An Open Letter To: Aaron MartensAn Open Letter To: Aaron Martens I believe that we as a foundation, Tackle The Storm Foundation, does good things, but Aaron's gift will allow us to do…great things.
By Don Barone
“Mama may have,
and papa may have…”
It is not what we say,
but what we do, that is the measure of the man.
It is not what we take,
but what we give, that is the measure of the man.
It is not what we help ourselves to,
but what we help others with, that is the measure of the man.
I certainly want to thank you for your more than generous $15,000 donation to Tackle The Storm Foundation, but more so my friend, I want to tell you what it means.
I would do so on the phone.
I would do so in person.
I would do so eye to eye.
If I could do so without breaking down.
But I can’t.
The only way I can thank you, is through the keyboard, writing late into the night, early morning.
The only way to really thank you, is to tell you what your gift means.
Means not to me.
Means not to the Board of Directors.
Means not to your fans.
But what it means,
to the children.
“…God bless the child who can…”
Walk with me through fields of destruction, Aaron, help me untangle a child’s tiny jeans from the clutches of a barbed wire fence.
Help me search the branches of the one tree that is left for a child’s cuddle bear.
Help me look for the storybook that mommy read to them at bedtime.
Help me look for their Little League trophies, the baseball glove grandpa gave them.
Walk with me through the fields of destruction and try to find anything, that was once theirs.
Explain to the child how the sky came to earth and took away all that was theirs.
Explain, what it means, to have nothing.
To a child.
Wipe away their tears.
Wipe away, your own, tears.
Wipe away, the hurt.
“…stand up and say, I got my own…”
We will give the children back, “My Own.”
We will put those children back on the water and away from the destruction, if only for a short time.
And we will do so by handing them the Magic Wand of childhood, a fishing rod and reel.
And I know you know it is a magic wand, because I have watched your face as you hold a rod and a reel.
I have watched the calm come over you, as you hold it, watched the smile on your face, as you cast with it, know from talking to you many times, the peace it brings to your soul.
Aaron I know you to be a gentle, kind, thoughtful and loving person, husband, father.
We will take your donation and we will put rods and reels into the hands of children.
In fact if we used your entire donation to purchase the magic wands of childhood…you Aaron, and your wife Lesley, would personally outfit TWO THOUSAND children…with “their own.”
Leave not only stuff behind, leave not garbage, leave goodness.
Leave what carries on.
Venture forth into the next generation, and bring with you, greatness.
Greatness of the heart.
Greatness of the soul.
Greatness of the spirit.
Make that the gift of “their own.”
Give them something, that sticks, that they pass on, to their children, to “their own.”
And that is something we are going to do with your donation.
“…every child's got to have his own…”
Have, his own.
Have, her own.
Have, their own.
Storms, may take their stuff.
Storms, may take “their own,”
but we can not let the storms take their voice.
There will be no silence, following the storm.
But Aaron, for the children, it cannot be strictly our voice.
Cannot be just the adults talking.
We, as Tackle The Storm Foundation, do good….but I don’t believe good, is good enough.
We need to continue to do good, but we also have to do…great.
Goodness is for today, greatness is for tomorrow.
I believe that in every child, there is greatness.
I believe that in every child, there is courage.
There is empathy.
There is a sense of innocence for humanity, that many of us at adulthood, lose.
I am going to take some of your donation, and give the children….their own.
Working with a web-design company, we are going to build a place where children of the storms can reach out and talk to, help, HELP other children around the planet…get through their storms.
And do it, “their own,” way.
Let their voices be heard above the storm.
Let not the storm legacy be devastation.
Let the storm legacy be education.
By, and for, “their own.”
It will be a place where they will be able to go to talk.
To reach out to each other, wherever the other may be.
Aaron that will be the legacy of your gift.
Hopefully turning good, into greatness.
A small part of your gift will be used to start…a children’s place.
A place where children can help other children.
Aaron thank you for the good you have done,
but more so, thank you for the greatness you will do,
when Tackle The Storm: With Me,
comes on line, for the children.
“…every child's got to have his own,
God Bless The Child
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