The Road Back
Sometime in the late 1920s a New York stock broker came to Fort Worth on a big business deal, checked into a downtown hotel—and promptly got, in his own words, “stewed.”
The business deal flopped. So did the subsequent opportunities the man had elsewhere.
Behind the failures there always was a whiskey bottle. He was a classic drunk, swilling himself into oblivion.
“You’re hopeless,” a medical authority told him. The New Yorker was doomed to obscurity and premature death, all who knew him said.
Same Man Returns.
Thursday the same man returned to Fort Worth for the first time since his ill-fated visit of the roaring Twenties.
He could look back on 20 years’ sobriety and history may mark as his a page chronicling one of the social phenomena of this century. The man was a principal founder of Alcoholics Anonymous, the unique fellowship in which untold thousands of problem drinkers have found the road back to health and happiness. He flew here for the ninth annual Texas State Conference of Alcoholics Anonymous, which opens a three-day meeting Friday in Hotel Texas.
More than 1,000 delegates are expected for the convention and highlight of the program for most of them will be talks to be made by the founder.
In keeping with AA tradition he’s identified to the public only as “Bill W.,” but his fascinating story of the birth of the AA movement is scriptural with its members.
The public will have an opportunity to hear the story, also, when Bill speaks at 2:30 p.m. Sunday in Will Rogers Memorial Auditorium. Admission will be free.
Meanwhile, a packed convention schedule Friday, Saturday and Sunday faced AA members coming here from at least eight states.
Bill, 58, who now devotes full time to AA work, said upon arrival here the fellowship probably has 150,000 members throughout the world.
“AA is now at the threshold of its maturity,” he told convention officials at a Hotel Texas dinner Thursday night. “The association will survive and continue to grow unless someone finds a better way to sobriety for the alcoholic.”