A story of unconditional love and acceptance where you least expect it.
Imagine yourself a 13-year-old hundreds of miles away from home, in a strange city, and your mom leaves you at a bus station and drives off into the night with her lover. That's the real life story of country music star Jimmy Wayne. It's a miracle that Jimmy survived being hungry, homeless, and bouncing in and out of the foster care system, and sleeping in the streets. But he didn't just overcome great adversity in his life; he now uses his country music platform to help children everywhere, especially teenagers in foster care who are about to age out of the system.
Walk to Beautiful is the powerfully emotive account of Jimmy's horrendous childhood and the love shown him by Russell and Bea Costner, the elderly couple who gave him a stable home and provided the chance to complete his education. Jimmy says of Bea, "She changed every cell in my body." It also chronicles Jimmy's rise to fame in the music industry and his Meet Me Halfway campaign - his walk halfway across America to raise awareness for foster kids.
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EXCELLENT LISTENING EXPERIENCE!
- Robert C. Kitchell
Inspiring - Shows the Impact One Person Can Have
This is one of the best books I've ever read or listened to! I literally lost sleep because I wanted to find out what happened next!
There was one part of the story that sounded like something out of a horror movie but it was real life to Jimmy and his sister, Patricia. No one should have to experience something like that, especially a child! I don't want to give away the details. It's really amazing that Jimmy and Patricia lived through some of these terrible situations. For all of the bad things described in the first part of the book, they are outweighed by the beautiful love and appreciation that comes through later in the story when Jimmy speaks of Russell and Bea Costner, the couple who welcomed him into their home when he was living on the street.
Crowd surfing at the concert at Madison Square Garden - Silly and cool at the same time! How many people can say they've done that? Jimmy completing the walk half way across the country was incredibly inspiring. I can't imagine taking 7 months out of your life to do something like that! It took such dedication to keep going and complete the walk even though it took longer than planned and Jimmy dealt with multiple physical hardships along the way. It was touching how many people reached out to help Jimmy Wayne and support Project Meet Me Halfway!
When Jimmy Wayne approached legendary songwriter Skip Ewing with a song idea and they planned a meeting to write together! That took guts and it was the beginning of his career taking off. Without making a name for himself as a songwriter and country music artist in Nashville, he wouldn't have the platform to bring awareness to kids and youth growing up the way he did.
It's very fitting that Jimmy Wayne himself reads the Prologue and Epilogue. There is raw emotion in his voice that can only come from someone who's lived the words he's reading. Gabe Wicks does a fantastic job of bringing the story to life. He has just the right tone and inflection to articulate the situations and emotions in Jimmy Wayne's autobiography!
- Tiffany White