Kathleen Mikkelson endorsed 2018-06-17 07:55:59 -0700My mother, Mary B. Mikkelson, volunteered in the literacy program at the Hayward Library for more than 25 years. I believe that she started volunteering after teaching first grade at Cox school in Oakland. She really enjoyed being around her fellow volunteers and helping adults learning to read for the first time. She and my father, Dr. V.E. Mikkelson, raised us six girls to have a lifelong love affair with books.
When we were growing up in Grants Pass, Oregon my mother would take us to the library once a week to hear a story being read by a librarian. I can still remember the delicious crack the brand new book would make as its pages were turned. Once we moved to West Linn, Oregon, my mother would take us to the library once a week to pick out books to read. Nancy Drew books were among my favorites; I could easily read three books a week, sometimes under the covers with a flashlight if I was supposed to be asleep.
My mother inherited the books from her parents’ library after they died. I was amazed to discover that my grandparents owned books written about or by early African Americans when I was a college student at Pomona College asking to take independent study courses African-American history and literature. When my mom and dad died, we inherited those books, plus other books our parents had bought for themselves. I remember my father giving me the very first books he learned to read with back in Minneapolis, Minnesota in the 1920s, which I still have (somewhere…) My sisters and I kept many of these books, but others we donated to the Hayward Library and to the library in San Anselmo, where I live now.
When my dad died, mom bought a brick in his name at the Hayward Library. My mother died in February of 2016 and I recently donated $1000 for a plaque in my parents’ name in the new library, which will have its grand opening in July of this year. I only recently read the history of the Hayward Library, which is pretty amazing! Thank you for inviting me to write why I am pleased to be a friend of the Hayward Library.
- "I believe libraries help Hayward thrive"
- "I believe in lifelong learning for people of all ages"
- "I want to give back to my community"
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