Commentary

June 15, 2012

56th CONS civilian salutes military father’s lessons

by Mary Peetz
56th Contracting Squadron

When I was a senior in high school, my father served as the Hill Air Force Base commander.

Understandably, the unwelcomed public scrutiny of a teenager’s life that occurs when your father is the base commander naturally created tension at times. As my father approaches his 80th birthday though, my reflection on that period provides a greater appreciation for his service to both those entrusted to his command and his family. Unknown to me at the time, he consistently demonstrated one of the most important elements of leadership — balance.

I didn’t realize, much less appreciate, the demands on my father’s time during this period and the enduring life lesson he was displaying not only to his daughter but to the men and women under his command. Despite the significant time demands placed on someone serving in such a position, he always made time for me. Whether it was spending time with me doing homework at the dining room table, going for evening runs, or accompanying me to church, he committed one of the most important things a father can to a child’s development — his time.

In fact, I cannot remember a single instance when my father missed one of my high school volleyball games, track meets or softball games during this period even though I may not have appreciated it at the time. More than 30 years later, he still has the ability to recount play-by-play my athletic highlights with all the excitement of an ESPN sportscaster. The same is true for my four sisters and brother. I now know there is no greater motivation than a father’s pride. His love was unconditional.

Although I cannot say conclusively, I suspect that many of the men and women who served with my father took notice of the example he set in his personal life and have similar family memories due, at least in part, to my father’s leadership. As leaders, we have a responsibility to encourage our people to find that proper balance in their lives. With the current operations tempo, achieving that objective is more difficult than ever but no less than important. As Father’s Day approaches, it provides an excellent opportunity for us all to reflect on what matters most and ensure we are achieving the proper balance. I salute my father for his commitment to this leadership principle.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

People — Air Force’s greatest asset

As I reflect on almost 25 years of military service, I find it easy to remember my assignments, the multiple jobs I’ve had and duties I have performed. I have served on four continents and for four presidents. Within that same time period, our nation has been in numerous campaigns ranging from operations Desert Storm...
 
 

Character, good or bad, will be passed on

Your character is who you are when no one is watching. At the same time, your character is who you are when everyone is watching. Your character is the sum of your morals and values and the quality of your character is of the utmost importance when leading others. In addition to your own values...
 
 
Courtesy photo

This week in history

1990: Operation Desert Shield Twenty-five years ago, Saddam Hussein ordered the Iraqi military to invade Kuwait. He wanted to annex what he called Iraq’s 19th Province. The country of Kuwait was Iraq’s small neighbor on the...
 

 
fear-the-walking-dead-poster

Fly Over: ‘Fear the Walking Dead’ and ‘Banjo Kazooie’

‘Fear the Walking Dead’ The much anticipated premiere of “Fear The Walking Dead” airs Sunday, giving new life to fans of “The Walking Dead.” The prequel was created by Robert Kirkman and Dave Erickson who gave us ...
 
 

Chaplain’s thoughts …

“I have $1.50 in my pocket. All other monies are ear-marked for other obligations.” That’s a line from my personal journal dated Jan. 10, 1997. I’ve kept a journal for my entire adult life. It helps my nostalgic nature be able to look back and remember where I’ve been. So here’s a snap-shot of where...
 
 

Common sense, simplicity play lead role

There are numerous resources describing the attributes of extraordinary leaders, and one could spend countless hours sorting through data to supplement their toolkit. However, as with most things, common sense and simplicity should play a factor in any leadership situation. Throughout my Air Force experience, I have witnessed the same basic and successful qualities in...
 




One Comment


  1. Mary Anne Jimenez

    Such a beautiful, heartfelt tribute from a loving daughter to her father on Father’s day weekend.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>