RESERVATION NOT ACCEPED

THE COURT RETURNED LALITA ALTAHA TO HER NATURAL MOTHER, AND A LIFE OF UNHAPPINESS AT FORT APACHE

Allen kept in touch with Lalita after his term on the Civil Rights Commission expired and he returned to California to take a teaching position at Claremont College. After Lalita returned to the DesRochers, he visited her in Durango and took the family out to breakfast.

Earlier this year, when Lalita graduated from Durango High School, Allen sent her a dozen roses. For better or worse, Thurza was correct about one thing: Lalita feels no connection to her Apache roots.

"To me," Lalita says, "Apache is just a word. I don't know that much about it. I always knew they were there, and I knew I was Indian--it's obvious--but I never felt any connection to the tribe. Before all this happened, I did have a somewhat normal life with my mom and dad, and I wish they [the Apaches] had just left me alone.

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