Remembering What Matters, One Step at a Time

Peter Quinn is my best friend.  We met at the University of St. Thomas during a karate class.  From day one, he was a joker.   He’d line up next to me in karate and do a funny sounding kiya (the sound you make as you finish a punch or kick).  I’d laugh.  The instructor would stop class to ask me what was so funny.  That was the start of a 25-year friendship.

After graduation, Pete moved to Chicago, got married and had three kids.  I remained in Minnesota, also got married, and adopted two kids.  Though in different cities, we’ve stayed close.  We talk most days usually to share a funny story or chat about our kids (we’re each godparents to the other’s youngest child).

Something happened a year and a half ago that fundamentally changed his life (and, obviously, the lives of his family).  While training for a marathon, Pete was struck by a driver who ran a red light.  It left Pete paralyzed.  His commitment to walk again is inspiring and, given he was a runner and the Twin Cities Marathon is less than a week away, I wrote an article the Star Tribune was kind enough to print in on its business OpEd page.  You can read The power of Pete here.

For me, as I shared in the Star Tribune article, I’ve gained tremendous perspective on what matters in life and what’s a real problem vs. just a nuisance.  If, after reading the article, you feel fortunate, I’d encourage you to visit his video blog and make a donation to offset his medical expenses. (As my article explains, Pete was between employers when he was struck, leaving him without a job, without disability insurance, and healthcare insurance limited to the COBRA required time limit).

As thanks for anyone who makes a donation, I’ll mail you a copy of my book Building a Winning Business: 70 Takeaways for Creating a Strong Company during Good and Bad Economic Times.  Just fire me an email at: tsalonek @ with your address.