ONE MORE TRIP
Jon Wayne’s Journey from Addiction to Redemption
(Coming Oct. 1, 2017)
Just as Minneapolis songwriter Jon Wayne’s music career is taking off in the summer of 2008, his life is falling apart. He’s homeless and begging on the streets, addicted to heroin, cocaine, alcohol and whatever other poison he’s putting into his body. He’ll overdose three times that summer before embarking on his seventh trip to rehab. As he begins his newfound sobriety on Sept. 14, 2008, he knows getting clean has to stick this time because it’s no longer a choice of whether or not to get high; it’s a choice of life and death.
Growing up in bucolic Jamestown, North Dakota, Wayne enters rehab for the first time at 18 after a brief yet voracious dance with cocaine addiction. His struggles with addiction and sobriety will take him to Fargo where he parties, delivers pizzas and attends chef school, and ultimately to Minneapolis, where he makes music – forming reggae band Jon Wayne and the Pain in 2006 – and discovers heroin, the answer to the ever-present voice in his head.
One More Trip is one man’s story of survival and redemption set against the backdrop of a non-stop music career in a drug-prone work zone. Author Thom Wilder weaves the inspirational tale of Jon Wayne’s moment of truth in overcoming addiction, changing his life, correcting his mistakes and making amends.
THE GHOSTS OF WHEATON
How the ‘Red Grange’ Tigers Conquered Illinois High School Football
Today, the Tigers of Wheaton Warrenville South High School are recognized as one of Illinois’ preeminent football programs, but it hasn’t always been that way. NFL legend Red Grange had put Wheaton on the football map in 1920 as he ran roughshod over high school opponents before finding glory at the University of Illinois and the Chicago Bears. Over the next half century, Tiger football would become a regional powerhouse in Illinois high school athletics, yet something had changed as the 1970s rolled around as the Tigers slipped into two decades of uncanny mediocrity. The once great football program had become an also-ran in Illinois high school football.
Set to break out of their football doldrums in 1988 with one of the school’s most talented squads in decades, the Tigers would instead fumble away their first three games. Tiger football was at a crossroads. How the team responded would mark the future of the program. With head coach John Thorne on the hot seat, the Tigers rebounded to win six consecutive games and earn the school’s first-ever playoff berth. The resurgence of the once-proud program had begun.
Four years later, the 1992 Tigers would embark on a journey to win the school’s first-ever state football title and place them once again among the Illinois high school football elite. The Tigers’ 40-34 double overtime victory over powerhouse Joliet Catholic Academy cemented that game as one of the state’s most exciting championship matchups in history. The Ghosts of Wheaton is more than the story of Illinois high school football; it is the recipe of how champions are made.
THE ROAD TO PARADISE
How the 1982 Castle Knights Upset Indiana’s Football World
Considered by many “experts” to be a team that could never seriously contend with the powerhouse schools from northern Indiana, the 1982 Castle Knights of tiny Paradise, Indiana, capped off a magical undefeated championship that had been born six years before when a group of young teenagers took the practice field for the first time as a team. The Road to Paradise is the story of that season, that team, that community, and high school football in Indiana.
But this story reaches beyond football. The Road to Paradise is the story of all that happened before, and all that would happen after, for a team, a school and a community at a crossroads. It is a story about winning, but even more so, a story about refusing to lose. It is the story of a diverse group of young men who came together to accomplish something impossible, something magical that no matter what life might throw at them — could never be taken away.