Ahead of Her Time

By Ellen Kruger Radday 

My mother, Vera Sommers Kruger, was a special woman in my life. She was a woman "ahead of her time" who supported my plan to leave San Francisco for graduate studies in Washington, D.C. I wonder if she realized the risk she was taking, that I might never really come home? As it happened, I didn’t. At least not to stay forever, as did most of my college friends.

I married a Foreign Service Officer and we have lived in a number of countries, learning languages, raising our three children, immersing ourselves in different cultures. My mother came to visit in most of the places we lived and, while in Belgium, we took her to visit the mother house in Namur. She always spoke happily of her school days in San Francisco, where she graduated from Notre Dame in 1919, along with her life-long best friend Mary McLester Allio.

My mother lived the last years of her life with us in Arlington, Virginia, where she died in 1998, just short of 96 years of age. In honor of my mother, I have continued to remain in contact and support the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur.