While in L.A. I spent some time with an old family friend, Doris Dotson. Doris is almost 80 years old, came to California from Birmingham, Alabama during the segregation of the 1950s. She worked as a cleaning lady for my grandmother, mother and aunts by day and as a janitor for L.A. City College by night. She had four children and was divorced when she arrived in Los Angeles, and while working at City College, had three more with one of the other janitors. She also had a third husband, but no kids with him.
Today, four of Doris’ children are still alive, she has 10 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren. They are scattered around the country, but most remain in California. Doris is as sharp as ever, looks pretty much the same as I remember her from my childhood and has been a foster mom to over 100 kids from newborn to 23 years old. She is one of the most awesome people I have ever known! I can talk politics, religion, business and history with her and she sounds like someone half her age. It was also fun to talk about my parents and grandparents and about my childhood.
I hope to interview Doris soon and bring her to life on this blog. She has lived through some amazing times and has a wonderful perspective. She’s tough but also compassionate and truly inspiring to know.
Do you know someone like Doris? If you know someone who inspires you, makes you think, opens your eyes to things you’d never otherwise see, let me know about them. I’d love to talk to people you think are interesting and awesome. Everyone deserves their 10 minutes.