Walk to Beautiful

Written by: Jimmy Wayne

Imagine being thirteen, in a strange city, hundreds of miles away from home, and your mom abandons you at a bus station, driving off into the night with her lover.

It's a miracle Jimmy Wayne survived his growing-up years. Hungry, homeless, and bouncing in and out of the foster care system, Jimmy spent more nights wandering and sleeping in the streets than he cares to remember. His father left before he was born. And his mama, when she wasn't in a mental hospital or behind bars for various small offenses, was simply too overwhelmed, trying to survive herself.  

Walk to Beautiful is the powerfully emotive account of Jimmy's childhood and the unconditional love and acceptance Russell and Bea Costner gave to Jimmy. This elderly couple provided a stable home and the chance for him to complete his education. Jimmy says of Bea, "She changed every cell in my body." After his high school graduation, Jimmy went on to earn a degree in Criminal Justice because, as he says, "I knew a lot about it." But in his heart Jimmy wanted to write songs and sing. 

A music company opened its doors to Jimmy, and he moved to Nashville to pursue his dreams. He had several memorable hits, such as I Love You This Much, Paper Angels, and Do You Believe Me Now, which remained at #1 for three consecutive weeks on the Billboard Chart.

But success was not satisfying. Jimmy remembered where he came from, and he wanted to give back. With his Meet Me Halfway campaign—a 1,700 mile walk from Nashville to Phoenix—Jimmy walked halfway across America, raising awareness for foster children. Along the way he not only found a lot of crazy things, such as coins, keys, a plastic Jesus, and a Lucille Ball ashtray; but he also found himself. And more important, he found a way to forgive the people who had hurt him. Jimmy learned how to walk to beautiful—and so can you.



  • “Curveballs, sinkers, and change-ups -- life has thrown all at Jimmy Wayne, and he has not only managed them; he has hit them out of the park! When Jimmy and I first met, we were two guys from Bessemer City High School who had big dreams and little more.  Jimmy’s incredible story in Walk to Beautiful is evidence that with faith and hard work, dreams still come true." - Kevin Millwood. Major League Baseball Player
  • “We were blessed to hear Jimmy Wayne’s story as he shared them with our family at our home.  Walk to Beautiful  presents a challenge to all of us to live out the biblical charge to help children that are in need (Matthew 25:40) can make a difference.”  - Bubba and Cindy Cathy. Chick-fil-A
  • “Jimmy Wayne’s Walk to Beautiful weaves the complexities of life, love, faith, hope and the eternal validity of the soul.  This is a deep down-in-the- gut story.  A uniquely American tale of truth that exposes a shadow culture in our country in a way that cannot be rivaled by even the finest fiction.  If a person is defined by experience, then Jimmy Wayne and his story should be an example for a profound effect on the world and everyone around us” - John Oates of Hall and Oates
  • “I was very touched by reading Walk to Beautiful.  It is an incredible story, so well-written, and Jimmy Wayne is an inspiration.  What a way God has of working things out.  I guess if he can true water into wine, he can certainly make lemonade out of lemons.  It reads like a movie to me, and if so I’ll be the first one in a seat to see it .“ - Dolly Parton
  • “Jimmy Wayne’s story is as powerful as it is heartbreaking.  Walk to Beautiful offers, hope, inspiration, and incontrovertible proof that one person can make a difference.” - Cynthia Sanz. Editor, People Country