Tim Kennedy (fighter)
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Timothy Fred Kennedy (born September 1, 1979) is a retired American mixed martial artist and current soldier. A professional from 2001 until 2016, he has fought in the UFC, Strikeforce, the WEC, ShoMMA, HDNet Fights, and represented the Chicago Red Bears in the IFL. Kennedy is one of the few fighters to simultaneously serve in the United States Army while also fighting professionally. He also is a television host, producer, and entrepreneur.
Scars and Stripes (2022)
- New York: Atria Books. Co-written with Nick Palmisciano.Scars and Stripes: An Unapologetically American Story of Fighting the Taliban, UFC Warriors, and Myself.
- This book is dedicated to the men and women we have lost in the Twenty Years War.
In particular, I would like to dedicate it to the 660 Special Operations personnel we lost, and the last thirteen U.S. military personnel we lost at Hamid Karzai International Airport on 26 August 2021.
I will spend the rest of my days trying to be worthy of your sacrifice.
- My name is Ted Kennedy, and I have a problem: I only feel alive when I'm about to die. I've killed evil men on multiple continents, fought in main-event bouts in the UFC, served as a Green Beret, an EMT, a firefighter, and a cop. I've hunted Nazis, drug runners, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, human traffickers, rhino poachers, Al Qaeda, the Taliban, wildebeests, elk, bears, and have the recipe for the perfect soufflé. I fly helicopters, jump out of airplanes, dive mixed gas to the ocean depths, wrestle bulls with my bear hands, lift heavy weights, blow things up, and am proficient in just about every weapon under the sun. I train warriors, own companies, and serve my country- and I'm just getting warmed up.
- p. 1
- But life hasn't been easy, and it sure as shit hasn't been perfect. On the surface, I make a pretty good Rambo, but the truth is for everything I've accomplished, I've screwed up a whole lot more. I don't mean that in the self-serving "my biggest fault is I work too hard" style. When I say I've hit rock bottom, I need you to understand I went for it so hard that if I were a car, I'd have no windows, doors, or fenders, and I'd be on fire... at the bottom of a ravine.
But as bad as it got (and it got really bad), I've never quit. I've been called a lot of things: the most dangerous man in the world, a businessman, a dad, a husband, a hero, a villain, an SOB, and an arrogant asshole. There's probably truth to all those things. But at the heart of it all, I am a survivor.
- p. 1-2
- And that's what this book is about. It's about learning how to weather the storms, no matter how bad they are, and start amking decisions to improve the situation and get yourself to a better place. And when I say "weather the storm," I don't mean that in a passive way. Sure, there's something to be said for enduring pain, but enduring that pain and not making any changes in your life until the pain subsides is pretty dumb. You don't want to be dumb. Life only gets better when you do a few things:
1. Take accountability for it. It's your fault.
2. Failure is going to happen. When it does, see number 1. If you want to fail less, see numbers 3-7.
3. An ounce of preparation prevents a pound of cure. The best time to start preparing is right now.
4. You cannot mass-produce elite people. They need to be forged from hard experiences. If you want to be one of them, you need to seek these challenges consistently.
5. Take care of yourself physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. For some people that means therapy. For some people that means yoga and a cup of tea or fishing with the family. For me that means embracing a constant struggle. Rejecting comfort makes me... well... comfortable.
6. Surround yourself with good people striving to also improve themselves.
7. Build goals and pursue them to the end of the earth.
No matter where you are in life, putting yourself on this path will change everything.
- p. 2
- I just turned forty-two. I've been selfish. I've been an asshole. I've made mistakes and I've been all too human. Twelve years ago this book would have been about how spectacular I am. That book would have sucked ass. Yeah it would have had its moments, but the last dozen years have been marred with failure and loss and gifted with growth, reflection, and hopefully, a little wisdom.
- p. 3
- In the Army, when you graduate from being a soldier to a noncommissioned officer, you earn the title of "Sergeant." In that moment, you earn your stripes, the upward-facing rockers that affix to your uniform. Those stripes are the symbol that shows you are a leader- that you assume responsibility for yourself and those around you. It took me a lot to get there. It's been a hard road. And every step of the way- every additional rank, every additional accomplishment, every great success- has required more of me. I have had to sacrifice more, suffer more, and yes, fail more. Failure isn't final. It's necessary. It's the fuel that allows you to advance, to succeed. To earn those stripes, you need to earn those scars first.
- p. 389
- I'm excited. This is the beginning of a whole new amazing year of failure and suffering. I can't wait to get started.
- p. 389
Quotes about Kennedy
- Tim Kennedy is a Green Beret, sniper, and former MMA fighter. He's starred on the History Channel's Hunting Hitler and Discovery's Hard to Kill. Tim owns Apogee Cedar Park, a private school in Texas, and Sheepdog Response, a tactical training company. He lives with his wife and children in Texas.
- About the other on the inside back flap of the dust jacket for Scars and Stripes (2022) by Tim Kennedy and Nick Palmisciano