Mulally was born in Oakland, California to Charles R. "Dick" Mulally and Lauraine Lizette Clark, who met at a USO dance. Mulally grew up in his mother's hometown of Lawrence, Kansas, where he was a member of Plymouth Congregational Church. He considered Rev. Dale Turner "a mentor and an inspiration." He used to sit at the front of the church to study the minister's influence on the congregation. Mulally said that he found himself motivated at the age of 17 by president John F. Kennedy's challenge to send a man to the moon.
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