This Book Hits Close to Home
By An 11-year Old Reader on Oct 29, 2001
Children of the Storm: The True Story of the Pleasant Hill School Bus Tragedy Ariana Harner and Clark Secrest On a clear, sunny spring day in 1931 the bus driver, Carl Miller, made his route to bring the twenty children to the Pleasant Hill school house, a one room building located on the plains of Kiowa County, Colorado. Upon arriving, a terrible storm cloud came up from the north. Carl Miller and the teachers decided they should send the children home, instead of keeping them at the one room school house without food or water. The bus started out in what was then a blinding blizzard. It was not long before he was lost, finally ran off the road, and the bus was stranded. Finally, Mr. Miller thought that it would be best for him to try to find help. He asked the oldest child on the bus, Bryan Untiedt, to make sure the other children do not go to sleep. Do whatever he could to keep them from freezing to death. Some of the children had very little for coats. Mr. Miller was soon lost and later found frozen to death. There were no phones and the only help was from families and friends, who were unable to find them until the second day. They found three children had already frozen to death and seventeen were still alive. They were all taken to the hospital for treatment of frostbite on their hands, feet, etc... The Denver Post interviewed the children and families. Bryan Untiedt was promoted as a "hero" by the Post. Other newspapers were interviewing and photographing the survivors, as well. Nineteen days after the tragedy, all the survivors and their families were invited to Denver for one week to see different sites. Mr. Bonfils, the owner of the Denver Post, presented all the survivors with some cash and a gold-plated heroism medal. Bryan Untiedt was also invited to Washington, D.C. by President Herbert Hoover. This story was very informative about what can happen in a short time with spring storms and how dangerous they can be on the plains of Colorado. I did not like how the media made Bryan Untiedt a hero more than the other survivors. I feel that you should read this book called Children of the Storm. Ages 8 to Adult. Talli, Eads Middle School, 6th Grade
A tragic tale of unlikely heroes and their exploiters
By Peter on May 30, 2001
Having grown up in Colorado, I found this book informative, poignant, and a genuinely great read. I remember people eluding to a bus tragedy in Colorado ages ago but never was able to learn the circumstances, until now. That so tragic an event could have been exploited by so many unconnected to its events speaks volumes to the age we live in. I found the details and timeline remarkable given the generations that have passed and the silence so long held by the tragic participants. Well researched!
A POIGNANT STORY, FINELY RESEARCHED, FINELY TOLD.
By Gary Penley on Jul 16, 2001
I am the author of "Rivers of Wind: A Western Boyhood Remembered," another story of life on the Colorado High Plains in an earlier time. While growing up in southeastern Colorado, even as a child I remember hearing about the Pleasant Hill school bus tragedy. Knowing that a definitive account of this historic event had never been written, when this book came out I was pleased to see what a fine job Ariana Harner and Clark Secrest had done. "Children of the Storm" is a finely-researched and well-written account of this tragedy. Along with telling the story of the unfortunate victims of a devastating High Plains blizzard which trapped them for thirty-three hours in a dilapidated school bus with pieces of cardboard lodged into the frames of its broken-out windows, the book tells of the subsequent exploitation of the survivors by a greedy media mogul and a United States President seeking reelection. "Children of the Storm" tells, at long last, the true story of the twenty children and one adult who were trapped in the school bus, the tragic deaths of six of them, and both the short-term and long-term effects the event had on the lives of the survivors.
Gripping true story
By D. Bell on Sep 23, 2009
For anyone interested in Colorado or prairie history, this is a must read. Using many sources, including interviews from the few remaining survivors, the writers detailed account of the thirty-three harrowing hours trapped in a bus with cardboard back windows and no heat, the resulting deaths and the aftermath, are a chilling account of a forgotten history. Included are the medical details, how the press exploited the ordeal, those who came to help and finally, what became of all 'The Children of the Storm'. Anyone who reads this book should also try 'The Children's Blizzard' by Laskin. Both clearly show what danger prairie children lived in on a daily basis, even into the early twentieth century.
Hard to put down.
By Lynnita Mattock on Nov 27, 2004
The only reason I didn't read this book in one sitting was because my eyes grew tired. This story besides being true is fascinating - well researched and well written. The book even has an update on the survivors of the snowbound bus tragedy in Colorado. Highly inspiring read. Lynnita Mattock, author of Abductee
Children of the Storm: The True Story of the Pleasant Hill School Bus Tragedy
By Bk Wolf Whitaker on Mar 30, 2010
This is a true storm about a group of school kids and what they experienced during a freak snow storm. The author starts the book by giving you some background information about the area and the families involved. Then they go to the early morning hours on the day the storm hits. Even thought the bus made it to the school just as the storm started it was decided that the kids should be returned to their homes, instead of waiting out the storm. CHILDREN OF THE STORM tells you what the kids went through while being trapped in a blizzard on a bus for 30 plus hours as well as what happened afterwards. It tells you how it affected their lives and where they are today. Even though it was a true story as well as a tragedy I enjoyed reading this book. I thought it was an excellent read. Children of the Storm: The True Story of the Pleasant Hill School Bus Tragedy
By Lynne Harrison on Mar 04, 2015
This really helped me understand this story! From the actual people who survived the storm. My dad knew Brian Untiedt and also had worked for him for several years. Dad said he would never talk about this part of his life except to say he remembered seeing the Queen of Siam at the White House. I remember hearing that Brian was a hero and wanted to know the details and got my answers. It was a book I couldn't put down. Excellent history of a part of Colorado back in the 1930's.
Highly informative and entertaining
By Brad Shaw on Jan 18, 2014
Fascinating, little-known story of life on the Great Plains during the 1930's. It is also the story of the people of the region, who they were, why they moved to that area, why they stayed and how they survived by depending on each other.