Charles Plumb, a U.S. Naval Academy graduate, was a jet pilot in Vietnam. After 75 combat missions, his plane was destroyed by a surface-to-air missile. Plumb ejected and parachuted into enemy hands. He was captured and spent 6 years in a Vietnamese prison. He survived the ordeal and now lectures on lessons learned from that experience.

One day, when Plumb and his wife were sitting in a restaurant, a man at another table came up and said, "You're Plumb! You flew jet fighters in Vietnam from the aircraft carrier Kitty Hawk. You were shot down!"

"How in the world did you know that?" asked Plumb.

"I packed your parachute," the man replied.

Plumb gasped in surprise and gratitude.

The man pumped his hand and said, "I guess it worked!" Plumb assured him, "It sure did. If your chute hadn't worked, I wouldn't be here today."

Plumb couldn't sleep that night, thinking about that man. Plumb says, "I kept wondering what he might have looked like in a Navy uniform, a white hat, a bib in the back, and bell-bottom trousers. I wonder how many times I might have seen him and not even said, "Good morning, how are you?" or anything because, you see, I was a fighter pilot and he was just a sailor.

Plumb thought of the many hours the sailor had spent on a long wooden table in the bowels of the ship, carefully weaving the shrouds and folding the silks of each chute, holding in his hands each time the fate of someone he didn't even know.

"Now," Plumb asks his audience, "who's packing your parachute?" Everyone has someone who provides what they need to make it through the day. Plumb also points out that he needed many kinds of parachutes when his plane was shot down over enemy territory --- he needed his physical parachute, his mental parachute, his emotional parachute, and his spiritual parachute. He called on all these supports before reaching safety.

Sometimes in the daily challenges that life gives us, we miss what is really important. We may fail to say hello, please, or thank you, congratulate someone on something wonderful that has happened to them, give a compliment, or just do something nice for no reason.

As you go through this week, this month, this year, recognize people who pack your parachute. I am sending you this as my way of thanking you for your part in packing my parachute!!!

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I Am Flying

Created on 27 January 2011
Once upon a time there was a little boy who was raised in an orphanage.

The little boy had always wished that he could fly like a bird. It was very difficult for him to understand why he could not fly. There were birds at the zoo that were much bigger than he, and they could fly. "Why can't I?" he thought. "Is there something wrong with me?" he wondered.

There was another little boy who was crippled. He had always wished that he could walk and run like other little boys and girls. "Why can't I be like them?" he thought.

One day the little orphan boy, who had wanted to fly like a bird, ran away from the orphanage. He came upon a park where he saw the little boy, who could not walk or run, playing in the sandbox.

He ran over to the little boy and asked him if he had ever wanted to fly like a bird.

"No," said the little boy who could not walk or run. "But I have wondered what it would be like to walk and run like other boys and girls."

"That is very sad," said the little boy who wanted to fly. "Do you think we could be friends?" he said to the little boy in the sandbox.

"Sure," said the little boy.

The two little boys played for hours. They made sand castles and made really funny sounds with their mouths. Sounds which made them laugh real hard. Then the little boy's father came with a wheelchair to pick up his son. The little boy who had always wanted to fly ran over to the boy's father and whispered something into his ear.

"That would be OK," said the man.

The little boy who had always wanted to fly like a bird ran over to his new friend and said, "You are my only friend and I wish that there was something that I could do to make you walk and run like other little boys and girls. But I can't. But there is something that I can do for you."

The little orphan boy turned around and told his new friend to slide up onto his back. He then began to run across the grass. Faster and faster he ran, carrying the little crippled boy on his back. Faster and harder he ran across the park. Harder and harder he made his legs travel. Soon the wind just whistled across the two little boys' faces.

The little boy's father began to cry as he watched his beautiful little crippled son flapping his arms up and down in the wind, all the while yelling at the top of his voice,

"I'M FLYING, DADDY. I'M FLYING!"
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Testimonials

Laxmi Rao
2007-04-07, 21:38
oh my god krishna... im totally convinced of ur passion 4 food n dance.. socha tere msgs ke badle cake dena.. not a bad deal. coz i really like the ms...
Änkur Pötdar
2013-03-02, 23:47
loved this one.
Rahul Mahale
2007-03-26, 21:34
Hi Krishna,
I am Rahul from pune. Third year, comp. engg. student.
I take this opportunity to thank u for all your emails via kkonline com...