My Daughter – Amy Eldon Turteltaub
Ever since she was a small child, Amy has been an extraordinary daughter- and cherished friend. When she was 13, I went through a rough patch and she became my guide for a year or two, until I found myself again and she was able to relax. She has always been a peacemaker, never unkind to anyone. Perhaps that was because of a warning given to her when she was a little girl by William, who looked after our house when we lived in Nairobi, Kenya. Upset that Amy had been rude to him, he reprimanded her, saying, “toads will come out of your mouth if you say bad things!”
Just after Amy’s 19th birthday, her beloved brother Dan was killed in Somalia at the age of 22, and we spent the next two years propping each other up. One day I would fall apart and the next day she would call me in tears. To help us get through the pain, we wrote “Angel Catcher,” a guided journal on grieving. When Amy was 21, hosted a film about journalists at risk called, “Dying to tell the Story,” which was nominated for an Emmy. We found that transforming our grief into creative endeavors helped us be happy again.
After graduating from college, Amy moved to Los Angeles and lived below me in West Hollywood. After enormous challenges, we managed to produce a CNN documentary, “Soldiers of Peace, a Children’s Crusade,” about the Children’s Peace Movement in Columbia. A few years later, Amy hosted a PBS, “Global Tribe,” about courageous change-makers around the world. We also wrote two more guided journals, “Soul Catcher,” about finding your purpose, and “Love Catcher,” about attracting more love into your life.
“Love Catcher” worked for both of us! I met Michael Bedner, a wonderful architect and designer who lived on a beach in Malibu, who introduced Amy to Jon Turteltaub, a film director who lived next door to him. It’s hard to believe, but I married Michael, and Amy married Jon. They live next door with their two little boys, Jack and Daniel, and daughter, Arabella, and Amy and I continue to work together– at the Dan Eldon Center for Creative Activism– teaching young “creative activists” like Dan to use media to create awareness of important issues and ignite positive change.