July 29th, 1926 Oxford
I am afraid I have never thanked you for your letter and the cutting you sent me weeks ago. I have been very careless. Almost more important than that is the fact that until now I have not written to offer you a word of sympathy and the sad loss of your chief. I am sure it must mean very much to you after these years of such close association with him. I was
shocked to hear of Dr. Howland's death. I did not know of it until it was too late to be of any use to Mrs. Howland. She had already left. It must have been a most dreadful shock to her & being away from home and her own people added to the misery. Some one said that Dr. Barker came over from Switzerland or wherever he was but I do not know if that was true.
All kinds of of tragedies have happened. Have you heard of Sally Emmons death?
Bob is so reserved & reticent he may not have written. Please not speak of this detail to anyone but your wife for I do not know if it has been in the American papers - & probably only under a confusion of the name. She was spoken of as "Emmins [B]?". She committed suicide. Isn't that an end of such a career? No people can understand & appreciate about it better than you two. Perhaps you know they had a villa on Florence & had moved out all their things from London - even a motor. Bob was there from October to
February when Sally went to Taormina in Sicily and stayed until May. Bob was working in London for the R. C. P. membership & watching his poor mother who still lies perfectly helpless at Hamble. About June 12th he was cabled for & dashed off to Florence. Found she had been dead 24 hours - dying in the Hospital. It seems she was mixed up with the son of hotel keeper at Taormina with whom she had a row in her own villa in Florence - bought a pistol which the servant got away from her. She then drank some stuff she had ready. She lived 12 hours
and died in the Hospital. It was simply ghastly for Bob. He has only talked to his father once about it - his sister is over here & she & he are having a wonderful time together. I have been down & found him very pathetic looking but cheerful. He blames himself for being so much away from her - but she was impossible at times & I think he was right to keep on with work. After this exam he is going to Scotland for a visit with his friend Mac Intyre & then into the West London Hospital. I think he means if possible to become associated with it - & practice
in London. I had an Italian paper sent me and got my information from that & from what Mr. Emmons told me. You will please keep all this to yourselves. I know Atala will be interested. I love your article in the Osler Memorial Volume also Penfields'. They aroused such memories!! Oxford is agog over the coming of the British Medical[strikethrough] Association next week. I am having the Schafers from Edinburgh & the Mc Craes from Philadelphia to stop & many others pouring in as usual. My love to you both.
aff. G. R. Osler
Dr. Wilburt Davison
Johns Hopkins Medical School
Baltimore Maryland. U.S.A
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