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Ironton born author releases first book

Some may call John Roush a late bloomer.

Despite being in his 70s, the Ironton born author and Ironton High School graduate released his first novel in June.

Roush was born in 1934 and graduated from Ironton High School in 1952. Roush taught history and government in public school for 29 years and was in the U.S. Marine Corps for a total of five years. Having spent all those years churning up book ideas, he retired in 1994

"This (retirement) gave me the opportunity to flesh out ideas I had," Roush, who now lives in Florida, said.

From then, he began fleshing out an idea for a historical mystery that he got while teaching American history. That idea became his first published novel, "Trouble at the Coeur d'Alenes."

It is the tale of a young itinerant prizefighter caught up in the struggle between the Coeur d'Alenes mine operators and the union in 1894 Idaho.

"It deals with how he is drawn into the fight and the murder of his manager," Roush said.

Roush has already started working on another novel, which he described a "small town mystery" along the lines of his genre of choice, westerns.

"It's set in the '40s," he said. "A lot of stuff I will probably draw from what I remember of Ironton."

Roush said he has many fond memories of his hometown.

"I really enjoyed my young life in Ironton," he said. "It's a good place to grow up."

He mentioned the thriving downtown and the school system, but said the most fun he had was with the children in his old neighborhood at Sixth and Jefferson streets.

"There were probably, within two blocks, probably 15 to 20 kids roughly the same age," Roush said.

"Trouble at the Coeur d'Alenes" can be purchased at www.publishamerica.com, www.amazon.com, or www.bn.com. Roush has also had a short story published in Elbow Creek Western Magazine titled "A Conflict of Interests."