In previous posts (here and here), I learned that Lucy T. Briggs gave the gift of “Bambi” to Vlado, and that she followed in the footsteps of her father, Career Ambassador Ellis O. Briggs, as a Foreign Service Officer. I wasn’t quite sure how they met, until I found this condolence letter recently, written to Mrs. Fabry, dated September 23, 1961:
Dear Mrs Fabry,
I was deeply shocked and saddened to learn of Vlado’s tragic loss. There are no words to express if fully, but I want you to understand that I am truly sorry, and pray that God is helping you to bear this heaviest of burdens.
I did not know Vlado very well, but I think we were friends. We met, of course, through Olga in Geneva, where I studied in 1950-51. Vlado took me skiing in Vermont the following year, one weekend, and I remember how patient he was with my slowness as a somewhat permanent beginner! Then, he and Olga came to Washington, about two or three years ago, and came to see me in Virginia where I was then living. At that time, Vlado was already moving up rapidly at the United Nations. You must indeed be very proud of him for having achieved so much in a short time, and in spite of difficulties which would have discouraged most men. The account of his accomplishments portrays a life of dedication to high principles and of tireless efforts to put them into practice. The United States is the richer for having claimed him as a citizen, and the poorer for having lost him in the battle which we are all fighting. But his spirit and his example will be with us always.
Forgive me if I have imposed on your sorrow with this long letter, but I wanted you to know my feelings.
With every good wish to you and Olga,
Lucy T. Briggs
P.S. Please let me know if there is anything I can do for you.