Fort Smith High School
Susan Townley

I married James Foster, Class of '56 when I was "sweet sixteen", continued to attend FSHS until December of my senior year when I graduated at mid-term, being the girl in a hurry that I was. I enrolled at Arkansas Tech where Jim was attending college and we lived in the "marriage apartments" for a semester where I made a valiant attempt at combining college classes, housekeeping, cooking, washing, ironing and a job at the school library while he attended classes, hung out with his bachelor friends in the dorm, and invited them to our efficiency apartment for late night poker parties during which I cooked them frog legs and slept in the shower. We didnít find it there, so HE moved on . .

to Fayetteville where he attended the U of A while I remained in Fort Smith and worked at the Welfare Department (an education in itself) until about five minutes before our daughter, Faren, was born in July of í59. I had such a STRONG maternal instinct that our daughter, Mary Shannon, was born in July of í60. We continued to live in Fort Smith until l968; Jim was employed by Harding Glass and I made a valiant attempt at combining motherhood, homemaking and a fulltime job at Garner, Shaw and Kimbrough, a local law firm. After ten years we didnít find it there so we moved on . . .

to Houston where Jim prospered in the glass business and I gave up trying to combine motherhood with anything else and had a pretty good year! We didnít find it there so we moved on . . .

to Hot Springs, Arkansas where Jim continued to prosper in the glass business and I continued my valiant attempt at combining motherhood, my new hobby as a horseracing aficionado and a part-time job to support my new hobby. After four years in the spa city, we didnít find it there so we moved on . . .

to Denver for four years where Jim continued to prosper in the glass business and I went to work for Frontier Airlines. This worked out very nicely for my children, because while I was slaving away and spending my weekends cleaning their rooms, they could fly for free and so they were off to see the world. (Mostly they flew back to Fort Smith to see family and friends.) But we didnít find it there so we moved on . . .

to Los Angeles where Jim continued to prosper in the glass business and I went to work at Ford Aerospace in Newport Beach. After a couple of years, he got ďtired of following my elusive dreams and schemesĒ so he moved on. After 23 years of marriage, we divorced in l980 after which I met my (then) new husband who had a home in Whittier where we lived for ten years and I worked for a local law firm. My husband took early retirement from the aerospace industry so we moved on . . .

back to Fort Smith where he was employed by Whirlpool and I became a real estate agent for Ramona Roberts Realtors. After 14 years of marriage, my husband retired so we divorced. I have since been employed by Abilities, Unlimited for a short while; married to Scotty Remler, the local tax assessor for three years. He retired so we divorced, and I moved on alone with his black cat, Miss Barbie.

So three years later, here I am - livin' by myself and doin' as I please. I excel at shuffleboard, karaoke, ridin' the back roads, floatin' in the lake on an old boat cushion, taking trips to places like Italy with my Albert Pike classmate, Dickie Cowan, his wife Susan, and whatever significant other I am dragging along at the moment. I try my hand at a little creative writing now and then, and do my best to keep up with my successful classmates. I have finally found a blonde haired, blue-eyed handsome man who loves me just the way I am ... my three-year-old grandson, Max!

My daughter, Faren, and her husband Dave Swartzendruber live in Denver. She has been employed with IBM in several capacities since her graduation from the University of Colorado. My daughter, Shannon, graduated from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles and has a law practice in downtown Fort Smith. She is married to Danny Bailey and they reside, along with their two children, on Shadow Lake in Greenwood. And everyone knows the girls turned out "smart like their daddy."

And I DO agree wholeheartedly with Mayor Ray Baker whose famous quote is, "Life Is Worth Living in Fort Smith, Arkansas!"

Susan "Townley" Foster - 2003