Amazing how things can work out. My friend Mark Haney introduced me to Jake Schroeder, director of the Denver Police Athletic League. Mark Haney is the heroic SWAT team officer that tried to save the life of Officer Bruce Vander Jagt some years ago in Denver. Mark is prominently mentioned in my chapter on Courage.
I met Jake for the first time a few hours ago. Jake is a dedicated intense and talented guy who puts his heart and soul into working with thousands of needy and often troubled youngsters. Jake is an inspiration to anyone that works with youth. During a conversation about marvelous people who have helped the Denver PAL, Brad Paisley’s name was mentioned. I will write more about Brad in subsequent posts, but I wanted to share promptly Brad’s new song “Hard Life” and its remarkable uplifting, if not tearful, origin. Here is information taken from Brad’s website.
Download the song. If possible, attend Brad’s concert in Denver later on in January.
BRAD PAISLEY LENDS VOICE TO NEW SONG “HARD LIFE”
Written By Joe Kindregan
To Benefit A-T Children’s Project
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Dec. 12, 2011) Brad Paisley has just recorded a new song, “Hard Life,” available for purchase here http://bit.ly/vEkarW and on all digital music outlets. The song is written by Paisley’s friend, 23-year-old Joe Kindregan from Springfield, VA, who has A-T (ataxia-telangiectasia), a rare, fatal genetic disease that combines symptoms of cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy, immune deficiencies and cancer. The release of the new song marks a special initiative on behalf of the non-profit A-T Children’s Project, the yearlong beneficiary of Brad’s artist royalties from U.S. digital single sales of “Hard Life.”
“I’ve known Joe for several years and he is one of my favorite people. His disease is physically debilitating but obviously creatively and mentally Joe has such tremendous depth. It’s an honor for me to be the person to give voice to his creativity and cause,” says Brad.
Brad and Joe met in 2005 at a fundraising event hosted by former professional hockey star Shjon Podein, for Team 25, benefitting children facing extraordinary difficulties. It was at this event that Joe was convinced by his buddy, Brian Christiansen, who also had A-T, to join him on stage and sing with Brad. Joe developed a love of country music and its true-to-life lyrics. Over the years he and Brad have stayed in contact and Joe has attended many of Brad’s concerts. When Joe’s friend Brian lost his battle with A-T a few years ago, he knew he wanted to do something to carry on their love of music, and with encouragement from Brad, decided the best way to do that was to put his story in a song.
Joe knew he wanted to write about enduring life with A-T, the good and the bad. He talked to other people who also had the disease and then put his thoughts on paper to share with Brad. Once Brad saw the lyrics he knew they had something important. Joe came to Brad’s Nashville studio twice to be a part of laying down the tracks and to see his song being produced firsthand.
Joe thinks that his pal Brian would have been proud and excited to know that he had written a country music song about their struggles and it was produced and sung by Brad.
About the A-T Children’s Project
The A-T Children’s Project is a nonprofit organization that supports and coordinates biomedical research, scientific conferences and a clinical center aimed at finding life-improving therapies and a cure for ataxia-telangiectasia (A-T). A-T is a progressive, degenerative disease that affects a startling variety of body symptoms. Children with A-T appear normal at birth, but the early signs of the disease usually appear durng the second year of life. A-T causes the relentless loss of muscle control, usually making children dependent on wheelchairs by the age of 10 and making it difficult for them to read, speak, and eat. Children with A-T also have a strikingly high risk of cancer. Although considered a rare “orphan” disease, A-T may actually be more common than we know, since many children with A-T, particularly those who die at a young age, are never properly diagnosed. There currently is no cure for A-T and no way to slow the progression of the disease. Research on A-T may help many more common diseases, such as cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, and Parkinson’s disease.
Help Joe’s fight for a cure with a donation at atcp.org/JoeKindregan
As I wrote above, I will post more about Brad and his organization. I will have ‘buttons’ to facilitate donating to Brad’s A- T Children’s Project and to the Denver Police Athletic League.
Seems like a great way to begin the New Year!!!!