Shenandoah.com | Stories
events.shenandoah.com, 31 July 2004 [cached]
Debbie Reynal works as a teacher in special education at Osbourn Park High School where she works with high-functioning autistic youth, Reynal said.
really enjoys it and is committed there until the fall," he
said."I'm not sure she
wants to commute with the traffic."Reynal
said the family had some reservations about leaving the small town atmosphere of Ashland to move to Northern Virginia.
"It was definitely a change of pace for us.It has really grown, but you can still find open areas," he
said."You can walk out into the middle of Manassas Battlefield and the roads disappear.You can envision the Union troops coming through the woods."
One commute Reynal
is sure he
wife will make is a Sunday morning one back to the Antioch Church of Christ
"There's not a lot of traffic Sunday morning," he
said."I'm an elder there and chairman of the building committee.I've found there are others in Front Royal who also go to Antioch."Reynal
described a mission trip to India he
took last November with his
wife, son Matt, and 11 others.
"I've never done anything like that before," he
said."We read the 'Purpose-Driven Life' and thought it was a great book."He
said the book inspired them to take the trip to central India where his
church supports a mission. Reynal
said they flew in and out of Delhi, rode elephants and saw Bengal Tigers on a reserve.
"We're not officially allowed to go in as missionaries, so we went as tourists," he
said."We can't help with any physical labor.That would be taking jobs away from the local people.But we did preach, encourage and give messages.It's amazing what they're able to do with so little."
They group came back with an appreciation for all the blessings we have in America, Reynal
"After you see the way other people lead their lives, you really appreciate what you have," he
...Reynal was born in New Britain, close to Hartford, the "Hardware Capital of the World" and home of Stanley Tools.His
family later moved to Madison, Conn., on the Long Island Sound.
"It's a great place up there but it's too cold," he
said."The winters are too long."Reynal
went to college and got his
first job in New York State.He received his B.S. from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y., and a Masters of public administration from the Maxwell School at Syracuse University.In Utica, N.Y, he was the assistant to the financial coordinator.
"Up north it got to be depressing from October to April," he
said."It was always snowing, sleeting, or raining."Reynal
had a friend and a brother in Newport News, Va., so he
"Virginia was a great discovery for me," he
There aren't many states in the union that rival Virginia, according to Reynal
"The people in Virginia are so friendly and open," he
said."You have everything from the oceans to the mountains."Reynal
has enjoyed his
life in public service.
"I feel privileged to have worked most of my career in the public sector," he
said."It's not my vision.I want to work with the council and community to fulfill their vision.I hope my background in community development and building will help that.The town has the potential to be a place with an even higher quality of life than it has now.It's a great place now and hopefully that won't change."
On the future, Reynal
still plans to still be working.
"In 20 years, I see myself on the beach somewhere," he
was on the tennis team in high school.He
said golf was too frustrating for him.
"I wasn't able to devote enough time to it," he
said."It's nice being outside on a golf course.It would be nice to be able to hit the ball down the fairway.I play what the Mayor calls 'Army golf.' Left, right, left, right."
Other than food or tennis, Reynal
didn't have any hobbies or special talents.
"I played the accordion in junior high school," he