Mary Allen - 1963

Bio & Picture from 40th Reunion

Great Picture
















Mary (Allen) Francis - 2003-11-25

Since last I wrote one of these, we've been back & forth the country a few more times.  In 1984 my husband, Lee, & I both received our Master's in Education from San Francisco State.  We then moved back to Virginia for a few years.  In 1986 it was back to Albuquerque to check in on Lee's parents - both were in poor health.  Then in 1987 we moved to Santa Barbara for a year - Lee worked at UCSB & I had a great job working in the Sales Office at a resort hotel.  Then in 1989 we moved to Long Beach - Lee went to work for Cal State Long Beach & I went to work for as office manager at a Congregational Church - another great job.  In 1990, Lee's parents moved in with us for the last year of his mother's life.  She passed away in 1991 & then we moved back to Virginia.  I went to work at another church - Unitarian this time, while Lee reorganized & directed the "Washington Internship for Native Students (WINS)".  In 1996, we decided it was time for a change (that & the fact that American University cut some of the funding for the WINS program).  So what to do now - where to go?  Stay on the east coast or move on.  Move on it was - back to Missouri for a couple of years for me, only one for Lee.  He was offered the position of Interim Director of the Native American Studies Dept at the University of New Mexico.  Since it was only Interim, we decided I would stay in Columbia until a decision was made about a permanent director.  However, by spring of '98 I was tired of the long distance relationship.  So everything went back into storage & off I went to NM again.  Lee did become the Director of the Dept.  I also went to work for UNM and life went along great until 2001.  Lee's father passed away on Sept. 11, 2001 - between the towers.  Then in Feb. 2003, my wonderful husband was diagnosed with Cancer & passed away July 7.  However, some wonderful things happened before he passed:  He received the Albuquerque Arts Alliance Bravo Award for excellence in Literature for his new poestry book "On the Good Red Interstate"; he was invited to the International Taos Poetry Circus; lots of wonderful family & friends came from around the country to visit and reminisce.  I miss him terribly (we would have been married 32 years on Aug. 12), but what an adventure we had together, as I told him before he died "it's been a trip", and the next time will be even better.  It's very strange & a little scarey to live alone again, it will take some time getting used to, but my son lives close by (next door actually) & life does go on - through the good times & not so good.  I'm still with the University, but for how long, I can't say.  I'm sorry I could not be there for the reunion -I'll see you next time.
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