Very Thankful! by Bob Krech

In 1962 when I was six years old my father was a New Jersey State Trooper assigned to the Division of Civil Defense/Disaster Control. I remember him going away for a week because of the great Nor'Easter that hit the New Jersey coast in May that year. When he returned home he showed me some 8x10 black and white glossy photos of the devastation, where Long Beach Island was literally cut in half by the ocean, houses were flattened, and cars and boats were piled like toys in scattered heaps. It seemed to me at the time like something out of a movie. Fifty years later it happened again, this time courtesy of Hurricane Sandy.

I'm incredibly thankful that the effects we encountered in my town were limited to downed trees and fences and a power outage that lasted only four days. As I'm sure you've seen on the news or maybe encountered yourself, parts of New Jersey and New York suffered far, far worse and many are still without power and housing and are reeling from the devastation.

From Day One New Jersey began bouncing back with many groups and communities organizing to raise money, supply food, and offer various forms of help and comfort. One response you might be interested in has been put together by fellow author and Rutgers alumni (Go RU!) Kieran Viola. Kieran has organized YA For NJ. This will consist of an auction of autographed books by about 160 YA authors from across the country. All money raised will go to The Food Bank of New Jersey (four star charity as rated by Charity Navigator). The auction will take place on Ebay on November 30, 2012. For more information check out the facebook page:

If you are interested or know librarians or other book lovers that would like to grab some cool autographed books and other author goodies for their collections and at the same time contribute to a worthy cause, please pass them the word about this great event. Here's the link. Thanks for letting me share this with you. Happy Thanksgiving!


  1. Great post! Also, the Society of Children's Books Writers and Illustrators gives out five grants a year to help schools, libraries, etc. damaged by natural events. You don't have to be an SCBWI member to receive the funds. Find your area's Regional Advisor at and ask her/him to apply.

  2. Footage of Sandy is just devastating...Thanks for this, Bob.


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