A Voice from the Field

January 4, 2012

A note from Bob Beitcher:
Frank Galvan’s touching and articulate words echo what we’ve heard from many industry members who participated in the Home Safe Home project for George and Pam. His thanks to MPTF are so very welcome, but the true gratitude we all know goes to committed people like Frank and Brooks whose hearts were touched by the story of George’s illness and his promise to Pam and who took the extra step to join the painting project. Little did we all know at the time, it wasn’t paint we were spreading on those walls, but rather a message of love and caring for an industry friend.

Hello my name is Frank Galvan. I’m a member of Local 729 Motion Picture Set Painters and Sign-Writers.

My first intro to George Herthel I believe goes back to JAG. My wife Brooks Vallerand and I were lucky to have worked with George the last three years on Ghost Whisperer.

Frank Galvan and Brooks Vallerand.

Frank Galvan and Brooks Vallerand.

George always has a friendly smile and time to talk to you. He had many a golf story — we talked about playing all the time, but I never made it to the course. I guess I did not want to get that badly beaten!

Brooks and I first heard about George being sick through Mayling Cheng, a production designer on Ghost Whisperer. We watched a Home Safe Home video sent to us by the Motion Picture & Television Fund (MPTF). When we saw it was about George and Pam we knew we had to be part of it.

When we showed up in November, we were overwhelmed with emotions and tears. It was amazing to see all the different people from all crafts of our business and people who are not even in our business. We ran two shifts, a morning and a late afternoon one. The people in the morning shift would not leave; they wanted to stay and help finish our project. The weather hurt us the first weekend. Then, in December, we tried to finish, but the weather was so windy we were unable to.

The executive producer from Ghost Whisperer and all kinds of people from different Locals helped us keep George’s promise to Pam. There was also Kathy from Famous Dave’s BBQ who fed us great lunches along with Rick from Pit Stop Coffee who provided breakfast and Dominick from Hansen’s Natural Tea’s who kept us hydrated. Mark’s Paint was kind enough to provide all the paint for the project. I met Derek Krull and Holly Spiegel, who organized the project for MPTF. I can’t thank them enough for keeping us moving and going throughout this project. They returned calls at all hours and kept us all informed on what was needed on our part.

On our last weekend we needed about 12 volunteers to finish…we had nearly 30 volunteers show up. I feel so blessed to have been part of this wonderful group of people who gave their time and hard work to help someone in need.

George Herthel, Frank Galvan & Volunteers

George Herthel (center) flanked by friends and volunteers, from left to right: Frank Galvan, Mayling Cheng, James Chressanthis, George Herthel, Ian Sander, Brooks Vallerand, and Andrew Moors.

The feeling you take from being part of a Home Safe Home project will last a lifetime. I would like to do more of this, as time allows. I’m getting phone calls from all kinds of people wanting to join this great group of people. If you can donate money, that’s all good. But to give your time and be part of something this good and positive is something we all need to do. You are there to make someone feel special and loved and you leave feeling so special and loved yourself.

Thank you to the MPTF for allowing me to be a small part of your fantastic group of talented and giving people who make such a difference in people’s lives in their times of need.

George Herthel, thank you for allowing me to help you keep your promise my friend! I love you.

Your brother and friend,

Frank Galvan III

Would you like to help out with future projects? Contact Derek Krull at [email protected].

About Bob Beitcher

Bob Beitcher is the President and CEO of the Motion Picture & Television Fund. He has been a senior executive in the entertainment industry for 30 years, having held leadership roles at Jim Henson Productions, Paramount Pictures, Panavision and MacAndrews & Forbes Media Group. Bob has been an MPTF board member since 2007. He became interim CEO in 2010 and was named permanent CEO in 2011.

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One Response to A Voice from the Field

  1. Lesli Leder on January 5, 2012 at 4:09 pm

    Watching the YouTube video of all the amazing work that was done by so many big hearted volunteers – it gave me goose bumps. The generosity of the human spirit is clearly in evidence here. It makes me very proud to serve these industry members, look at the way they serve each other!

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