Diana Koppen followed her mother’s and aunt’s paths to become a schoolteacher and was an educator of elementary and middle school students for over 37 years. Being inspired by the young writers in her classroom, Diana aspired to assist her sister Pam in writing and publishing their aunt’s story. Diana lives in Spencer, Iowa, with her husband Wayne.
Diana and her sister compiled their first book,Breaking Free From Rigid Boxes: From the Outside Looking In, based on their aunt Marion Helland’s personal photographs, journals, newspaper clippings, official documents, and artifacts she left them at her death. With the assistance of Marion’s community of colleagues, relatives, friends, and past students, Marion’s nieces transcribed her memoir in a loving tribute to the woman who inspired all those around her as she led a life of nine decades of human/civil rights service.
Marion Helland’s memoir may be purchased at Arts on Grand, as well as the Clay County Heritage Center, with proceeds going to each of these places. One can also purchase the book on Amazon.