The Priority List

The Priority List Cover

The Priority List

A Teacher's Final Quest to Discover Life's Greatest Lessons

By David Menasche

Touchstone Books, Hardcover, 9781476743448, 224pp.

Publication Date: January 14, 2014

Description
In this poignant and inspiring memoir, a beloved high school English teacher with terminal brain cancer undertakes a cross-country journey to reunite with his former students in order to find out if he made a difference in their lives, discovering along the way what is truly important in life.
Based on a beloved teacher's most popular lesson, "The Priority List" is a bold, inspirational story of learning, love, and legacy that challenges us to ask: What truly matters in life?
David Menasche lived for his work as a high school English teacher. His passion inspired his students, and between lessons on Shakespeare and sentence structure, he forged a unique bond with his kids, buoying them through personal struggles while sharing valuable life lessons.
When a six-year battle with brain cancer ultimately stole David's vision, memory, mobility, and most tragically of all his ability to continue teaching, he was devastated by the thought that he would no longer have the chance to impact his students lives each day.
But teaching is something Menasche just couldn t quit. Undaunted by the difficult road ahead of him, he decided to end his treatments and make life his classroom. Cancer had robbed him of his past and would most certainly take his future; he wouldn t allow it to steal his present. He turned to Facebook with an audacious plan: a journey across America by bus, by train, by red-tipped cane in hopes of seeing firsthand how his kids were faring in life. Had he made a difference? Within forty-eight hours of posting, former students in more than fifty cities replied with offers of support and shelter.
Traveling more than eight thousand miles from Miami to New York, to America's heartland and San Francisco's Golden Gate, and visiting hundreds of his students, David's fearless journey explores the things we all want and need out of life family, security, independence, love, adventure and forces us to stop to consider our own Priority List.


Praise For The Priority List

"A lot of people could write about what they would do if they were told they only had a short time to live, but few could write as thoughtfully, and with as much honesty, as David has with The Priority List. This former skate punk turned English teacher's life lessons will inspire anyone who reads them."
-Jim Lindberg of Pennywise

“Within David’s journey, there are powerful lessons about how we connect to one another, and how even the smallest gestures can leave a lasting legacy. THE PRIORITY LIST is a brave and important book, which at its deepest level reminds us what it means to be human."
-Jerry DeWitt, author of Hope After Faith



NPR
Wednesday, Dec 25, 2013

Teaching high school English came naturally to David Menasche but a terminal brain cancer diagnosis forced him to leave the classroom. So he visited some of his former students to see what impact he's had on them. He writes about the experience in his forthcoming book, The Priority List. More at NPR.org

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