Hunter’s Special Squawk

A poignant, beautifully illustrated picture book about grief and loss, with a promise that everyone has a purpose.

We completed a successful Kickstarter campaign on April 20, 2019, and delivered printed copies to our backers. We also created an ebook version!

Through our “1 for you, 1 for them” reward, we are able to donate 18 copies of the book to hospitals and schools in the Edmonton area and elsewhere in Canada, and 4 copies to families who are going through a time of grief. Edmonton area hospitals and schools included: Stollery Children’s Hospital, UAH Palliative Care, Royal Alex Hospital NICU, Earl Buxton School, École Richard Secord School, Victoria School of the Arts, and Lansdowne Elementary School.

Copies were also provided to the following hospitals and schools in Canada: Shuswap General Hospital in Salmon, Arm, BC; Dawson Trail School in Lorette, MB; Pierre Elliott Trudeau Elementary School in Blainville, Quebec.

Get your copy!

Did you miss our Kickstarter campaign? Don’t worry, you can grab your copies on Amazon! Hard copies and eBooks are available!

The backstory

On August 22, 2017, our 5 month and 1 day old nephew, Hunter Brown, was killed in an arson that also destroyed his home. His mother, Ron’s younger sister, was brought to hospital in critical condition but ultimately recovered from her injuries. This unfathomable event was and continues to be extremely difficult for our family to understand. Even more difficult was trying to explain it to our young daughter, who was a week away from her 7th birthday at the time.

As the months passed and the pain of the grief came and went in waves, I wondered how we would ever escape the despair, the heartbreak, the emptiness. Finally I started to think about everything Hunter had meant to us, and the memories we had made with him in his short time on earth.

Hunter’s Special Squawk is a way for me to make sense of a horrific situation. To explain to our daughter why a life could be taken so soon. And to move forward honouring Hunter’s memory and the things he taught us.

Hunters Special Squawk cover juicygreenmom

The good Hunter brought to the world will continue to live on. 10% of the proceeds from the sale of this book will be donated to WWF-Canada‘s vital conservation work through the Give a Panda Room to Grow fund.

Check here to see how much has been donated to the fund, or to donate directly to WWF-Canada.

Our hope is that Hunter’s story can bring comfort and solace to others who have lost loved ones too soon. We hope that it can help both children and adults to understand and process their grief, and be able to see the light in the darkness.

What are people saying about the book?

It has been so wonderful to receive messages from our backers about how the book has touched their families!

“I picked up my copy of “Hunter’s Special Squawk” from Judith Lam Tang today. What a beautifully written book. Her husband, Ron Tang, did the amazing illustrations.” – Carol

“I just read the book. What a beautiful tribute. Made me cry. Thanks for making me cherish my children just a little bit more. ❤️” – Ashley

Hunters Special Squawk reading1

“Hi Judith! Just wanted to say thanks for the book! My little guy really likes it and has asked for it a few times this week.” – Sheena

“It’s a great book!!! Well written and illustrated. We love ours – (even though my kids are older). And our copy was signed too!!! ♥️♥️♥️. A great tribute to Hunter.” – Priya

Hunters Special Squawk girl reading
A Kickstarter backer sent a photo of her daughter reading our book.

Amazon reviews:

“A beautiful book written in tribute to a very special and precious little boy named Hunter. This book has wonderful illustrations that are colourful and full of emotion. The storyline is perfect to comfort those who have lost someone very dear to them. It is suitable for all ages and is a timeless classic.”

“This book was written about a boy who was lost and will forever be remembered. A good story to share with young children who don’t quite understand how to handle the loss of a loved one.”

Why is Hunter a chick?

Ron has always drawn his family members as animals. For as long as I can remember, he drew adorable pictures of his immediate family, and then of me and our daughter, as a way to commemorate events, or immortalize life’s moments. Hunter is a chick because he was born in the year of the rooster according to the Chinese Zodiac. The chick became extra significant as Hunter made a squawking sound that sounded very much like a bird.

Thanks

We are so grateful for the friends and family who have supported us through this journey. We especially want to thank Jana Rieger for providing story editing expertise, and Johanne Regunathan and Janet Lam for providing feedback on our drafts prior to publishing.

Video graphics and animation by Ron Tang. Music composed and performed by Judith Lam Tang.