This full moon photo taken by Tyler seems an appropriate image as author Alex Weddon and I prepare to make our books available for signing and sale during the Harvest Moon Festival, September 8 and 9 at the Stockbridge, MI, Township Square. If you live in the area, we hope you’ll stop by.
Also, thank you to all who have posted stellar reviews and ratings of The Fall and Rise of Tyler Johnson on Goodreads and Amazon.com. If you haven’t already posted a review or clicked a star rating, please consider doing so. Reviews mean a great deal. So far, Amazon features 8 reviews with a 4.7 star rating. Thank you!
Thank you to those who have inquired about Tyler’s solar oven designs. The good news is that David, a dear friend of Tyler’s in France, has provided them to me. The not-so-good news is that they are in PDF format and entirely in French. In order to translate the design explanations into English, I’m attempting to convert the PDF files into Word and then running Google Translate on each section, a slow process.
Problem is the converter is distorting some of the formatting, so the project is painstaking and frustrating. I’ve also been told that the translations aren’t so hot either. So, here you go: the originals in French. I hope to post the converted, English translation in the near future. In the meantime, any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
In response to reader questions as to what happened to Tyler and Yuki after the end of the book, I’m pleased to provide the following Epilogue. Hope this provides a bit more closure:
. . .
Tyler and Yuki returned to Corsica, and as they waited for word from Venezuela, their relationship continued to suffer bumps and grinds. Tyler naturally gravitated toward university life, and one day while attending a free seminar on a college campus, he learned of an effort to provide solar energy to impoverished people in third-world nations. One thing led to another, and he co-founded a non-profit association that designed solar technology out of scrap mirrors and materials to power affordable, easily constructed cook stoves.
Concurrently, he undertook a personal challenge to climb all 214 of Corsica’s summits that stretched higher than 2000 meters. Ten peaks remained on his checklist as he and Yuki were preparing to leave the island to start a new life in a new country, so on December 20, 2009, he and Chiki ventured out for a solo expedition. He and Yuki were maintaining regular contact via text messages until December 26 when Tyler’s communications ceased. Five days later, a search party recovered his body amid debris from an avalanche. Devastated, Yuki fled and remains at large.
Until his final moments, Tyler continued to chronicle his life through his journals and the lens of his camera. Although he and Yuki never heard back from Venezuela, it is likely that, to this day, his open-sourced designs are enabling people in Burkina Faso, Africa, with no access to electricity, to disinfect bandages, rid their drinking water of life-threatening bacteria, and to sit down with their families for safe, hot meals.
July 15, 2017: A Branch of the Capital Area District Libraries was packed with an attentive audience to hear Patrice Johnson talk about her new book The Fall and Rise of Tyler Johnson. The book is based on the journals and actual events of her son’s life as a fugitive of the US government.
First-time author Johnson is a Stockbridge resident, a former Stockbridge teacher, and a graduate of Stockbridge High School. Her son, Tyler, the central character of the dramatic true story, was a native of Michigan, and his driving goal throughout the book is to find a way to return home to his family.
In his journals, Tyler details how he coped with facing the threat of life in prison for an alleged act of environmental extremism. A Caltech Presidential Merit Scholar, he eludes the FBI and flees to a Mediterranean island south of France. Fiction? No. This narrative non-fiction work, based on Tyler’s writings, depicts an idealistic young genius’s struggle to overcome the crushing consequences from a night of college binge drinking in a post-911 world.
This serious, tender, and sometimes funny, 493-page work chronicles Tyler’s battle to survive as a fugitive, all while trying to piece together the shards of his life and maintain a relationship with the Japanese lover who fled with him. Living off the grid in the wilds of Corsica and on the streets of Marseilles and Paris, Tyler copes with starvation, thirst, the degradation of homelessness, and human and creature attacks. His story raises a warning flag to others who may feel tempted to cross to the wrong side of the law.
This is a must read!
A portion of the royalties for The Fall and Rise of Tyler Johnson will be donated to Longmont Community Justice Partnership(LCJP). The LCJP collaborates among police, schools, and municipal courts to provide restorative justice as an alternative to the traditional criminal system. Johnson stated, “No young person should feel his or her life is over, no matter how serious the mistake.”
This was brilliantly written. It analogs the life of a man and woman who made mistakes – but don’t we all. Their struggles are immense but they continue to soldier on. I found it hard to put down. I would highly recommend this book. What courage for both author and son – I salute both of you. . I hope Yuigi [Sic} has found peace.
Patrice Johnson is publishing her account of the life of her son, Tyler, to tell the true story. Patrice graduated summa cum laude from Alma College and received her master’s degree in English literature from Michigan State University. When her children were young, she taught high school English and community college writing. She then spent sixteen years in the computer industry where she served as vice president of marketing and communications with a Fortune 500 company and was a weekly columnist for the industry’s largest trade publication.
She has founded three successful technology companies and been quoted in USA Today and Business Week. Her work has received six first-place awards from the Michigan Press Women.