Recently, a teacher named Candy Lopez from Rockridge Junior High contacted me with a desire to excite her students about history. We've asked them to capture stories of World War II veterans for the A BOOK by ME series. Today eighteen students have signed up to either write or illustrate. As we began searching for stories to tell, the following subjects were found in our area:
A veteran from Galesburg, Illinois who photographed the atom bomb explosion over Hiroshima and documented the aftermath on the ground afterward. His story would belong in our Hero Series.
A veteran from Davenport, Iowa who survived the attack on Pearl Harbor. His story would belong in our Hero Series.
A veteran from Princeton, Iowa who watched aboard ship in Tokyo Bay as the white flags went up as the Japanese surrendered. His story would belong in our Hero Series.
A veteran from Annawan, Illinois who helped liberate a concentration camp. His story would belong in our Holocaust Series.
These remarkable stories will be told by the Rockridge teens starting today (Monday) when the first gentleman on the list visits their school. Reed Robertson of Galesburg will meet his young author and the young artist to tell his amazing story.
This is a great start but there aren't near enough subjects to have all of these kids participate so we turned to News 8 for exposure. They came to the middle school on Friday morning while the students were listening to veteran Casey Celske who was part of the first special forces unit which was developed during the second world war. A children's book about his military career was written by young author Halie Parkinson and currently Halie is finishing final edits on her book entitled Life of a Black Devil. The Rockridge students found that meeting him brought the project to life for them.
Thank you John David and News 8 for featuring Casey and the Rockridge students. I hope this great news story brings forth many veteran stories so the Greatest Generation can continue to inspire this generation of students and future generations of young readers.