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JOHN SAM AND Cathy Balenovic have
both suffered great losses. Sam lost
his mother; Balenovic lost her 25-year-
old son. As with any family member,
their memories live on, but the two
friends were inspired to create a business to help make other people’s cherished memories more tangible.
G2G Films, an abbreviation of
Generation to Generation (www.
g2gfilms.com), produces movies celebrating an individual’s life and memory.
Sam and Balenovic, Costco members
who live in Pembroke Pines, Florida,
will travel anywhere at the behest of
customers looking to document their
lives on film.
“Every life is a story,” Balenovic
explains. “We’re storytellers, and it’s
about documenting and preserving,
making sure the thread of families is
G2G’s biographical pieces range
from personal tribute films to birthday
celebrations to video memoirs. It’s a
way to remember events and cherish
One customer with pancreatic cancer wanted to leave her children a message in her film. The film provides her
children with a legacy they can watch
as many times as they’d like.
From the heart-wrenching to the
overwhelmingly joyful, G2G, launched
in May 2013, wants to help capture life
on film, creating time capsules for families, friends and businesses.
“It’s a priceless gift,” Sam says, not
only for their customers but also for the
two filmmakers. “We leave the shoot
with a good sense of who that person is.
It helps put perspective on life.”
A beautiful day
John Sam (left) and Cathy
Balenovic have made a business
of preserving memories on film.
IN 2003, COSTCO MEMBER Barbara Natof Paget learned
about a spa in Northern California that had offered a
special complimentary day of beauty for any of their
clients who had been diagnosed with cancer. Paget, a
longtime volunteer in the fight against cancer, decided
to go to a spa in her hometown of Highland Park, Illinois,
and ask if they would offer the same special day.
Eleven years later, Cancer Survivor Beauty and
Support Day (CSBSD; www.cancersurvivorbeautyand
supportday.org) has become an annual all-volunteer
event, held on the first Tuesday in June, for men, women
and children who are cancer survivors, regardless of their
type of cancer or when they were diagnosed. Recognized
by the U.S. House of Representatives, the event is
celebrated in all 50 states, with more than 1,000 places
in 2013 offering complimentary beauty services to those
with and those who have survived cancer.
“It is the only event of its kind in our country,”
says Paget, who is chair of the CSBSD Foundation.
“It is strictly an all-volunteer day, with no fundraising.”
“For many of the cancer survivors who do celebrate
the day, it is their only day of beauty all year,” she says. “It
is also a wonderful way to reach volunteers who would
gladly offer services at their salons.”—T. Foster Jones
Barbara Natof Paget created
Cancer Survivor Beauty and