A Man Can't Just Sit Around
Larry Walters is among the relatively few who have actually turned their dreams into reality. His story is true, even though you may find it hard to believe.
Larry was a truck driver, but his lifelong dream was to fly. When he graduated from high school, he joined the Air Force in hopes of becoming a pilot. Unfortunately, poor eyesight disqualified him. So, when he finally left the service, he had to satisfy himself with watching others fly the fighter jets that crisscrossed the skies over his backyard. As he sat there in his lawn chair, he dreamed about the magic of flying.
Then one day, Larry Walters got an idea. He went down to the local Army-Navy surplus store and bought a tank of helium and 45 weather balloons. These were not your brightly colored party balloons; these were heavy-duty spheres measuring more than 4 feet across when fully inflated . Back in his yard, Larry used straps to attach the balloons to his lawn chair, the kind you might have in your own back yard.
He anchored the chair to the bumper of his jeep and inflated the balloons with helium. Then he packed some sandwiches and drinks and loaded a gun, figuring he could pop a few of those balloons when it was time to return to earth.
His preparations complete, Larry Walters sat in his chair and cut the anchoring cord. His plan was to lazily float up to a height of about 30 feet above his backyard, where he would enjoy a few hours of flight before coming back down. But things didn't quite work out that way.
When Larry cut the cord, he didn't float lazily up - he shot up as if fired from a cannon! He didn't level off at 100 feet, nor did he level off at 1,000 feet. After climbing and climbing, he leveled off at 16,000 feet! At that height, he felt he couldn't risk shooting any of the balloons, lest he unbalance the load and really find himself in trouble. So he stayed there, drifting cold and frightened with his beer and sandwiches, for more than 14 hours. He crossed the primary approach corridor of Los Angeles International Airport, where a United Airlines pilot radioed in reports of the strange sight.
Eventually, Larry gathered the nerve to shoot a few balloons and slowly descended. The hanging straps tangled and caught in a power line, blacking out a Long Beach neighborhood for 20 minutes. Larry climbed to safety, and as soon as he hit the ground, he was arrested.
But as he was being led away in handcuffs, a television reporter called out to ask, "Mr. Walters, why did you do it?"
Larry stopped, eyed the man for a moment and replied nonchalantly ,
A MAN CAN'T JUST SIT AROUND!
Seriously, though ... What are you doing today to make your dreams and goals come true?