"If you can write, that's great. If you can tell a story, that's even greater. But if you can work a resilient premise into both, you're worth digging to find."

Friday, October 7, 2016

My Road by Charles E. Williams

Synopsis: Memoir of (retired) Major General Charles E. Williams.

Writing Style: 1st person 2-piece suit, neck & tie writing voice.

Pacing: Fast.

Premise: A ‘solipsistic’ look back at one life journey paralleling a literal and figurative paving of roads.

Personal Highlights: Most amazing about this memoir was discovering the book and learning the author, a black retired military official who I personally met, engineered the Dulles Greenway Toll Road… a toll road I recall well after commuting over the 14-mile stretch of highway for years and remembering (minus information about its engineer) talk about its construction.

‘The Road’ described in this humble story filled with colorful pictures proved to be a path, literally and figuratively, paved to the benefit of many. From an inspiring upbringing to serving two tours in Vietnam as a pilot, and rising up the ranks… building (and deconstructing) military bases Williams’s management (negotiating) skills were quite impressive. Clearly I wasn’t the only one who realized this, which in my case I had to read between many lines to pick up on this. A number of officials, to include Colin Powell, and individuals employed in private sectors sought out Williams’ planning and building expertise. Not only did he have solid engineering knowledge of project management work, and was humble and could be trusted, but quieter than spelled out, and probably ever vocalized, he had to be a fierce negotiator. That I found amazing. Very interesting read. Highly recommended.

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