Throughout our lives, many people inspire us. Whether they had a hand in our professional career or an impact on our lives, these individuals stand out against the many, and for good reason. In celebration of Black History Month, LMIer Bill Smith pays respect to his friend, retired Marine Corps Maj. Gen. Clifford Stanley. It wasn’t so much Stanley’s professional achievements that were inspiring to Bill; rather, his ability to overcome adversity and keep doing what he had to do, “working, taking care of his family, and keeping his faith.” Stanley was truly a man who led by example.
But his inspirational story is not only about his deeds and professional experience, it is also about his commitment to family and his faith.
In 1974, during his assignment at Marine Barracks Washington, his wife was randomly shot by an avowed racist, paralyzing her for life. Cliff Stanley’s story is not just his many accomplishments, it is that he accomplished so much while concurrently taking care of his wife and daughter.
But Cliff Stanley’s legacy doesn’t stop there. Inspired by her dad, his daughter became a Navy nurse.
For me, Cliff Stanley is an inspiration because he overcame adversity and still did what he had to do—working, taking care of his family, and keeping his faith. He was truly a man who led by example.