This is David Heffernan telling his story. He spent time living rough as a young man because he didn’t want to be an accountant. He didn’t want to follow the career that had been chosen for him.
As a result, he ended up founding a charity to help the vulnerable and homeless.
After that he was involved in an armed robbery in #Salford, he’s been wrongly arrested for arson, beaten up a few times and worked with vulnerable children trapped in prostitution.
Here is David telling a small part of his story
David is available to speak at corporate events nationwide and his full story is truly inspiring
And so, it was a little bit like, the Army. You come out of the Army and you cant’ get used to Civilian life. My life started picking up a little bit. And I got myself a job, in a petrol station in Salford, which I don’t know why but trouble attracts me. And I got this job in Salford on nights, again on one of the roughest Council States in Europe. And I hated it, but I used to fall asleep, but I’d leave the door open.
And so one night, about three o’clock in the morning, I woke up to a sawed-off shotgun in me face. And this guy was balaclava and I won’t swear, because I’m a polite guy, but he said some choice words and he told me, to give him the f’n money, or else I will die.
Now my first reaction was not to give him the money. But to turn around to him and say, ‘Look I can’t open the till, you need to buy something.’ And he looked at me and he gave me the biggest crack across the face and he said, ‘give me the f’n money.’ And I said, ‘I would love nothin’ more than to give you the money, but I can’t open the till until somebody’s bought something, so can you please buy something? Pass a pack of those peanuts?’
Anyway, the guy was clearly on drugs, his eyes were bulging, but very politely, he actually passed me a packet of peanuts. Well he threw it at my face in fact, and they dropped to the floor and I tried to scan ’em and said ,’These peanuts are not scanning. You couldn’t have picked a worse packet. Can you get me a packet of those Opal Fruits?’ And by this time I’d pressed the alarm button, the silent alarm that went through to the Police.
And so eventually he came around to my way of thinking that he was never going to get the money unless he passed me this packet of Opal Fruits. For the younger ones, it’s Starburst now, I believe. Always be Opal Fruits to me. And at that point I really should have just opened the till and given him the money, but I turned around to him and said, ‘That’ll be 39p please.’ And that was it, again the bow of the sawsawed-offotgun went right across my face and my jaw flew. And it broke in three different places.
Fortunately at that time I heard the sirens coming around the corner and he got arrested.
Now when the Police reviewed the CCTV and got my statement, the Police words to me were, ‘you are the biggest asshole we have ever come across.’ And I turned around and said, ‘Would you have arrested this guy had I not stalled him?’ And they said, ‘No’. And I said, ‘Well how can I be the asshole? Surely the guy with the sawed off shotgun is the asshole?’ They had no choice but to come to my way of thinking again.
So, it all comes down, this talk is all about decisions and choices we have. Now that was a stupid decision by me. But it was right at the time, because he got arrested, and he got probably about 10 years for that. And so I moved on and I thought, ‘Okay, I need something in my life now. I need to go back to my core purpose. What is it that drives me?’ And it’s all about helping people.