Happy Birthday to me and Hello World

Happy Birthday to me, and Hello World.  (Not really, but it’s my mother’s – R.I.P.)

This is how I wrote it, in the book. And it’s dedicated to her grands and great-grands!

Today is my day. Celebrations are in order.

 

Birthdays are so special because they are so personal. I was born on the 21st of April many, many years ago. However, I was not the only person born on that day. Other people were also born on that day, but I don’t know them, they probably don’t know me either. We can search through the internet for some of the famous people that were born on the same day we were born, to form a kinship.

 
As I got older, I would also use this day as a day of reflection. Young folks have called me an “old head” or “OG” for some time now. Hopefully those terms are a show of respect for having reached a certain age. Whenever I hear the term, my response is always the same. “Everybody doesn’t make it”.

 
A lot of the people I grew up with, in “The Big D: Detroit” are no longer here. Some died, due to illness or accident. Some choose the fast life and died through violence or drugs.

 

I even lived through the Vietnam War, and was considered a Vietnam Era veteran, even though I went to Germany. A lot of folks never made it back home. I grieve for those who are no longer here. I remember them, but I celebrate life. Life is precious and not to be wasted.

 
As I think back on past birthdays, I remember certain birthdays more than others. We key in on the numbers and sometimes on the events that happened on that special day. I remember 13 because that number represents passage into being an “official teenager.”

 
I reflect back to 18, because that age represents official responsibility. Young folks say, “I’m grown now, I’m 18.” That is considered the start of young adulthood. The next milestone is 21. At 21 we look at that age as being a legal adult. Time to get “officially drunk”.

 
At 19, I was in the military service. And I became a man, a legal adult (age 21), on the African Continent. I was stationed at an US Air Force Base in Libya, and served under the base commander, then Colonel “Chippie James” who later became the first African American, Four Star General for the United States Air Force

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As a baby boomer we looked at 30, as being part of the establishment or over the hill. When I got there, I was glad to be able to “look down the hill”. After that, I looked at each ten-year period as a milestone.

 

I remember the birth of each of my children. I was not in the waiting room; I was in the delivery room, helping to bring them into the world. I grew up in an environment of too many baby daddy’s and wanted to break that cycle. My oldest son, Edward was born in Philadelphia. My daughter, Nicole was born in a German hospital and my youngest son, Matthew was born in a military hospital at Ft. Bragg (home of the Airborne) in North Carolina.

 

When I got older and wiser, I discarded some old misconceptions. Men do cry in the dark. We just don’t do it as much as women, because we don’t want to appear weak. When you look at the world and tragedies involving the young and the innocent like Boston and New Town and the things we do to each other it should break any heart. Sadness and grief is a human condition.

 

I always called home for my birthday because I was away in the military. That was my way of saying Hi, I’m still here. If you happen to read this, do that (like, comment, and share). I’m blogging on the internet because I have had a unique life experience and I’m sharing because it helps my own personal development.

 

When I went to college “back in the day”, we used punch cards for the main frame computer. Now kids carry carry computers in their back pocket, in the form of a smart phone. And things are still changing, so I’m still learning. The bottom line is: “Thank God I’m still here” another year.

 

H.G.M. Is for Hackett Global Marketing.
I also Have Great Mindset, I’ve Had Great Mentors.                                                                      And because I’m still here, I Have God’s Mercy

Internet comments

Azam Hamdoon
Happy birthday Earl 🙂 Have a great one, and great story by the way.

Deirdre Powell
Great post Earl. Happy Birthday! I love the way you tell your stories. Being a Baby Boomer myself, I appreciate your post. Life is precious, people don’t always act like they think it is. Glad someone still does. Blessings!
Sheena
Happy Birthday Earl!

Tereza Kumric
Happy Birthday Earl! Thanks for sharing your special day with us!

Earl Hackett
Thanks for your well wishes and comments.

To Edward, Nicole, and Matthew this is what Dad has been doing! You called it “that blogging thing”. My birthday gift to me, and surprise to you, is putting your name in ink; on a blog and in a book. How is that for a little family history?

Your determination will take you places

It’s how you finish the game that counts.

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Albert Mensah started from a hut in a little village in Ghana West Africa. He is now one of the top motivational speakers in the world. I started from a mother on welfare and survived the mean streets of Detroit and graduated from the hallowed halls of Drexel University. Between it all, I traveled to seven countries on three continents and served in two branches of the military. Your start does not have to be your end.

When Mensah graduated from college he worked as a bar back in a fancy hotel. Bar backs wore the black bow ties and black suits and cleared the glasses off the tables. He took them back to the dish washer and refilled the racks behind the bar so the bar tender would always have fresh glasses. His next promotion was as a dish washer, they were paid hourly instead of living on tips. Each job for him was getting him into the American culture.

Work experience and work ethic will take you places you never dreamed of. One of the bar patrons noticed Mensah’s and asked why he was always working so hard. Mensah told him that he had just graduated from college and that he was from Ghana West Africa and he had to work somewhere. That chance encounter lead to Mensah being offered a sales rep position with the local Yellow Pages sales office.

When he was hired, he told the former bar patron, now branch manager that he was going to become “rookie of the year”. The manager laughed, but he didn’t know about the power of intention, perseverance and determination. When you start anything have a clear intention and declare it. When you do, you hold yourself accountable and the powers of the universe will come into play.

Dave Wood one of the co- founders of the empower network talked about the power of intention at my first convention in Denver CO. The rest of the leaders talked about it also and I heard about it at the beginning the $15 K Formula which became the Team Building Formula. You got to get your “mind right” before you get your “money right”.

When Mensah started selling yellow page advertising he started with the small accounts. He found it hard to ask for a $2,000 ad because that was more than he was making at the time. But he sold the smaller amounts on such a consistent basics that he made up in numbers what he lacked in skill. Jim Rohn, the young farm boy did the same thing when he first got started in sales; he made up in numbers what he lacked in skill.

Again, hard-work and the right attitude got him noticed. The manager told him that he had potential and started to work closely with him to smooth out the rough edges. Before the year was up Mensah was rookie of the year.

Mensah realized that if he knocked on enough doors he would make $60,000 a year as one of the top salesmen. As a result, he stayed with the company for 15 years. It didn’t take long for Mensah to make more in one year than his father had with 15 years in the Ghana Army. America is still the land of opportunity for those willing to hustle.

When the door of opportunity opens for you, will you walk in or will you wait? Would an additional $3,000 to $5,000 a month in addition to whatever you may be doing right now be enough for you get started?

Are you willing to spend the time and the energy to learn what you need to learn? Are you willing to invest in the training programs that give you the technical knowledge and the sales philosophy behind internet marketing and direct sells? Are you willing to stay the course and attend the events until you get the results you want? This is just just me talking straight, no chaser. What is your story?

H.G.M.

Internet comments

Sheena

Yes, determination and persistence will take you places.

Earl Hackett

Thanks Sheena for your comments. Mensah started from a hut in Ghana West Africa and he became a top motivational speaker (in America). He got to that position by “determination and persistence”.

I started with Empower Network as a recent retiree looking for something to keep my mind active after a unique career path. My determination and persistence will take me to the published author status someday. But more importantly, I get to continue a family legacy.

Mom was about basic survival, and she was a rock. To me she will always be the country girl from Mississippi who knew how to cook. She never learned how to drive but didn’t let it stop her. She was an independent woman who caught the bus everywhere. I was always amazed that she would catch the bus to work at the age that most would be retired (in her mid eighties). Mom gave birth to 14 kids and raised many grandkids along the way.

I learned the rest of her story at her funeral. She had told the story of her mom passing when she was only eight. At the age of 90 mom passed on to glory, and because I blog, I get to tell the rest of her story. Her father that she never really knew was a Native American who kept count of all his children and when mom was born in 1919 she was the last of 33. I’m about the arrival and I come from good stock.

Jim Rohn once said, That’s my mountain, and I will climb that mountain, or you will find my dead body on the side (of the mountain). A do or die, not try, is the only way to go, if you want to blaze a trail!! That’s my determination, what is yours?

What if you are not ready for retirement?

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Too many baby boomers, went bust!
(Another story from the book)
Just finished looking at the evening news. They were talking about the fact that too many seniors are not ready for retirement. Even if you are 50+ it may be closer and more serious than you think.
I know it was for me. I had been working as the same place for many years (15) and was counting down to retirement within three years. I was coasting. Did I also mention that I also worked another  full time jobs for a six-year period while working on this steady job? Retirement to me, meant not punching the clock for a pay check or putting up with anyone (supervisor, manager) you really didn’t want to deal with, for 8 hours every day.
I learned the hard way (I knew that it happened to others but…) Companies really want to make as much money as possible (and it’s not personal – until it happens to you) and it’s the easiest way to increase profits for the company. To reduce cost they get rid of the senior people who have earned the top pay scale because they can be replaced by young folks that will work for less, especially when the job market is shaky. Some people are just glad to be working steady: That can be a white collar or a blue-collar or no collar type occupation..
If you have worked your way up in the company, watch out! It’s not like it use to be –companies stopped giving out gold watches after 30 years. Corporate America does not care. Get ready, wake up now. If you are making a lot of money, be even more careful because your life style is probably putting you deeper in debt. (your living the dream now, may be your worst nightmare later in life).
Only the US government can spend and spend, because they can always print more money. If you or I try that, we will go to jail. You need to start your search now and if it feels right, make a decision now. When you get older (I’m 63) time is limited. Mom made it to 90, some leave here before 30. What are you going to do with the time you have left? When you are older you should be wiser. What a good time to give something back to the next generation before you leave.
One option is to down size your life style, pay off as many of your bills as possible. Move into a smaller residence or look for a part time job. Getting your funds together requires a nest egg (the country has been so messed up in the last few years – some not only lost the egg, they lost the whole nest) they needed a good certified financial planner who was more concerned about them, than their profits per transaction/transgression.
I looked at different income producing opportunities over the years. When I was introduced to personal development many years ago I remember how good it made me feel. Feeling good is nice, but I needed to get paid. I reached the leadership position in one Network Marketing companies – traveled to different parts of the country but I never made the money, I really wanted. The products and services were great but it takes years to get to certain levels.
The Empower Network is a money system. I got that! If you follow the system, the core values and do what the leaders tell you, it’s only a matter of time before you get the results you need. The industry is growing and this company in right in the mix. Any company that teaches internet marketing skills puts you in a better position.
I listen to Dave and Dave as to where they came from. And I listen to the story of others. Learn as much as you can, because when you learn the skills you can take the skills with you.
H.G.M.
Internet comments
Sheena
Awesome post Earl, Thanks for your input.
 
Shahidah Akbar
Earl, I too am a baby boomer (age 60) that’s ready to retire but realized my retirement’s accounts are underfunded. As I look for something else I could do to bring in additional income the thought of getting another job is not appealing. Building an online business is my solution. I truly love what I’m doing and that’s the key.
 
Charlene Burke
Baby boomers are the best online marketing business owners! With our work ethic combined and our life experience we’re unstoppable!
Omkar
It was a nice read Earl, Thank you.
 
Jimmylee Velez
Awesome post Earl! This is very true, and kind of scary for people who are not prepared. This can destroy the golden years for sure! Thanks for sharing.
 
Tamara Boggio Upton
What started me on the path to find empower network was a conversation my mother-in-law had with my husband last summer. She said she didn’t know how many of her kids would ever be able to retire. I decided I would find a way to make that happen, if it was the last thing I did. Labor Day weekend I came across the website for empower network and joined on the spot. This is what I was looking for and I’m making retirement happen. Thanks for sharing this blog post
Debbie Moffat
This is awesome!!! Thanks Earl 🙂
 
Earl Hackett
Thank you for the comments. If you are of a certain age, you know what time it is. If you are not there yet, take a look at your parents, they know what I’m talking about. And if you live long enough you will find out.Why not find an on-line business. Everybody seems to
have a smart phone and most spend a lot of time online.

How Vernice “Fly Girl” Armour became and inspiration and hero to me

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.

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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?
H.G.M.

Internet comments

Charlene Burke
She is certainly an inspiration to me and I will be checking out her book today! Thank you for sharing.
Charlotte Clausen
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.
Larry Rivera
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.
Stephen Rosario
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!

Lynn Brown

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.

Timothy Gardiner
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.

Earl Hackett
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!

What do you do when the missile locks

What do you do, when the missile locks on, and you are about to be blow up, somewhere in the sky? After the initial pucker in the lower regions, you suck it up, get it together and go through all the defense maneuver you practiced. You try to remember the books and the training you received over the years. Your life may even flash before your eyes. Rob Waldo Waldman did what he needed to do, and he lived to tell his story.

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On April 28, 1999 Waldo was on a real-world combat mission in support of Allied Force Operations in Europe. As an F-16 fighter pilot he and his group were flying a support mission for an F-117 stealth fighter group that were assigned to take out some strategic targets in downtown Belgrade.

As they approached the forward edge of the battle area everybody put on their game face. Two minutes into the battle area, Waldo’s radar goes off, alerting him that trouble was headed his way. He couldn’t see the actual missiles because it was the middle of a night time operation. What he could see, were the two huge red flame fireballs representing the flame trail of two surface to air missiles headed towards him.

As he retold the story to Chris Widener in the “Made for Success series”, you could hear in his voice the excitement of the moment. It was a moment he would never forget. It was kill or be killed and he had to execute a defensive movement or that would be his last flight. Mistakes in the air during combat, tend be fatal.

Short of combat, there are times when things become very critical. It’s the do or die of life, and business. It’s, I got to do this, or I’m really going to pay the price. It could be your moment of glory or your moment of defeat. It may not be physical death, but it hurts just the same. It’s what do I do now, or where do I turn?

If you lose your job and you have a family to support, and you have no savings, and you have a house that you are about to lose, that’s stressful. If you are a single parent, and the job lays you off suddenly, and you don’t have any money, and you can’t feed you kids, or keep the lights on, that’s stressful. It feels like the missile of misfortune is headed your way. Too much stress even kills.

Waldo went through the procedures he had trained for; out run the missile or out maneuver it to break the radar lock of the missiles. The danger is not over until something explodes. The missiles blew up about 1,000 feet from his aircraft. Close call, but not fatal. He said that at that moment, he felt like he had defeated the most dangerous threat of his life. However, he still had a job to do and he continued the mission.

He regained his composure and returned to the flight pattern. Another two missiles locked on, same fatal danger, but this time it felt a little different. He remembered how good he felt when he avoided the other two, so his confidence was higher. He was still in danger but he was able to react a lot quicker to avoid the danger.

In life and in business when you overcome situations you gain more confidence when you survive the problems. If every time you start something and you quit when the going gets rough you cheat yourself out of getting stronger for the next challenge. How often do you encourage a toddler to keep trying to walk even though they may fall down a lot? You keep pushing UNTIL they walk.

If you start with the empower network how long do you stick with it? You stick with it long enough until YOU get it. Period. Do the work, attend the events and someone will notice. Lock arms and get plugged in. The people you hear making big money started some- where and they just continued to grow with the high commission structure system.

One unique individual with prior online experience set company and industry records. How else can you explain how Vic Strizhus became the number one earner in the company? He earned $710,000 in his first thirty day (his results are not typical they are exceptional – see the income disclosure statement). He had “a lot of prior on-line experience” and he was able to take advantage of the the high ticket educational products. This has been straight talk, beast mode.

H.G.M.

 

Internet comments

Garry

It’s hard to compare combat to blogging… but it scares me sometime… and your post, puts it into perspective. Thanks Earl.

Movie Trailers Rule

Great story Earl and a powerful lesson within. Everything gets easier the more you do it, so you have to go into it with a ‘no-quit’ attitude and stick with it until you “get it”. Thanks for sharing this!

Sherry Parks Starnes

Great post Earl. I had not heard the story of Rob Waldo Waldman and it’s an amazing one. We must do whatever it takes when put into difficult situations. He relied on his training and experience and that’s what we have to do as well. Thanks for sharing.

X Ray Cat

Thanks Earl. Loved the story and how you compared it to business and life in general. And I absolutely agree, every combat you have in life and in business is a learning opportunity and I have learned from my own experience, that universe doesn’t put any obstacles in our way that we couldn’t overcome. He’s just testing us, to see if we are worthy of our dreams 🙂 Heck yea, we are, but we have to show it. The Universe will not just take our word for it.

Becky

The comparison here are so powerful …Too many times we give up too soon which prevents us from seeing our true potential and reaching our goals. Trails and tough times do make us stronger – when we reach the other side we’re thankful for the strength gained. Thanks for sharing this – I look forward to the next one 🙂

 

Sheena

Awesome stuff Earl, Thanks for sharing.

Earl Hackett

Thank you for your comments. Rob Waldo Waldman (Lt. Col. Ret.) survived combat and became a Certified Speaking Professional (CSP) and a key note speaker. He is also the Founder and President of the Wingman Foundation, a 501(c)(3) who’s mission is to raise awareness for soldiers, veterans and their families in need.

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Review of events; the movie, the news paper and real life.

I went home to Detroit to visit, and saw the movie “Detroit” with my sister Diane. We are both old enough to remember, we were there when it happened 50 years ago. I was living with my dad and she was with mom and my other brother at the time. I was actually home alone when it happened because my dad was out of town that weekend.

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The numbers are still staggering; over 2,000 buildings were destroyed, over 7,000 people were arrested, 1,100 injuries and 43 people were killed. The vast majority of damaged buildings were never replaced. I left the city the next year by joining the military. I would come back to visit over the years, but it was never the same.

The riot began with the raid of a illegal bar ( it was called a blink pig) on the west side. Police had conducted other raids without incident, but this time they were surprised with the amount of people that were there. It was six times more than normal. The people there, were throwing a party for two returning veterans who has served in the Vietnam War according the details in the 8-Page Commemorative Section of the Detroit Sunday Free Press; Written by Bill McGraw, Detroit Free Press special writer, and others.

 

It was hot summer night, and many people were outside witnessing the long process of seeing people carried off in the paddy wagons. Bystanders joked with the bar patrons at first, but the crown grew angry and rowdy as the white cops kept carting off the Black bar patrons.

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A couple of people agitated, and someone in the crowd, threw a bottle. A line of police quickly moved toward the crowd, then backed away. That hesitation, and other missteps  caused a chain of events that resulted in 5 days of destruction of which the city has never really fully recovered.

From that point on, windows started breaking and people started looting.  The police were issued riot gear and loaded shotguns but “told not to shoot the looters”. Even during the first several hours after daylight, the police did not shoot anyone and they only made a few arrest. I always wondered how things got so far out of hand, now I have a good idea why.

Mayor Jerome Cavanagh and Police Commissioner Ray Girardin took a very controversial approach of using restraint, at first. Maybe, they were thinking about the recent (1967) Newark NJ riot in which 26 people were killed. Or maybe they were thinking about the (1943 Detroit two-day race riot) that happened at Belle Isle in which 34 people were killed. Or maybe they didn’t want to appear weak by losing control of a major city. They knew that the Detroit Police force, the Michigan State Police and the Michigan National Guard were also mostly White and most of the residents of Detroit were Black and the outcome would not look good in the news.

The first fire started in a 12th Street shoe store and the fire crew battled it with no harassment at 8:24 a.m. By early afternoon blazes raged out of control up and down 12th Street. At some fire scenes residents helped the firefighters and at other locations the crowd threw rocks and bottles. At one point, the fire department radio dispatcher relayed a command from the fire chief to withdraw from all areas that didn’t have police protection. That’s when things really got hot!

With the temperatures being in the high 80’s and winds in  15 m.p.h.range it whipped the growing flames and and spread the embers around the city.  Johnny Lee Hooker, the late blues singer, who lived in Detroit sang ” The Motor City is Burning” and it was. Many of the 34,000+ fans at Tiger Stadium saw the smoke, but were not told the cause of the smoke. The announcer just told the fans to avoid certain streets, when the doubleheader game was over.

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There was a media blackout at first because the Mayor and the Governor wanted to gain an upper hand first. When the story finally broke, people in the suburbs moved their cars up into the driveway and grabbed their guns. Police and residents in the suburbs like Grosse Pointe and Dearborn stood ready to defend their borders.

At the Fox Theater (in downtown Detroit) on Sunday, Martha and the Vandellas were the headliner for the “Swing Time Review”.  When Martha Reeves got the word she told the audience, and they all left calmly. In my mind, I will always remember the Fox Theater, as “the place for the Motown Review” where all the Motown stars performed in person. To me, the 1967 Detroit Riot was an incident that forever changed the city.

At 2:05 p,m, the police commissioner called for the State Police and at 4:10 the Governor called  for the Michigan National guard. But, by 4:30 p.m. firefighters had abandoned a 100 city block area along 12th Street area because they didn’t have police protection. Now Detroit was really out of control. At 9:07 the first sniper fire was reported, then other people started dying.

Governor Romney finally reached out to Vice President  Hubert Humphrey  Monday  morning and by the afternoon, President Lyndon Johnson ordered  4,700 Army Paratroopers into the Detroit area. As a young high school student, it seemed like a bad movie, seeing tanks and Army troops rolling down the streets I rode my bike on.

The US Army troopers diversity, skill, no-nonsense demeanor and strict discipline quickly gained control of the East Side. About 40% of the paratroopers were Vietnam veterans and 25% were African American. At that time the National Guard was know as weekend warriors and were trigger happy back in the day. They got paid to drill, “one weekend” a month, and attended a “two week training” each year. They became “real warriors” during the Gulf War. How did I know? I learned the difference, when I was active duty Army, stationed at Fort Bragg NC. many years later.

As I read the newspaper article about how the Federal Troops gained control of the “East Side” I realized that the streets named ( Kercheval, Van Dyke, Vernor, Chalevoix, East Grand Boulevard and Mack Street)  were some of the areas I traveled on with my bike. I was walking distance to Belle Isle Park (but I didn’t know the history of it). My friends  James M. , Greg H. and Bugs and I  were always on the go. I was discovering the world as I knew it, a few blocks at a time. I didn’t get a car until I got a job on the assembly line later that year.

“Detroit –  the movie” centered on incidents at the Algiers Motel on Woodward Ave. By the end of that incident, three young Black men – Carl Cooper, 17; Fred Temple, 18 and Auburey Pollard 19 were dead, and several of their friends, plus two White women from Ohio had been assaulted during a brutal lobby interrogation …. all evidence pointed to an execution and not a shootout with police.

The catastrophe was an economic disaster; 2,509 stores were looted or burned including 611 food markets, 537 cleaners and 285 liquor stores and 27% took place in Black-owned businesses. About 388 families were displaced near the stores and shopping areas when the fire department was instructed not to do anything without police protection.  The fire department responded to a total of 3,034 calls.  The vast majority of damaged buildings were never rebuilt.

I may come back to settle down, but it won’t be in the city. The downtown area is going through gentrification but I like the open spaces of the suburbs. Will there another riot as bad at the 1967 event? I don’t know. Many things have changed and yet many things remain the same.

H.G.M.

Salute to Military Veterans

Military service is a unique experience.

Once you go through it, you never forget. The training, the travel, and the time away from family and friends affect the service member and their family. As a two-time military veteran (Air Force & Army), I have first-hand experience.

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I was in the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam War. I missed the combat but I had friends that didn’t. Some came home and some didn’t (R.I.P.) Freedom is not free – many paid the price. During this time period in America most of my class mates were being drafted into military service. If you are a Vietnam Era veteran I’m sure you remember the mood of the country in the 1960′s and early 70′s.

I still remember basic training, AIT, and my assignments. At age 19, I took my first air plane ride from Detroit Michigan to San Antonio, Texas. I also spent time in Nevada, followed by 90 days at Wheeler AFB in Tripoli, Libya during the US base closure there. Then I spent almost two years at Sembach AFB, in Southern Germany.

During this time, Detroit was really the MOTOR CITY – Home of the big four – Ford, General Motors, Chrysler, and American Motors. While in my senior year of high school, I started working on the second shift at the assembly line at Chrysler. The money was good but the work was hard – basic level manual labor. Always observant, I looked around and noticed too many, worn out old workers stuck on the line in support of their families. My way out was to join the Air Force, to use the GI Bill.

I remember the separations from family and friends while in the service – years overseas and other parts of the country. But I learned to make friends and I always wrote home. Think about all the friends you made from different parts of the world. It’s been many years for me, but I have photos to refresh my memory. Some of you still keep in touch with people you met while in the military.

I received a hardship discharge from the Air Force to take care of my dad who suffered a stroke while I was in Germany. After a year, a friend of his took over and I went off to college in Philadelphia under the GI Bill. While there, I ended up going through the Army R.O.T.C. Program there.

While in the Army, I spent time at Ft. Lee VA, Ft. Bragg N.C. and three years on Army posts in Germany. I even took the Border tour between East and West Germany and saw miles and miles of two story fences, land mined areas, kill zones and guard towers.

Things have changed, but I still remember. I saw first-hand why everyone wants to come to the land of opportunity and freedom. I did 10 years in the Army along with 3 years in the Air force that’s 13 years total – no 20-year retirement, but I gained a wealth of priceless experience.​

Do you still have a military mindset? Accomplish the mission and take care of your men (family). Do you have kids over 18 that are looking for a job but spending hours and hours on the internet, or their smart phone with mobile internet access? Do you need additional funds to send them to college? Do you still need additional funds to pay off your own student loans?​

Communication has advanced so much in the last twenty years. How much time do you spend online? Do you have a Face Book, and LinkedIn account, Twitter, Instagram, etc.? More importantly, are YOU getting paid off all this technology?​

Are you up to the challenge? Can you take that “can do attitude” to help someone in your circle of family and friends who needs additional income? Do you personally know a disabled vet that can use a computer key board. There is a way for them to generate income off the internet?​

Are you a military spouse, holding down the home front while your other half is off fighting somewhere? Information is power, use it to your advantage. Get the info. Having served as an Air Force Sergeant and an Army Captain request you take your time – recon the material. If you accept the mission, the Team is ready. This has been straight talk, beast mode.

H.G.M.

                                                           Internet comments

Sheena

Awesome stuff Earl, Thank you for everything you have done.

Sue Price

Hi Earl, I have never been in the military but I know people who have. I get Vietnam was very tough. We had Australians there supporting the US as I’m sure you know. I do have a “can do” attitude. Thank you for sharing some of your journey Earl.

Deirdre Powell

Great post Earl, thank you for your service to our country. A can-do attitude is so important. Thanks for sharing your story.

Sherry Starnes

Great post Earl and thank you for serving our country. You asked some very great questions that will really get people thinking. What is it that we really want? People don’t know what they want. Thanks so much for sharing your awesome story.

Earl Hackett

Thanks for your comments. I joined the military for an opportunity to escape the assembly line. What I discover was The Thin Red Line that changes the ordinary Joe into the GI Joe. That “can-do attitude” gets drilled into the heart and the brain. We train to maintain in any type of weather or terrain. And even as I age, I will always remember the stage, where duty and honor always stand, against the rage.