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Unique Leaders Podcast - Megan DiMartino EPISODE 42, 25th May 2021
Unique Leaders: James Smith
00:00:00 01:08:46

Unique Leaders: James Smith

James was born in Fort Worth, Texas and grew up in a small-town west of Fort Worth. It was mostly a ranching town. His father worked in making parts for airplanes for a company called General Dynamics. His father was a working cowboy when James was young. His father did go to the navy during the Vietnam era.James had dreams that he would go to play professional football but unfortunately, he wasn’t built for that. Both his grandfather and father were in the navy and James decided to go into the army at the age of 17. James’s mother was always very supportive of him with his army career.James is red-green colorblind so he was put into a communications support role type job. He wanted to be more in a combat role. Within two years he went to South Korea fora time. Once he was done with his time there he was moved to Kentucky where he met lots of men who helped him go down a path that worked more for him personally.He ended up going to get his special forces certification. In 2001 he was overseas in the Middle East. He ended up having to go to war, which was a changing moment for him. He was a part the first push back against the Taliban from a neighboring country. His team was a support role for those troops in Iraq.At 28 years old he invaded his first country, the western desert in Iraq. A few months later he went home and then ended up back in Baghdad. During his time there he did interact with many locals. He ended up taking 7 trips or 5 years to Iraq. There was an identity that as a solider you needed to have. As a solider you are a go getter, hard fighter and a heavy drinker. During this time he subscribed to that and ended up in a very selfish attitude which drove a wedge between him and his wife at the time and his family. He made many sacrifices, which included a divorce and his relationship with Christ.This line of work takes a toll on you as a solider and your family and friends. This is something he chose but his family didn’t choose it, which caused some strain, especially for his mother.Christ ended up taking him from his current zone and moved him to another place where he had to relearn how to follow Christ and let go of the bad habits he was following. James struggled with surrendering himself to God, but through this time God worked with him and brought him to the place he is today.After retiring from the military, he moved and met his now wife and they created a life together in Louisiana. During 2020 they decided sell everything, they bought a travel trailer and traveled the country for a few months. This was a great time for them. They all learned so much and all did a lot of personal growth. After this they ended up in Georgetown, Texas.