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Face time with Chris Halsey

Published: Wednesday, May 1, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT

Sugar Grove resident Chris Halsey, 69, was working at an event for the Elburn Lions Club when he answered 12 questions for the Kane County Chronicle’s Al Lagattolla.

Where did you grow up? Elburn.

Who would play you inthe movie of your life? George C. Scott.

What was your first job? Paper boy.

As a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up? Heavy equipment operator.

What did you become? Drywall finisher.

Is there a movie you would recommend? “Patton.”

What is your favorite charity? Elburn Lions Club

Do you have any hobbies? Riding my Harley. Collecting Lions pins.

Do you play any intstruments? In high school, I played Sousaphone.

What is your favorite local restaurant? Fireside Grille.

What is the best part of being in the Lions Club? Being able to actually see the fruits of your labor.

What is an interesting factoid about yourself? I once walked across a bed of red hot coals. It was in New Lenox. And it’s not fake. It’s the real thing.

This won’t fit in the paper, but you can add it online to the end of the factoid answer:

It’s something a friend of mine called me up and he said let’s go to New Lenox, we’re going to do a fire walk. It was fashioned after the Kahunas, which were Hawaiian warriors who used to walk across lava beds that were hot, but they were firm enough to walk on. And it kind of scared their enemies. And, so we spent probably four to six hours just doing the classroom stuff. I’m out there stacking logs and everyone else kind of backed away, and I said if we’re going to do this, we’re going to do this right. We started the fire. We raked the coals out there, and they were red hot. We rolled up our pant legs, and you were barefoot. And the guy who was the facilitator, he started walking across, and I saw him start high-stepping when he got to the other side and sprayed some water, and I thought, holy mackerel, he’s the teacher. So we started chanting the “Om” mantra, meaning God, and it was like a bunch of Buddhist monks, and pretty soon, people started walking across. The guy next to me, he was in a pretty conservative religion, he wasn’t into the new age thing, but he was really going at it, yelling, “Om.” I’m thinking, all right, and I started walking. I went across, and I turned around and came back. I just got off focus a little bit and felt a little burn, so I got back on focus. They said tonight, you’ll probably have some ghost burns. I said, what are ghost burns, and they said it’s going to feel like your feet are burning, but they’re not. I never got burned. But the interesting thing. You rolled your pant legs up and the hairs on your legs never even singed. And you walked across red hot coals. The only thing I noticed different in my life, I used to have a fear of heights, but after that climbing scaffolds and stuff like that never bothered me. It was different.

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