As a little kid you look up to a hero who can do no wrong in your eyes and even some of them follow you into your adult life. This is me and Walker on "Walker, Texas Ranger". It may be a cheesy show and I've teased by friends all the time, but I am really addicted to that show. Maybe the acting was not always the best, but that show had morals and still had that good feel of an old western where the hero would always win out in the end no matter how bad it looked for him. Now I'm not a huge fan of Chuck Norris outside of "Walker, Texas Ranger", except a movie he made with his brother called "Top Dog" which was basically another movie about Walker. I know he's a huge star with "Delta Force" and his famous battle with Bruce Lee, but I'm interested in the man that Chuck Norris is.
I was so happy that he was coming out with an autobiography, because beyond Star Trek books these are my favorites to read. I love how you get to hear the voice of someone you've been intrigued by. Like they had sat you down in their living room and just spilled everything about themselves. That's how a good autobiography is written. When the words are in the tone of the real person and you can tell the difference between the Dale Earnhardt Jr. autobiography and this Chuck Norris one because they are two very different men. That's a good autobiography when it's an echo of the person its' about.
Sitting down with the pages of the book was like sitting down with Chuck. I can imagine his smile and his hand gstures as he told the story of how his life started out. Even though life was tough as a little boy named Carlos Ray Norris in Oklahoma with an alcoholic father, a strict grandmother, and a mother who never gave in. His mother followed his father to California and back to Oklahoma trying to make this marriage work as Carlos and his younger brother Wieland grew up. Finally after the birth of Aaron, the youngest Norris brother, the marriage ended in divorce in 1956. Wilma Norris remarried and Carlos headed off to the United States Air Force in 1958.
In boot camp at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas is where Carlos got the nickname Chuck since Carlos was the Spanish equivalent of Charles. This is also where he became an avid study of judo when he was stationed in Korea where he learned under some of the best and then took on tang soo do. Chuck was also married young to a woman named Dianne, a high school sweetheart.
Chuck finished his tour in Korea and returned home to have his sons Michael and Eric with Dianne. He had originally joined as Security Forces in the Air Force to take that experience to become a civilian police officer later. But his study of the martial arts had really gotten to him, so he started teaching locally. His business grew and his recognition through competing got him into acting very slowly. He started writing and doing movies, but his marriage fell apart despite the thirty years of trying to make it work in 1989. Chuck continued his work as an actor and built his career. He was convinced it was just better if he just concentrated on his work. That led to "Walker, Texas Ranger" and led to Chuck meeting Gena, an actress, model, and deputy sheriff. Years after being alone and then living with her, Chuck married Gena. They combined their two families and Gena suffered through a horrible pregnancy to have twins.
This is an amazing story of a mother's devotion to her sons and the success that followed with one of them. Chuck fought his battles personally and spiritually to achieve the happiness he feels now. He made mistakes along the way and he made wrong moves, but he ended up on the top and still the good guy. I seriously wish I could have given Chuck a hug after this book. I was so touched by his devotion and heart he put into this book. My first love of him will always be "Walker, Texas Ranger", but the man behind the badge and character seems to be really a great guy. He's an awesome role model for anyone. And I really felt close to him when he described his efforts for the fisrt President Bush and persistence with our current one, but also as a fellow Air Force enlisted member. His words towards the Armed Forces moved me so much. I was really glad to get this chance to share in Chuck's story.
Title: Against All Odds: My Story