(DOUG JESSOP’S UTAH CARING STORIES – ABC4 NEWS – Salt Lake City, Utah) Brett and Sandy Folkman’s daughter, Brooke, was passionate about life, animals, and adventure. Brooke struggled with mental health issues. She died from an accidental overdose at the age of twenty-three.
Her sister Rachel read from one of her journals; “I forget to pray to God. Because I think I know the way. But that’s really just pride and I’m falling astray. Reality is I don’t know my way. But God, he never leaves me. As soon as I kneel to pray, I feel the spirit surround me. There are no words to say.”
Remembering a family activity to see The Light of the World Sculpture Garden to a way to honor their daughter
Sandy told me; “Brooke absolutely loved the sculpture garden, and she had a deep love of the Savior.”
The Folkman’s commissioned The Light of the World sculptor, Angela Johnson, to memorialize their daughter.
Brett got emotional and he showed me a full-sized clay model which will be made into a gleaming bronze figure. “This beautiful, winged rendition of Brooke is how she is free of pain and suffering. It’s been a very spiritual experience for us and connected us deeply to Angela and that’s why we got involved with her next project, The Tree of Life.”
The Tree of Life project will feature over two-hundred larger than life figures representing the Plan of Salvation and be adjacent to the Light of the World Garden at Thanksgiving Point in Lehi, Utah. Angela gave me a tour of the miniature version in her studio.
Angela made an important observation as we walked around the impressive figure and ended up standing next to the figure of Jesus; “This is to recreate that connection and that open discussion and that bond of love. Which in the end is more powerful than the pain? The pain terrifies us, but the love heals us. That is the ongoing mission of Jesus Christ.”
You can find out more about The Tree of Life project by watching my about twenty-four minute extended interview with Sculptor Angela Johnson by CLICKING HERE.
Everyone has a story. I strongly feel that “stories have power”. Chances are that if you are going through something, that someone else probably has as well. The shared experiences we humans have can help each other. That my friend makes the point that stories “help us understand each other.”
You don’t have to agree with everyone, but in my opinion, if people would take more time getting to knowing more about others and where they are coming from, we just might find out that we have more similarities than differences.
You can see my positive business profiles called “Utah Success Stories” every Sunday in the ABC4 News at 10 p.m. or online at www.ABC4.com/Success.