A Special Gift

When we began our Face of America journey, we had three objectives:

We wanted to visit every one of the 48 continental states;

We wanted to build a mosaic of the Face of America on its best day;

We wanted to write and publish a book about our discoveries.

Friends and family who have been following our journey know that we have accomplished all but one of these goals. We could not find a publisher who was willing to take an interest in our book, America at Its Best.

This year we found an alternative.

Motivated by some unexpected life experiences, Kitch and I decided to do something special for our grandchildren. We wrote a book entitled Papa Tony’s Gift: Life Lessons from the Heart.

The book is a summary of the lessons we learned in our lifetime. It is a roadmap to happiness, joy, fulfillment and inner peace. It is Cover FC_1077 Smdesigned to give our grandchildren guideposts for living a good life. Every chapter in the book contains material that will encourage, inform and inspire them.

Papa Tony’s Gift is a visual narrative. It is dedicated to Dr. Dan Kopen.

There are 15 chapters in the book including chapters about character, courage, honor, integrity, kindness, gratitude and leadership. The majority of the pictures in the book were taken during our journey. The 217 graphics and 10 poems in the book speak to all of the values we associate with America on its best day.

Six of the poems were written by Gary Dodd, a poet who lives in Australia.

There are 268 aphorisms and quotations in the book.

Six well-known motivational speakers gave us permission to include their inspirational quotations in the book.

The idea for the book is rooted in our experience at the 2013 Medal of Honor Convention. Four months later during the screeningMedal of Honor_SA of ourdocumentary about the convention, Four Days of Honor and Valor in Gettysburg, I looked out at the audience, and my eyes focused on my grandchildren. Without thinking I spoke these words from my heart:

“I am worried about your future, your generation and the challenges you will face in your lifetime.”

I also made the point that we must not permit digital relationships to replace personal relationships.

Shortly after we returned home, I began researching and writing Papa Tony’s Gift: Life Lessons From The Heart. During their Christmas visit, we presented a draft copy of the book to the children.

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Of all the things Kitch and I have had the opportunity to do and see during our journey, writing and printing the book was the most challenging, difficult and rewarding experience.

Originally designed as a legacy gift for our grandchildren and their parents, the concept of the book resonates with virtually everyone who hears about it. I mentioned it during my presentation at the Speed Networking event and the annual Ethics Conference at Marywood University. After each presentation we had several requests for the book. I mentioned it during my Gardner Lecture at Wilkes University, and several people asked Kitch if they could purchase it.

This year we are working on a sequel to Papa Tony’s Gift

To everyone who took the time to help and encourage us we want to express our thanks.

For more information about the book, please contact us at: