Louisville Magazine

JAN 2019

Louisville Magazine is Louisville's city magazine, covering Louisville people, lifestyles, politics, sports, restaurants, entertainment and homes. Includes a monthly calendar of events.

Issue link: https://loumag.epubxp.com/i/1066550

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Page 48 of 92

46 LOUISVILLE MAGAZINE 1.19 to get arrested." Her name appears nearly 700 times in the Courier-Journal, mostly attached to her letters to the editor. "She can motivate a crowd and have the mo- mentum and get people fired up about is- sues, similar to (Louisville Urban League president and CEO) Sadiqa Reynolds today," Aldridge says. In the '80s, Post became executive director of the local ACLU and worked herself so thin that she had to quit after eight years, the second-longest executive director tenure after Aldridge, who has held the role since 2008. Her parting gifts: securing seed money from pro- choice philanthropists in the Bingham and Brown families; starting the Repro- ductive Freedom Project (which turns 30 this year) as Kentucky and other states were attempting to chip away at rights granted in the Roe v. Wade decision; and reviving the organization from lean times and giving it the grounding to become the 11-person staff that's currently in four lawsuits against Gov. Matt Bevin concerning abortion access. e ACLU is in the midst of moving into offices at Waterfront Plaza on Main Street, and Aldridge says that a meeting room will be named after Post. "She was like, 'Couldn't name the whole building after me?'" Aldridge says. After leaving the job at the ACLU, Post went on to become the founding director of the Metropolitan Housing Coalition, which works to secure affordable housing for those in need. But she has remained tight with the ACLU. "She's talking a lot about death right now," Aldridge says. "She kept trying to get me to use her death as a fundraising opportunity. She's like, 'I've raised money. I know you can do this. Let's think about who can give you a lot of money on my death.'" For her 80th birthday, in 2013, she helped raise nearly $200,000 for Louisville Central Community Center (a west Louisville nonprofit she's worked with for decades) during a Suzy Post Roast and Toast. When I visit her in mid-November, she's got red and blue star-shaped foam stickers on each of her cheeks. ey're a way to cushion the oxygen tube she's worn since she had a cancerous lung removed years ago. "Usually when you see people that wear these, you'll see these indentations," she says. "It's a dead giveaway. I also think they're a little more festive-looking than just showing up in one of these ghastly... e only trouble is I have to go into one of the stores that I tell everybody never to shop in to get (the stickers). It's one of the stores that is anti-choice? It's a chain?" Hobby Lobby? "Yeah, that's it." Post, now 85, appears decades younger as she bounces from room to carpeted room, barefoot. It's a postmodern dream inside her Craftsman-style home in Crescent Hill. Two giant tiger-print sofas face each other in an art-filled sunroom. ere's a sculpture of a dancing couple that Post bought from former Universi- ty of Kentucky basketball player LaVon Williams, though she didn't recognize the name until her son mentioned it. She calls her bedroom "the vagina room" because she had a friend paint it in a swirl of coral, orange, purple and peach, making it seem like you're inside a Georgia O'Keeffe painting. Maureen Womack, a friend of Post's daughter, helps out around the house, keeps Post company and drives her places. Post says, "I moved in going through a divorce when I was 47 and I'm eighty-…?" "Five," Womack says. "Eighty-five?" "Mmmhmm." "God, I can't believe I got so old so fast. So I've lived here 20-something years. No! irty-something. Jeez." Post takes a gulp of iced Coke, sets it down on a glass coffee table and wrings life stories from her sharp memory, for the first of three interviews, condensed on the following pages. When I return a few weeks later, a woman with Home Instead Senior Care answers the door and asks if I'm with Hosparus. Inside, a loud oxygen tank hums and gurgles. Post is on the coiled landline in her kitchen, talking with her neighbors who are in China. Once we sit down, the phone seems to ring every few minutes. "We're trying to figure out how long I've got to live," Post says, "I've never been here before. I have a lung disease that's gonna kill me, and we're trying to think about when the best time for that would be. It's interesting. And a little strange, to sit around thinking, When's the best time to get her drugs? It's hard for me because whenever I have to have a discussion about my death, which is gonna be coming up soon — I mean, I have just loved life. It is gonna piss me off to have to die before I really want to. "And the one thing I wanted in my life, after I decided that I was not gonna end up just planting seeds and growing little gardens, is that it was really important to me to have an interesting life, because an Post in the 1970 s.

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