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Bob O., Richfield (Akron), Ohio.
(OM, p. 317 in 1st edition.)
Bob entered the
program in December of 1936, but after six months
had a slip. He stopped drinking again in May 1937.
His teenage years
were uneventful. He was raised on a farm but wanted
to be a businessman, so he took a business college
course. His first business was buying produce from
the family farm and selling it to customers in the
city. The business theory he had learned in college
helped him to become successful and he soon expanded
his business. But in 1921, during an economic slump,
he was wiped out. With more time on his hands, his
He worked at a variety
of jobs from then on, but most often as a salesman
- a career at which he was very good.
He started drinking
during Prohibition, and it soon became a habit.
Bob at one time
brewed beer at home. He tells how, when a fire threatened
to destroy his home, he rushed to the cellar and
rescued a keg of wine and all the beer he could
carry. He became indignant when his wife suggested
that he had better get some of the needed effects
out of the house before it burned down.
He lost jobs and
his home, and car accident once put him in the hospital.
When he got out of the hospital he stayed sober
for six weeks and had made up his mind to quit,
but returned to the same pattern.
His marriage deteriorated
and his wife divorced him. He had no friends left.
His mother tried to help and sent clergymen to talk
to him. When his mother heard about Dr. Bob she
persuaded him to go with her to see him.
Dr. Bob suggested
he be hospitalized for a short time, but he refused.
He did agree, however, to go to a meeting. He was
as good as his word, and met the small group. He
liked the informality of the meeting, but the meeting
did not impress him. However, he saw men he had
known as drinkers apparently staying sober.
It was another six
months, after a binge, before, in a maudlin and
helpless state, he made his way back to see Dr.
There was no over
night change, in Bob, but he began to enjoy the
meetings, and to exchange the drinking habit for
something that has helped him in every way. Every
morning he read a part of the Bible and asked God
to carry him through the day safely. It also helped
that Dr. Bob immediately put him to work helping
another alcoholic who was hospitalized. All he had
to do was tell his story to the new man.
He reunited with
his wife, began making good in business and paying
off his debts. His former friends and employers
He was sober several
years when he wrote his story, kept that way, he
explained, by submitting his natural will to a Higher
Power. He did that on a daily basis.