In Time for the Holidays

This is Ron with my newest painting!

Can you believe it is already fall? In preparation for the coming holiday season I painted a Christmas surprise. This new piece is now available as a signed and numbered print and also on stretched canvas for purchase. It makes a wonderful gift for anyone, especially for someone with a special little furry friend.

puppy

If you are interested in placing an order for this print, please contact the Never Give Up Office at ( ). The price of an 11″ x 14″ print is $25.00 and the 12″ x 16″ stretched canvas is $59.00.

To your inspiration,

Ron

It’s All Good

This is Ron with your Motivational Message:

I once sat on a beach in Hawaii, mesmerized by the beauty of the sunset. Watching the magnificent colors burst across the sky, I thought to myself, “I’ve been here before.” That’s when it dawned on me; years ago I had painted a sunset. A place I could to return to when things got dark and dreary in my life. Now, years later, I sat watching that very image unfold before my eyes.

If you have trouble viewing the video, please click here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=–DhZZFvCIc&feature=youtu.be

May all of your dreams be fulfilled. In the chaos of your mind, please remember to ponder a peaceful place. You never know, it may become a reality. God is good to those who wait for him.

It'sAllGood

To your inspiration,

Ron

9/11 We Remember

This is Ron with your Motivational Message:

It is hard to believe that it has been thirteen years since I rolled down the empty, ghostly streets of New York City following the collapse of the World Trade Center towers. I was reminded of how suddenly life can change. How, within a matter of minutes, your entire future can be altered.

On September 10th, 2001, we flew into New York City. I had been invited to share at the launch of a television series created by Martin Luther King, Jr. III. “Wisdom of Dreams” featured stories of people whose lives exemplified the drive to make dreams come true. Unfortunately, on the morning of September 11th instead of celebration there was sudden tragedy. We witnessed the terrifying event and saw the towers crumble to the ground. Thousands of lives were lost and many more were affected drastically. We watched as chaos unfolded and fire trucks pass, never to return.

I recall a radio commentator who was interviewing an individual that had miraculously escaped using the stairwell in one of the towers. I could not help but cry as he described the people who were left in their wheelchairs, stranded at the landings unable to access the elevator and no one to get them down the stairs. I wondered, as many did, why so many innocent people must suffer and die.

I was engulfed by sadness when my family and I realized we were still alive and there was a reason why we all are live today. May we never forget the fond memories of loved ones who are no longer with us and those that made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. But, as they would tell you if they could, live your life to the fullest, pursue your dreams, enjoy your family, value your life. I realize that there are many reasons to lose heart and that too many people have given up, but I know one thing: we are not dead yet. As long as we are alive, life is worth living. We can make a difference with God’s help and the support of those around us regardless of our past or how difficult our circumstances. Together, we can change the world and make it a better place.

On a lighter note, it was four years ago on September 11th that a team of dream-building friends and myself completed a seemingly impossible task. With their ambition and support, I drove a ’68 Firebird without assistance and topped 100 mph using only my head and teeth. Although it was a thrill and an amazing accomplishment, it was intended to encourage all those wonderful soldiers who fought for our country and came home wounded. It was a message to never give up; each life has purpose, take one day at a time and believe you can achieve. Today I have a new dream. I challenge Sam Schmidt (http://www.spmindycar.com/team-owners/sam-schmidt/), a fellow quad, to a race in order to raise money and awareness for spinal cord injury.

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In closing, I ask you to take a moment and pray for our country, our warriors, our family and friends. Pray for encouragement and strength to stand united in spite of our differences. Let’s fight hard to keep our freedom that so many take for granted. Your life has value. Thank you for your friendship.

To your inspiration,

Ron

Judge Not

This is Ron with your Motivational Message:

I was recently reminded of how easy it is to pass judgment on our fellow man. I think that too often we place ourselves above others, even if it isn’t a conscious act. However, as the Good Book says, “Judge not, lest ye be judged.”

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Gracie has really enjoyed riding her bike this summer, so I took her to a nearby park to ride the trail and practice turning and balancing. As soon as I turned my attention away, I heard a noise. Sure enough, the chain on her bike had popped off and she was now riding without brakes. Luckily, she was in the grass and quickly figured out how to come to a safe stop. Later that night, Gracie and I were in the garage so I could teach her how to loosen bolts and adjust the chain by herself. 40 minutes later, with a lot of patience on her part (i.e., finding the correct size wrench, holding the tires, putting in the bolts) the chain was back in place.

The next day we returned to the park to put her mechanical abilities to the test. The chain remained firmly in place, making it a successful repair job. One our way back, we walked past a park bench where a woman, who appeared to be homeless, sat. Her eyes were black and blue and her face was covered by an allergy mask. She looked so very sad and lonely. Something in my spirit told me to stop and say ‘hi,’ but my mind thought better of it and instead I rolled on by.

Not long after, I began to regret what I had done. I had passed judgment unjustly and even worse, had set a bad example for my daughter. Realizing my mistake, I told Gracie the right thing would have been to at least say ‘hello.’ We all need and want companionship and approval from others, and yet we don’t take a few seconds out of our crazy life to show someone that we care. My avoidance of this woman was based solely on an unfair judgment. She was of no threat to Gracie or myself, I just didn’t want to take the time to acknowledge her.

Although I taught my daughter how to fix her bike, I missed an opportunity to teach her a lesson in compassion.

May we be quick to love and take time to brighten another person’s day.

Speaking of sharing compassion…

Looks like I will be returning to the Los Angeles area for another outreach opportunity in mid-October and am hoping to fill a few more days with speeches elsewhere. So, to all of my friends in Southern California, if you or someone you know happens to be looking for an encouraging presentation that is sure to change lives please let me know! Whether it be a school assembly, a corporate get-together, or any other event I guarantee that my story will make an impact. I have a wide range of topics that I can cover and can cater to all age groups and all backgrounds, secular or religious.

Please contact the Never Give Up office at heagyoffice@gmail.com if you are interested. Please let me know the name of your organization or group and what days you may have available.

I hope to see you in October!

To your inspiration, Ron

LA Bittersweet

This is Ron with your Motivational Message:

The ocean sparkled as we gazed out from the Huntington Beach pier. We could see surfers among the breakers. A flood of memories filled my soul; it was a bittersweet moment. “Girls, this is where my life both ended and began,” I said.

Some months ago, I received a call from a gentleman named Ed who coordinates conferences for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. To my surprise, he had been using my short promotional video as a motivational tool for LA officers. “Your video has made more of an impact on their attitudes than anything else, particularly because of your motto ‘I’m paralyzed from the neck down, what’s your excuse?” he told me. I was flattered to hear that, of course. His encouraging words came at a much needed time.

During our conversation, Ed extended an invitation to me to present to the Sheriff’s Department in person. A bonus being that it was during Summer Break so I would be able to bring my two daughters along.

We were greeted warmly by a group of officers and administration after driving for 40 minutes in heavy Los Angeles traffic. With all eyes on me and the cameras rolling, I felt instantly accepted. I was presenting to individuals who have seen some of life’s worst circumstances.

I told my stories, focusing on purpose, perspective, potential, planning, and lots of persistence. I wrapped up my speech by emphasizing that in the midst of life’s darkest moments, we still have control of our attitude. I challenged them, along with myself, to get better and not bitter. I closed by inviting my girls to come forward for a question and answer session. They, of course, stole the show. The conference ended with laughter and a sense of hope.

During lunch with a few officers and their family, I noticed that one young man hugging a young girl that I learned was his sister. I was so taken by it that I said, “You must really love her.” “Yes, she and my mom were the only things that got me through the five years I spent fighting overseas. I realized how many things I took for granted.” He replied. I told him what a blessing he was and thanked him for his service and asked “Is there anything that you want to share with me?” He stared right into my eyes as if he was waiting for that question. He stammered through his tears, “I want to thank you, Ron. I’m not an emotional man.” I reassured him, “It’s cool and very manly to admit to emotions.” “I just want to thank you for demonstrating with your life and your struggles. Now I, too, feel that I can proceed with confidence and hope.”

That evening, I brought the girls to Huntington Beach where I re-lived the accident. As we sat watching the sun set, I told them that I was so glad that they could see where my life abruptly changed 32 years ago. I wanted them to know that I wouldn’t change a thing about what happened that day because without the tragic accident I would not have two beautiful daughters and the experience with the LA officers.

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A thought for the day: don’t let circumstances, pain, or problems with the past destroy you. Like orange juice, some of the sweetest moments occur when our dreams are crushed. From that, something new is created. Keep believing!

To your inspiration,

Ron

You can view my presentation to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department:

If you cannot see the video, please click here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G6RCSbCy23s&feature=youtu.be