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"There is no distinctly American criminal class - except Congress." Mark Twain (1835-1910)

“Be thankful we're not getting all the government we're paying for.” -Will Rogers (1879-1935)

"Stability in government is essential to national character and to the advantages annexed to it." -James Madison (1751-1836)

"Liberty must at all hazards be supported." -John Adams (1735-1826)

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Looking Back and Thinking Forward - in no particular order

Born – St Joseph’s Maternity – Houston Texas – 19 October 1947 at 1:00 PM

Spent the first ten years of my life residing in a trailer house; living everywhere from Mississippi north to Illinois and New Mexico north to Montana and everywhere in between

Mom & Dad taught my brother and I the difference between right & wrong and that the Truth is always best.

At 4, I saw my first Big League ball game – 8 future Hall of Fame members on the field that day (watched 63 play live over the years; the first 8 were the most memorable)

At 5, Peaked Pike and again at 11 and 40; done with that -never going there again

At 5, had Route 66 as part of my address

At 6, I stood where George Armstrong last stood

Grew up and was educated in the company of some of the best people one can gather

Worked with and for some of the most interesting people walking the planet

Trained a great bunch of subordinates (both military & civilian), stood back and watched them get at it

Worked in the two most interesting places in the world – Alaska & New Work City

Had the opportunity to test start-up and prototype organizations in both the military & civilian communities

Dreamed and implemented organizational structures that 2X & 3X production rates and cut manufacturing lead times by 75%

Spent two full summers and more hours than most can count working with the smartest and best man walking the earth prior to his passing in 1993

Watched with pride the example set by my Mother spending 22 years teaching first grade

Watched my Son achieve all he has – College degree, CPA and the expert and go-to guy in his field

Watched my Daughter get her degree, start teaching and obtain her dream job

Convoyed some long trails (1965 - Bryan, TX to Valley City, ND – 1278 miles), some tough trails (1974 - Ft Richardson, AK to Ft Greely, AK – 673 miles) and some exciting trails (1978 - Ft Bragg to Akron-Canton, OH – 912 miles & back – total 1824 miles)

Saw the Bear hoist Gene

Watched live as both Heisman winners played 55 years apart

Earned a Bachelor Degree from Texas A&M (’69), all along thinking I would be the first to graduate without ever achieving a C average

Earned a Masters in Business (Central Michigan – ‘80) and a Masters in Logistics (Command & General Staff College – ’81) within a year of each other

Suffered the loss of a child early in her life & my adulthood

Preferred charges and sent to court-martial a guy that threatened my life “If I ever show my face in Newark, NJ, I’ll kill you!” Never thought that would happen. Little did I know that my next assignment would call for me to visit the downtown area of Newark every three or four weeks for some two and a half years – always looking over both shoulders!

Served on 150+ court-martials and administrative discharge boards

Continually connected to D.B. Cooper

Uncovered fraud and saw to it that money and equipment was collected

Know secrets held at some of the highest levels one might imagine – still haven’t divulged a one of them

Spent more time than imaginable with feet dangling from the tail ramp of a C130 or C141

Experienced both the 112s under canvas (-112ºF Feb 1974-Ft Greely, AK & 112ºF Jun 1975-Ft Bragg, NC) within 16 months – Had never thought about the time frame until I put it down just now!

Stood beneath Niagara

Visited both Halls twice

Boated the 1000

White-watered the New

Float-fished the White in spite of Hillary

Squarely and proudly stood where it’s Red

Visited all 50 states

Lived in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Illinois, Kansas, Colorado, New Mexico, Colorado (again), Montana, North Dakota, Texas (again), Virginia, Alaska, Virginia (again), North Carolina, Virginia (again), New York, and Texas (again)

Worked in Texas, North Dakota, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Colorado, Wyoming, Virginia, Alaska, Virginia (again), North Carolina, Virginia (again), Massachusetts, New York, Texas (again) and Canada (Calgary)

Topped the Empire State building three times

Topped the World Trade Center - I

Walked on Mount McKinley

Walked on the Chilcoot Trail

Adventured out of Resurrection Bay

River-boated the Yukon

Visited the site of the two most important surrenders in United States history

Visited feud sites and both the Hatfield and McCoy family graveyards

Talked with a grandson of Devil Anse

Canoe trekked the Quetico Boundary Waters (135 mile trip)

Canoe raced the Texas Colorado (110 miles)

Canoed the Delaware River Gap

Canoed (over-nighter) the Shenandoah

Hunted with some good buddies :
Texas – Duck .22 & 20 Gauge – Sherman (chest deep wading in real cold winter water), Bob & James Lee
Texas – Dove 20 Gauge – James Lee
Alaska – Knick Flats - Duck 20 Gauge – Johnny, Marvin, Martin, Larry
Alaska - Knick Flats – Moose .357 – Marvin, Martin, Larry
Alaska – Hatcher’s Pass – Bear 30-06 – Marvin, Martin, Larry, Cliff, James, Doug & Sgt Stone
Alaska – King Mountain – Snowshoe Hare - .22  - Marvin, Martin, Larry, Cliff
New York – West Point Military Reservation – Whitetail – 30-30 & 30-06 Richard

Fished some great spots
Texas – all over Central Texas
New Mexico
Minnesota & Canada – Quetico Boundary Waters
Alaska – Finger Lake, Susitna, Yukon, Ship Creek, & many more
North Carolina
New York – bottom to top
Wyoming – Tetons Wilderness (son, Joseph & son-in-law Michael)

Set foot inside the Arctic Circle (Ft Yukon, AK 1973)

Lived in my current abode longer than any other along the way

Fortunate to have had 20 or so canine partners (& a couple feline)over a span of 65 years; the last six being the best (Denali, Buck, Maggie, Gus & Otis, Crook)

Have had the great luck and accomplished all this with my best friend and the best person I know in the entire world by my side for the majority of the trip and am now looking forward to and thinking just what adventures we might challenge together in the coming years to top all that has gone before!