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Many years ago, I was shown a training video during a leadership course during my career in the United States Navy. The video featured a famous former U.S. Navy F-4 “Phantom” fighter pilot, named Charles Plumb.  Charles was shot down during the Vietnam war, he was captured, eventually released, and he became a motivational speaker. If you haven’t heard his amazing life story, you really need to read it. It’s an amazing story of survival! I’ve included a YouTube link below of one of his powerful talks before an audience, where he speaks about who has “packed his parachute” and his time as a POW in Vietnam.

What brought this memory to surface was some recent experiences my family and I had, and I was reflecting back on how so many great things had happened for us lately, and I was thinking of all the great ways my family and friends were supporting each other in achieving our dreams and goals.

You see, as we’re sailing along in life, and things are going so well for us, we tend to forget to thank the people in our lives who “pack our parachute.” The people who look after us, who have looked after us, who have ensured we succeeded, who made sure we did well at work, made sure we were safe, we were fed, we were clothed, we were spiritually or financially sound, and most of all… we were loved!  My “parachute packers” list consists of my parents, my brothers and sister, my wife, my kids and grandkids, my teachers, my coaches, my supervisors, my coworkers, my doctors, and each and every person who made sure “I made it.”

So, as you go about your day or week, don’t forget to pause occasionally, and “thank” those wonderful people who “packed your parachute!

Post Author: Dana Steele

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