Wyatts co-author new book on 60th Anniversary

Russell and Betty Wyatt recently celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary and also debuted the release of their book entitled ‘The Farmer Marries The City Girl.’


By Brett Nachtigall


HOT SPRINGS – When Russell Wyatt wrote and published his book entitled “The Farmer Goes to Town” in early 2021, his wife Betty told him, “well, your next book is going to be called ‘The Farmer Marries The City Girl’ and I’m going to help you write it!”

Now, about two years later, that is exactly what took place and the couple is very excited about offering their joint book venture for sale to the public, which just so happens to be coinciding with their 60th anniversary, which took place back on April 14.

Russell’s first book was 30 years in the making and was a literary lifetime of memories from his early education inside the one-room classroom of the Coffee Flat School, to working on a combine crew across the midwest, helping construct the Angostura Dam, buying his own ranch along the Cheyenne River and then starting his own real estate business.

Russell, who is now 96-years-old, contributed some more of his historical reminiscences in this new book as well, and devotes a portion of the first half of the book to such topics as how the Fall River Feedlot and Black Hills Wild Horse Sanctuary came to be. 

In the book, Russell describes how his real estate business brokered the sale of 5,500 acres of land south of Hot Springs to the Honeywell Corporation. He describes how the company wanted to utilize the steep canyons along the Cheyenne River for the purpose of ammunition testing. Once they purchased the land however, protestors opposed to their plans forced Honeywell to pull out of the area and gift the land to the State of South Dakota. That transaction then paved the way for Dayton Hyde to secure the land and ultimately turn it into the Black Hills Wild Horse Sanctuary.

In addition to Russell’s chapter on local history, he also has a number of other short stories about real estate and appraisal business, as well as other stories about livestock and some personal stories as well.

Betty’s portion of the book, which she describes as “the story of my life,” includes several devotions that she has put down on paper over her lifetime, and also many other personal stories about being a teacher and raising a family, as well as pictures, poems and other memories that will sometime make you laugh and sometimes make you cry.

Betty said one of the most meaningful parts of the book to her is when she writes about her great-nephew Brandon, who lived in Alabama and was the middle son of her niece and was killed in a motorcycle accident in 2006 at just 14 years old.

While writing about how she struggled to accept Brandon’s death, Betty writes a poem about how one morning she discovered a patch of snow in her yard that was perfectly shaped like a five-point star. She then describes how she believes the star was a sign from Brandon telling her “It’s all right Aunt Betty.”

To inquire about purchasing a signed copy of the book directly from Russell or Betty, call 605-745-5354. The book is also available for sale at Many Moons Trading in downtown Hot Springs.

Fall River County Herald Star

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