An inspiring life of KFC’s Colonel Sanders

2 min readJun 29, 2021

Colonel Sanders born in 1890 in Henryville, IN, USA was only 6 years when his father passed away leaving him to take care of his siblings. At 16, he faked his age to enlist in the United States Army, where he was discharged within 12 months. Next up, he got hired as a railway laborer and soon got fired for getting into a brawl with a coworker. While working for the railways, he studied law but easily managed to derail his legal career due to another broil. Running out of options, Sanders was forced to move back in with his mom and got a job selling life insurance and guess what, yep, fired yet again.

It was not until 40 when he started selling chicken dishes at a service station. As he began to advertise his food, a dispute with a competitor resulted in a deadly shootout. Following World War II, he tried to franchise the success of his restaurant. His recipe was rejected 1,000+ times before someone accepted it.

Sanders “secret recipe” was none other than what’s now a global culinary sensation known as KFC — “Kentucky Fried Chicken”, which quickly became a huge success. The booming restaurant soon came to a jolting halt when an interstate opened nearby and Sanders ended up selling it. However, with franchising on the rise, Sanders jumped on the bandwagon and decided to open multiple KFC’s across the country.

After grueling struggles from his fledgling years until he was almost at his retirement age, Sanders finally hit a jackpot. KFC expanded internationally and Sanders sold the company for USD 2 million in 1964 (equivalent to USD ~17 million in 2021). Even today, Colonel Sanders still remains the face of KFC’s branding. He passed away at 90, with 6,000 KFC locations across 48 countries to his fame.

Are you frustrated and overwhelmed with rejection and/or discouraged by setbacks, remember Sanders story. Fired from multiple jobs, with a ruined legal career to his claim, setback by World War II, and many bumps along the way in the restaurant industry and still managed to create one of the largest fast food chains in the world.

Don’t be satisfied with stories, how things have gone with others. Unfold your own myth.

― Rumi




Entrepreneur. A bibliophile with passion to write inspirational stories on selfmade millionaires.