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TURTLE CREEK - Failed landing gear in a Lear jet led Marcia Zimmermann to a new career direction in 1982.
A busy grocery executive for what was later to become Whole Foods Market, Zimmermann was traveling with her then-husband, a pilot, in a chartered plane to California when it began dumping fuel. They had to fly around for 30 to 45 minutes until emergency equipment arrived.
Zimmermann used less than 30 seconds of that time to re-evaluate her life.
"I had a nanny who took care of my son and I had a housekeeper but I was not there for him," she said. "After that first 30 seconds I felt relieved. I knew I was going to sell all my businesses and I knew I was going to be a better mother and have a family life."
The scare moved her to trade in her 18-hour workdays for homemaking in an Arkansas log cabin. But, she eventually became short on money and returned to Dallas to begin a career in insurance sales.
Her first job at Businessmen's Insurance Agency allowed her a flexible schedule and a chance to …