On the day of the Freeman shooting, Daniel Sparks was subbing at North Central High School. The uncertainty of the situation at Freeman led to full lockdowns in Spokane Public Schools. Sparks remembers hiding behind several tables for about 30 minutes before being quickly ushered into a locked classroom.
“At the end of the day, I told myself I had to write a book,” he said, and immediately thought of two SPS counselors, Jacquie Bernbaum and Lori Gibson. Sparks has been a substitute teacher for SPS for 20 years, and had interacted with them from time to time.
“I got into the car and asked myself, ‘What message would Jacquie and Lori want?’” Sparks remembered. “There wasn't a specific answer, but their influence and guidance were present for two and a half years of sketches, erasures and revisions.”
Sparks’s wife Patty took county library courses in Adobe Illustrator and InDesign to help make the children’s book a reality. You can now find “Take the Bull out of Bully” on Amazon Books.
“The characters in the story span different ages,” Sparks said. “I think it gives the story depth so the reader can ponder over what was, what will be, and what could be.”