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Peck to discuss book April 25 in Beloit

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April 14, 2014

BELOIT-Greg Peck, Opinion page editor of The Gazette in Janesville, will speak about and sign copies of his newly revised nonfiction book, "Death Beyond the Willows," at 9 a.m. Friday, April 25, at Grinnell Hall, 631 Bluff St., Beloit.


His talk at the senior center is open to the public.


Peck describes his book of rural history this way: In 1927, Johnny Pirkl, a handsome young farmer from a large family in Peck's hometown of Marshall, proposed to Hazel Ferguson, only child to a farm family from Cottage Grove. Her parents objected because Johnny was Catholic and Hazel was not. What followed this clash of religions was a shocking wedding-night tragedy in Portage that made national news and left both families grieving for decades.


The book debuted in 2005. Peck re-edited this edition and added updates and fresh graphics, including a new cover designed by The Gazette's Tony DiNicola.


"Death Beyond the Willows" sells for $16.95 and is available at Book World in Janesville and at amazon.com.



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