An Open Letter to my Travel Family

Dear Travel Family, I am writing you this letter because I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. In the past 3 1/2 weeks I think I have had tears in my eyes more than any other time in my life.

It has not been from  the pain (although at times unbearable) but from the outpouring of support and encouragement that I have received from you…my travel family.

When I broke my back a little less than 1 month ago it changed my life. on-the-boat-836x627

An Open Letter to my Travel Family

Not only did it open my eyes to the fact that life can change in the blink of an eye, but it also made me hyper aware of how important friends and family really are.

I could not get through this without Deb. She has been my rock and unsung hero not only through this whole ordeal but my entire life.

While I was laying in the hospital in Peru spaced out on painkillers she was by my side 24hrs a day tending to my every need, trying to communicate with doctors with her Google Translate as well as having to organize all the details of getting me home in an Air Ambulance and all the insurance needs.

This woman is superhuman let me tell you as anyone who has met her can attest to. Thank you my love.

deb and dave

Family and Friends

I also could not have gotten through this without the support of family and close friends. Just to see the faces of my brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, my nephews, and close friends or to hear their voices over the phone really lifted my spirits and I believe it has been a huge part in my recovery moving along so quickly.

Thank you guys and to Deb's parents for letting us use their house to recover. But truthfully the support of my family and friends did not surprise me.

They have always been a part of my life and always been their for me during my ups and downs. Your reassurance and comfort have been unwavering.

Travel Family Around the World

What was most overwhelming for me was the words, comments, gift baskets, phone calls, emails, and Google chats that came from you…my Travel family.

We have been doing this for 6 years now and have been fortunate enough to meet and work with some of the most amazing people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing.

The joy that I get from meeting new people is the fuel that powers my passion for travel. And that is exactly what you guys do. Fuel my passion. You will never know how much those words of encouragement have meant to me and when I see you again you will be getting an embarrassing hug so be prepared.


Online Friends

But it is not just the people I have met in person that are responsible for that, but also the people that I know only virtually.

Some people can argue that your “online” friends are not your true friends. But obviously, they have not met my online friends.

Our goal when we started ThePlanetD was to develop a relationship with our readers, and if the response that we have received during this tough time is any indication then I think we have accomplished that.

I have been overcome with emotion each time I read your comments and realize how lucky I am to be part of this incredibly giving travel community. This may sound strange but when we were younger we used to cut out quotes from Oprah Winfrey's magazine and stick them to our fridge for inspiration.

There was always one that really stayed with me.

It was “Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher”.


I feel that is exactly what we have done. You guys have become part of that group that lifts me higher and inspires me to follow my passion and take the risks necessary to live a fulfilling life.

So thank you again from the deepest reaches of my soul and heart for being you and most importantly for being my travel family.

With Love and Gratitude,


Please Read: Why you Need Travel Medical Insurance, it truly saved our bacon

We'd like to thanks International Expeditions for all their help after the accident. They stayed with us for the entire week I was in the hospital in Peru. And especially Jaime who was on call and at the hospital in the blink of an eye when Deb needed him. And a huge thanks to Joyce and Ryan, fellow passengers on our cruise. Joyce is a retired nurse who took control of the situation, stabilized my back and made sure I was safe until the float plane came to take me to the hospital. Her nephew Ryan, is an amazing young man who didn't have to stay with us, but he was there to help move Dave and keep him comfortable too!

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