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NIAGARA FALLS – A free, eight-week author lecture series kicks off Wednesday afternoon on Old Falls Street with tales of mothers’ losses in war.

The first speaker, Linda Jenkin Costanzo, talked to 16 mothers who lost a son in the Vietnam War for “Our Sons, Our Heroes: Memories Shared by America’s Gold Star Mothers From the Vietnam War.” She is a retired high school teacher.

The lectures, which run through Aug. 27, begin at 2 p.m. and will be held in the middle block of the street. In case of inclement weather, the lectures will be held inside the Barnes & Noble store in the Niagara Falls Culinary Institute, 28 Old Falls St.

Here’s the rest of the schedule:

• July 9 – Anthony Casuccio, author of “Be Nice: Nice People Can Succeed.”

Casuccio, who has worked in the music industry for more than 20 years, writes about how being nice and doing the right thing has helped him get ahead in his career.

• July 16 – Joel A. Dombrowski, author of “Niagara Falls.”

Dombrowski, who has worked in local television news, published his first book this year, a guide for visiting the Niagara Falls region. He provides humorous historic tours of Buffalo and the Falls.

• July 23 – Meg Albers, a contributor to “The Kite That Bridged Two Nations.”

Albers is an expert on kites and Homan Walsh, the young man who helped build the first suspension bridge in the Falls by using his kite. The book was written by Alexis O’Neill.

• July 30 – Nancy Rizzo, author of “Speaking Your Truth.”

Rizzo, a life coach and motivational speaker, gathers courageous stories from inspiring women to offer advice on living the life you want.

• Aug. 6 – Eriel Rivera, author of “Nightmares & Vultures.”

Rivera – who ran away from home, lived on the streets in New York City and spent 15 years in prison – has become an anti-violence advocate.

• Aug. 13 – Lee Simonson, author of “Tuscarora Heroes.”

Simonson wrote about how Tuscarora men helped Lewiston residents escape an attack from the British in 1813.

• Aug. 20 – Maureen Ott, Mary Herbst and Maureen Weber, who wrote “Have Mercy: A Nursing Memoir.”

The authors describe the restrictive life within a Catholic nursing school in the early 1960s.

• Aug. 27 – Saladin Q. Allah, author of “Games.”

Allah, a youth mentor in the Falls, writes about unhealthy behaviors aimed at taking advantage of others and the environment.

email: abesecker@buffnews.com