Lawyer, Writer, Educator

Who says trusts and estates law is boring? It’s got everything – murder, conspiracy, corruption, family feuds, and lots of money at stake. I explore the human experience of inheritance. My topics are people who use their wealth to control others, great philanthropists who try to make the world a better place, and regular folks who are often surprised at what the law does to them instead of for them.

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Recent Posts

  • Tony Comes Home From Vietnam

    Tony_Comes_Home_Patti_Spencer blog header

    It was 1970.  Tony was coming home from Vietnam.  He had been wounded – something to do with the helicopter he was in – the details were discussed in hushed voices.  They didn’t think the casualties of war and brutal injuries were appropriate for a girl’s ears. That was odd to me.  The war in Vietnam was for real and not over yet. For my… Read More

  • Growing Downwards

    Growing Downwards - Patti Spencer

    A great deal of growing, is growing downwards. . . Sooner or later the process of growing smaller starts, and it is painful at first until you get used to it. – Donald Winnicott   We learn from Dendrology and the root structure of woody plants the importance of growing downward. The spread and depth of the root system of a tree are just as big,… Read More

  • The Jumping Off Place

    Jumping_Off_Place_Patti_Spencer blog header

    My father called the town the “jumping off place.” Mont Alto had been a stop on the railroad where folks got off the train to go to the Tuberculosis Sanatorium. The Sanatorium was at the top of South Mountain. Granny Beulah told me a horse and wagon would meet the train and take the new patients up the mountain. Later, the same horse wagon would… Read More