Monday, May 25, 2015
This weekend, renowned mathematician John F. Nash, Jr. and his wife, Alicia Lopes-Harrison de Lardé were tragically killed in a taxi accident. John and Alicia were on their way back from the airport to their home in
West Windsor Township, New Jersey,
where John served as Senior Research Mathematician at .
They had just returned from Princeton University , where
Nash had been awarded the Abel Prize for his legendary work in mathematics. Norway
The movie A Beautiful Mind brought attention to the work of John Nash, along with his lifelong struggle with schizophrenia and the unique relationship he shared with his brilliant wife, Alicia.
He and Alicia met at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where she studied physics and he taught advanced calculus. She was one of only 16 women entering the M.I.T class of 1955. It was her dream to become the next Marie Curie.
They married in 1957, and John was awarded a tenured position in 1958. Soon, however, the first signs of the schizophrenia, which was to plague him for many years, became apparent. Alicia chose to have him hospitalized for care, and suffered greatly worrying about him and their new born son.
The stress of the illness caused the couple to divorce in 1963. When John finally was able to leave the hospital in 1970, however, Alicia invited him to stay at her home to be near her and their son and to have some stability.
Nash’s condition began to slowly improve and he was able to resume teaching at
Princeton and eventually
resumed his relationship with Alicia. They were remarried in 2001.
Russell Crowe, who played John Nash in A Beautiful Mind, paid tribute to John and Alicia by referring to them as, “An amazing partnership…beautiful minds, beautiful hearts.”
Posted by Susan Amestoy at Monday, May 25, 2015
Friday, May 22, 2015
Deborah Samson is the Official State Heroine of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. She was awarded this honor On May 23, 1983, because of her heroic role in the final months of the American Revolutionary War.
At a young age, Deborah was sent away from her family because her impoverished mother was unable to provide for the large family. An independent spirit certainly was born of necessity, and Deborah asserted herself early by gaining an education despite the lack of formal schooling, and later, in a burst of patriotism, disguising herself as a young man in order to enlist in the Second Massachusetts Regiment.
Now known as Robert Shurtliff, Deborah faced some wild skirmishes and merciless hand to hand struggles in the final gasps of the fight with Britain. She was able to preserve her disguise by treating one leg wound, but a more serious wound, incurred later on, and one that almost cost her life, required medical attention that revealed her sex.
After an Honorable Discharge, Deborah, like so many veterans, attempted to return to normal life, but was unable to fit in. She once again donned male garb, and traveled to the house of her aunt, this time as Cousin Ephraim.
|Deborah Samson Gannett|
One wonders if Deborah Samson suffered from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, like so many of her brave modern colleagues who are the veterans of all too many wars.
Poster Girl is a documentary film telling the story of Robynn Murray. Robynn, like Deborah, wanted to make a difference by enlisting and going off to fight in a war; this time the war was in Iraq. First time director, Sara Nesson, creates a film that follows Robynn through her Post Traumatic Stress Disorder following her deployment home. The film, nominated for an academy Award for best short documentary, is a touchingly honest portrayal of an amazing young woman. Like Deborah, Robynn’s journeys chronicle war, brutality, and pain both physical, but even more heart rending, emotional. Both women come out on the other side. Both women find someone to love and understand, and both women represent the price paid in the call to duty, and the debt we all owe for the sacrifice they made and are making.
Perhaps in another time Deborah Samson would have shown the honesty that Robynn Murray demonstrates in Poster Girl. Who knows, though, perhaps Deborah’s American Heroine lecture series did exactly that.
Robynn Murray and Deborah Samson, two American heroines, who made a difference, of whom we are proud, and who should take great pride in all their accomplishments.
That's what Memorial Day weekend is all about.
That's what Memorial Day weekend is all about.
Tuesday, May 5, 2015
A true super woman,Nellie Bly became famous for her inventions, adventures, and investigative reporting. Nellie gave voice to those held down by gender, poverty, and social injustice.
I've always loved super heroes and grew up watching Superman. I was a huge fan of all the characters, so, I was thrilled to discover that Lois Lane was based on Nellie Bly.
Lois Lane was created in 1938. She was a tough, career minded woman, like real life journalist, Nellie Bly. In 1940, much to Lois' dismay, along came Clark Kent.
To her he was nothing but annoying competition in the dog-eat-dog world of reporting on the Daily Planet.
Of course, though, when Clark Kent came along, so did Superman. Was I the only person who was amazed at Lois' obtuseness concerning the identity of Superman? How could she not see that he was Clark Kent?
I think that Nelly Bly would have done some investigation and solved the Clark Kent/Superman mystery,but maybe Nellie, always one to seek adventure, would have understood the power of Clark Kent's mystique.
As soon as the guy took off his glasses and put on the"S" outfit, complete with cape, he was transformed. He looked no more like Clark Kent than Jimmy Olsen did. Lois often came close to thinking Superman and Clark Kent were indeed the same man, but fortunately our caped crusader always managed to keep the myth and the romance alive. Lois and Superman have been an item for a long time. Here's to Nellie Bly and the Superhero in all of us!
Posted by Susan Amestoy at Tuesday, May 05, 2015
Sunday, May 3, 2015
The result... the Royal Wedding on April 29, 2011...the birth of Prince George, on July 22,2013, and a new arrival!
A little Princess born on May 2nd 2015...Kentucky Derby Day!
I wish them all the best!
Posted by Susan Amestoy at Sunday, May 03, 2015