Have you read this week’s Featured Story, “Kyle’s Legacy?” This is a particularly emotional story for me, as it was written by my sister, Penny Whipps. Her story is powerful. Kyle, Penny’s son and my nephew, died because of an accidental drug overdose. Our whole family grieves his death. He was amazingly gifted, with so much life ahead of him. We loved him and miss him so much.
Amid this horrible tragedy, something beautiful has happened. My sister sensed a calling on her life that she never expected. After talking with Kyle’s friends about his death and hearing their regret over not speaking out and getting Kyle help, Penny realized that there are many other kids out there who have friends like Kyle and they are afraid to break what she calls their “code of silence.” So she started an organization called Just1x that reaches out to those kids and helps them muster up the courage to help their friends who are living dangerously. I’m so proud of my sister.
Penny mentions in her interview that she has been a single mom for 15 years. Seeing her live through single motherhood for so many years—especially amid great tragedy—is part of the reason why we decided to give all royalties from God Makes Lemonade toward helping single moms and their children. I’ve seen first-hand what an incredible role single moms have with their children and they deserve our support and care.
Penny also mentions that I tried to electrocute her in her interview. Hmm. Well, that might be true but she definitely didn’t remember exactly what I said to my grandpa after he nailed me with the same electric fence. While shaking my finger at him in righteous indignation, what I actually said was, “Grandpa, Jesus ain’t going to love you.” It was actually my first lesson on the pains of hypocrisy.