A search is on for the recipient, or author, of a touching note found inside a book at Arizona Goodwill that has become a message of hope for an entire community.
“Believe, Trent, believe,” the note read, certain words underlined for emphasis.
“You are loved and respected! So let’s get going. The ride may be bumpy, but we’ll make it. When you believe in yourself as much as I do, you’ll be there. – Dad.”
Rose Farmer, 46, of Gilbert, ArizonaShe was recently shopping at her local Goodwill with her mother and seven-year-old daughter. She was searching the halls for a costume.
“I went there one Sunday, reluctantly, and we found something for [my daughter] use,” Farmer told Fox News Digital.
“So I just wanted to go look at the books real quick. In fact, there was an older lady next to me, also looking at the books.”
The woman, also a buyer, picked up a copy of Carson McCullers’ “The Heart is a Lonely Hunter,” which was first published in 1940.
Then a handwritten note fell to the ground, according to Farmer.
The note was written on a piece of paper at the Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa in California, more than 700 miles away from the Goodwill store.
“[I] I thought, ‘Wow, what an amazing, special note,’” Farmer said. “It’s about overcoming any obstacle by believing in yourself, and also making someone else believe in you.”
She continued: “Especially since it was her father. Who knows what Trent was going through at the time her dad wrote him this note, you know? He really he spoke to me at that time ”.
Farmer asked the other buyer if she could keep the book.
“It was 50% off that day, so I think I spent [about] $2 on the book,” Farmer said.
He went home and posted a photo on “Go Gilbert,” a Facebook community page, to see if anyone recognized the note, the book, or even the handwriting.
Farmer said she didn’t immediately find a connection, but was moved by the overwhelming response.
“It just got a lot of likes and comments from people,” Farmer said. “Someone said, ‘I’m not Trent, but this note spoke to me.’ Someone else said, ‘My son’s name is Trent and it’s like this note was written just for him.’ They all seemed really touched by it.”
Farmer said one person commented, “Oh man, I really wish I had a dad like Trent’s.”
“That kind of crushed me because I was like, Wow, everyone should have someone in their life that they can turn to,” Farmer said.
The post garnered more than 1,000 likes, which Farmer says motivated her to keep looking.
“People really want me to find Trent or Trent’s father,” Farmer said.
Trying to follow as many leads as possible, Farmer said she contacted the hotel whose name appears on the stationery, hoping the hotel would post the note on its Facebook page and that the guest who wrote it would see it.
He has not received a response, he said, and has not seen any mention through the hotel’s social media.
“The note was pretty new, so I thought maybe it was someone who went there and took the paper home with them,” he said.
“But you never know. He could have been someone from all over the country.”
That made Farmer think even more.
He wondered: Did Trent ever see the note? Did he read the note?
It was hidden in the pages of the book, so the son may never have known how much his father believed in him, Farmer suggested.
“He didn’t know the note was there?” said the farmer. “Maybe he never got to read that message.”
“The Heart is a Lonely Hunter” is the story of John Singer, a deaf man who lives in a small town in Georgia.
When he loses his only deaf companion, Singer is left isolated and alone.
Last month, we spoke with the late Cicely Tyson about her life and career while teasing her new memoir, Just As I Am. You can read the interview here: https://t.co/up4zMGbfjx;
“It’s a book about overcoming hopelessness,” Farmer said, adding that he never read the book written by Carson McCullers.
“Follow a man who is deaf and befriends some people in a town in the south. The book is about being able to overcome despair.”
In 1968, a film adaptation of the book was released. The movie starred Alan Arkin and Cicely Tyson.
Farmer said she feels there is a reason she was the one who found the note, and that it would mean a lot to her if she could track down the owner.
“I don’t think he realized how many lives he touched with that note, although it wasn’t meant for me to share it with everyone,” Farmer said.
She continued, “I feel like it would be a wonderful feeling to know that, ‘Hey, you touched a lot of lives even though you didn’t mean to.'”
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