Run For Your Life
Starring Ben Gazzara

Paul Bryan's Journal
17 - 24 July 1966

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17 - 24 July 1966 ("The List of Alice McKenna")

After Paul has gone around his home town, trying to find the real killer of Alice McKenna's husband, the favor he has done for her not only lands him in the hospital after a beating, but stirs up trouble with the people he knows. Now that Alice and her children have been accepted again, she reveals the truth to Paul

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Return to "The List of Alice McKenna" page or read from Paul's journal about the events of the episode below

Journal Entry
Chronology of Events
Sunday, July 17

Kate met me at the airport, but begged off going to the funeral, the unsaid reasons making me change the subject quickly, and I got a rental car to drive down the coast.
Thinking about the breaking of these last ties with Almeria put me in a lonely mood, and attending the requiem Mass at St. Anthony's made death feel all too close.
Deeply regretted staying in town, and would have preferred to go to my Carmel house with Kate, maybe relaxing a few days before Zandvoort.
Here I am in the middle of so many people who felt that knowing me since we were kids entitled them to ask prying questions about my lifestyle, career, marriage plans and political ambitions.
The individuals I would have liked to see weren't there, only the other sort, but I'd been glad to meet Alice McKenna at the cemetery.
Couldn't get away from the reception afterwards at Ralph and Debbie's soon enough, and then Alice spoiled the nice encounter we'd had by showing up at my room with a cockeyed notion that I should investigate her husband's murder.
She wants to clear her name after serving seven years for the crime, but I didn't see any way I could help her, and headed back for San Francisco, only to pass the kids baseball grounds, and be struck by what a tough time her boys must be having if their mother is ostracized in the community.
Instead of leaving, drove back to look at my parents' home and Alma's. Since I last saw it, a large swimming pool has been added at the back of the house where I grew up, and a conservatory built on to the place where Eileen's family lived.
I thought back on childhood, and what a decent person Alice had always been. With Kate's schedule busy the coming week, trying to clear time for us to spend in Europe at races and on Rachel's cruise, maybe I could give a little time to Alice.
If it's true what she said, anything I could do to right a terrible injustice would be worth the effort. Went back and asked the sheriff about the case, but the conversation didn't make up my mind.
So I'll spend the night here at Carmel to go over the packets of mail and stuff Kate gave me, and see what I think after a night's sleep. Had really looked forward to coming back here, but am finding this once so restorative house too reminiscent of the time I left San Francisco.

When Paul attends the funeral of his great aunt, he is approached by an old school friend, Alice McKenna, who served seven years for murdering her husband. She  wants Paul to find the real murderer from a list of women with whom she believed her husband to have had an affair.

Paul refuses, claiming that he has to travel to Switzerland, but then feels sorry for Alice's sons.

Monday, July 18

After a long call with Katie last night, it seemed clear this morning that I should give Alice a few days - I told her ten, and said I had business in Switzerland, but would like to be in Holland for early qualifying on Friday.
Checked out the names on her list of people she suspected to have had an affair with her husband, and it was like Chick Hearn was following me around, doing play-by-play, the way everyone in town seemed to know exactly where I'd been.
Though I didn't come up with anything, the technique I tried with Alita Greenley seemed to have at least gotten people nervous - even Debbie AND Ralph, - surprisingly testy about my investigations, and for some reason I can't pin down, of all people, the two of them seem the most suspicious.
Even old Tony Oliviera got stirred, and called me into his office to explain that Alice was using me. He just can't drop the rivalry we had in high school, and maybe, I'm just as bad, as I was ready to go for him with his first salvo.
He and Rosintha are apparently getting married next month. I offered congratulations, but wondered what she sees in him. Maybe as Alice is possibly using me to restore her reputation, Rosintha sees Tony as some way of improving hers.

Paul interviews the five women on the list, and finds that the town is buzzing about his activities on Alice's behalf.

But the District Attorney warns Paul that he is merely running a public relations campaign which Alice is directing.

Tuesday - Wednesday, July 19 - 20

Every muscle and bone in my body is aching, and even if none are broken, it feels like every one of my ribs is. Though I was released from Almeria General yesterday, I spent the day in bed here, not up to driving back to Carmel.
Reassuring Alice of my continued support yesterday, and taking her boys to our school seems like a million years ago.
The polite but very firm no I got from the principal, trying to get them admitted was a bare foretaste of what came after when two thugs rammed my car, and beat me up right in front of John and Chris.
Thank goodness, someone came by within moments, scaring them away before it got worse, and getting me to the hospital. I may have suffered dearly for it, but at least Oliviera is now giving some credence to Alice, and looks to be re-opening her husband's murder case.

Paul tries to have Alice's sons admitted into the private school they both attended, but is refused on grounds that Alice is personna non grata by the other parents.

Driving back, in front of the two boys, Paul is viciously beaten by two thugs, and lands in the hospital where he is visited by the District Attorney who is now willing to re-open the murder case.

When he visits Alice, the DA finds that she is starting to receive visitors.
Almeria - en route to Paris
Thursday, July 21

Felt well enough to go out for a bit this morning, and when I got back, Billie Showalter was waiting in my room.
If I'd thought that the greatest suspicion seemed to fall on Ralph and Debbie, she added to it with the story that Ralph was going to set her up in an apartment when Debbie was having an affair with someone - right around the time of the murder.
And here, all these individuals I thought as grown-up but still innocent kids, were carrying on like people in the big city. Who'd have thought my old Almeria would turn out to be Peyton Place.


Went to Ralph and challenged him with Billie's information, virtually accusing him of hiring hoods to assault me, maybe even kill me next. God, when I think of that now!
It was when the outraged Ralph asked where he'd know people like that, the tumblers started to click. What a fool I was.
We were all embarrassed, and I made a hasty exit, coming back here to think about what they said. There can only be one conclusion. Who in Almeria would have underworld contacts?


Hadn't really expected Alice to admit anything, but she came out with the whole story - how she murdered her husband accidentally but without regret, how she'd been turned into an “animal” in prison.
She described her scheme to use me in an effort to restore her standing in the community, AND how she'd unabashedly employed men to beat me up right before her children's eyes.
Not a drop of remorse - even for the latter. Just satisfaction that my mission was a complete success: a crowd of women enjoying tea in the next room and her sons playing ball with neighbors in the front yard.
The toughest Mafioso couldn't replicate her coldness. I was dumbfounded, and found my steps taking me to the office of my old arch rival.
Even though it was after five, he was still there. I'd done him an injustice in the service of a hardened criminal, but Tony was philosophical. Maybe he was the better man all along.


Charged up with the idea of campaigning for Tony Oliviera in October, I started to drive back to San Francisco, then realizing I could still catch the overnight flight to Paris.
Headed for the airport instead, having to admit the story about the beating to Katie as soon as she hugged me hello.
What a love! She brought a case packed with fresh clothes, a parcel of letters from Marcella, and the stack of material and journals from Garms to study on the flight.
Kate reminded me that tonight Gina was opening at the Met, but of course, the many emotional letters have been a constant reminder, and I've sent flowers.
Armand's invitation to welcome her back to France at his Paris palace will follow the performance, and we have to count on her acceptance.
If it weren't for my poor judgment in giving Alice the benefit of the doubt, I could have been on hand to witness what surely has to be a great triumph in New York.

Paul learns that a friend of his propositioned a local woman when his wife was having an affair around the time of George McKenna's murder.

Considering the man a suspect, Paul confronts him, and even accuses him of having had Paul beaten up.

When the friend says he wouldn't know where to hire such people, Paul suddenly realizes who would - someone with prison connections.

He goes to Alice, who is entertaining a roomful of guests, and she admits to everything.

But when Paul sees her sons now accepted by the local boys, he decides to say nothing, and flies to Europe.

Friday, July 22

Spending the flight reading through articles from the clinic, but kept going back to a letter from Lisa Sorrow who's invited me to Israel. I was in a reverie of fantasies, but on arrival here, the mood was snapped by an ebullient Rachel, buzzing about developments in “my beautiful sportscar” to be unveiled at Monza.
To my surprise she not only met my flight, but treated me to a personal tour of this fascinating city in the morning before heading off for Zandvoort, and the team is now going out for a Night On The Town in her elegantly appointed canal boat.
Grabbed her copy of The New York Times soon as it arrived, and was thrilled to read about Gina “displaying a depth of emotion and tragedy beyond what the Metropolitan stage has been treated to in many a year.”
Rachel read over my shoulder with interest when I mentioned that Armand was inviting Gina to stay in Paris after New York, and indicated that she must do the same.

Paul arrives in Holland for the Dutch Grand Prix.
Saturday, July 23

The whole team continued to be elated over new changes in the car, and wonder of wonders, Pete turned the developments into sixth place on the grid. In the points if he can hold onto the position.
When I saw Nick Cooper with a woman and two children after qualifying, went over to speak to them, and he introduced his wife, son and daughter. I studied all their faces, and wondered if one of them was dying. They all looked so happy and healthy, I just hoped it wasn't possible.

The team qualifies in sixth place.
en route to Mexico
Sunday, July 24

We'd found ourselves in seventh heaven when a clever move at the start got Pete into fifth, and another car losing its place had the Mastin FOURTH. All only to end in disappointment when Pete was crashed into.
He was in a black mood, but I decided to cut out with him for the airport, regretting it as soon as we got in the car, never having seen him so seething. However, we made it to Amsterdam in one piece, not having exchanged more than a few sentence fragments along the way.
At first, I took it as ironic, Pete's parting words that my company on the drive meant a lot to him, but once I got in the plane, realized that he really meant it.
Would liked to have spent more time, exploring the city and country, but don't want to miss my fishing date with Ramon.


Having poured through the medical journals on two long flights this weekend, I am coming closer to an understanding of this disease, which discoveries have meant progress in possibly treating it, and the challenges to coming up with a genuine cure.
Never thought medical research was anything but tedious, but maybe it's having such a big stake in the solution that is making it like the best of Conan Doyle for me now.

24 July - 2 August 1966 ("The Sex Object")
Paul leaves for Mexico after the race.