The daughter of a bartender who was the the only single
mom among 2000 residents of Red Lodge, Montana, Doe Tabor
got married at 14 to a Viet Nam vet with PTSD. "I called him
Buck and he called me Doe," says Tabor, born Dorene O.
Ewing. At 16 she got a divorce and ran off with their baby
daughter to the wilds of Wyoming. "He was serious about
killing us," she says. "He killed himself 14 years later."
Tabor studied vet tech in Demopolis, Wyoming, then worked in
animal health for 16 years, mostly in Eugene after her
arrival in 1977. A novel-writing class at LCC in 1995 led to
the publication of Do Drums Beat There, the story of a
Lakota girl, a psychedelic journey, and the occupation of
Alcatraz, nominated for an Oregon Book Award in 2001.
Energized by literary success and the Bush election, Tabor
has leapt into activism, from Truth in Voting in '01 to the
Code Pink occupation of Hilary Clinton's office early this
year. She is also writing her second novel, Tug of War.
"It's about Buck and me," she says. "It's about how war
ripples through society when soldiers come home."
photograph and story by Paul Neevel
Eugene Weekly / 19 April 2007