Mattie C.'s Boy
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Mattie C.'s Boy

The Shelley Stewart Story

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Pub Date: 06/01/2013

ISBN: 9-781-6030-6314-2

List Price: $9.99


NewSouth Books

Mattie C.'s Boy

The Shelley Stewart Story

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  • Description
  • Reviews

Shelley Stewart was five years old when he and his brothers watched in horror as their father murdered their mother with an ax. Homeless at the age of six, Stewart found what shelter he could, suffering physical and sexual abuse and racism. Despite heartbreaking setbacks and the racial strife that gripped the South in the 1950s and 1960s, Stewart graduated high school and entered the broadcasting profession. There he became a hugely popular radio personality, rubbing shoulders with the top recording artists of the day and becoming one of the nation’s first black radio station owners.

He helped Dr. Martin Luther King mount the historic Children’s March through the streets of Birmingham, Alabama. Later Stewart would use his powerful communication skills to help convict one of the men who bombed the city’s Sixteenth Street Baptist Church. Then this often-honored man turned his business skills to the creation of a foundation named after his mother; the Mattie C. Stewart Foundation works to convince high school students to stay in school and graduate, a topic Stewart speaks on in his many engagements around the country. Stewart, with author Don Keith, tells his story in his memoir Mattie C.'s Boy.

A well-written bio-pic. This book made me want to go hug my children and review my life and make sure I have done right by my fellow man. I could not stop reading and hoping there was an upside to [Shelley Stewart's] story, only to realize he was the upside.

—Hippocampus Magazine

A page-turning book ... Shelley Stewart is inspirational proof that reading opens doors. Reading his life story will open hearts and minds.

—Birmingham Magazine

When you read a person's life story and feel like you've been in their skin, you know you're in the hands of a talented biographer. Shelley Stewart's story is astonishing, and Don Keith has told it with grace and honesty. I was mesmerized.

—Robert Inman, author of The Governor's Lady

Compassion, grit, intelligence, foresight, generosity ... these are only a few of the words that come to mind when I think of my friend Shelley Stewart. In this powerful memoir, he demonstrates that a son's love for his mother is best shown through a life well lived. Hope confronts despair; hope wins!

—Andrew Westmoreland, president, Samford University

This book is a testament to the courage, strength, and generosity of the human spirit. Shelley’s life story is both lesson and inspiration: it teaches us that hope and determination can overcome adversity, and it inspires us always to choose what is right, not just what is easy.

—author of The Last Dropout and From the Rearview Mirror

About the Author/Editor

Award-winning author DON KEITH has published more than twenty-five fiction and nonfiction books. As a broadcast journalist, he won awards from the AP and UPI and was the inaugural winner of Troy University's Hector Award for innovation in broadcast journalism. Keith twice was named Billboard Magazine "Radio Personality of the Year." His first novel, The Forever Season, was named "Fiction of the Year" by the Alabama Library Association. His military thriller, Firing Point, co-written with former submariner George Wallace, is in pre-production as a major motion picture. Don lives in Indian Springs Village, Alabama, with his wife, Charlene. His web site is