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Published July 7th, 2021
Campo grad publishes children's book to honor his late mother
Alex Tandy with his mom, Judy Ohlrogge Photo provided

In 2019 Alex Tandy, a 2005 Campolindo graduate and Moraga resident, learned that his mother not only had cancer but had also passed away from the disease. Judy Ohlrogge, his mom, who was remarried and living in Ecuador, had kept her disease a secret from him and his brother.
As Tandy made his way to Ecuador to seek closure he rediscovered a manuscript for a children's alphabet book that his mom had always meant to publish. As a tribute to her and her love of teaching children English, he decided to publish it himself. Enlisting the help of his cousin, Ryan Scott Tandy, who is a Miramonte grad, as creative director, they set off to establish their own publishing company and raise funds for the venture through IndieGoGo.
Tandy, who now works for a Brazilian high tech firm developing a mobile app, has past experience in writing, having worked for Diablo Magazine, Huffington Post and a New York ad agency before moving into the technology field. It was a natural fit to take on the job as co-author and editor, even though he had never written for children. The Tandys found an illustrator from Uruguay and a printer in the U.S., and 18 months later, their dream became a reality with the publishing of "Journey from A to Z with Teacher Judy - An alphabetical and Animal-filled ad-venture" (Tandy Books 2020).
"My mom was a true animal lover," said Tandy. "She adopted lots of cats and dogs, and I remember on one visit to Venezuela with her, we led an injured horse home; she could not leave him. She also loved teaching and had decided to write her own alphabet book to help her students learn English." The cat named Chanel for the letter C is based on his mom's pet.
The rhyming book is a fun adventure through the alphabet with animals that are both common and unusual, like a vulture that makes sculpture and a quail that delivers the mail. The illustrations by Alfonso Lourido are fun and lively with each one set in a unique environment with bold and joyful colors. The final spread with Zelda the Zebra is a satisfying ending to the traveling adventure.
"It was a work of multiple people," added Tandy. "It was started by my mom. We [his cousin and him], took it to the finish line. Our objective was to make sure her work was finished in the best way possible. I wasn't going to cut corners on my mom's work. Finishing the book lets me share the best parts of my mother." He is grateful to the 180-plus people who supported the project financially, which made that goal possible.
The book sells for $20 on www.TeacherJudy.com. A discount code for our readers can be used for 20% off: LAMORINDA20.

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