Skip to main content

Search the Special Collections and Archives Portal

Interview with Megan Gillespie Rice, June 22, 2005


Download nts_000036.pdf (application/pdf; 186.73 KB)





Narrator affiliation: Staff member, Nevada Desert Experience: Holy Child Sister

Digital ID


Physical Identifier



Rice, Megan. Interview, 2005 June 22. MS-00818. [Transcript]. Oral History Research Center, Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.


This material is made available to facilitate private study, scholarship, or research. It may be protected by copyright, trademark, privacy, publicity rights, or other interests not owned by UNLV. Users are responsible for determining whether permissions are necessary from rights owners for any intended use and for obtaining all required permissions. Acknowledgement of the UNLV University Libraries is requested. For more information, please see the UNLV Special Collections policies on reproduction and use ( or contact us at

Standardized Rights Statement

Digital Provenance

Original archival records created digitally

Date Digitized



31 pages





Nevada Test Site Oral History Project University of Nevada, Las Vegas Interview with Megan Rice June 22, 2005 Las Vegas, Nevada Interview Conducted By Suzanne Becker © 2007 by UNLV Libraries Oral history is a method of collecting historical information through recorded interviews conducted by an interviewer/ researcher with an interviewee/ narrator who possesses firsthand knowledge of historically significant events. The goal is to create an archive which adds relevant material to the existing historical record. Oral history recordings and transcripts are primary source material and do not represent the final, verified, or complete narrative of the events under discussion. Rather, oral history is a spoken remembrance or dialogue, reflecting the interviewee’s memories, points of view and personal opinions about events in response to the interviewer’s specific questions. Oral history interviews document each interviewee’s personal engagement with the history in question. They are unique records, reflecting the particular meaning the interviewee draws from her/ his individual life experience. Produced by: The Nevada Test Site Oral History Project Departments of History and Sociology University of Nevada, Las Vegas, 89154- 5020 Director and Editor Mary Palevsky Principal Investigators Robert Futrell, Dept. of Sociology Andrew Kirk, Dept. of History The material in the Nevada Test Site Oral History Project archive is based upon work supported by the U. S. Dept. of Energy under award number DEFG52- 03NV99203 and the U. S. Dept. of Education under award number P116Z040093. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in these recordings and transcripts are those of project participants— oral history interviewees and/ or oral history interviewers— and do not necessarily reflect the views of the U. S. Department of Energy or the U. S. Department of Education. UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 1 Interview with Megan Rice June 22, 2005 Conducted by Suzanne Becker Table of Contents Introduction: born New York City, NY ( 1930), family background, childhood in Manhattan, education, joins Sisters of the Holy Child Jesus 1 Memories of early pacifist movement in New York 4 Race and racism in 1930s and 1940s New York 5 Recollections of World War II and the atomic bomb 8 Developing awareness of the effects of the atomic bomb and nuclear testing, and involvement in growing pacifist movement, work in Africa 9 Visits to Las Vegas, NV and involvement in NTS protest movement; return to discussion of education, joining order of Sisters of the Holy Child Jesus 11 Education ( B. S., secondary school biology, Fordham University, 1957; M. S., biology, Boston College, 1962), teaching in Nigeria ( ca. 1962- 1986), work in NY ( 1986- 1990), work in Ghana ( 1990- 1996) 12 School of the Americas protest actions, arrest and imprisonment ( 1998- 1999) 16 Transfer back to Nigeria and return to the U. S. ( 2001- 2003) 17 Concern about nuclear weapons and work with Nevada Desert Experience [ NDE] protest movement at the NTS ( ca. 1986- 1990) 18 Recounts uncle, Walter Hooke’s experiences as marine during U. S. occupation of Nagasaki at the end of World War II 19 Discuss various Nevada Desert Experience events, actions and people 20 Holy Week celebrations at NTS 26 Current agenda re: work with Nevada Desert Experience August Desert Witness 2005 27 Conclusion: thoughts on militarization and its effects on economy and society, and links between nuclear testing and use of resources 28 UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 1 Interview with Megan Rice June 22, 2005 in Las Vegas, NV Conducted by Suzanne Becker [ 00: 00: 00] Begin Track 2, Disc 1. Suzanne Becker: State your name and when and where you were born. Megan Rice: My name is Megan Rice. I was born in Manhattan on January 31, 1930. Did you grow up in Manhattan? Basically, yes. We spent a few years in Connecticut, the first four or five, year- round, then we moved back to the city. OK. And you moved back because of— Well, it was easier to go to school and things like that. My father was in New York, in Manhattan, working. What did he do? He was an obstetrician and gynecologist, and he taught at NYU [ New York University] for much of his life. What was his name? Frederick W. Rice. And how about your mother? My mother was— he was actually born in Maine but spent his whole life connected with New York hospitals. And she was Madeleine Newman Hooke Rice. She was born in Manhattan in 1903 and grew up in Bronxville but then went to college at Barnard, and then was married in 1925 and had three daughters. I’m the youngest. When we got a little bit older, she did her UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 2 master’s at Columbia [ University] in history, and then her doctorate at Columbia, so that’s why we were living three minutes away at that time. Right. Wow. What did she get her doctorate in? It was in American history. Her dissertation was on the American Catholic Opinion on the Slavery Controversy. And it was one of the first studies that they claim as African- American history, which was nice. Wow. That was fairly unusual at the time. It was. It was early [ 1925]. But that generation of women, I think, Margaret Mead was in her class at Barnard, they were really women, and many of them became academic people. Now, growing up with that, did that have an influence on you? I’m sure it did. The more I think about it now, you realize how different— we just took it for granted at the time. But she was studying while we were going to elementary school. What was that like, growing up in Manhattan at that time? Well, it was a nice neighborhood, and it still is the same. Right next door to Barnard. That’s the street where we were when we moved into that neighborhood in ’ 37, September. Claremont Avenue borders Barnard, and 119th Street and 116th Street, all over there, so it was that neighborhood. We grew up with all those people. And that was how next door to us on the fourth floor in the other apartment was the Hecht family. Selig Hecht was a physicist then engaged in doing something very secretive. He couldn’t even tell his wife. And that was the way we learned about it at age seven and eight. So you knew about— that a neighbor was doing something— UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 3 We knew him. Right. But we also knew that he understood “ the Einstein theory,” and so, what was “ the Einstein theory?” That turned out to be something [ he said] that hardly anybody in America understands. That was the way it was explained to me. Right. Still don’t. Yes, so you thought of it as this big mystery. But he was a dear and kindly man. We loved him. He had one daughter named Maressa, and his wife; she [ Maressa] was a good friend of my older sister. To end his story, we knew nothing about what was happening, and then the atom bomb was dropped in 1945. The next thing I heard in the early fifties was that he had written a book for high school students so they would understand the Einstein theory easily. And I remember seeing the book. It was a soft- covered book that was handled easily. Then the next thing I heard was that he had died. I’m not sure what it was of, but he asked to have his ashes sprinkled over the Pacific. So that’s the end of this kindly gentleman who was our next- door neighbor. [ 00: 05: 00] And it turned out he was involved at the Manhattan Project? Right. Which you knew nothing about, and nobody at that time in your neighborhood? No. And it took— 1960s and ’ 70s, and especially early ’ 80s, when the real awareness in the anti- nuclear movement was celebrated in New York. I was out of the country at the time. There was one time when I was home and I remember hearing them every few seconds doing the drumming outside the physics building, went on for days, for the number of people who had died in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. And that would happen yearly. I’d like to go back for just a minute. You mentioned you had two sisters. What are their names? The oldest was Alessandra Rice. She became a religious sister, like myself, after she went to Barnard for a year. Studied science and was teaching high school and then college biology, and UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 4 then she died very suddenly of Marfan’s syndrome when she was thirty- seven. My other sister is fine and alive and well and is a grandmother of seven children, mother of five. Wow. And what’s her name? Madeleine Newman Finnerty and they live around Syracuse [ New York], outside of Syracuse. [ She has served as an occupational therapist in New York City and in the Veteran’s Administration Hospital in Syracuse while raising five children.] Now you spent most of your youth in Manhattan? Yes, until I was seventeen. OK, so you went to high school and— Yes, near there. And grade school, too. Then I became a sister, actually when I was eighteen, because I was really very interested in Africa. I guess this is where my mother’s influence [ came in]. And my father, because he was also very interested in the social problems of New York during the Depression and very devoted to Franklin Roosevelt and Eleanor. There was a good crowd of people in that neighborhood who were very ecumenical. Through our elementary school we were exposed to the Catholic Conference of Christians and Jews, the National Conference of Christians and Jews, and the Catholic Interracial Conference that my parents were well involved in, and especially The Catholic Worker movement. Dorothy Day was a good friend of theirs from the very beginning, from 1933. So that was always part of our awareness. And I can remember in the Catholic Worker newspaper in the early part of the war, like 1940, ’ 41, ’ 42, you’d be reading it, looking at it, and it was always a little bit above me, but these words like “ pacifism” came in and I [ thought], “ what is this,” and “ voluntary poverty.” My mother would give me some explanation, [ but] it was always “ a very controversial thing,” this “ pacifism,” in those days. UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 5 So you were exposed to that fairly young. Right. Right. Did you have any initial thoughts on that when you figured it out? Well, yes. The elementary school that I went to also was very much interested— it was a progressive school run by a person who was very involved in Columbia and Barnard for the Catholic, Roman Catholic students since the twenties, Father George B. Ford. He was also very community oriented and also involved in the Jewish Theological Seminary, the Union Theological Seminary, which were all within three blocks of this school. So he was anxious that the students, the children in that elementary school that he started in 1935— and that was the reason why we moved there, because of this school; it was a very experiential kind of teaching. He wanted to show that elementary school children could be exposed to issues. So he would take us to these meetings and we would have a class discussion on racism. That’s amazing. Right. Or isolationism. I can remember those topics. And those who were attending [ 00: 10: 00] the meetings, like Langston Hughes, thought this was great. Then in our house, when kids would come, some of them were more racist than others depending on their families, so we would have these big arguments, especially about racism. So it became a good way of learning that and showing that it should be a theme in education. What was it like then at that time as far as race and racism goes? We had a lot of first- generation immigrants, especially Irish. But there were also Germans, so that came in. I can remember during the war when the German people had to be— there were problems with it. We had good neighbors who were at Columbia with a German immigrant wife. So we were very aware of discrimination in general. It was strong. Another way that we were UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 6 connected with that was through the Baroness [ Catherine] de Hueck [ Doherty] who was a Russian émigré of the Russian Revolution. She had come [ to the U. S.] probably in the late twenties, and gradually was appalled by the poverty in New York and started a movement called Friendship House in Harlem. I can remember my mother brought us up there and we met her. [ I was] nine. I can remember it very well, and her saying in this storefront, How would you like to have cockroaches this big under your bed to create relationships? Her workers, her volunteers who were like Catholic Workers also, they would do work in— I don’t know, I’m not sure what kind of a thing was in this store, but maybe it was helping people with clothing or something. I’m not really sure of that. Then later they moved to Canada as “ Madonna House.” But I can remember many of their volunteers became [ part of] interracial marriages, and I can remember my mother feeling so angry that people were disparaging about this. I remember her saying, I just can’t wait until everybody in the world is tan! It was a very radical thing to do in those years. And then later, this house that we lived in, which was around the corner, on the corner of Riverside Drive, the Sheeds [ Frank J. Sheed and Maisie Ward] who were British publishers and also refugees from England in, a sense. They opened their publishing house, Sheed & Ward, in New York, so they were there during the war years. They would come to our house and we would go to theirs. They would have gatherings of these Friendship House couples, and they were often interracial couples. They were kind of helping to educate them, and reflect together with them, on social issues and other things. Now, as a kid, did you have a sense that these were fairly controversial, large [ issues]? Well, we were always on that side [ of the victims, the minorities], because both my mother and father had such compassion, my father especially, for women, poor women. He was years at Bellevue as head of obstetrics, I think. So we were very conscious. And I can remember there UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 7 was a Communist bent, too, in there. One of his relatives coming down from Bangor, Maine, talking to him, and then going back to Bangor and saying, Do you know that Freddie Rice is a Communist? So they were a generation of very aware people, made aware by the social inequities of the times, of which there are still many now. That’s so amazing. Not everybody is aware. No. And there would be others. Some from the Columbia faculty, especially Carlton Hayes, who was the head of the history department, and he and his wife Evelyn, they would mentor us in some way. He was consulted by Peter Maurin, who was the colleague of Dorothy [ Day], and I guess you might say also they mentored in some way. They would go to those Friday night meetings and there would be, I think, a lot of consultation and mutual learning. It was an energy, and we caught that; all of us, over the years, because of the grave situations of poverty the Catholic Worker movement was grappling with. That’s pretty amazing. Yes. And my one hope was to go to Africa because I said [ to myself], well, there are plenty of teachers in [ 00: 15: 00] this country and we have given such terrible conditions of education to the people who are living here from Africa. Let me go and see. I at least would be some help there, more than in this country. So that was really my motivation. My sister has done lots of things around Syracuse, and her husband, with a big Unity Acre place. [ It] is a home for a hundred wandering men that has succeeded very well. So this is really instilled in your whole family? Yes. That’s neat. Now, being as socially conscious and aware as you were, I’m assuming that you remember World War II and when the bombs were dropped. I’m wondering if you could talk UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 8 about that, what your recollections are as a kid. You were young but you were old enough, it seems, to probably have some conscious awareness. Yeah, we had that mix. Because there was a lot of this from Roosevelt. I mean we thought wonders of him. Early on, we were doing things for the British soldiers before we went into the war, like we’d sell lemonade. And then a lot of refugee children came over and lived with families on our block, so we got to know them. I can remember the day we went into the war and it was— you had this very heavy heart. It seemed that World War I was way back in history and here we are, after all of these years, and it really wasn’t all that long, I guess. But you felt it was ancient history, and we’re getting into it again. And it was there, that mix of suspicion of the enemy, because of the way it was posed and propagandized, I’m sure. We had posters about Hitler, and of course that was not all that propagandizing, but it made you [ aware]. We had these good friends that were German and we had these good friends who were blacklisted as Communists. None of us were really anti- American government. I mean we trusted. We thought it had to be, that it was just the last resort, though, you had that feeling. So there was never a suspicion of any of the stuff that came out later. Twenty, thirty years later, we began to realize the other side. It took a while. And I can remember when the atom bomb was dropped, we were up in camp in Maine. My mother wrote to us about coming out of the subway on 116th Street and seeing the daily news, “ Atom Bomb Dropped on Japan.” Her reaction was “ thank Heavens.” Her brother Walter “ will not have to invade Japan.” I mean all she thought about was that. No concept of anything more than that. And so it was still gradual. That was ’ 45. We got into our troops coming back and that kind of stuff, and so you were no more questioning— I don’t remember hearing about the evil effects of the atom bomb. You just felt that it ended the war. Until maybe the early fifties when I think it was sparked off by realizing that some of those UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 9 people like Einstein and Selig Hecht must’ve had questions. I didn’t know the history of it. I was involved in learning to be an elementary school teacher and I wasn’t thinking about politics, except knowing that people were discriminating against black people and those [ kinds of matters]. But the war for me kind of petered away and it was a gradual thing later in the fifties, realizing the waste and everything. So when did you develop an awareness? It was my uncle whose name is Walter George, Walter G. Hooke, who volunteered as a Marine and was sent to the Pacific and eventually was sent in to lead or prepare for the [ 00: 20: 00] occupation force in Nagasaki. And so over the years he told us. I know many more details now. He married during the war, Caroline Small, out in California when he was home for one of his trainings in the Marines. They sort of eloped, in a sense, but we knew her and we loved her. She is a Quaker, so I think understanding her feelings and the two of them together— when we’d have conversations on my leaves from Africa. I had gone to Africa in ’ 62, so I’d come back, first, every four years, and then it got [ to be] three years. They were living on the West Coast most of that time, but there were times when we would get together and we realized that he had gotten himself very much involved with the nuclear vets. Some of them were already sick, and some of them were their wives— were already widows. And he was actually working for United Parcel [ Service] in personnel. And he was very active on the West Coast in interracial relations for labor, unions, workers, César Chávez and those kind of people up and down the West Coast. But then he was also contacting these people who were affected by the bomb from Bikini. So we gradually learned about that. And the legislation, he was very involved in pushing [ Ronald] Reagan to sign, kicking and screaming, as he always says, before the end of his term the legislation that would at least begin to give recognition, compensation for the Atomic Vets, UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 10 which is a very slow process. Well, he had known many that were dying. So he has a very wonderful history. But in the late seventies I began to realize, from Africa, that very bad things were happening in Latin America, and the whole business of the buildup of the military and the treatment and the collusion with the dictators of Latin America and the containment. I guess my really big thing was being in 1980 in Calibar, Nigeria, when a Maryknoll sister was working with me on a project from East Africa, came down the stairs and she’s saying, Two of our sisters have just been assassinated in El Salvador! That was December 1980, and we had already heard of Oscar Romero [ Archbishop of San Salvador assassinated in 1980]. I relate it to that, because we also had sisters who were also being persecuted in many ways in Chile during the Allende time, our own sisters. So I was learning that and very aware, by gradually reading books like Penny Lernoux’s. She was a journalist and lived in Latin America, but American, and she followed all the Maryknoll people who were affected by the governments, the right- wing governments and dictators and allies of the U. S. government. And so I read all of that. She wrote two very good books, Cry of the People, and I think the second one is People of God, in the late seventies and early eighties. And so I was filled with that. Then when I was in this country in the eighties they were beginning the protests in Manhattan, so I would attend those. In 1984 or so, we had on Good Friday, a walk across Manhattan. The first time, people were arrested at the Riverside Research Institute on 42nd Street, and we had Dan Berrigan and many others. I remember being just appalled that the police could carry these people out and arrest them. Two years later I was able to be there and I [ 00: 25: 00] was able to do that with them. So I began to get into the peace movement in New York in 1986. I was invited back to be somewhere in New York to be nearer my mother, who was living alone in her apartment. My UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 11 sister just asked me to be somewhere on the East Coast, but I ended up at the Catholic Worker in New York, and then in a similar little place in Harlem, helping in the community that was getting started, but being near my mother and looking out for her. So I was able at the same time to attend. To become involved. Yes. And got arrested with them, but we’d go to court and we���d be dismissed. Right. So going through the motions, basically. Right, and that was when I began coming here to the Nevada Test Site. To Las Vegas? Yes. [ I] came here the first time for the anniversary of Dorothy Day, the tenth anniversary of her death, I think it was, or her ninetieth birthday; it might’ve been ninetieth birthday. And that was where I really saw and heard and listened to the input during the Holy Week. We did the whole Holy Week thing. And that was your first time out at the test site as well? Here. Right. Now, I want to back up just a minute because I’d like to know more about— you said it was when you were seventeen or eighteen and you realized that you really wanted to go to Africa. How did you end up doing that? When did you end up doing that? I was being taught by Sister Mary Laurentina Dalton, one especially, who had been our pioneer in Nigeria of the order that I joined which was the Sisters of the Holy Child Jesus. They ran a school up on 140th Street and Riverside Drive. We all went there to high school. OK, so this was from high school. UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 12 Yes, She was teaching us Latin, but we would always divert her to— she loved Nigeria. She had been in Calibar for just five years and then got sick, but she never really left it and knew a lot about it. And other women were being sent during the war, actually. They’d go by boat, and they would leave from that school. So we would send them off. And there was a magazine about education in both Nigeria and Ghana, and the first secondary schools were being opened by our nuns, and teacher training colleges. So that was attracting me. By the time I was a senior, I really wanted to get there as quickly as I could. My parents didn’t object, even though I was young and uneducated. They had objected very much to— my older sister was four years older and she had only spent one year at Barnard so my mother was very disappointed. My father always nurtured it and fostered it. He was happy. They were good women. So I got educated as a sister in a variety of ways. Meaning? Well, I went to sort of normal school, I guess you’d call it, teacher training while I was being trained, got a certificate to be able to be an elementary school teacher. We also did some courses at our college, Rosemont College, and then we always went to school on Saturdays in New York. I was sent to New York to teach in Mount Vernon, where I taught third grade and then first grade. And this was— This would’ve been 1950, ’ 51, ’ 52. But I was taking courses on Saturday at Fordham [ University] and in the summer at Villanova University, so it took a while to accumulate enough [ credits]. I was always teaching. I never went full- time. It wasn’t until ’ 57 that I accumulated enough to graduate with a B. S. in Secondary School Biology. And then I went right in to get my master’s in Boston College because they said in Nigeria, which has an English educational UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 13 system, they were being very superior about most American colleges; unless they were on the list of the top ten, they didn’t even accept them. Partly it was they were independent in 1960 and it meant you had to have a higher salary because all the salaries were paid by the government. It was a way of screening. So I had a master’s in order to be qualified as a graduate teacher when I got there, and it would help— the money from government salaries would help run the school. And what did you do your work in? Biology. Actually it was cellular biology and I used radioactive isotopes. I used autoradiography, [ 00: 30: 00] so I was learning the technique at Harvard Medical School for Boston College. But it was fun. I enjoyed the radiation biology I learned as part of it. Yeah. So you had some background in that. Yes. So that, again, would give me a better awareness, because it was tracing tracer elements. But it was good. And then from there, you went to Nigeria? Right away, as soon as I got my master’s, I was able to go that summer of 1962. Because I was also teaching in high school in Melrose, Massachusetts while going part- time to school. You were teaching science? Biology and math. Yes. And chemistry. But it was high school. Well, it was fresh in me because— I don’t think I could teach [ those]. Well, I had to do it for the biology. It was a like a preliminary. Also I had to do physics, which I’d never really understood, but because it was a quick, concentrated dose— I hadn’t had it in high school. Anyway, I was ready to be validated, and we were starting a brand new school in Nigeria in the east, but it was in from the coast in a very rural, very rural place where they had UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 14 never had many schools, let alone schools for girls at that time. We opened this school in 1961, so they were all really building the classrooms. We slept in a classroom, no electricity, no water on the compound. A very different way of life. Right, but it was good to experience that. And so you basically taught girls? Yes, all girls, boarding school at that time. Was that unusual at that time? No, that was the way it was done because girls, you had to really recruit. By the time they were ready for high school, they were dying to go. But to get them into elementary schools, because that was breaking the tradition, especially in the rural places, they used to have campaigns to recruit the girls. They used to call them convent schools, these little elementary schools that our order started. So there were little, we called them “ bush schools,” all around, maybe fifty of them. We had a teacher training college in three other places, and the teachers from the teacher training college would take over these little rural schools. Our sisters were the supervisors, paid by the government to do that. They were like public schools but, you had to really nurture the local people to want to allow their children [ to attend]. But that changed very quickly. By 1968, ’ 69, they were already doing much more controlling, even appointments of teachers and that kind of stuff. There was a very rapid change in Nigeria from ’ 60 to the present. They’ve gone through a terrific amount, very quickly, of rapid development. How long were you in Nigeria that time? Well, I was asked by my sister, in 1986, to look over my mother, so I spent four years, from ’ 86 to ’ 90, in the States, basically in New York. Then my mother— I actually moved in with her for UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 15 about two years— she decided she’d move out to my sister’s house and we’d give up the apartment, which was getting too much. Then I went right back to Nigeria in 1990. So you were there for quite some time. Yes. And that was good. In New York, I was working with the homeless people. I mean I didn’t have to work full- time. I did have a city job for a little while, till it was de- funded, in a city shelter. And then just visited voluntarily, I think, for a while, from my mother’s house. We had groups with the men and I did some learning in AIDS [ Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome]. It was pretty much the thing at that time in New York. Got involved in groups defending the homeless people who were being evicted— squatters, homesteaders— so there were good community, right- across- the- city people coming together for the homeless. They were the same people who were politically concerned about, whether it was nuclear or Latin America, Central America stuff. [ 00: 35: 00] So I went back in ’ 90, and this time I was sent to Ghana, to northern Ghana. Actually I had been working in Nigeria from ’ 77 until ’ 85 or ’ 86 in religious education for the government, an ecumenical team of three people who went around giving workshops to teachers in all the high schools of the state, of which there were about, by this time, three hundred and sixty. They’d gone from ninety to three hundred and sixty. Significant growth. Yes, in like eight years. But this was when Nigeria was using its money for the people. It was before the bad dictators came in in ’ 85, ’ 86 when it declined. So when I went back to West Africa in 1990, I was appointed to a small diocese in northern Ghana. Well, not small, but a diocese in the very rural part, and worked with adult community leaders. A little bit of a different aspect of the process. UNLV Nevada Test Site Oral History Project 16 Right. Yes. But I had taken a course in that. And that was until ’ 96. Then I was going on leave and my sister asked me to stay for four months. Our mother was beginning to lose her memory then and I saw that [ my sister] was having much more to do, and so I asked to just stay and help her. That was when I got involved in Syracuse. I mean I’d kept coming here whenever possible. But we did the School of the Americas action— 1998 I was arrested with a group of people, twenty- five, and we did six months. I was reading about that. And where—? In Danbury Federal Prison Camp in Connecticut. And my sister was able to manage and she’d gotten more help, so in that way it was good. So what was that like? Well, it’s a camp. It’s not like a high security facility. And there were four of us SOA resisters together, which made it much less formidable. But it was a great eye- opener, great eye- opener, and we really learned a lot. We met wonderful people and we understood the prison system much better. I’m sure. Yes, and they too became aware. You felt there was a lot of awareness growing. And some of those people I still keep in touch with. Then two years later, my mother had passed on. I was waiting