Unemployment ran around 20 percent, the war clouds were gathering in Germany and Benny Goodman’s Swing era was born. The year was 1935, and 8-year-old Ed Gooden went to work shining shoes. He was a self-described mischievous kid, but the act of shining shoes, for the going rate of a nickel, gave a young shoe shine lad a sense of focus and purpose.
Mister Ed as he’s more commonly and affectionately known by the Associates at CHRISTUS St. Michael Health System just turned 90-years-old. He has been shining shoes with the hospital since 1959. CHRISTUS St. Michael just celebrated 100 years of healing. Mister Ed welcomed that century of extending the healing ministry of Jesus Christ knowing that he’s been part of their operation for a good part of their history.
“I’m just a hardworking country boy,” Mister Ed said of his beloved tenure at the hospital. He holds the title of Chief Shoe Shiner and is somewhat a legend amongst all hospital departments.
Everyone knows Mr. Ed. He’s a preacher and has no problem ministering to those who can spare a shine and sit in his chair.
“I love the people here — meeting them, talking to them, eating with them, and praying for them.” he said.
In honor of this birthday, CHRISTUS St. Michael Associates put together a special birthday greeting for their friend making sure he knows they continue to take a big shine to him.