Monday, March 7, 2016

Memories of Pat Conroy

Atlanta’s Sarah Mallas Wayman

By Doc Lawrence

ATLANTA-Like her friend Pat Conroy, Sarah Mallas Wayman was born in Atlanta. A longtime practicing attorney, Ms. Wayman and the novelist were neighbors in Atlanta’s Midtown as Mr. Conroy’s career was blossoming. For five years, she recalls, “many of my days were filled with his wonderful stories, usually over coffee in my office.”

I spoke with Sarah Wayman when I learned of Conroy’s death and asked her to share some memories.

“Pat was such a Southern gentleman, “ she said, “and our time around the very popular office coffee pot was priceless. Pat spoke and wrote beautifully and my life is richer for the times we would see each other, leisurely talking and laughing.”
Sarah Mallas Wayman

“I have some books,” said Ms. Wayman, “that Pat inscribed including The Boo, The Water is Wide and The Great Santini. Pat invited me to the premiere of two movies, Conrack and The Great Santini where I met his family and friends.”

Sarah Wayman said that when she learned of Mr. Conroy’s death, she thought of an old verse: “Kindness is something the blind can see and the deaf can hear. I join all those who knew Pat personally or through his books and movies in expressing gratitude for so many lasting contributions to the literature of the South.”

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