The Thought for the Day/Chesty Puller

These poor bastards. They’ve got us right where we want ‘em. We can shoot in every direction now.
Chesty Puller
From Marine! The Life of Chesty Puller by Burke Davis

Lewis ‘Chesty’ Puller (1898-1971) was an American Marine, one of the most revered and the most decorated Marine in history. Puller earned America’s second highest award for valor six times: five Navy Crosses and one Army Distinguished Service Cross. He served America honorably in the Marine Corps for 37 years, retiring in 1955 as a lieutenant general and a common theme you hear from those who served under Puller was that he was tough but fair. Burke Davis (1913-2006) was an American writer and historian, who wrote extensively on the Civil War and those who prosecuted the war.

Today’s Thought, obviously, comes from a time when when Puller and his men found themselves surrounded. Specifically, in the Korean War, when the Chinese had overrun the Yalu River.

From time to time in this feature, we say there are few situations that can not be turned to advantage and this quote has always been our favorite – and perhaps the ultimate example – of this. There you are, in a foreign country, in combat, surrounded by people trying to kill you. Puller not only sees the advantage of being able to fire in every direction, but he pities those who have him surrounded.  

You don’t have to be a Marine surrounded by the enemy to fire, figuratively, in every direction. We do that by putting ourselves in a position to succeed every day, by having a plan for our life and working that plan with courage and diligence.

One of the few questions that matter is is our time paying us a dividend or is it being squandered and friends, we are the only ones who can answer that. I can’t answer it for you and you can’t answer it for me. Our time pays us a dividend when we are following our hearts and trusting our instincts because our hearts tell us where to go and our instincts tell us how to get there.

When we do this we are on our path and living the life we are meant to live. We have life exactly where we want it and are firing in every direction.

Quotes are from Gaylon’s personal quote book, begun in 1988 in a hotel room in Berkeley, California.

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