5 Things I Know For Sure with Yancy Caruthers
1. Never put off a visit to an old friend, or a phone call. Life is fragile, and I have a few regrets in this regard. You don't get another chance to go back and do it.
2. There may be something I can do to fix today, even if doing nothing is sometimes better than doing something. Regardless of how it plays out, there won't be a single thing I can do that will change today. I can only learn from it. I've learned just as much if not more from doing things wrong.
3. People don't follow you because they fear you or because they like you, at least not once you turn your back. They follow because they believe in you, even if they think you are wrong this time. This trust is earned, usually by trusting your subordinates first with the little stuff. They will trust you with the big stuff.
4. Success isn't about one single decision or event, it's about a series of them, and your ability to make good decisions and consistently do the right thing. I can sock away 20% of my paycheck for a year and still lose it all in a game of blackjack. That won't buy me a reputation as a financially responsible person. Honesty is like that, too.
5. Most of the big things in life that went wrong - I knew they were wrong before they started, but I ignored it. I told myself that things weren't really like that, that this time it was different. It doesn't matter if the decision is financial, professional, or in your personal life. It's okay to listen to what your heart has to say, but don't just blindly follow it, especially if your brain is yelling at you to stop. Most of the time your heart makes pretty stupid decisions.
Yancy Caruthers (1971- )grew up in Alton, MO, and joined the Army Reserves at 17. He became a nurse, and worked in several areas until finding a passion in emergency medicine, which ultimately led to a job with an air ambulance company. He served in Iraq two different times, and retired from the Army as a Captain.
After this experience, he decided to leave the medical profession and pursue other endeavors. He has now lived on three continents, and is hoping to reside on at least three more. He currently lives with his family in Nassau, The Bahamas.
Author Links -
Book Genre: Memoir, Military/Medical
Publisher: Independent (CreateSpace and Kindle Direct Publishing)
Release Date: eBook April 2014, paperback May 2014
Book Description: Northwest of Eden is the author's first person account of his experience during Operation Iraqi Freedom as second-in-command of an Army emergency department and leader of an air transport team. The varied cast of characters provides top-notch medical care to service members in harsh conditions, while wielding the darkest humor against each other just to stay sane. Most of the time they succeeded...
My nose hairs stung as I shook the sleep from my head. The putrid smell was back in force, although I hadn’t noticed it the night before. I reminded myself to call someone in housing and have them try to disrupt whatever animal funerals were occurring under my hooch.
I sat down in my office and rested my head on my left hand, feeling stubble there. I hadn’t forgotten to shave, but I’d somehow skipped that half of my face.
“You look like hell,” Maria said.
“I love you, too,” I replied. I went on to tell her the details of the prior night’s flying adventure. I was just wrapping up the story when I looked up to see Sullivan.
“I just wanted to apologize for last night,” she began. “I didn’t mean to leave you hanging with an unstable patient but I had to have eyes out.”
“I understand that. What was going on up there?” I asked. I wanted to ask what was more important than giving our patient CPR, but I held off, figuring Sully would explain it, and she did.
We had taken fire.
Apparently some idiot with a machine gun had opened fire on us, and the pilots had released several clusters of flares to mask our position, then banked sharply to fly sideways to our original course.
Sully laughed as she told me the rest – the bad guy had then turned on a spotlight, trying to shine through the flares to get another crack at us, but he discovered an interesting military fact instead.
The Cobra AH-1 attack helicopter also has a spotlight.
Upon seeing our escort craft, the dirtbag repented of his terroristic ways and ran full speed into the bushes. I waited with anticipation to hear about how the AH-1 fired a rocket up this guy’s ass, but apparently when the medical chopper one is supposed to be protecting takes off in a dead sprint at 150 mph, it’s considered bad form to stick around to shoot one bad guy, so they peeled away and followed us.
Sully’s commander would later tell me that we hadn’t taken “enough” fire for the engagement to qualify as a combat action.
So I was content to know that we got shot at “some.” I was also glad that the guy wasn’t that good at it.