'A Sirius Christmas' for BLET member in Iowa
Division 6's David Lahner writes, distributes children's book
David Lahner, a member of BLET Division 6 in Boone, Iowa, celebrated the holiday spirit by writing, publishing and distributing his own children's book for Christmas.
Titled "A Sirius Christmas," the book is about a 12 year-old-boy who goes hunting in Iowa and has a magical encounter with Santa Claus.
"It's a heartwarming story," Brother Lahner said.
The book gets its name from the star Sirius, which Lahner says is the brightest star in the Northern hemisphere. The book's main character sees the star in the sky at night and, along with other groupings of stars, reminds him of the Star of Bethlehem.
"The book has Santa Claus in it, but it really conveys the true meaning of Christmas," Lahner said.
The book is illustrated by Sarah Kudron, the daughter of BLET Division 6 member Joe Kudron. Lahner said he originally asked Brother Kudron to illustrate the book, but he deferred to his daughter.
"They both have a real talent for art and drawing," Lahner said. "Joe is really proud of his daughter and she did a great job illustrating it."
Lahner didn't write the story for money. He donated all money generated by the book's sale to his home town school system in Sheffield, Iowa. He donated about 1,000 books to the Sheffield-Chapin Community School. All of the books sold were and the money was used to buy new playground equipment, Lahner said.
Lahner has donated countless copies to various public libraries in Iowa, primarily along U.S. Highway 30. He most recently gave a copy to the Ericson Public Library in Boone.
Lahner children Nathan, Amy and Holly, and grandchildren Jacob and Molly "loved the book." It is written in memory of his late father, Dale Lahner, and with love to his mother, Luella Lahner. It is also dedicated to his former teachers James Cuvelier, Richard Heimer and Hank Stoffer.
An illustration from the book "A Sirius Christmas" written by David Lahner, a member of BLET Division 6 in Boone, Iowa. It is illustrated by Sarah Kudron, daughter of BLET Division 6 member Joe Kudron.
© 2007 Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen