By the end of the Transtar saga early in 1987 and with my 55th birthday in April and with early retirement, the option to leave was available.
An old friend from the distant past, Mort Byer, the TWA Rep in Saudi Arabia, had a Consulting Firm in Washington D.C. After due consideration, we opted to join his firm in June. Under the strain, this was a bad decision. Not that some time with Mort would have been good but I had reached my goal, 55 years of age and over 30 years of tenure. The decision to leave cost me alot of money. However, as Barbara says, under those conditions they may have carried me out in a pine box, if I had stayed at Douglas.
Leaving Douglas was an emotional smack between the eyes and one that did not need to be made. If one person from Management would have asked, when I submitted my letter, if they could help to straighten things out, I would have jumped at the opportunity and remained at Douglas. I am sure there was somewhere in the Marketing Department, away from Kim and Ron, that I could have given Douglas the benefit of my experience, but it was not to be. My taking the job with Mort Byer was as bad a mistake as could be made, but that is another story.
At my retirement luncheon, Ken Fairless, one of my salesmen in the Pacific and Asia group, said that if there was one thing that he would say about me was that I was FAIR. I guess that was all I was asking from the people that I worked for, and sold plenty of airplanes to support their commissions. If that is what Ken remembers about me, I will take it.
Bill Gross, Executive V.P., sent me a note some three months after I had left. He said he had just heard of my leaving and was sorry that I had left the company. He reiterated my sales record and benefit to the company. I guess I talked to the wrong people prior to leaving.
The thing that tipped the scale was my last salary review. Kim stated, that he was going to give the younger salesmen the raises this year and that I would not get one. These younger salesmen would leave Douglas shortly after I left. My last statement to Kim was a cliche from the past..."With friends like you, who needs enemies."