Richmond

The next time I saw Gen was on the 4th of July 1976. I had accepted an offer for a job of 18 months' duration and moved back to Washington, DC, leaving Robert to hold down the fort in Utah. Gen and Doug had settled their property and their divorce was final. Alimony was flowing to Gen as was money from a Worker's Compensation claim stemming from the back injury she sustained while working for the IRS. She was settling into an apartment in Ginter Park, on the north side of Richmond, Virginia.

Gen's apartment on ChamberlayneShe and Doug were on amicable terms. Doug helped her move and fix up the apartment, a one-bedroom second-floor unit in a modern garden complex on the east side of Chamberlayne, a couple of blocks south of Laburnam.

She was preparing to do what recently divorced women often do--return to school. Although she had a financial angel sitting on her shoulder for her entire life, she was aware that alimony would eventually end; she would need a job and competitive knowledge.

Richmond boasts a couple of world-class health-care institutions, the most prominent of which was the Medical College of Virginia (as it was known then), associated with Virginia Commonwealth University and its commendable nursing curriculum. The cost of living in Richmond was lower than it was in northern Virginia. In Richmond, Gen could be relatively close to her favorite kids--Becky and me. Richmond was also far enough away from Arlington that Gen wouldn't have her face rubbed too deeply into Doug's gleeful plans to set up housekeeping with Pat, now that Pat had divorced her own husband in Salt Lake City and returned to Washington.

Gen was doing ok. She made excellent progress with physical therapy for her herniated disc. She lost weight and was playing tennis several times a week. Her apartment was comfortable and well-appointed with the treasures that accompanied her from place-to-place for her entire adult life. She had been accepted at VCU and was planning to start classes at the end of August. She had a new car. She was emotionally stable.