(Rock Island, IL)  The concept of  A BOOK BY ME allows children to interview Holocaust victims, World War 11 survivors  and other heroes and write about them.  The Jewish Federation of the Quad Cities and the Holocaust Education Committee of the Greater Quad City Area will be celebrating their work at a Red Carpet event today,  Sunday August 23 from 2:00 - 3:00 at the Tri-City Jewish Center in Rock Island. In attendance will be the young authors, the illustrators and two "heroes" who are the subject of two of the newly published books.

One hero in attendance is World War II veteran Casimer "Casey" Celske who is one of the few surviving members of the celebrated World War II Special Forces unit known as The Devil's Brigade or The Black Devils. While part of the Special Service Force, Casey was wounded twice. The first wound came from shrapnel that hit his head, face and ears, splitting his helmet in two and knocking him unconscious. It killed the soldier next to him in the foxhole. Then in Anzio, Italy he was wounded in the leg when a bullet from a machine gun struck him as he crawled on his belly across a wheat field. "I was lucky," he insists. "I was wounded twice but I just kept quiet because I'd seen so many dead kids or ones with legs blown off. It was horrible."

It was during the attack at Anzio that the brigade got their nickname. Some say the diary of a dead Nazi soldier was found saying "The black devils are all around us every time we come into the line. We never hear them coming." Another German prisoner stated "They are treacherous, unmerciful and clever. You cannot afford to relax." The Black Devils were immortalized years later in Hollywood in a 1968 movie titled "The Devil's Brigade" starring William Holden. The film portrays the first mission of the Italian campaign, the seemingly impossible task of capturing an impregnable Nazi mountain stronghold called Monte La Difensa. Casey knew how to handle mules from life on the farm back in Wisconsin. He volunteered to bring a pack of four with supplies up the mountain in Italy. The plan was to lead one and have the other three follow but that plan didn't work all the time because mules can be stubborn. It was an extremely cold and tedious journey up the mountain.

A great victory was won when Monte la Difensa was in Allied hands and eventually the Allies took the other mountain peaks nearby. Afterward, they tried to catch up to Patton's Army who were at the Battle of the Bulge. They never did find them and Casey's unit was near the Czech border in the spring of 1945 when the news came that the Allies had won the war in the European theater. Today Casey is a decorated war veteran with a bronze star and two purple hearts. In 2013, the United States Congress passed a bill to award the First Special Service Force members the highly prestigious Congressional Gold Medal. By his side will be young author Halie Parkinson of Aledo, Illinois. She is proud to tell his story for young readers.

Another "subject" for the A BOOK by ME Human Rights Series in attendance will be Father Marvin Mottet of Davenport. Father Mottet worked tirelessly on civil rights issues and brought Reverend Martin Luther King Jr to the Quad Cities to speak. In addition, he had Mother Teresa come for an event. He is a social justice champion and his story will be documented by Sophie Jackson of Moline. She is the newest young author in the A BOOK by ME series.

Many young writers and artists will be attending to receive L'dor Vador awards. A major component of Judaism is passing traditions from generation to generation. In Hebrew this is known as L'dor Vador. The young people involved in the A BOOK by ME writing process have assured that important stories of the Holocaust, Human Rights and Heroes will be told to the next generation.

The celebration will include praise for the Scott County Regional Authority as the Jewish Federation received a spring grant allowing the Holocaust Education Committee to donate 2,900 copies of children's books about local subjects from the Holocaust Series. In addition, the celebration will include a number of smaller grants and the fact that over two dozen books in the series are now available on Amazon. To see those available, visitwww.abookbyme.com and see the link on the right hand corner. 

WHAT:  Red carpet event to celebrate young writers
WHERE: Tri-City Jewish Center Rock Island
WHEN:  Sunday, August 234rd 2 pm

Davenport, Iowa - Friday, August 21, 2015 - iHeartMedia - Quad Cities today announces an exciting new radio format is coming to the market: ALT 104.5: the Quad Cities Alternative. The station officially debuts at 1:04pm today.

ALT104.5, The Quad Cities Alternative, is a new adult rock station merging New Music and Alternative, including such artists as Twenty One Pilots, Mumford & Sons, the Black Keys and Kings of Leon. ALT 104.5 debuts with 100% music, no personalities."We wanted to create a new radio station totally unlike anything else in the Quad Cities, and ALT 104.5 certainly will be!" according to iHeartMedia - Quad Cities SVP Programming, Jim O'Hara. O'Hara also invites listeners to comment on the new format by calling the ALT 104.5 Feedback Line: 563-344-7145.

ALT104-5 will be heard on-air at: 104.5 FM, on FM HD radios at 103.7-HD2, online at www.ALT1045.com and anywhere you go by searching 'ALT104.5' with the iHeartRadio app.

About iHeartMedia

With 245 million monthly listeners in the U.S., 87 million monthly digital uniques, over 75 million social followers and 196 million monthly consumers of its Total Traffic and Weather Network, iHeartMedia has the largest reach of any radio or television outlet in America. It serves over 150 markets through 858 owned radio stations, and the company's radio stations and content can be heard on AM/FM, HD digital radio, satellite radio, on the Internet at iHeartRadio.com and on the company's radio station websites, on the iHeartRadio mobile app, in enhanced auto dashes, on tablets and smartphones, and on gaming consoles.

iHeartRadio, iHeartMedia's digital radio platform, is the No. 1 all-in-one digital audio service with over 600 million downloads; it reached its first 20 million registered users faster than any digital service in Internet history and reached 70 million users faster than any other radio or digital music service and even faster than Facebook. The company's operations include radio broadcasting, online, mobile, digital and social media, live concerts and events, syndication, music research services and independent media representation. iHeartMedia is a segment of iHeartMedia, Inc. (OTCBB: IHRT). Visit iHeartMedia.com for more company information.

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First time author's new memoir celebrates indomitable human spirit

DES MOINES, Iowa - At the age of 96, Desmond Halcomb Bragg has a lifetime of stories to tell. In his recently released memoir, he looks back at his journey and how he overcame seemingly insurmountable odds including being orphaned at the age of four, poverty, homelessness, and a tragic accident that left him paralyzed. Readers will follow Bragg on his transformative odyssey in "Started Out from Texas" (published by Xlibris).

Born in 1918, Bragg grew up in an orphanage in Beaumont, Texas, until he was sent to live with a foster family on a dairy farm at the age of 11. At 16, he dropped out of high school and left Texas for good on a freight train at midnight, in the middle of the Great Depression. Bragg was determined to seek out his fortune with nothing in his pockets but fifty cents and a biscuit. Now, 80 years later, Bragg recognizes that fortune has come in a variety of forms - a rewarding life, lasting relationships, nuggets of wisdom and incredible resilience.

"Started Out from Texas" chronicles Bragg's remarkable life from childhood to the present. Although personal in nature, the themes in this account are universal, a tribute to the indomitable human spirit and an authentic American story of a young boy who dared to follow his dreams. The author's courage shines throughout the pages of this book.

"Almost everyone faces some challenges growing up and the transition to adult life is still a difficult time in any person's life," Bragg says, "If a poor, uneducated orphan boy from Texas can make it, so can you!"

"Started Out from Texas"

By Desmond Halcomb Bragg

Hardcover | 6 x 9in | 142 pages | ISBN 9781499080841

Softcover | 6 x 9in | 142 pages | ISBN 9781499080858

E-Book | 142 pages | ISBN 9781499080865

Available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble

About the Author

Desmond Halcomb Bragg was born in Port Arthur, Texas, in 1918. He holds a bachelor's degree, master's degree and doctorate in education from the University of Wisconsin. He and his wife, Jean, have three children. They settled in Iowa and Bragg became a college professor at Drake University for 25 years.

MOLINE, IL?The award-winning documentary Letters Home to Hero Street, produced by Lora Adams of WQPT-Quad Cities PBS and Kelly and Tammy Rundle of Fourth Wall Films, has received a Mid-America Emmy® nomination in the Historical Documentary category. A gala award ceremony will take place in St. Louis, Missouri on October 3.

Letters Home to Hero Street focuses on a young Mexican-American veteran's personal view of World War II as told through the letters he sent home to his family in Silvis, Illinois. He becomes one of eight veterans of WWII and the Korean War killed in combat from the same block-and-a half long neighborhood now called Hero Street, USA.  Frank Sandoval was just beginning a new job at the Rock Island Arsenal when he was drafted in 1942. He sent hundreds of letters to family and friends during the two years he was in the service and the 130 letters that remain tell the story of one man's dramatic and epic journey from Illinois to India. Killed on the bank of the Irrawaddy River in Burma on June 1944, Frank was one the first of the Hero Street Eight to fall in combat.

Reenactments in the film feature Eric Juarez, Maya Chavez, Cindy Ramos and Josh Wielenga, all from the Quad Cities. WQPT's Chris Ryder was the cinematographer.

The 25-minute historical documentary film was partially funded by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council and recently received a Silver Eddy and the Audience award at the 2015 Cedar Rapids Independent Film Festival.

Fourth Wall Films is an award-winning independent film and video production company formerly located in Los Angeles, and now based in Moline, Illinois. This is the second Emmy® nomination for Fourth Wall Films' Kelly and Tammy Rundle.

WQPT is a media service of Western Illinois University. For more information, visit http://wqpt.org/.

Book uncovers collection of poetry about struggles of mind, heart, soul


FENNVILLE, Mich. - Working through adult and childhood trauma, author Sidonamarie offers readers a glimpse into her mind, heart and soul with a compilation of poems that reflect her life. The poems in "By the Pond" (published by AuthorHouse) serve as a therapy in order to sort the chaos of her mind.


An engrossing collection of poetry, this book shows the author's journey of remembering who she is, who she has been and who she will fiercely fight with heart, soul, spirit and mind to continue to be. It is also a journey of the mind, working through chaos brought by trauma. While the heart of it is Christian-based, Sidonamarie believes that her poetry speaks to all. It shares her private struggle without preaching or forcing her ideas on anyone.


An excerpt from the poem, Can a Voice:

can a voice be the rebel

and not add to wars and their aggression?

can a voice speak the truth

and not add to the lawlessness?


A mixing of thoughts, ideas and dreams, "By the Pond" presents a new and fresh way of approaching and creating poetry and using it as a positive avenue through the dark times in life.


"By the Pond"

By Sidonamarie

Hardcover | 6x9 in | 110 pages | ISBN 9781504911498

Softcover | 6x9 in | 110 pages | ISBN 9781504911481

E-Book | 110 pages | ISBN 9781504911474

Available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble

'In the Arms of God' shares true stories from author's experiences with God


BELLA VISTA, Ark. - Author Ira E. "Ed" Delk believes that whenever he has needed help, God has intervened in his life and been a constant presence. In his new memoir, "In the Arms of God: A Testimonial" (published by WestBow Press), Delk shares his experiences to showcase how God truly does work in mysterious ways.


"In the Arms of God" traces Delk's life from childhood to the present. The fifth child in a family of nine children, Delk enlisted in the Air Force and served during the Korean War. When he returned, he earned a J.D. from the University of Iowa and practiced law for 32 years before getting an MBA. When he retired, he and his wife moved to Arkansas.


Throughout these events, Delk says that in order to save his life or change his direction, God intervened in his life. In one example, Delk's physician, who usually prescribed pain medication for regular pains, changed his usual routine and ordered an x-ray on Delk's lower back. The x-ray found an aortic aneurism.


This event inspired Delk to look back on his other life experiences and see God' work. Through his book, Delk hopes to illustrate that God is present and relevant to daily life. He also hopes to encourage readers to examine how God has affected their own lives.


"In the Arms of God"

By Ira E. "Ed" Delk

Softcover | 6 x 9 in | 52 pages | ISBN 9781490881805

E-Book | 52 pages | ISBN 9781490881799

Available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble


About the Author

Ira E. "Ed" Delk served in the Air Force during the Korean War. He practiced law for 32 years in Sioux City, Iowa, and earned an MBA. He retired as senior vice president and general counsel of Midwest Energy Company. He has previously published "The Second Time Around," "Tess's Tale," "Deadman's Run," "The Plight of the Common Man" and "The View from the Hilltop." More information is available at www.eddelkauthor.com.


and follow @westbowpress on Twitter.


New book offers rich glimpses into farm life in 1950s, 1960s

TEMPE, Ariz. - Lawn Griffiths has released a collection of true stories and essays titled "Batting Rocks Over the Barn: An Iowa Farm Boy's Odyssey" (published by Xlibris). The award-winning writer's latest book follows his incredible journey as a young Iowa boy who dared to chart his destiny beyond the rural landscape of the 1950s and 1960s.


"Batting Rocks Over the Barn" captures the rhythm of rural life through the eyes of a young boy who grew up to become a newspaper journalist and farm editor. As largely a non-fiction biography, the work is narrated by the author from real experiences on the farm leading up to college.


The book devotes considerable space to the writer's parents, his twin brother and sister, plus such other people as hired men, neighbors, teachers and others who came to the farm.  All are important because of their genuine place in the writer's formative years, especially in their teaching responsibility.


Pervading the book is the author's belief that, put together, the varied experiences, jobs and misadventures helped shape him to be an alumnus of the rural school of hard knocks.  Time and again, the author has zeroed in on single elements of his farm life like fences, grease guns and harvesting wild asparagus in the roadside ditches, the  death of the town's blacksmith and city kids' raiding of his father's melon patch.


"Batting Rocks Over the Barn"

By Lawn Griffiths

Hardcover | 6 x 9in | 150 pages | ISBN 9781503572843

Softcover | 6 x 9in | 150 pages | ISBN 9781503572836

E-Book | 150 pages | ISBN 9781503572829

Available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble


About the Author

Lawn Griffiths spent 40 years in daily newspapers as writer, editor and columnist, including 12 years with the Waterloo (Iowa) Courier, 25 years with Tribune Newspapers in Mesa, Arizona, plus freelance writing for the Arizona Republic. Born in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1946, he grew up on a farm near Parkersburg, Iowa. He earned a bachelor's degree in science journalism from Iowa State University in 1968 and master's degree from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University in 1972. He also served in the Peace Corps in Paraguay and the U.S. Army. Griffiths has earned more than 80 writing and community service awards.

Rock Island, IL/June 15, 2015 - Media Link is proud to announce that Adrian Wille has joined our team! Adrian, a German National, proves that the Quad Cities is a region attractive to natives as well as internationals. He will serve as Marketing Assistant for the full service strategic communications marketing firm.

"I'm happy to call the Quad Cities my new home. And Media Link is different from the organizations I have worked with previously. It offers exceptional transparency, flexibility and efficient strategic marketing solutions crafted individually to each client, "says Wille.

Adrian graduated from Friedrich-Alexander University of Erlangen-Nuremberg with a Master's Degree in Development Economics and International Studies, as well as a Bachelor's in Business & Economics and MENA Area Studies. Adrian contributes to Media Link's marketing and advertising operations by providing an interdisciplinary and international perspective. He has gained early marketing experience during his studies as graduate student research assistant in the field of macro-marketing and by interning in Nuremberg and Berlin. He later accepted a position as a Project Manager at a business consultancy in Cairo and Alexandria, Egypt, where he contributed to the foundation of a transnational startup. He eventually moved to the Kurdistan Region of Iraq to conduct research on the capital's real estate market. Adrian is actively involved in our community. He is Vice President and a Board Member of the Palomares Social Justice Center in Moline. He is also a member of the Young Professionals of the Quad Cities, the German-American Heritage Center and the American-Scandinavian Association. He volunteers at the Komen Quad Cities Race for the Cure and is a proud AIESEC alumnus.

"Adrian's background and his zest for learning bring a lot of energy to our office. We're excited to have him here. His interdisciplinary thinking is a welcome complement to our team," says Natalie Linville-Mass, President of Media Link.

Media Link is a full service strategic communications marketing firm specializing in strategic media buying and placement. Media Link works with businesses in the Quad-Cities and around the country to develop and execute customized marketing strategies to help them more effectively reach their customers. Media Link developed and launched its own media buying software system, Media Link Software™. This company is also one of the only marketing firms in the region to have obtained an 8(a) SDB certification, a designation of significance to clients who contract with the federal government.


MOLINE, IL - WQPT, the Quad Cities Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) station, has announced Michael Carton has joined the station as the new director of education and outreach.

Carton has been a teacher for seven years, most recently as a first grade teacher at Frances Willard Elementary. He is a graduate of Western Illinois University, with a degree in elementary education, and is the recipient of the 2015 Master Teacher Award from the Dispatch Argus Newspaper. He has also been honored by PBS with a Teachers Innovator Award.

Carton began his association with WQPT as a member of the first class of WQPT/PBS Ambassadors in 2004. Since that time, he has remained a committed volunteer, most recently earning the National Friends of Public Television Outstanding Volunteer of the Year Award for his work on WQPT's new special event for families, Imagination Station. WQPT chose Carton as its Volunteer of the Year in 2009.

"I am really looking forward to this opportunity to reach more students in my new role with WQPT," said Carton. "I have had the good fortune of teaching 30 first graders, but this job gives me the ability to make a difference to even more people, from pre-school through adults."

"Michael is a seasoned professional who will combine strengths of classroom teaching with the power of PBS programming for the benefit of all children in our region, expanding that vision to include learners of all ages," said Mary Pruess, WQPT general manager. "We are delighted to welcome him to our team."

Carton succeeds Ana Kehoe, who spent 20 years in the WQPT position, retiring last year.

WQPT is a media service of Western Illinois University. For more information, visit http://wqpt.org/.