I want to thank you for your interest in what I am doing. It has taken me a long time to get here, but I am indeed where I believe God wants me to be. Simply being a shepherd who serves others. It is my hope that my story will inspire you to follow your journey and to encourage you to find your own true happiness by taking your focus off of you and focusing on others instead. It is well worth the journey.
Bruce's Early Years
Bruce was born Bruce Robert Norton on December 14, 1963 in Baltimore, Maryland. His parents, Robert and Lynne Norton, were agnostics. His father was an engineer, and his mother worked as a federal employee. Bruce was raised in a small rural neighborhood in Howard County. He didn't make many friends, but the friends he did make were long lasting. He met a young girl his age who lived in a house owned by a nearby convent. Her name was Jackie. She gave him his first kiss. He remembers being in her house as her family, of Italian descent, made homade pasta and sauce. Sadly, she broke his heart when her family moved to New York. He still considers her to be his first "girlfriend."
Bruce was a very sensitive child and as such was one of the picked on kids through elementry school. He did not have many friends, and the friends he did have were girls. Long before he entered adolescence, he was often found talking on the phone with his girlfriends for hours at a time. He found them to be attractive, sensitive and caring, and he loved the attention they gave him.
The month after Bruce turned 8 years old, the television show, "Emergency", came on the air. It was after watching a few episodes of "Emergency" that Bruce knew that more than anything else, he wanted to be a paramedic. A few years later, Bruce would become one of the youngest people certified in CPR by the American Heart Association. For his twelfth birthday, he remembers he only asked for a watch, a stethoscope, and a sphygmomonometer (regular people know this as a blood pressure cuff but Bruce always liked using the big words). That is all he got that birthday, and it is the only birthday he remembers what he got. During that time in his life, he had a well stocked first aid kit. Other kids in the neighborhood would come to Bruce to get their scrapes patched up. Bruce remembers one incident when a neighborhood kid got a sleeping bag caught in the front spokes of his bike while he was riding it, and crashed. Another kid who was riding with him, rode to Bruce's house to get help. Bruce and his mom drove to where the kid wrecked. Bruce noted that there was a small rock embedded in the wound. He put butterfly bandages on the gaping wound and dressed it and told him he would need to go to the hospital for stitches. Bruce also told him about the rock and to be sure to tell the doctors in the hospital about it, which he did.
These early events served to form a passion in Bruce to rescue others. Though God was far from Bruce's mind at that age, clearly He was shaping Bruce to be a rescuer.