William Baker was six years old in 1931 when his mother left him at an orphanage, promising to return for him when she was settled in a new home. But years passed, and she virtually vanished from his life. At age fifteen, Baker unceremoniously “graduated” to a boys’ home, where orphans were forced to do hard labor and sometimes abused.
Leaving Lila is the true story of Baker’s escape from “The Home.” With his meager possessions stuffed into a Boy Scout knapsack, Baker lived by wits and determination, on the road in search of his mother and a better life.
Baker skillfully crafts a memoir that is moving, suspenseful, and sometimes shocking. From the rare perspective of a ninety-year-old who experienced America’s underbelly in the 1940s, Leaving Lila is a firsthand account of a frightened boy who escaped horror only to find more trouble. But along the way, he also found love in encounters so intense they were indelibly imprinted upon his memory.
“Touching and beautifully written by an excellent writer with much to share and the courage to share it.” ~Lois Duncan, bestselling author of Hotel for Dogs.
About the Author
William Baker was born in 1925 somewhere in Virginia. An ex-soldier and professional orphan, Baker likes gin, cats, apples, and the poetry of William Butler Yeats. He lives in Lake Oswego, Oregon.