Sunday, October 4, 2015

Overcome with Gratitude

We've been blessed in so many ways along your journey Forrest.  This week-end we had amazing opportunities to give back to the two non profit organizations who have helped you the most. 

On Friday after speaking in two Same Sky performances at Saunders middle school on the far side of Manassas, you rallied and spoke again at the CalKaine Cares formal fundraiser benefiting CCI at Salamander Resort. It was terrific to be there with other CCI friends including beautiful  Caroline her charming CCI companion, Shelley!    

Your talk about the many ways that Toliver has enriched your life and supports your recovery gained a standing ovation.  

We all kind of got carried away with the evening as you began to bid on the first live auction item, an hour training session for four with Pierre Garcon, wide receiver for the Redskins.  As the bidding topped $3000 you looked to your Dad and questioned, "what should I do?"  His reply, "Go For It!  And you did...placing the winning bid at $3800.  Ouch!! 

On our way out the door the organizers approached you and said how much they appreciated your speech and to not worry about checking out that they were going to underwrite your hour with Pierre Garcon!!!  What a terrific gift!!!

And Friday night was just a warm-up for our own Saturday night fundraiser for the Forrest Stone Allen Financial Aid Fund at A Place To Be in conjunction with the 2015 public premiere of Same Sky! The weather forecast was so dismal our event was moved from BrightWood to Hill School. No problem.  All hands on deck.  Let's relocate this event and we did!    With the help of many incredibly generous volunteers, including eight of your faithful life long friends, last night we raised $62,000 to help children and adults who might not otherwise be able to afford music therapy!  

Tom, Kim and all the staff, mentors, and fellow clients At a Place to Be have given so much of themselves to help you and your recovery. There's no doubt in my mind you would not be where you are today without their talent, devotion, compassion, encouragement and friendship.  Throughout your journey A Place To Be has taught us that sometimes the best way to heal ourselves is to lend a hand to someone else.  

You and fellow Same Sky cast member, Megan, celebrate in the lobby of the Hill School theater, under a sky full of clouds.  Each cloud representing the name of a donor to the FSA fund.  It was truly a breath taking moment to emerge from the theater and see this beautiful visual testimony of our community's generosity.  We are truly blessed!  

Good night Champ. You and your pal Toliver done good. Sweet dreams. 

With Love & Gratitude,
Team Forrest 


  1. Great post! Looking forward to seeing you all next week. Forrest, you truly have a village at your back, and you also inspire so many more than you know. I continually run into friends who I thought had never heard of you, only to find out they've been following your story and rooting for you for years! Hang in there champ, see you soon.


  2. You know I always have a lot to say. But, after reading this and spending two nights in a row with you guys, all I can say is how my family loves your family. You are the champion. (And Toli is pretty awesome, too)