Saturday, January 24, 2009

A Wikipedia entry....

Later Life

Foster suffered from alcoholism and mental illness in her later years.[10] Her mother and both sisters were also heavily afflicted by mental illness and/or alcoholism. With no warning, Foster walked out of her marriage to Evans, citing the reason that she was not in love with him. She could barely support her two young sons, who endured a hellish childhood sometimes living in squalor. Foster did make several courageous attempts at a comeback, in 1962 Arthur Lubin, the director of her hit film 'Phantom of the Opera' offered her several spots on TV shows at the time including 'Mr. Ed' of which he was producing. One of the stipulations was that she would have had to relocate to Los Angeles with her two boys. At this time, Foster was involved with a man ten years her junior in the apartment building they lived in. Wilbur Evans, who was supporting his family e.g. rent, alimony, child support, remained hopeful that his family would reunite, soon found out about the affair his ex-wife was having. Evans reportedly became enraged, immediately taking Foster to court suing for custody of the two boys. It was a public fight with articles in many of the New York and Philadelphia papers, with one headline declaring **"Wilbur Evans Calls Ex-Wife Beatnik." Evans lost the custody suit but was successful in keeping his ex-wife from leaving beyond '100 miles of Columbus Circle' in New York City. Ironically, Evans would soon withhold payments for rent, alimony and child support, disappearing from the lives of his two boys. Soon, Foster and her two boys Michael and Philip were evicted and lived for a time in several hotels on the upper west side of Manhattan. Foster, who hadn't worked since her days in motion pictures, quickly had to train herself and found work as a receptionist for several Wall Street firms and an answering service operator. She would often work 80 hours a week trying to make a home for her two boys. For the bulk of this time they lived in a small one bedroom apartment on west 82nd street in New York City. This was when the boys became "latchkey kids" and "things went terribly down hill from there" as Foster would later tell a reporter.

**please see January 7th entry "After their divorce...the Upper West Side"

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