The “Almost Girls Only Book and Social Club” gets a real treat and a little one on one with Drew Pearson & his Hail Mary story.
By: Richard Carey
Drew Pearson recently spoke to an attending woman’s book club at Galleria Pierra, our stone showroom. It’s good business practice to cater to women and try to ingratiate ourselves gender specific any chance we get. Guys, what can I say? We know where to go to get things done. It seems that Drew knew the value of such an audience too.I was making my usual commercial appeal for business and introduced Drew Pearson. I got caught by my dyslexic eye and arranged to show up at the time it was to be over. My bad! Well, after a where are you call? I rushed to make the event even though I had missed my cue. When my people realized I was not going to make the MC announcement one of my staff members stepped up to the plate in my absence. My late arrival proved to be fortuitous as I watched the event unfold before me. Rob Peterson, our National Sales Manager, stepped up to the plate and made the unrehearsed typical announcement thanking all for coming to our stone gallery. As he pointed out all the stone carvings of statuary and fountains, the architectural facades of photographs hanging on the wall, he even spoke of all the talent surrounding us. He then turned our attentions to the man of the hour – Drew Pearson.
Drew had a lot of stories to tell – both entertaining and informative. I am afraid his life story paled in comparison to the genuine nature in with which Drew spoke from his heart. He has a way of touching you with his words. You could almost care less what he was saying because the way he said it made you feel so special that you felt he was talking directly to you. I know because I was not the only one forming this very personal bond with a man I didn’t know prior to that day. He shared some of his experiences that formed his character. He was careful to give credit where credit was due. If you don’t know his story you should. This is man is a class act. He shared his struggles and icons of his professional football career. You could hear word for word what went on because he was there and he put you there!As he finished his story on the book he opened a question and answer session and many participated. It was evident that Drew had the same respect Landry. He commented during his presentation Couch Landry had as expectation of your conduct on the field as well as off the field. I personally believe his leadership is exemplified in this statement and is what made the Dallas Cowboy’s “Americas Team.” It is clear to me Drew knew this though not a word was said related to this. I asked, because he actually knew the late great Tom Landry, a man I personally admired, “What was your most memorable comment from Coach Landry?” He replied without hesitation, “A Commitment to Excellence, the keyword here being Commitment!” How befitting was this answer because we just released a blog post that I had written some time ago to our employees about the relevance of Excellence. I ask them to continue the quest for excellence and practice these traits of excellence as they go. I couldn’t share it then and I would like to now for I hope someday Drew will read this for himself. Drew, I think what I was trying to say is commitment
- Excellence is warehoused in the smallest of details. Do micro manage.
- Excellence is elusive, but obvious if ignored. I didn’t know, but now I do.
- Excellence is knowledge, captured it’s worthless until released. Share what you know
- Excellence is what you know coupled with what you do not; success is knowing the difference. The more you know, the more you realize there is to learn.
- Excellence is the marketplace, judge and jury. You cannot buy it. Serve well and rewarded.
There were many personal questions that followed. I distinctly remember one question, “How did you get through all the tragedy and the twists of life that came your way?” He paused and gave his only one word answer, “Faith.”
When asked about his upbringing, he proceeded to speak of his mother and honored her for being such a large part of his faith. He then followed it by how she used to whip him for skipping church to play ball. You could not help but think what a humble and wonderful guy he was for opening his heart towards you. It was not the speech I was expecting, in fact he was so personable, I was really having a good time. One of our customers had his eleven-year-old son there. Drew called him out in front of all of us and put his super bowl ring on the young man. Then cameras started flashing and there wasn’t one of us who didn’t wish that at least for that moment we were eleven again. Drew knew how to make you feel special and he did it with such sincerity that I surrendered any skepticism I had harbored, as did the rest I am sure. What a privilege it was to meet a person like Drew Pearson in this most intimate of settings. What unfolded next moved me to my core.
(Pictured from left to right: Rob Peterson, Aela Zamecki, Drew Pearson, Cathy Martin and RC)
I have never been more pleased to be associated with an employee and after this many years, a dear friend Rob Peterson. Rob laid a question on Drew that I did not hear at first. All I heard was Drew in his charismatic voice say with zeal, “Get him on the phone!” Rob stepped back and began to dial the phone. I knew he was in the doghouse with his teenage son for not taking him to meet Drew Pearson, so naturally I jumped to conclusions. I was moving to intercede with a suggestion of opting for a more appropriate time as Rob was dialing, just as the phone was ringing he retorted, “No this is not my son but a guy in the hospital with cancer and Drew just agreed to speak to him. Drew said to do it and hey I’m doing it. A doodlebug in a tire rut wasn’t any lower than the way I felt then. When I realized it was not as I had thought and Rob had asked Drew to call a friend in the hospital trying to beat cancer, I was shocked. As I reeled from my overconfidence in jumping to conclusions, Rob handed Drew the phone. In a voice with such resonance that Gabrielle’s trumpets came to mind, Drew says, “Hello … how are you?” With the warmth of sunshine emerging over spring day, the room lit up. The two began an exchange; I could not help myself but to strain my hearing so as not to be noticed as I eavesdropped. The room changed something special was unfolding.
It humbled me so that Rob was bold enough to ask for something so selfless. Equal to the call, Drew responded in the same selfless manor. Right in the middle of the book signing Drew said without hesitation, “Get him on the phone right now, I’ll talk to him.” And talk to him he did. We all waited 20 minutes while he completed the call. Drew was giving his undivided attention to this stranger a friend of Rob’s in need. Drew emerged from the conversation saying we are going to go fishing as soon as he is strong enough to get out of that bed. I could feel the difference in Drew’s voice as I overheard him consoling and befriending someone he had never met. I looked around the room sheepishly; mine were not the only eyes tearing up as we witnessed the compassion of the exchange. One who was bold enough to ask on behalf of another and the other was bold enough to respond with the nobility of a stallion. I could not help but think to myself that today we are in the presence of men real men.