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Author Joe Sexton Discusses “The Lost Sons of Omaha” with Actor Dion Graham

On September 27, St. Ann & the Holy Trinity Church hosted a Brooklyn Book Festival Bookend Event featuring Joe Sexton in conversation with celebrated actor and narrator, Dion Graham, to discuss Sexton’s new book, The Lost Sons of Omaha: Two Young Men in an American Tragedy.

On May 30, 2020, in Omaha, Nebraska, amid the protests that rocked our nation after George Floyd’s death at the hands of police, 38-year-old white bar owner and Marine veteran Jake Gardner fatally shot James Scurlock, a 22-year-old Black protestor and young father. Following subsequent investigations and an indictment, Gardner took his own life.

In The Lost Sons of Omaha: Two Young Men in an American Tragedy, published by Scribner in the spring of 2023, acclaimed journalist Joe Sexton offers a meticulously reported and nuanced account of the two deaths, while disentangling the fictions about both men that emerged on social media. The book looks at a badly broken America, riven by racial mistrust, a flawed criminal justice system, partisan politics, and the menace of a weaponized Internet. The author Richard Price describes The Lost Sons of Omaha as, “A crushing read,” and it has been called “brilliant” and “searing” by the Washington Post and the Associated Press respectively.

Sexton is an award-winning, veteran reporter who worked for both the New York Times and ProPublica. He was joined in conversation about The Lost Sons of Omaha by Dion Graham, stage and film actor who has starred on Broadway and in the iconic television series The Wire. He was named AudioFile Magazine “Golden Voice Narrator,” and he holds a place in Audible’s Narrator Hall of Fame.

A video recording of the event may be viewed here and a photo album here.

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