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Terry Coleman’s life never looked promising from the start. Born to alcoholic parents in an abusive relationship, neither parent had the mental wherewithal to care for a newborn infant. Two weeks after his arrival Terry was back in the hospital with a severe bout of the whooping cough. That’s when his great-grandmother decided to take matters into her own strong and capable hands
Terry Coleman’s life didn’t start off auspiciously. Abandoned by his mother and raised by his grandma and aunts in the projects of Denver, Colorado, he reached adulthood with no sense of direction or purpose. Marriage and fatherhood did not halt his descent into alcoholism and despair. But, as he explains in Don’t Give Up, Don’t Give In, a chance invitation by a friend to attend church reawakened the religious leanings of Terry’s childhood, and his resulting conversion turned his life in a whole new direction. He became a certified paralegal and went on for a bachelor’s degree, becoming the first person in his family to graduate from college.
Having been so blessed, Terry felt compelled to do something to benefit his fellow human beings. But what could he do? His answer came when he began helping out with a church homeless ministry. Terry’s brother was homeless, and it troubled Terry that so many people, were without homes. He decided to use his powerful singing voice to set a world’s record for singing hymns, publicizing the marathon event to draw attention to the plight of Denver’s homeless. In July 2005, Terry Coleman sang hymns for forty hours and seventeen minutes at the age of 54, establishing a world’s record for hymn-singing and earning him a spot in the Book of Alternative Records, Records Holders Republic, and Ripley’s Believe it or Not. Today, Terry continues to live alcohol-free and serves as an ordained deacon.
" With God all things are possible" (Matthew 19:26)