It was during a virtual event with fellow St. Jude supporters in early 2021 that 95-year-old Jim Guth found himself being serenaded with an online rendition of “Happy Birthday.”
Every year, in communities across the country, members of the Danny Thomas–St. Jude Society like Jim gather at luncheons to hear updates on the impact of their support. Most members are seniors who have made a commitment to include St. Jude in their final estate plans, and the pandemic meant converting the events to virtual regional gatherings.
Shortly after Jim turned 95, his good friend, Frank, arranged for Jim to participate in a Danny Thomas–St. Jude Society event in March via iPad. Jim and his late wife, Jo, had taken up the St. Jude mission years earlier.
Frank said Jim was beaming when hearing from a St. Jude survivor, Jake, and then when his new virtual St. Jude friends sang “Happy Birthday” to Jim.
Jim, who had had become like a second father to Frank, passed away the following day. Frank said it meant so much that Jim could see the impact of his support one last time.
“Oh, how he loved that,” Frank says.