"Everything has two handles: one by which it can be born and the other by which it can’t.”    The Art of Living – Epictetus So often, I watch in utter amazement the reaction that we sometimes witness when people reply to a statement which they do not support. Before the paint dries, they are shouting at the top of their voice.  The opposing view, which may be part of the solution, is lost in the heat of the moment. Have you had such an experience? Perhaps, you were the originator of such an … [Read more...]

Life 360

“I learned early in sports that to be effective -- for a player to play the best he can play – is a matter of concentration and being unaware of distractions, positive or negative.” - Thomas W. “Tom” Landry As I watch in utter amazement, my wife Carol opens her Life360 app, (labeled as the ‘new Family Circle’), pointing to the geographical location of our daughter Kelly and her family. Data collected via satellites is transmitted into map icons on a display screen.  My astonishment is … [Read more...]

Pontoon Trip

“Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom . . .” Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello Pulling away from the Caribe fuel dock, I safely idle our pontoon boat into the channel where other boats are moving in both directions near Perdido Pass, the scenic passageway entrance to the Gulf of Mexico. On the other side of the canal is popular Robinson Island, where a number of families have already gathered in small boats. After a few minutes in the idle only zone, and just past the signs … [Read more...]


“Walking with a friend in the dark is better than walking alone in the light.”  Helen Keller River, our Australian Labradoodle and a real member of the Hackbarth family, is traveling with us on a road trip to Jackson, Mississippi. Less than four hours from Mobile, the Capital of Mississippi is home to one of the terminal branches of Hackbarth Delivery Service (HDS). My wife Carol and I have planned this journey to personally say goodbye to Robert Moody, who has been with our company for over … [Read more...]

Please Forgive Me

“It is in pardoning that we are pardoned.”   Saint Francis of Assisi The first weekend in October is two weeks away. In 14 days from now, my life is going to dramatically change. I will never be the same. The year is 1976. My fiancé and future wife, Carol and I will be attending a marriage preparation program called Engaged Encounter (EE). Father Gallagher, the priest we have asked to witness our vows, has requested that we attend this marriage preparation. I do not want to go, but Father … [Read more...]

Daily Victory is Lifetime Success

The typical process in earning a college degree includes many steps during a four-year journey. Attending class, listening to lectures, and studying are among the requirements needed to pass exams. Requisite exams passed results in completing a course and the award of credit hours. Repetition of all these steps finally ends in qualifying for a degree.  This whole process, requiring many steps and daily effort, is a good example of what is needed for lifetime success. Lifetime success is daily … [Read more...]

Knock Your Socks Off

“The keys to brand success are self-definition, transparency, authenticity, and accountability.”   Simon Mainwaring, (social media consultant) My wife Carol and I started Hackbarth Delivery Service (HDS) with a complete dedication to exceptional service. The strategy was successful. Many years later, our company branded that original concept and named it Knock Your Socks Off service. Today, the huge customer response to this brand has verified the value. Branding is an important business … [Read more...]


“Silence is the sleep that nourishes wisdom.” Francis Bacon (1561-1626) It is quiet. Very  quiet. My oldest daughter’s household of eight are on a family trip to England and Ireland.  My wife Carol and her brother are in North Carolina. My youngest daughter’s two sons start school today, which comes earlier than my oldest daughter’s children who are on the overseas trip.  No noise in an empty house.  Our family pet, River, an Australian Labradoodle, is home with me, resting comfortably on the … [Read more...]


“Success is a journey, not a destination. The doing is often more important than the outcome.” Arthur Ashe Time seems brief when we compare some of our most cherished events to the journey required to get to these special moments. Our oldest granddaughter’s graduation from college is a great example. For Gabrielle, this commencement at Auburn University in north Alabama represents the end of a four-year voyage and the beginning of the rest of her life. This is a joyous celebration! My wife … [Read more...]

I Believe in You

“Some people can’t believe in themselves until someone else believes in them first.”– Sean Maguire, from the movie, Good Will Hunting Call itdestiny. Providence. Throughout my life, people surrounding me have believed in me! Starting with my beloved parents. My mother, Lucille, and my dad, Alfred, made a significant difference by placing their complete confidence in me. Additional advocates include my three sisters, two daughters, eight grandchildren . . . and, the most transformational … [Read more...]