W. Garth Callaghan has been diagnosed with cancer four times since November 2011 and doctors recently gave him five years to live. So Garth set out with a mission: to write 826 napkin notes for his 14-year-old daughter, Emma; one for each day until she graduates from high school. When Emma was in kindergarten, Garth began packing the handwritten napkins with personal notes and famous quotes inside her lunchbox.
Garth compiled the notes in Napkin Notes: Make Lunch Meaningful, Life Will Follow. With a passionate social media fan base, he shares the daily napkin inspiration on his blog, Twitter and Facebook. His story has gained national attention and he and Emma have appeared on The Today Show, Fox & Friends, Dr. Oz, The Rachael Ray Show and NPR.
Garth encourages parents to write their children notes to create deeper connections and relationships. “This isn’t a story about cancer, because any parent at any time could be hit by a car or have a heart attack. This is really about leaving a legacy so that she can understand some of my life philosophies and how much I love her.”
Garth’s inspiring story is currently being developed into a major motion picture by Reese Witherspoon’s production company, Pacific Standard.
"Instead of just speaking about the incredible power of personal connection, Garth embodied it. People are still talking about his stirring message of faith, hope and the importance of reaching out to those around us. By sharing so candidly his personal story, he touched a chord that resonates deep within all of us who yearn for a new level of meaning and significance. By choosing to focus on light and hope, he inspired us to move past our complacency and live in the moment. Not in a pie-in-the-sky, sentimental way, but with honesty, courage, and purpose. I was especially struck by the powerful simplicity of your core message that each of us can make a profound difference simply by expressing our feelings and doing what we can."- Children's Treatment Centre, Ontario