I posted this cover shot of, "Where the Red fern Grows," on my f/b last night, and received many "likes," and several heartfelt comments from friends. Most said, that reading, "Where the Red fern Grows," was one of their favorite elementary school class-time moments. I know it was certainly one of mine---I even named two of my dad's bird dogs after Little Ann, and Old Dan.
I remember, like it was yesterday, sitting with my fellow, innocent, fourth grade students, in our reading circle, with Ms. Junger. I recall, with a lump in my throat, the dreaded afternoon when we arrived at the chapter where Old Dan died of injuries sustained in his heroic battle. How I cried, sitting on that classroom floor, when Little Ann laid on his grave, and passed as well, of a broken heart. I thought my heart was going to break in half too! And then the red fern...sentimental perfection.
Ms. Junger, was my favorite teacher of all my years in school. She was so kind, to this painfully shy, and awkward grade school girl, who loved to read. Thankfully, one of my facebook friends, that I haven't seen in over thirty five years, let me know that she is on her friends list, and is still teaching in Hawaii. I am so thrilled that I am going to be able to reconnect with Ms. Junger, and let her know just how much she meant to me. I am even using her name in my next book, "Rock Angel."
Thank you, Wilson Rawls, for writing the best book of my childhood. The movie was even, partially, filmed in the lush, rolling hills of Tahlequah, Oklahoma, where my husband and I lived for the first several years of our marriage--gorgeous, Green Country.
Wonderful memories---incredible book!