Charles Plumb is a motivational speaker who speaks to a wide audience around the world.
He wasn’t always a motivational speaker. During the Vietnam War he was a fighter pilot who flew seventy-five missions off the USS Kitty Hawk. He was shot down over Vietnam and spent six grueling years as a POW in Hanoi.
You may have heard his famous story of what happened after his return. He was eating dinner at a restaurant in Kansas City with his wife when a man two tables over kept staring at him. Finally, the man came by and said: “You’re Captain Plumb.”
Charlie Plumb replied: “Yes sir, I’m Captain Plumb.”
The man said: “You flew jet fighters in Vietnam. You were on the aircraft carrier Kitty Hawk. You were shot down. You parachuted into enemy hands and spent six years as a prisoner of war.”
The man astounded Charlie Plumb with his recognition and the details about his life. He asked the man how he knew who he was and so much about him. The man replied: “Because, I packed your parachute.”
That night Charlie Plumb could not sleep for thinking about the unnamed and unthanked sailor who saved his life. In those days airmen didn’t have much to do with sailors. Plumb couldn’t help but think that this man had saved his life without any appreciation.
“I wondered how many times I might have seen him and not ever said ‘good morning,’ ‘how are you,’ or anything because, you see, I was a fighter pilot and he was just a sailor. How many hours did he spend on that long wooden table in the bowels of that ship weaving the shrouds and folding the silks of those chutes? I could have cared less . . .until one day my parachute came along and he packed it for me.”
Today Charlie Plumb asks audiences: “Who is packing your parachute?”
Let me ask you: “Who do you need to thank? Who is providing service to you? Who is working hard with little recognition? Who are the special people in your life who provide the encouragement you need when the chips are down?”
May you and I learn to give thanks to those who have helped and blessed us through the years.
If you would like to receive my daily posts, you can subscribe to waylonbailey.com below. Simply type in your email address and click subscribe. It’s free and easy. When you receive a return email, confirm your desire to subscribe by clicking on the link.
Waylonbailey.com is my ministry across the Internet. I would appreciate your subscribing and also forwarding this and other posts to your friends. Thanks for your help and support.