16:19 PM

Love of Children and Geography Spawns Children’s Book, Soon to be a Series

Edward Casserly '79 and Ricci Iverly Casserly '79Ricci Ivers Casserly ’79, graduated from University of St. Thomas with a Bachelor of Arts in Biology. Her plan was to be a doctor, but along the way, she met a fellow student Edward Casserly ’79, who served as her tutor in biology and then became her husband. Edward went on to earn a PhD in organic chemistry and Ricci earned a Master of Science in Health Care Administration.

Ricci, who had a full-ride scholarship to St. Thomas, credits the classes in theology and philosophy - which she did not want to take as a science major - for making her a whole person of faith and reason.

Debilitating Disease Changes Her Direction

After three children, and a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis in 1997, a disease that left her initially unable to speak or walk, Ricci began to recover and was considered a miracle patient by doctors.

Kathy's Adventures Book CoverBecause of her love of children, Ricci decided to write children’s books. Her first book, Kathy’s Adventures, was published in 2011 for young people in pre-school to third grade.

“I want to give children a sense of geography where they can explore and use their imaginations,” Ricci said. Ricci loves reading to groups of children and cherishes their smiles and questions about geography.

According to Amazon where the book is sold, Kathy's Adventures tells the story of a little girl named Ricci and her favorite doll, Kathy. Ricci and Kathy are the best of friends, and Ricci will do anything to care for Kathy. But as time passes, Ricci plays with Kathy less and less. One day when Ricci goes to her grandmother's house to see Kathy, Kathy is gone. For the next 20 years, Ricci searches for Kathy. Come along with Ricci as she learns never to give up hope and follows her dreams of reuniting with her best friend in Kathy's Adventures.

Ricci, who was born in Mississippi and now lives there in Madison, has plans to publish two more books in the series next year based on her travels – Kathy’s Adventures in Dublin and Kathy’s Adventures in Paris.

Casserly’s are a Legacy Family

The Casserly’s are a legacy family starting when Edward’s mother Doris Casserly was an employee at the University. His brother Raymond ‘70 met his wife, Rita Taschler Casserly ’70 at St. Thomas too. In addition, brothers Dennis '72, Patrick '77 and David '84 and sisters Mary Casserly Bancroft ’74 and Susan Casserly Brawner ‘81 graduated from St. Thomas.