His attitude toward charter stems from a lifetime of lessons. He learned the value of behind-the-scenes work while studying theater arts at Wake Forest. He learned the importance of strong leadership while serving as a U.S. tank battalion captain in Germany. He learned to love the sea while living aboard a 35-foot Dufour with his cat, Zorro. Eventually, he learned the value of money and decided he needed to make more. Unwilling to altogether abandon his wandering ways, he became head engineer on a 93-foot motoryacht where his future fiancee, Betsy Durst, was honing her talents as chef. They became a couple, he became captain and, after several years aboard the private yacht, the two went in search of a bit more variety.