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Blanton Belk
J. Blanton Belk

Adult; Memoir; (Market)

Encouraged by his grandchildren and others to document his story, Belk embarks on this recounting of his many adventures with his Southern childhood, his influential grandfather and father. There were a few pranks along the way. Belk recounts his military days, how he met and married his soul mate, Betty Wilkes, and the striking list of world leaders who influenced him (and in turn were influenced themselves). As a young man, he befriended Black leaders Charles Preston Howard, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and Jesse Owens. Further, he reveals what happened when performing casts of Up with People youth traveled to countries that were previously forbidden to outsiders—People’s Republic of China, the Soviet Union, and Cuba—and built a lasting legacy of hope.