A Touching Letter

Wednesday, April 18th, 2012 | Books

Mike received the following letter recently from a reader. It was really touching. Thank you sincerely, Mr. LaVeck, for the kind words.

Mr. Chapman,

I wanted to let you know how much my son and I have enjoyed your books, but in particular our experience reading “Gotch: An American Hero.”

My son just turned 12 and is an avid wrestler. We live in Maryland and he competes all over the mid-Atlantic and we both love the sport.

We have several of your books, but this week we were on spring break and Alexander and I decided to finally get to your novel about Frank Gotch. We sat on the balcony of an oceanfront condominium every day for the past 6 days and completed the entire book together.

It was a rewarding experience to read the book and allow the fictionalized account of Gotch’s life to illuminate what we had already learned through your non-fiction materials.

We often read together, but I know this will likely be a joint reading experience that we both remember for the rest of our lives, not only because of the beautiful location, but because we both enjoyed the story, and the writing so much and we now are both huge admirers of Frank Gotch…and we both have you to thank for that.

Thank you very much…we already have “Caddock” but we are looking forward to all of your future titles.


Art LaVeck (and Alexander)

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Upcoming Speeches and Appearances

  • August 26, 2014 – Speaking in Forest City

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Category: GeneralSpeaking in Forest City


August 26, 2014N/A

The Winnebago Historical Society will celebrate Forest City's own Bob Baker on Tuesday, August 26, with Iowa History Journal's Mike Chapman, who will speak at several venues in town.

Chapman will speak at the Forest City Rotary Club at noon in Salveson Hall's ballroom (106 S. Sixth St.) at Waldorf College. He will be at the Mansion Museum (336 N. Clark St.) from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. He will speak at Forest Plaza Assisted Living (635 Highway 9, E.) at 3 p.m. He will introduce and play one of Bob Baker's films in the community room at Titonka Savings Bank (101 Highway 69, N.), starting at 7 p.m. Free admission with popcorn and refreshments.

Bob Baker, a singing cowboy in movies in the late 1930s, was born Stanley Leland Weed on Nov. 8, 1910, in Forest City. He was selected to star as a singing cowboy for Universal Studios in 1937, beating out several young men for the position – including Leonard Slye, who went on to become famous as Roy Rogers. Stanley’s parents were Guy and Ethel (Leland) Weed. He served in the U.S. Army, was a police officer in Arizona and ran a dude ranch. He died Aug. 29, 1975.

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Oklahoma Shooter: The Dan Hodge Story is $22 plus $5 for shipping and handling. You can order by sending a check or money order for $27.00 to Culture House, P.O.. Box 293, Newton, IA 50208, or by calling 641-791-3072.

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