Ninth A. A. International Convention

The ninth AA International Convention was held in Seattle, in 1990. This convention drew 48,000 people from 75 countries. Dr. Bob's son and daughter, Bob Smith and Sue Windows, and Bob's wife Betty were all in attendance.

It began, as had become the custom, with the Friday night flag ceremony.

Nell Wing, Bill's secretary and later AA archivist, wrote that: "The hall really let go when the Soviet, Bulgarian, and Romanian flags were carried to the front of the platform."

Nell told an interest anecdote about herself: "It was also a homecoming of sorts for me. I had spent 1944-46 in Seattle (the 13th naval district) as a member of SPARS, the Women's Coast Guard Reserve, In the basement of the Olympic Hotel (now affiliated with the Four Seasons chain) there was a large bar and dining room which we called the "snake pit" and where many of us, along with the Coast Guard and Navy guys, did a bit of off-duty drinking.

One night I got involved in an all-night drinking spree and next morning, up before my executive officer, was "awarded" a captain's mast and sentenced to a brief confinement in my quarters (the "brig" was full). I was allowed out once a day, accompanied by a shore patrol.

"Now, 44 years later, here I was in Seattle again and the recipient of the 10 millionth copy of the Big Book. No words can adequately express my deep gratitude to this beloved Fellowship and my cherished friends therein."

So now we have some insight into why Nell Wing, who was not an alcoholic, could be so comfortable with and dedicated to the many members of AA.

"Grateful to Have Been There©" by Nell Wing.

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