Northlake seventh grade students in Laura Alonso’s classroom read a chapter in their literature book called No Gumption from the novel Growing Up, by Russell Baker. The students enjoyed the Pulitzer-prize-winning author’s comedic style so much they decided to write him. They asked the 86-year-old author about his childhood during the Great Depression, his first job selling the magazine The Saturday Evening Post, and of his bossy sister, Doris. Mr. Baker soon responded with a well-written letter that gave the students a greater insight into his childhood in the 1930s.
The author also said his sister Doris is still bossy, and praised the quality of the students’ writing. “There may even be a Shakespeare or two among you,” Mr. Baker wrote. Each student received a copy of the letter personally autographed by the author.