By Betty Wilson
When I was first asked to write my story, I hesitated for a long time. Why, I asked myself, should I expose myself to more hurt and humiliation. I dont want anyone to pity me or feel sorry for me. Im not a strong person but I can take care of myself.
But my friends have had to suffer in silence too long while the media distorted everything about me and my case. Even at my trail I was advised to remain silent for fear anything I said might e misconstrued. Maybe its time to talk now.
So where do I start?
I was born on July 14, 1945 in East Gadsden, Alabama. My family was what I have always called typical lower middle class, with my father working as a policeman and my mother in a factory. I had three sisters, one of whom is my twin. Contrary to the books that have tried to portray my family as being somewhat dysfunctional, we should have been, but mother made up so completely for Daddys absences and drunks that we never felt any lack of love or attention.
Shortly after graduating I married my high school sweetheart. Looking back over the years I realize now we were just kids. My husband was a good man but we both knew we had gotten married too young.
After we separated in 1969, I rented an apartment at the Imperial Gardens. At that time it was a fashionable singles complex where everyone knew everyone, and partied almost every night.
Oh, Ive heard the stories and read the books about me that talked about the wild partying the drugs and the heavy drinking that went on there. Some of it was true, and I make no apologies for it. It was also the liberated seventies and we were all young and single, without a care in the world.
I still had to pay the bills though and I soon found a job at J.C. Penneys. After paying rent and making car payments there wasnt much left to live on, so I took a part-time job at the Cosmopolitan health club, working evenings. I really enjoyed that job and met many people who are friends of mine to this day.
A woman from the health club talked me into applying for a job at the Humana Hospital and gave me a recommendation. I became a unit secretary (word clerk) and from the very first day I loved it. I could hardly wait to get to work every morning! As I became involved with the patients I realized this was what I wanted to do with my life. I know it sounds silly; I had grown up wanting to be a scientist, an artist or even the owner of a dress shop. Being a nurse had never entered my mind, but never the less I decided to become one.
After I received my nursing degree I became interested in kidney dialysis and soon became proficient at it. The work was demanding and the hours long but in a way this was one of the most satisfying periods of my life. Often times at night I would go home and just crash on the bed, to tired to even undress.
I met Jack while working at the hospital. It would have been hard not to have noticed him. He reminded me of a little boy with an impish smile on his face all the time. He was one of the kindest people I had every met and regardless of how busy he was, he always had time to stop and talk. He was always teasing me about something or the other and calling me brown eyes in front of the patients.
We ere both involved in relationships with other people and I really didnt think much about it until one day when a patient Jack had operated on went into kidney failure. I was on call and we worked late that night, barely exchanging words except to monitor the patients condition. A few days later Jack called my supervisor and asked if I was engaged or involved. He even asked my age and is she intelligent!
Our first date was a basketball game, sharing a bag of popcorn. That was about all either of us could afford at the time.
Looking back, Jack and I never really dated. On our second date he suddenly announced that if we were going to spend the rest of our lives together, he may as well move in with me! That was fine with me. I was already madly in love with him and would have done anything he asked me to do. It was also an easy move; everything he owned could e put in a couple of cardboard boxes!
The subject of marriage never came up at the time. He was still a young doctor building his practice and my career was going great. To be honest about it, we were both so busy we were happy to just take each day as it happened.
About a year later I was offered a job as an executive with a company in Atlanta. The job offered a fantastic salary with travel and all kinds of executive perks but I was in love with Jack and didnt want to leave him.
Murder of Dr. Wilson
BettyWilson--My Story Part 1
BettyWilson--My Story Part 2
The Confession of James Dennison White
Poll: Who Plotted to Kill Dr. Jack Wilson?
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