I need to take a little time to brag on our KING AEROSPACE team. The team consists of people all over the world supporting corporate, government and military aircraft who are passionate about making a positive difference in the lives of others. Their passion and performance is very noticeable. This is not just my opinion — those that we serve often tell me about the “little things” as well as the “big things” that KA team members do for customers and I read about them in written performance reviews. Our team does the right things for the right reasons with the right attitudes.
As a young boy, I got excited when the circus came to town. The anticipation would start when I would see the colorful posters on buses and telephone poles announcing its arrival. At school, the kids would all be talking about it, creating a great hype. I seldom got to go, but each year I would get very excited about the circus.
A couple of Sundays ago I was at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center to begin my annual inspection (an aviation term). You might know that over ten years ago I was first diagnosed with kidney cancer and then a year later with bladder cancer. Thank goodness they both were caught in the early stages!
An old aviation friend called me not too long ago. He is retired now but 35 years ago was the Director of Aviation for a major oil-related company. When I was at Associated Air Center this man was the definition of “aviation cool” and reeked of professionalism. He flew corporate jets of all sizes, including airline-sized VIP aircraft operated by his company. He was always polite and kind to me, the rookie in the industry. After I left Associated, the very first day I was going out to make cold calls to find some sorely needed income for KING AEROSPACE and to feed my young family, I decided to have an early breakfast at the “Original Pancake House” near Love Field before I made my first sales call. There he was, finishing his breakfast. I told him that it was fate that I would run into him on the very first day I began a new chapter in my life. He assured me that I would do fine and told me that he believed in me, or words to that affect. I remember like it was yesterday that his words put tears in my eyes to think that someone so successful and well respected in the aviation industry would say such kind things. The rest is history. I was blessed to have gotten KING AEROSPACE “off the ground” and have been able to avoid any “hard landings”, all by the grace of God.
At KING AEROSPACE, earning the right to wear the gold wings on your chest is something that is taken very seriously. Once an employee earns the right to wear the gold KING AEROSPACE wings, the employee is presented the wings in a formal ceremony. The KA logo is embroidered on a shirt presented to the employee. Hats, jackets and additional shirts with the KA logo embroidered on them are sometimes awarded at a later date.
Happy New Year! May 2018 bring only great things for you and your family! I keep a constant reminder of how I should live hanging on the walls of the places where you will routinely find me. It is on the wall of my residence bedroom, my KACC Ardmore apartment, my office in Addison and in my ranch house. I need the daily reminder to help keep me focused and I pray that I live up to the printed words. I borrowed these words years ago from someone to help guide me in my daily life and I want to share them with you. May you all find them helpful and meaningful in your own lives. May we all live up to them all of the days of 2018 with God’s favor!
I am a little reluctant to share this story but saying something that might be embarrassing has never stopped me before so here goes: I don’t recall my father ever telling me he loved me. I knew he loved me but he just never did say it. I freely tell my kids that I love them and strive to demonstrate my love to my wife of 31 years. I’ve said it to others but at times it just felt a little strange.READ MORE
It was recently announced that my old company, Associated Air Center (AAC), will be closing at the end of this year. It is sad to see a seventy year old company go away. Unfortunately, there are several other businesses that you and I can also recall shutting down in a number of other industries.
On August 12, 2017, I had the honor to be present with my family at Gethsemane Lutheran Church, my boyhood church in San Antonio, as a childcare center was dedicated in honor of my mother, Angela King Mosley. Mom was born in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico as Angela Echevarria and then married my dad and became Angela King. After my father’s death, she remarried and became known as Angela King Mosley.READ MORE
I have a true confession about my communication challenges. It’s a little embarrassing, but here it is: I still own and use a flip phone! Not only is it a flip phone, but the Puerto Rican in me moved me to customize it. I put J-B weld where there once was a display that showed the time and date and I filled in the camera lens.
Two weeks ago, I was standing out on the ramp at KACC’s Ardmore facility in the hot Oklahoma sun. I was shoulder to shoulder with others from KACC in our standard aircraft delivery formation, showing our respect to the customer and crew that had just entrusted us with their project and lives.
When I hear the word “paranoia” I think negatively of a mental condition. But, being “paranoid” is not always negative. Two of our KING AEROSPACE Cornerstone Principles require demonstrating “Pro-Active/Problem Solving Attitudes” and “Quality in Everything (“No Excuses”).” Living principles and professed convictions of service to God, Country and Family creates in me a very conscious and never ending paranoia. I do not want to fail those who place their trust in us.
As I look back over the years, remember that I have provided a lot of free meals to all sorts of people without ever really thinking about it. Maybe it is because there was once a point in my life when I would go a couple of days without much to eat or maybe it is because as a teenager there were many times that I would let my date order her meal first so I could calculate how much money I had left and determine if or what I would order. For most of my adult life, when I eat with someone, my personal policy is to always buy the meal. It is “My treat.” I have explained my policy countless times: “I always buy the meal so get whatever you want. If I ruin your meal, at least I paid for it.” Unfortunately, I have ruined a few meals for others over the years and some of my own!
It seems that hearts, or valentines, have always been special to me. I was born “Deep in the Heart of Texas” in San Antonio. My mentors, Herb and Colleen, always had hearts displayed somewhere as they operated Southwest Airlines. More importantly, the environment they fostered at Southwest Airlines was always “straight from the heart.” My mother and father’s favorite song was “Cuando Caliente Del Sol” or “Love Me with All of Your Heart.” The wedding ring I gave my wife was a heart shaped single diamond. Mariachis sang “Cuando Caliente Del Sol” at our wedding and this song has become our song. My valentine for over thirty years has always allowed me to follow my heart (or tolerated it).
Most of the time I begin and end my day with prayers for people and situations. The day after the recent Presidential election I said this prayer that I got from my deceased mother’s prayer book entitled, “Our Country.” I have said this prayer many times in the past but the words never resonated stronger or deeper within my heart than they did the day after the election. The prayer says nothing about Republicans, Democrats, Independents, the Tea Party, Conservatives or Liberals. I cherish this prayer and want to share it with you.
I grew up watching black and white television shows. The shows I loved would probably not be regarded as politically correct today but “it is what it is.” I watched “The Little Rascals,” “The Life of Riley,” “The Real McCoys,” “Dragnet,” “The Honeymooners” and “I Love Lucy” (Ricky Ricardo’s English was better than my own mother’s English). How can I forget “The Lone Ranger”,” Bonanza,” “Have Gun Will Travel,” “The Rifleman” and “Roy Rogers” plus Audie Murphy but my all-time favorite was the “Amos and Andy Show.”
I often ask people, “Who is the happiest person you know?”
The reason I ask this question is because it appears to me that more and more people are not happy despite continually seeking happiness. I cannot help but wonder if it has always been this way, or if our modern society of instant gratification has helped create this environment and my perception.
More than once in my life I have had a young person say, “I wish that you were my dad.” I always respond the same way, “If you knew what I expect of my kids, you probably wouldn’t feel that way.” I think of it as when the coach’s son or daughter is in a starting position, especially in a high profile position. The kid better work twice as hard as anyone else and better perform or you are just inviting the naysayers. The promotion of my son to President of the KING AEROSPACE Companies is something that was earned. I tried to raise my son and daughter to take care of themselves with values and hard work. They were given opportunities but it was up to them to sink or swim.
I will never forget several years ago when I drove past the lagoon shown in this picture. In disbelief, I saw two trespassers fishing in what was essentially a waste treatment plant! I am confident that if they caught a fish, it didn’t take them long to figure out that it smelled terrible for a reason.
Most Americans have good memories of things they have done on July 4th. I hosted an old fashioned July 4th celebration at my ranch for a number of years; activities included barbeque, horseback riding, hay rides, fishing and even a greased hog catching contest.