sun Media Group publication | Place an Ad