This book is based on the true story of Jonathan Ned Cole, a deaf adopted son of Mary Carol Cole and Ned M Cole. Much of the story is factually about Jon’s rather tragic life. Some of the story about his biological parents are works of my imagination. Jon never knew who his biological parents were. Other parts are dramatized to better portray who Jon was, a black, deaf boy raised in an all-white family. The last chapter is about Jon’s time in Heaven and of course is from my imagination. Thinking of Jon being in Heaven helps me to deal with my grief over losing him. The story is told in the first person as though Jon were narrating the story himself. Some of what Jon tells you might make you laugh. Other parts will cause your eyes to well up in tears.
As you listen to Jon tell his story you will discover that deafness is a far greater burden to carry than being a black person in mostly white America.
This story is one which with the author struggled for many years to find the words that would do justice to the extraordinary silence that Jon lived with during all of his short 26 years of life. This story is about the joy of living and the grief a family feels when a child is lost to them far too early. Yet this story in the end is about hope.
As Jon would have it, his “real” father and mother make their home in Melbourne, Florida.