A comrade in arms, brought back remembrances, almost forgotten. The first time I saw her, she was in the middle of a business conference with a military flight suit on, at the Philadelphia International Airport. She was the guest speaker of the 30th annual Minority Enterprise Development Week in Philadelphia. It is commonly referred to as MED Week.
With a dynamic approach, like shock and awe she quickly got the audience’s attention. I identified with her right away, because I was a former military officer. She wore the military flight suit because she was the first African American Female Combat US Marine fighter pilot. She flew Cobra attack helicopters during two tours of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
During her presentation, she talked about what it took to just become a female fighter pilot, then she talked about surviving actual combat. In the military, we are trained to accomplish the mission and as leaders to also take care of our comrades.You can accomplish great things if you are willing to try.
She changed out of her military uniform, on stage, into business attire. Vernice Armour is now a business coach and author. She is a very inspirational speaker and business coach, however that military bearing and that “can do attitude “never goes away.
While attending college after my first year, I noticed a poster for the R.O.T.C. program (Reserve Officer Training Corp). I had already survived my time in the military and knew the routine. My brief time in the Air Force (almost three years) was ended when I took a hardship discharge to take care of my dad who had a stroke. I had escaped the auto assembly line in Detroit Michigan by joining the United States Air Force but returned home to take care of family. He got better and a friend stepped in to take care of him, so I could go to school under the GI bill.
Vernice wrote Zero to Break Through – “The 7-Step,Battle Tested Method for Accomplishing Goals That Matter”. In addition to being a decorated fighter pilot she was Camp Pendleton’s 2001 Female Athlete of the Year and Strongest Warrior winner. She was also the first African American female on Nashville’s motorcycle police squad. And she was also on the San Diego Sun Fire professional women’s football team.
Vernice said she was inspired to set an example and to show others what’s possible, when you don’t quit. Vernice was my second exposure with a history making military person. As a young buck sergeant in the US Air Force I was assigned to Wheeler Air Force Base in Tripoli Libya during the base closure. The infamous Colonel Muammar Gaddafi was forcing the US out of the country.
That base commander was Colonel Daniel “Chappie” James, who was a Tuskegee Airman who fought in the Korean and the Vietnam War. Wikipedia stated that he was known for his patriotic speeches. I was exposed to one of his speeches “up close and personal” as part of a small group of young airman that came to his office to complain about some things. I went on to Germany, got out and went to school under the GI Bill. I later became a Second Lieutenant in the US Army and “Chappie” became the First African American Four-Star General of the Air Force.
In business as well as war, we must build a reliable team around us if we expect to win. Vernice talked about how important team effort played in combat, on the police force and on the football field. In her book Zero to Breakthrough she covered consciousness and awareness, preparation and the lack there of – procrastination, discipline and execution, obstacles and challenges, fear and focus. Bottom line, never give up because your breakthrough is just around the corner or over the next hill.
If you are trying to go it alone, who has your back when trouble comes along? What are you going to do, when they are shooting at you? In corporate America, someone always wants your position or they are jealousy of what you have. In any network marketing or affiliate business you get paid to help other succeed. You may seem like you are along at your key board, but you are not.
You are empowered to do your own thing, to follow your own passion, but you become an integral part of the whole. One person is barely recognized, on the internet but take an army of a couple hundred thousand blogging every day and big daddy GOOGLE listens and gives you rank. The more rank YOU get, the better YOUR exposure. This has been straight talk, beast mode. Is this your breakthrough?
She is certainly an inspiration to me and I will be checking out her book today! Thank you for sharing.
Hi Earl That was awesome. Must admit I didn’t know of her, so glad you shared this. It’s exactly about how you use your inner force, to do and get, what you wish for. Thank You.
As they say, Team work makes the Dream work. No one can do everything by themselves. Even the most successful people in the world had a team they worked with. Awesome article, thanks for sharing.
Great blog post Earl. I appreciate the suggestion on the book. I’m going to drop it on my list to read later on. Love the blog, I’ll be back to check it out, again soon!
What an amazing woman Earl, and your tribute is so detailed and very informative of all that Vernice accomplished and how it contributed to so many people. Thank you for sharing.
This is very inspirational. I appreciate this Mr. Hackett. I am an Army veteran myself, and I enjoyed your Blog. And I am sure you have a strong clientele of people who love your blogs. And I know you will be good at whatever you set your mind to. But remember there is no time like the present, to get business going, and there is no such thing as the perfect time, we both been around long enough to know better. It was a pleasure talking with you. To your success, be blessed.
Thank you for the comments. There is an old military saying: If you been around for a while; you survived the fight, the battle or the night and you are still alright; every day, above ground, is a good day!