Thursday, December 15, 2011

Drink Water, Face Out!

Mr. Newman,

My dad recently sent your book "The Night Eagles Soared" to me while I'm stationed in Japan. First of all I wanted to say how much I enjoyed your book. I've lost a couple hours of sleep staying up past my bed time unable to stop reading. Not only was it an excellent read but in my case provided much motivation in my training.

I'm currently training every day, very hard to become a Para-rescuemen in the USAF ( I'm sure your familiar with them having worked with Tac-P and CCT. Sometimes during long days rucking or drowning in the pool you find yourself questioning why your putting yourself through such punishment. Besides my own determination I found your book to be very motivating and a reminder of why we must train so hard.

Your ending was excellent! It left me in suspense wondering what those first steps in Afghanistan were like as well as missions conducted. Thank you for the gift!! It means more then I can say to have you send this to me. I have shared the book with two of my fellow airmen in hopes of spreading the word about your writing and the great things the GBF are doing. We have all enjoyed the book and agree it's a page turner. We can't wait to read "Burnt Yellow and Red"
Once again thank you so much for the book and your service.

Dear Reader,

I am glad you liked the book. And I appreciate you letting your friends read the book. As I wrote the book, I never imagined that it would be such a source of inspiration for young troops. Your comments are very much appreciated!

Since the book was released, I've received emails and letters from troops all over the world telling me how the stories helped them in someway to overcome a challenge, to make a decision in life, or simply pass the time entertained with memories of home. Also, know that no matter how tough a man is, or may seem, inside we all feel the same sense of doubt, especially when it comes to overcoming a challenge like becoming a rescue swimmer, or a PJ, a Green Beret, or a writer, you name it.

When I was a young troop, I went through SF training and I will never forget this one Sergeant I knew. He was a Ranger, hard as woodpecker lips, great big dude. One day during the land navigation test, I saw him walking down the road, crying. I stopped and from the wood line asked him if he was ok. He sobbed that he had fallen into a hole and hurt his leg and now he was out of the course.

It was his mind set, you see he walked the ten kilometers back to the base camp so he could turn in his card and quit. He was fine physically, not limping much. No more than the rest of us. The problem was that he had talked himself into quitting when he knew he could go on, and that is why he was so devastated emotionally.

The moral of the story is that our bodies can handle a lot more than we believe, so there comes a point when mindset over rides the situation. Have you heard the phrase? "Get your mind right!” When I would get really tired, I would to say to myself, "Feet don't fail me now!" And I had a Team Sergeant who summed it up real nice..."If you don't don’t matter!” Do not allow failure to become an option. You see, attitude will carry the day. Never quit and drive on!

Joel Osteen says, "At that moment when you feel like you can't go another step, just remember, you are a lot closer than you think!" So what I am saying is set your mind free from preconceived notions of what is possible and give yourself permission to succeed. You will be surprised to find out just how much can be accomplished at that point. If you feel like you just can't go on, say to yourself, "Feet don't fail me now!" and drive on...It applies to everything you will ever try to accomplish for the rest of your life, believe me!

No need to thank me for my service, you are the hero in my book because I know what it took for you to join the military during a time of war, knowing full well the dangers that may bring. God bless you and your friends. And thank you all for your service!


P.S. And like my friend Jimmy would say… “Drink water, face out!” :) He had no sympathy for soldiers or airmen, only high expectations!

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