March 3, 1947
Since 1944, Sarah Shirley Ruenker, 32, has suffered crippling claustrophobia, an ailment that today nearly kept her from filing for divorce against her machinist husband Carl. Accompanied by her attorney Barry Woodmansee, she bravely stepped into the tiny elevator at City Hall... then crumpled in tears and had to be carried out by Woodmansee and the operator. After quieting her, Woodmansee rode alone to the 19th floor, where he explained to Judge Paul Vallee the reason for Sarah's nonappearance. A sympathetic man, the judge agreed to hear the case on the ground floor of the Probate Courts Building, and granted the lady her divorce on grounds of non-support.