For the past month we have hardly seen our 16-year old son, Redford.
He is a straight-A student, leads our church congregation in music every Sunday, and seems to be asked to a girl’s choice dance at a different school every other evening.
And yet he has gone missing for almost the entirety of December.
Every morning at 6:40 AM he bolts out the door, always gets to school on time, and recently has even been gone before 6 AM.
Each night we await his return, often past 11 PM.
What is happening with this boy?
He is an SBO, Student Body Officer, at his high school, and the month of December is dedicated to raising money for single parents in an effort termed Hearts of Gold.
Every SBO is expected to go door to door, business to business, looking to do service in exchange for a donation to raise funds for parents needing help with providing Christmas.
My son has kept the ultimate Promise by being completely absent from our home while serving every stranger he can find for an entire month.
It’s hard to put into words how proud I am of this wonderful son, his leadership and consistency astounds me, his level of performance and sense of purpose fills my heart with gratitude.
Before the big reveal to see how much money the school student leaders helped raise through their gargantuan efforts, a few fun events happened, of which we were about to witness the kind of 72 hour swing we will talk about for the rest of our days in the life and Legend of Redford.
Monday Night: Mr. Mustang
Competing against thousands of boys in the school, and whittled down to the final 20, the competition began – to crown Mr. Mustang!
Evening Wear, Formal, Swimwear, Talent Competition…it was all silly, fun, and bizarre.
Redford followed multiple wacky and entertaining acts, such as boys doing cartwheels, whistling, and a body builder lifting weights.
Our son sat at the piano, bi’s and tri’s in great overhead lighting, and played a song he learned himself via YouTube tutorials performed by Queen, the extremely difficult, “Bohemian Rhapsody”. He slayed it. The crowd was shocked, as it was the most impressive talent of the night.
As we watched the evening progress, Tami and I braced for him to be left out of the Top 3, since that has happened to him in other efforts he’s made where he should have been recognized, made the team, or been in the running to win.
And then something marvelous happened: Redford Hewlett was named Mr. Mustang!
It was pandemonium among his friends, peers, and family, in front of a good showing of the student body for this special event.
It was heartwarming to see the crown placed on his head, the work he had put in culminating in this fun title bestowed upon a great young man.
Wednesday: Sean Bott Assembly
A few months ago Redford came to me with a HUGE ask: “Can you see if Sean Bott would come do an assembly for us as a part of our fundraising efforts for Hearts of Gold this December?”
I rarely ask friends for any favors, but Redford never asks me for anything, so I reached out to one of my most famous, incredible, generous, celebrity friends, to see if this could work within his insanely busy December performing schedule.
Sean Bott, if you’re not familiar, is similar to me in the sense that he’s had a multi-decades long successful career as a Performer, and has made the extremely difficult transition into being a renowned and sought after Keynote Speaker who teaches through his unique Mentalism entertaining ways while teaching leadership principles.
There is no one on earth like Sean Bott, both on stage and off. He’s as good as a human gets.
Sean said he was honored to be asked and offered to do it for no fee in an effort to help the school raise more funds, even though the school said they could come up with something to pay him.
The assembly was packed with kids who paid $5 each, and they got a life-changing experience, afterwards determined it was the greatest assembly in the history of Herriman High School.
As he wrapped the show, following the kids screaming with laughter, multiple standing ovations, and love from the audience, Sean did the most gracious thing a speaker and performer can do – he shouted out my son.
“I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for my friend, Redford Hewlett. Thank you for inviting me.”
Applause and gasps from the audience, to think Redford is friends to the greatest performer they’ve ever seen LIVE.
What a moment. Thank you, Sean.
Thursday morning: Funds Raised Revealed & Shaved Head
10 days prior to the big assembly to reveal the funds raised for Hearts of Gold, supporting single parents at Christmas time, it was rumored $30,000 was all that was raised, which was 3x less than years past.
Student Leaders were scrambling. Serving every night was not enough. Asking parents, friends, businesses…they couldn’t come up with the funds hoped for, due to the squeeze of these tough economic times.
God works miracles when we put in the effort.
At the assembly it was revealed that Student Body Leaders would shave their heads to earn just a bit more.
Redford sat front and center, with his dear friend, Griffin, and others, as they braved the razor, not knowing if their efforts had even been worth it.
Redford has been known for his gorgeous locks and Fabio-esque hair for years.
This was the moment. This was worth it, he thought, as they took the shaver to the middle of his head.
Applause, laughs, some tears, and his hair was gone, in honor of raising more funds for those in need, as buckets were passed one last time through the aisles and students.
When the final amount was revealed it had somehow miraculously jumped to an astounding and unexpected $113,052 raised for single parents at Christmas.
My son, head shaved, friend of celebrities, and now, Mr. Mustang, returned home with tales of the adventures of a wild week.
I hugged him and said, “My son, you realize this is the kind of 3 day swing you’ll be able to talk about for the rest of your life. You’ve just built another chapter of your great story, in the service of others, by learning to play the piano, sacrificing your time and efforts, utilizing your resources. You’ve done it, and will continue to do great things. What a story you’re writing for you life, I’m so proud of you for doing good in service to others.”
He said he was going to go write in his Journal, but he fell fast asleep and has hardly been able to get up for the past few days since.
Rest peacefully, my son, for you have much you will do, in continuing to build your Legend.
On the Eve of Christmas I think about the way a father watches his son from afar, doing things that are important, hard, and life-changing.
The Promise to serve, to give, to push ourselves, to sacrifice, to honor those in need, to lift others up, to do great things even to exhaustion….
My son, Redford, has a new and beautiful story to tell, through a life so well lived already, and I can’t wait to cheer him on, support and do all I can to help him succeed, from here on out.
Every person reading this post has a story – YOU are The One.
The Promise To The One is YOUR Story, Your Promise, Your Greatness.
The Greatest Story Ever Told is the One we celebrate this very week. I stand in awe the more I consider the feeling of a Father watching His Son do the most important, powerful, and saving work, by keeping The Promise, in the history of the world.
May we love one another that much more.
May we encourage, uplift, embrace, give, serve, care, listen, extend a hand, and be generous.
May we all Keep The Promise.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!
Love, The Hewlett Family
Enjoy SUBSCRIBING to my NEW YouTube Channel when you’re ready to improve upon Your Leadership Promise!
~ Jason Hewlett
Husband, Father, Writer, Mentor, Hiker
- Speaker Hall of Fame * Award-Winning Entertainer * Mentor
- World’s Only Keynote Speaker utilizing entertainment, musical impressions, and comedy to teach The Promise
- Author of “The Promise To The One”