Posts Tagged ‘Dan Laguna’

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  • You Have To Live Hard To Be Hard One Man’s Life in Special Operations  –  Signed By  Author Dan Laguna
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Dan Laguna is a retired Chief Warrant Officer 4, a 160th pilot who later went to work for Blackwater USA in Iraq as a contractor. This book recounts, with vivid detail, his personal experiences in these positions. Mr. Laguna speaks of events that occurred during the performance of these jobs with respect to his peers and leaders. The Laguna family’s spiritual perspective is interwoven with the  tactical stories of this man’s careers. Some readers may be surprised at the open and frank manner in chich Mr. Laguna shares intimate and personal details of his faith, family and friendships, and the manner in which he copes with the losses encountered in his work. Anyone who has had the opportunity to meet him with recognize that this book is an extension of his sense of duty, honor and his personal ethos. This book is recommended to all. Published by Laguna Publishing //264 pages//hardcover//$25

By Gloria Shytles

On September 10, 2011 honor our fallen heroes by attending the 10 Annual 9/11 Healing Field Flag Memorial in Sandy, Utah.  Motorcycle riders can register and get more information at any of the Harley Davidson dealerships in Salt Lake. There is a $25 registration fee. The event starts at 9 am.

Ride Itinerary:

9:00 am         Meet at South Valley Harley Davidson for registration and staging.

10:15 am        Ride to the 9/11 Healing Field Memorial Flag Display at Sandy City, UT

11:00 am        Fly-overs and Dedication of 9/11 Commemorative Bronze Monument

12:00 noon   Procession departs for Ogden Amphitheater

3:00 pm        Memorial service featuring bagpipes, a flyover and speakers and unveiling of bronze monument.

Dan Laguna will be part of the ride and will be at the Healing Field Memorial Flag Display to sell and sign his book “You Have To Live Hard To Be Hard”.

Dad and Art …. I miss you both so much. Life is not the same but I know deep down that we will be together again. Family is FOREVER! Dad, I know Memorial Day was your favorite holiday and in 2004 it was also the day you decided to go back to heaven. Tell Art I miss him and that I am sorry for how things ended for him. I would do anything to change it if I could. I know you both are in good company with the many heroes from our country through the ages. The rest of us here are doing our best to carry on and to make you both proud. You and Art are always in our prayers.

As for my other brave brothers who died in combat, thanks for your service and sacrifice to keep us all free. I pray our country will remain free and that your sacrifice was not in vain. God Bless America.

Art on Aloha Friday in Baghdad

Dad with some of his grandchildren in 1986.

January 23, 2007 brothers in Arms who gave all

Dan was invited to speak at the Native American Chamber of Commerce held at the Zions Bank Building in Salt Lake City, UT. We met the most amazing people who have similar desires to pay it forward. When you are so blessed you just want to share and help others to enjoy the same blessings.

YOU HAVE TO LIVE HARD TO BE HARD One Man’s Life In Special Operations by Dan Laguna

There really are very few books that you “can’t put down” and this is one of those books.

As a pilot and having been involved in the pilot training business for years, we would always hear stories about the “TF160 group.”  It was a mysterious group of the best trained, best disciplined and most hardened professional pilots that exist.  They operated where no man would dare and they performed operations that all knew were amazing even without knowing the facts… because they can’t be told.  Dan Laguna opens up, to the extent that he can, what it was like to be part of this elite group. More importantly he opens the door to the type of men these pilots are in their personal lives. They are family men, patriots and men of God.

My personal thanks to Dan for opening the curtain behind his incredible personal life.

Mark A. Kendell

Chairman & CEO

Kendell & Associates, LLC

International Venture Banking

You Have To Live Hard To Be Hard One Man’s Life In Special Operations by Dan Laguna

Dan Laguna has delivered one of the finest memorials to those who gave it all for the freedoms so many of us take for granted. His ability to tell the story of these high flying, super patriotic, uncommonly brave group of American heroes will keep the reader riveted page after page. He brings glory, decency, honor and esprit de corps to a world desperately in need of righteous examples of serving ones country while in the employ of a company named Blackwater. They do it with a magnificent flair and a zest for doing what is right in an upside down world. The book tells a different story than most have seen in the main stream media about Blackwater and illustrates in great detail why I’d like to be there to carry their water. Mr. Laguna has given light to those he has portrayed as they really are; living large, living big, living hard.

Gerald R. Molen

A former Marine

Academy Award winning Producer (Shindler’s List)

Co Chairman Whitelight Media Group

Father’s Day is around the corner. You Have To Live Hard To Be Hard One Man’s Life In Special Operations By Dan Laguna is a great gift for Father’s Day. You can get a personalized copy signed by Dan by ordering on the official Book Website at .  To get your book signed by Dan and personalized all you have to do is order before June 6th and send an email through the website on  Contact Us  and let him know who to sign it to.

As you probably already know, Dan Laguna works in Amman Jordan and will be leaving to go back the first week of June. So, don’t miss this opportunity to get a personalized copy signed by Dan Laguna before he leaves.

Today I wanted to remind all our men and women who are serving in war torn areas that their sacrifice isn’t for nothing and that most good American’s appreciate what they do to keep the rest of us safe and free. I personally want to thank all of you. You are truly living by my motto: “You Have To Live Hard To Be Hard“.

Some of you may not understand what that motto means. It is a Special Operations Motto. It was posted on the wall of my team room when I was in Special Forces in Panama way back in 1979. It doesn’t necessarily only apply to military hardships and training. It basically means that if you want to accomplish your dreams you need to work hard. Good things don’t come easy. You may fail sometimes but you can always pick yourself back up and try again. Don’t give up. When things get hard just remember “You Have To Live Hard To Be Hard“. I have said this so many times over the years to my kids, coworkers and everyone around me. It was my way of encouraging them to keep working hard and not wimp out. Things are not always going to be easy in life but you can get through it.

To read about my experiences and how I applied my motto in my own life you can purchase my book at

I have given many lectures across the United States on the events of my near-death accident. Everyone seemed so interested and wanted to know more. Many would come to me and ask if I was writing a book. I had kept a daily journal for many years on all the things I had done and really only meant my writings to be for my family. As time went on and I experienced more life-changing events, I decided to share some of these stories by publishing this book.

One of these stories is particularly difficult for me. The events of January 23, 2007, with the deaths of five of my brothers in arms, one being my sibling, made me look harder at my life. That day wasn’t just about the five who lost their lives. It was a day that affected many who were involved in many different aspects of that day. This was a very hard day for many brave men who survived but have the horrible memories of losing their close friends. Survivor’s guilt is a terrible thing. Unless you have experienced it, you can’t understand the true extent of how it can affect you. I hope this book will help those who still suffer from it.

I have spoken with many of the brave men who were there that fateful day and many of them feel responsible in some way for what happened. They are all going through the ‘what-ifs’. What if they had done this, or what if they had done that? What if they hadn’t run out of ammo? To all of these brave men I would say, “There is nothing you could have done differently that would have made a difference. It was no one’s fault. You all fought hard, brave and without hesitation. It is an honor for me to have worked with all of you. Remember, God is in control, not us.”

You Have To Live Hard To Be Hard is a motto after which I have patterned my life. This is my story, growing up in conditions of extreme poverty in a small town on the outskirts of Sacramento, California called Rio Linda, and the many adventures and experiences I had after leaving home to serve my country in the United States Army.

Even after all the negative comments I received in school, mostly based on my minority background, who would have ever thought this young boy from Rio Linda would have grown up to meet with and brief a King, Ambassadors, Prime Ministers, Generals, and the President of the United States not to mention the many diplomats and VIPs across the globe. In my youth I made a promise to myself that I would show everyone that they were wrong about my family and me.

You Have To Live Hard To Be Hard to me means you must never give up no matter how difficult your circumstances may be. As you read this true-life story you will see how this motto has kept me from giving up when hard times have seemed unbearable. From those early days in school when I was told by adults, who I was supposed to look up to, that I would probably flip burgers the rest of my life, to the time I spent many months in the hospital recovering from a helicopter crash that killed my best friend, and doctors telling me that my flying career had come to an end. I was also told my chances of walking normally again were not looking real good, and if I did it would not be without some kind of walking device. In reading this story, you will see the many opportunities I had to live by my motto.

I hope you will enjoy reading this book and when life seems unbearable, I hope it will inspire you in some way to apply my favorite motto, “You Have To Live Hard To Be Hard,” which has carried me through some of the most difficult times in my life.

This book is based on my memories and the daily journals I kept over the years. There is no intention to embellish anything to make the story sound better. All the events and information about people and organizations mentioned by name in this book are not classified. This information can be found readily on the Internet. I have focused on the experiences in my life and not on the tactical procedures of the military or organizations I worked for. Conversations with certain people may not have taken place at the time or places mentioned in the book but did take place and were inserted to keep the storyline flowing. This is only a fraction of the many stories my family has heard me tell over the years. It is a true story of my life.

Dan Laguna