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"Big Sandy - Big Helper of Men" by Shirley West

Story by Shirley West

 On April 17, Shirley West, author of “Big Sandy – Big Helper of Men” was the guest speaker at Brandi West’s third grade reading class at Winona Elementary School. Ms. West had been reading excerpts of the book to her class between study sessions and the students were very interested in the history. When the teacher told the class the author was her grandmother, the students wanted a visit from Grandma West!

 The elder Mrs. West was greeted with big smiles and many hugs. Questions were asked about Big Sandy and they were surprised the town was 140 years old. Ms. West said they were interested in the Caddo Indians and had looked them up on the computer. Some students suggested a field trip to visit the town.

 Students also wanted to know what school was like when Mrs. West was a third grader. She showed them a picture of the small school she attended for twelve years in western Oklahoma. She told them it didn’t have some of the amenities they took for granted such as running water and indoor bathrooms.

 The session ended with the class signing their names in a copy of “Big Sandy – Big Helper of Men” donated to their classroom by the Big Sandy Museum Association. Goodbyes included more hugs and an invitation to come again.