Tuesday, February 21, 2012


A 3-legged stool supported John Glenn in his many successes - or so I've heard. I am a student of the 3-legged stool school. Everyone needs a sturdy base in order to succeed. Do you have one? If not, you can design your own or give this one a try. Whether learning something new, describing something old or planning for the future, a 3-legged perspective makes good sense of your purpose and mission. Consider, for example Belief as faith, hope and charity; Humanity as thought, word and deed; Success as plan, action and outcome.

I was not surprised to learn that John Glenn, a man to admire, respect and appreciate, offered us his 3-point guide to an amazing and successful life. Now reaching his 91st birthday, he credits his long life to, "Attitude, Exercise and having a Purpose." - and since this 3-legged stool works for him, it may work for you, too.

Instinctively, I ran off to review Glenn's biography. I needed to know When, where and how he applied this wisdom in his life successes? Someone, in recent years, had the audacity (or, perhaps it was humor) to ask, "What on Earth has John Glenn done...?" Here's a quick review: pilot (1941); joined US Army (1941) the US Navy (1942), reassigned US Marine Corps (1943); flew 59 combat missions over South Pacific; patrol missions in North China; flight instructor (1948); 63 combat missions in Korea; joined NASA (1949) as astronaut; flew first supersonic flight (1957); earned 5 Distinguished Flying Crosses; 5th person in space; 3rd American in space; 1st American to orbit Earth (1962). He circled 3 times while all the residents of Perth turned on all their luminaries to become the "City of Light" as he flew overhead in 1962 - and again on his last orbit in 1998 when he was the oldest man (age 77) to fly in space.

Both feet on the ground, John Glenn is a Freemason and Elder of his church. He married and has two children. He was elected US Senator (D-Ohio) 1974-1990. American females were disappointed to learn Glenn testified (1962) to exclude women from NASA's astronaut program but, apparently, later changed his mind as Sally Ride was the first women in space (1983) and Eileen Collins piloted a US space craft (1995).

Without doubt, John Glenn had an 'atttude' of determination to fly, serve his country and to represent his Ohio neighbors in the US Senate. He revealed himself as a 'real' person in interviews and cameo television appearances. He has put attitude, exercise and purpose to exceptional good use.

We missed the 50th anniversary of John Glenn's orbit of Earth, but wouldn't it be wonderful if everybody turned on lights to celebrate his 91st birthday on 18 July 2012 - just as Perth did during his 1962 orbit and also his 1998 space flight? A 3-legged stool worked for John Glenn. Remember, if you don't have one of your own, you have Glenn's permission to copy his - and I hope you find Attitude, Exercise and Purpose a sturdy and reliable guide in your successes. Google John Glenn to learn more - or stop by to peek at the John Glenn scrapbook my 2nd grade son Glenn and I put together in 'real time.'

Don't forget to tell me about your 3-legged stool. I'd like to know.

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