Our Conversation with the “Gitchie Girl”

Rock Rapids, Iowa — A book-signing ceremony was held on Saturday, March 19th at Homeology in Rock Rapids, for the book by Phil and Sandy Hamman, called Gitchie Girl.
Gitchie Girl Cover
The book tells the story of then 13-year-old Sandra (Cheskey) Chrans, who on November 17, 1973, went with her teenage boyfriend and three of his guy friends to hang out, talk, sing, and just enjoy each other’s company, at Gitchie Manitou State Preserve in far northwest Lyon County. Within hours her boyfriend and the other three boys were dead, and the young girl had been sexually assaulted. Amazingly, however, one of the killers drove her to her home and let her go.

Phil Hamman is a published author who grew up in Sioux Falls, and was actually friends with the victims of the quadruple slaying. Hamman says he was approached by Cheskey, about writing a book to get her story out.

We were able to visit with Cheskey at the book signing. We asked her how being a victim of the crime has affected her.

Cheskey was requested to testify at the trial of the killers. She says that was also quite the experience.

We asked her how she has persevered and how she got to be where she is today.

Cheskey says she finally had a dream recently and it really has helped her to heal.

She says she wants to thank those who have helped her.

The foot traffic at the book signing at Homeology seemed to be steady. If you are interested in purchasing a physical copy of the book, there may be some left at Homeology, or you can get a physical book or the e-book version online at

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