That's me up there on The 503!
For a railroadman's daughter -- my father, Clifford G. Johnson, worked for the railroard for most of his life -- there's no better place to be. Especially since one of my books, THE LAST RIDE OF THE 503, tells the story of how I came to be standing on this caboose.
I'm a writer, you see, most currently -- and joyously -- a children's book author. But I've also been a newspaper reporter. A newspaper editor. A newspaper humor columnist. And a writer/editor of a monthly business publication. I taught school for five years, too.
I am also a museum curator of The Griffith Historical Park & Museum in Griffith, Indiana, where the above photo was taken. Learn more about the Historical Park by clicking The Museum tab.
I am a wife, too, having come to Griffith when I married my husband, Alan, who lived in the town. I am also the mother of four sons, Derek, Ken, Scott and Tim. A grandmother of eight: Billy, John, Jacob, Logan, Angel, Nate, Gianna and Jack Arthur. And I have three great grandchildren, Anthony, Lylah and Andrew.
I earned a journalism degree from the University of Illinois and once dreamed of being a reporter covering stories all over the world. I ended up just one state from my Illinois birthplace because I fell in love with a man and the town he lived in.
So, no wars, rebellions, and adventures in faraway places for me, just a peaceful Indiana town with a whole lot of railroads running through it. But I ended up in the right place, at the right time.
I didn't know it when I moved to Griffith, but this railroadman's daughter had come home.