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Collegiate athlete authors a timely book on gang violence

HOWIE EVANS AmNews Sports Editor | 8/23/2012, 3:49 p.m.

Jim Raysor was one of the first African-American athletes to earn an athletic scholarship to attend Iona College in New Rochelle. Raysor, who passed away some years ago, and Stanley Hill were the only African-Americans on the team. Hill would become one of the great labor leaders of his time. Raysor, standing 6-foot-6, long and lanky, was one helluva basketball player.

Raysor would today be extremely proud of his son Glenn, who, like his dad, was an outstanding athlete who played football at the New York Institute of Technology at Westbury on Long Island. Like his dad, he also played football and ran track at Lehman High School in the Bronx.

Glenn Raysor became a dad, an outstanding educator and a great role model for his students as an assistant principal in Brooklyn and an administrator in the Mount Vernon, N.Y., public school district. Along the way, Raysor developed a passion for writing. And it is here and now, after years of ducking and dodging the mean streets of the city and seeing numerous childhood friends become addicts of the streets, halting their growth as meaningful citizens, Raysor has written a book, "Somewhere Out of the Darkness," that reflects the world of youth violence on the streets of this city.

I met a young man named Blue via Raysor's book that took me personally through "the cold streets of New York City." A world where Blue was raised by drug dealers and thugs. I also met Blade, a street-wise young man who snakes his way in and out of the judicial system. It is a life shared by Blue and Blade that enters ours every night on the evening news--a life of unending violence. The book is also about Jarret, whose younger brother Lavar gets caught up in the violence and is cut down by drug dealers. The book is so on time and a must-read for parents and their children.

The book is available via Bravin Publishing, LLC, P.O. Box 340317, Jamaica, N.Y. and www.bravinpublishing.com.