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"By the Time You Read This" - Book Signing and Q&A

"By the Time You Read This" - Book Signing and Q&A

Thursday, May 2, 2024 (6:00 PM - 8:15 PM) (EDT)


Please join us for the South Carolina stop on the multi-state book events for "BY THE TIME YOU READ THIS." This free event will be at The Hood Center at York Technical College, 375 S. Anderson Road., Rock Hill, SC 29732

April Simpkins – Nationally recognized Mental Health Advocate and the mother of former Miss USA Cheslie Kryst, who passed away in 2022 from suicide – will host a book launch for "By the Time You Read This: The Space Between Cheslie's Smile and Mental Illness." The book, which Kryst began writing prior to her death and was completed by Simpkins, will be released on April 23 by Forefront Books, 

Part one of "By the Time You Read This" is written by Kryst. She discusses some of her most iconic achievements alongside personal challenges, including her battle with imposter syndrome. Part two, written by Simpkins, starts the morning she learned of her daughter's passing and provides reflections on her grief and her journey to becoming a mental health advocate. 

This free event will include a discussion moderated by Laurabree Monday, followed by a question-and-answer session and book signing. Attendees are encouraged to preorder the book and bring your copy if you'd like to have it signed by the author. A limited number of books will be available for purchase at the event. Net proceeds from the book will be used to support the Cheslie C. Kryst Foundation, which is being founded in Cheslie's honor. 

Doors open at 6:00 PM with networking and information from local mental health resources; the program starts at 7:00 PM.

For more information and to order the book before the event, visit

Seating at this event is limited, so be sure to register today to secure your spot. Light refreshments will be provided, thanks to our sponsor Questco Companies. This event host is NAMI Piedmont Tri-County. 

Members of the media are invited to attend and must RSVP by Monday, April 29, 2024, at


About April Simpkins

April Simpkins is a mental health advocate, serving as an ambassador for the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and a board member for NAMI Piedmont Tri-County, where she serves her local community. She has earned a Mental Health First Aid Certification and is also trained in Emotional CPR. As a C-suite executive, April is an in-demand public speaker who has addressed audiences internationally on the topics of leadership, culture, DEI, and mental health in the workplace. She has received numerous awards for her business acumen and community service.

April is the wife of David, the mother of six incredible children, and the grandmother of one beautiful granddaughter.

Cheslie Kryst was a complex civil litigation attorney licensed to practice law in both North and South Carolina. Passionate about criminal justice reform, she worked pro bono for clients serving excessive time for low-level drug offenses. Cheslie was crowned Miss USA in May 2019 and represented the United States at the 2019 Miss Universe Competition, placing in the top ten of ninety countries.

In October 2019, Cheslie was named a correspondent for the national broadcast entertainment news show Extra, where she regularly interviewed the world's biggest names, celebrities, and influencers.

The Cheslie C. Kryst Foundation is a nonprofit organization founded in 2023 by April Simpkins, mother, and best friend of the late Cheslie Kryst. Cheslie, a tireless community servant and mentor to young adults and teens, often volunteered her time and energy to causes and nonprofits supporting underserved communities. Her selfless nature is at the heart of The Cheslie C. Kryst Foundation and serves as our North Star.

The Cheslie C. Kryst Foundation provides resources and grants to nonprofits that support teens' and young adults' mental health and wellness through services, programs, education, and counseling. All net profits from the sale of the book will go to the Foundation. For more information go to

About Laurabree Monday

Laurabree Monday is an Emmy award winning TV Journalist who has covered local news in several states including South Carolina, West Virginia and Texas.

Most recently, for 16 years she was the CN2 News Director/Anchor in Rock Hill, S.C.. She loved being able to tell important stories in the community and highlight those whose stories would never otherwise be told. Since her first television job 25 years ago, she has worked hard to do justice to those who open up to her, especially in hard situations. 

Laurabree is a longtime Board Member and past President of the Radio and Television Digital News Association of the Carolinas (RTDNAC). She is an Advisory Board Member for York Technical College’s Tele-production Technology Department.  

Laurabree began her career working in radio for WLTW (106.7 Lite FM) in NYC.

She is originally from NY/NJ and graduated from Indiana University - Bloomington, with a double major in Broadcast Journalism and Political Science. 

Her husband Keith is a Meteorologist for WSOC-TV in Charlotte. The TV duo share two wonderful children and the four love calling South Carolina home.

The Hood Center - York Technical College
375 S. Anderson Rd.
Rock Hill, 29732
Thursday, May 2, 2024 (6:00 PM - 8:15 PM) (EDT)
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