Chadwick author traces family stories

CHADWICK – After escaping the crackdown at Tiananmen Square in China, teaching in Taiwan, and working in journalism in Mexico and Chicago, Daniel Nardini decided on something closer to home for his fourth book.

“After my grandfather, there’s really no history of my family at all. I wanted to leave something behind while I’m still here,” Nardini, 58, said of his fourth autobiographical work, “My Italian American Family, Rural Taiwan and Lawndale News Memoirs.”

Nardini was born in 1960 near a farm in Bloomington, later moving to Elmhurst with his family. The first third of his new book deals with his experiences growing up, and stories of his parents, his sister, Nancy, and other relatives.

This is the first book” to deal with his earlier years, Nardini said.

In his youth, Nardini was fascinated with Asian culture. After graduating from Beloit College, he gained a job in 1990 as an English teacher in Taiwan, staying in the countryside of Taichung, the third-largest city in Taiwan.

His first book, “South Korea: Our Story,” tells of his experiences as a teacher and his struggles to bring his Korean-born wife, Jade, to the U.S. In “My Italian American Family,” Nardini discusses more about his time in the Taiwanese countryside, including dealing with pit vipers, government corruption, and adjusting to the tropical climate.

“There’s more details on the ground, on the farm itself, specifically,” Nardini said.

His second book, “The Day China Cried: A Witness to the June 4th Massacre,” details how Nardini escaped the Chinese government crackdown on democracy protesters from May 7 to June 4, 1984. He later wrote “My Taiwan, Seoul, and Guadalajara (Mexico) Memoirs,” about his travels in the 1990s to other parts of Asia and his work as a reporter in Mexico.

In 1994, Nardini began reporting for the Lawndale News, a bilingual newspaper in Bensenville. The last third of “My Italian American Family” deals with Nardini’s struggles and successes in his reporting in the Chicago suburbs, until health issues forced him to retire in 2014.

Nardini said his wife is able to work, and his health is fair. The couple eventually moved to Chadwick, where they now live.

Go to xlibris.com and amazonbooks.com for more information on Nardini’s works and to purchase them.

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