The author and his wife, Mary Beth, promote his “Blind Journey” sequel, “Insomnia,” at a local library book-signing event.

About the author

Jack Hawn

Born in 1930 in Kearney, Nebraska, Jack Hawn grew up in Southern California where his father, an Irish farm boy nicknamed Sham, had leased a service station which Jack helped run during summer months. On March 17, 1947, Saint Patrick’s day, the young man’s parents opened the Shamrock Inn, a beer and wine tavern in the rural community of Oak View, California, near Ojai. Following high school graduation and a hot, dull summer, Jack enrolled at the University of California at Santa Barbara College. A pre-law major, Jack’s curriculum included bowling with young girls in downtown Santa Barbara, junior varsity football on a scrub team of misfits, and an English class that focused on “Hamlet.”

A year after those and other useless studies, classmates began to scatter. When Jack’s girlfriend was whisked off by Joe College in a shiny new convertible, Jack was so depressed, he walked into an army recruiting office…and signed up for three years.

Unaware at the time, the author had launched his “blind” journey that began at Fort Ord, California, where he was assigned to the Public Information Office. The journey spanned forty-three years. In civilian life, he found work as a copyboy at a Hollywood newspaper, was paid $5 to review plays and nightclub acts, and a year later filled a sports desk vacancy. Hired by the Los Angeles Times in 1970 at age forty as a sports copy editor, Jack soon became a boxing columnist and later transferred to the entertainment section of the Times. Freelancing, he earned extra income as a television dramatist and wrote TV and radio scripts for sportscasters. He covered Muhammad Ali title fights, boxing at the 1984 Olympics, Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis, Jr., and other celebrities until his retirement from the Times in 1991.