A MAGNIFICENT LEGACY
Many years ago I heard a TV announcer interview Paul Newman. I don’t remember the emcee but I clearly remember something that Mr. Newman said. He expressed the opinion that he, and his wife Joanne, believed very strongly that they needed to put a cap on the amount of money they needed in order to live a full life.
He went on to say that a person, or persons, could only have so many “toys” and, in a world that was overcome with poverty and hardship that he felt it was a crime to just keep on getting without giving back. He said he intended to live by these words.
Well, he certainly has lived up to his promise. Of course he will be remembered for his acting career but the real legacy that he will leave is that of the world-wide philanthropist.
In 1982 he founded “Neman’s Own”, selling everything from his famous salad dressing to popcorn and wine. All the profits from this venture have gone to charity worldwide ... to this date it totals more than $250 million.
Perhaps his best known charity is the “Hole in The Wall Association”, a network of 11 summer camps around the world for children suffering from life-threatening illnesses. My favorite image of him is when, at the age of 79, he flew to Britain to entertain disabled children. He performed as a clown in a special version of Zippo’s Circus.
Paul Newman lived to the grand old age of 83 and he did it with dignity, humor and an open heart and pocket book. Can you imagine what life would be like if we all followed his example ... can you imagine the change that it would bring to our world?
The motto of Newman’s Own is “Shameless exploitation in pursuit of the Common Good”. That’s what his life was all about and we owe him a tremendous vote of gratitude.