Inspired To Be an Inspiration: True Story

Do you have a hero? Matter of fact what is a hero? Maybe you use a different label to associate with someone who has inspired you. If so, maybe we will have a common meaning. Never-the-less a hero can be an ordinary individual who finds strength to preserve in spite of obstacles; it doesn’t have to be someone famous. He or she could be a person who saves lives or just a funny person who makes people laugh. A hero is a person who stands up for what they believe in no matter what the consequences. Heroes will put his or her life at risk to save another. A hero overcomes difficulties. Your best friend who helped you get through tough times could be your hero. A family member who helps you get into college or study for your midterm could also be your hero.

My hero is Sean “Puffy” Combs. Not because he is rich and famous, but because he has inspired me due to our similar upbringings. Like Puffy, I didn’t have it easy growing up as a child. I grew up between Carver Village and Charles Warner Projects in Pascagoula. My neighborhoods were drug infested and criminal activity became the norm. In hind sight, it could be summarized as a graceful survival against impossible circumstances. Many of my childhood friends and several of my classmates have ended up in jail, dead or working backbreaking jobs. I wasn’t lucky, I was blessed and it was by the grace of God that my good decisions outweighed the bad ones. Although I came from a single parent household where a father figure was absent, it did not prevent me from becoming a productive citizen in spite of my environment. Similar to “Puffy”, he was born in the public housing projects of the Harlem neighborhood of New York City. In childhood, his father was shot dead in his car after attending a party. Though this was a blow to his childhood, it didn’t stop him from growing mentally. Combs was able to graduate and matriculate to Howard University in Washington, D.C. At Howard University, he was able to get a penchant for marketing and a reputation as a party promoter. He eventually became an intern at New York’s Uptown Records as an Artist Recruiter. Combs dedicated himself to his craft, and eventually dropped out of school to focus on music. The gamble paid off and he was instrumental in developing the music group Jodeci. He also signed and produced Mary J. Blige. Although success came at an early age, his immaturity overshadowed his talent. As a result, he was fired from his position. Next, “Puffy”, having to grow up at this point, tried building a partnership to start a record label. This idea failed due to creative differences with his partner. He didn’t stop and his next gamble proved to be his best. That gamble was to bet everything on his self. All he had learned would pay off from being an intern and everything the streets had taught him at an early age. Puffy with a dream in one hand and hope in the other, launched an independent record label, Bad Boy Records. The rest is history. His record label has given him the opportunity to grow in multiple directions. He has become very successful due to his hard work, intelligence, and strict business challenges. Puffy also possessed the will to never give up.

I am truly inspired by Sean Combs, no matter what challenges he faced, he did not give up; that’s the person that I see in the mirror. My success is not like Mr. Combs in the sense of wealth, but I’m successful in my own ways. I am driven with a passion to venture out just as Mr. Combs did. Where I come from, opportunity is only a split second- you either take it or not. You either seize the moment or lose it. After following Mr. Comb’s career, I understand that when opportunity comes, take advantage of it. Mr. Combs is an actor, businessman, record producer, and CEO. He has many of these things at one point, he could only imagine. As for myself, I’m still a dreamer, and although I’ve come from very humble beginnings to currently an Educator, Athletic Coach, D.J. and an inspiring writer; there’s endless opportunities that await me. Self titled (CEO) due to being ambitious has allowed to me think it, pursue it, and become it, and at this point I see the world as possibilities. Now that I’ve obtained several of the things that I once saw as far-fetched, maybe I’ll become an inspiration to you or even your hero.

To be continued…….

Thanks for reading,

Historian Derrick (CEO) Caples