In writing of his decision to leave the Japanese army, Richard, after his return to the United States, said:
"On the receipt of Oku's answer to the Correspondents we left the army. Other correspondents would have quit then, as most of them did ten days later, but that their work and Kuroki, so far from being fifty miles north toward Mukden, as Okabe said he was, was twenty miles to the east on our right preparing for the, closing-in movement which was just about to begin. Three days after we had left the army, the greatest battle since Sedan was waged for six days.
"So, our half-year of time and money, of dreary waiting, of daily humiliations at the hands of officers with minds diseased by suspicion, all of which would have been made up to us by the sight of this one great spectacle, was to the end absolutely lost to us. Perhaps we made a mistake in judgment. As the cards fell we certainly did.
"The only proposition before us was this: There was small chance of any immediate fighting. If there were fighting we would not see it. Confronted with the same conditions again, I would decide in exactly the same manner. Our misfortune lay in the fact that our experience with other armies had led us to believe that officers and gentlemen speak the truth, that men with titles of nobility, and with the higher titles of General and Major-General, do not lie. In that we were mistaken."
Greatly disappointed at his failure to see really anything of the war, much embittered at the Japanese over their treatment of the correspondents, Richard reached Vancouver in October. As my father was seriously ill he came to Philadelphia at once and divided the next two months between our old home and Marion.
On December 14, 1904, my father died, and it was the first tragedy that had come into Richard's life, as it was in that of my sister or myself. As an editorial writer, most of my father's work had been anonymous, but his influence had been as far-reaching as it had been ever for all that was just and fine. All of his life he had worked unremittingly for good causes and, in spite of the heavy burdens which of his own will he had taken upon his none too strong shoulders, I have never met with a nature so calm , so simple, so sympathetic with those who were weak--weak in body or soul. As all newspaper men must, he had been brought in constant contact with the worst elements of machine politics, as indeed he had with the lowest strata of the life common to any great city. But in his own life he was as unsophisticated; his ideals of high living, his belief in the possibilities of good in all men and in all women, remained as unruffled as if he had never left his father's farm where he had spent his childhood. When my father died Richard lost his "kindest and severest critic" as he also lost one of his very closest friends and companions.
During the short illness that preceded my brother's death, although quite unconscious that the end was so near, his thoughts constantly turned back to the days of his home in Philadelphia, and he got out the letters which as a boy and as a young man he had written to his family. After reading a number of them he said: "I know now why we were such a happy It was because we were always, all of us, of the same age."
During my brother's life there were four centres from which he set forth on his travels and to which he returned to finish the articles for which he had collected the material, or perhaps to write a novel, a few short stories, or occasionally a play, but unlike most of the followers of his craft, never to rest. Indeed during the last twenty-five years of his life I do not recall two consecutive days when Richard did not devote a number of hours to literary work. The centres of which I speak were first Philadelphia, then New York, then Marion, and lastly Mount Kisco. Happy as Richard had been at Marion, the quaint little village, especially in winter, was rather inaccessible, and he realized that to be in touch with the numerous affairs in which he was interested that his headquarters should be in or near New York. In addition to this he had for long wanted a home of his very own, and so located that he could have his family and his friends constantly about him. Some years, however, elapsed between this dream and its realization. In 1903 he took the first step by purchasing a farm situated in the Westchester Hills, five miles from Mount Kisco, New York. He began by building a lake at the foot of the hill on which the home was to stand, then a water-tower, and finally the house itself. The plans to the minutest detail had been laid out on the lawn at Marion and, as the architect himself said, there was nothing left for him to do but to design the cellar.