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While I Run This Race Paperback – May 17, 2011
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The Amazon Book Review
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About the Author
Pocahontas Gertler, LHD, born in the Deep South, got her primary and secondary education in pre-Civil Rights era Georgia and Florida, and graduated from National College with a BA in Sociology. She later went on to earn her Master of Education degree from Chestnut Hill College. As a student, she helped integrate a college in a segregated environment. She has been a social worker, a chaplain's assistant in the United States Air Force, a trained singer of classical music, a mother, a lecturer, a teacher, an entrepreneur and an author. Now retired and living in Northern Arizona, Pocahontas and her husband Gene have devoted much of their time to volunteer work on two Indian reservations in Arizona. In June 2012 Pocahontas was awarded the degree of Doctor of Humane Letters (LHD) from Northcentral University for her lifetime of achievement and contribution to her community.
Top customer reviews
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Her grandmother had a positive influence in her early life and taught her peace and forgiveness and to love the Creator and love her neighbor as herself. Her grandmother's spirit remained with her while she was searching for meaning and purpose in her life. Striving for conflict resolution and pleasing people, she had to endure an adulterous husband and the death of her son; it seemed too much for a single person to bear. She had to work hard for every victory, but never gave up, and her faith carried her through.
She never did walk alone: the Lord her God held her hand and guided her feet while she ran her race. She overcame many hardships by determination, perseverance and faith. She met and married the love of her life and together they are striving to raise awareness of the horror of racism in America.
This is a book that will touch you like no other, especially if you, like me, were not aware of the depth of the anguish that people of color still endure in this day and age. My hope is that it will contribute to a better America, if not a better world.
childhood to the triumph of courage and forgiveness. I would
recommend it to anyone.
Gertler tells us of her experiences in Catholic school, and later a boarding school and college. She shares her feelings of insecurity while at the same time telling us of how she worked, in her own quiet, steady way, to beat down the walls of racism in any way she was able. She welcomes us into her heart and mind as she takes us down the path she traveled from an abusive marriage to one based on love and mutual respect. Her hope and optimism despite having seen the dark side of humanity again and again is a lesson for all of us.
Gertler is not a movie star. She is not a famous athlete or a world traveller. To some, her story might seem unimportant. But in the end, it is extremely important, as she opens a window into another world for many of us, using simple language, strong emotion and a quiet wit to give a voice to many who otherwise may have remained forever without a voice of their own.
by Khadijah Lacina
for Story Circle Book Reviews
reviewing books by, for, and about women
Ms. Gertler shows her resilience, determination and instinct to survive with a positive spirit in spite of all the trials she went through as well as the ones she bore personal witness to. Some of the chapters were difficult to read since they were so painful. I imagined my forebears in similar situations and remembered stories they had told me throughout my childhood. Memories came flooding back and I made prayers to thank them for blazing the path which we walk today.
At times, it became a little 'preachy' in my opinion, but the overall message overshadowed that. For a first book, her style was cohesive, flowing, concise and deeply moving. Reading this book was an enriching experience and I am grateful she decided to share her story with us.