This I Believe

Fox, Thomas P.

  • Thomas Fox describes his belief that one is happiest when serving others, and recounts the people in his life who shaped that belief.
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And now, This I Believe. Here is Edward R. Murrow.
This I Believe. Dr. Thomas P. Fox is a leading Philadelphia dentist. He is a fellow of both the American and the International College of Dentists, Director of the Course in Oral Medicine at Jefferson Medical School, and Executive Director of the Philadelphia Mouth Hygiene Association. This is what Dr. Fox believes.
I've had a life just crowded with wonderful experiences, first as a student, then as a professional man, and as an officer with the armed forces in World War II. Confronted with the question--What do I believe?--my answer is that I believe that honesty to myself and to my fellow man
is most important, because this is what I have been taught.
Most of us fall into a pattern, as it is most difficult to be really original. Beliefs are the result of association and experiences. Mine were mainly formed by three people: my mother--my father died when I was 7 years old; Thomas Sovereign Gates, a Philadelphia banker; and Dr. O.G.L. Lewis, my teacher and associate. Running through the lives of all three of these people was a theme or a philosophy, and a belief, and one, which I am happy to say, is also mine: that you are happiest when helping others.
It was summed up very well for me by Mr. Lewis B. Seltzer, on this very program some time ago, when he told what was on the second of the three yellow pieces of paper he always carried. It certainly stands
"I expect to pass through this world but once. Any good, therefore, I can do, or any kindness I can show to any fellow creature, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again."
It certainly would be wonderful if we would all adopt this philosophy. I find it rather a tragedy in one way, and very amusing in another, how little credit so many successful men give to their parents. They will speak on how they achieved this or that, the difficulties they had to overcome. But they forget to mention that way back in their childhood, their parents--via heredity, word of mouth, or actions--provided them with the tools they used to do the job.
I believe it is one's parents who teach him to be honest with himself and with others, to believe in God, and who lay the foundation of his character, which in later years helps him to appreciate the important and finer things in life. I know that this is what my mother tried to do for me. If I had it to do over again, I would certainly spend more time with her and exhibit greater love and affection than I ever did in the past. I am sure that many others would wish, as I do, for another chance.
In conclusion, I believe I must be honest, that I must always be myself, that I must profess belief in God, and that I should go through life helping others. I believe I'm a very happy person, and that the main reason for this wonderful blessing is that rarely does a day go by that I do not have the
opportunity to help someone. I believe that if this prescription is followed by others, it should result in a full and happy life, just as it has for me.
There the creed of Dr. Thomas P. Fox of Philadelphia.
This I Believe is now a Columbia LP record album. Two records, with two exciting new ideas, commentary by Edward R. Murrow. First, the beliefs of ten living Americans. Second, the beliefs of ten immortals, including Socrates, Lincoln, Queen Victoria, Will Rogers, Confucius and Ghandi, written by their most famous biographers, spoken by their best portrayers, Helen Hayes, Katharine Cornell, Raymond Massey, Jose Ferrer, and others. See the This I Believe LP album at your record dealer today.