Here we go! New Secretary, with thanks to those who attended our 55th… Speaking of which, two of our non attendees, Chuck Henry and his wife Jean, who had every intention of participating in our enjoyable gathering had their plans rudely interrupted by an unlicensed driver on the Merritt Parkway who sideswiped them causing a horrendous accident. After a trip to the hospital emergency room they wisely returned home rather than join the reunion in progress with a broken clavicle and numerous black and marks to show for their effort. We salute you and are thankful for your survival.
Charlie Lord, now resting on his rocking chair, passed along some notes he received but was unable to include in his column. One was from George Litton who reported last January that he spends his spare time as President of his New York Central Park West co-op and island hopping via Tahiti, Bora Bora and Fiji to catch his conductor/pianist son Andrew’s performance at The Sidney Opera.
I’m also happy to pass along the news that for the fourth year our class Memorial Scholarship (selection process favoring descendants of the class of 1956) has been awarded to Lindsey Raymond, grand niece of classmate Dick Raymond. Lindsey, coming off a spring semester at Oxford, is a senior economics major and member of the women’s varsity soccer team. She wrote to express her “heartfelt thanks for the generosity of the Class of 1956. Come to the Class dinner after the Harvard game November 19 and meet with her up close and personal.
On yet another front where the class of ’56 has distinguished itself, I received a final wrap up report from Bob Wheeler concerning the class sponsored “I Have a Dream” project initiated by Tom Jamieson and Ed Barlow and guided to success by Wheels. In short, we adopted the entire fourth grade of East Rock (56 students) with a promise to pay their college tuitions if they graduated from high school. Some of the final statistics are impressive:
44 0f the 56 dreamers graduated from high school on time.
Ten graduated a year later.
Only one student dropped out of school.
Of those who went on to college, one received her PhD in psychology from Penn State after
graduating from Pittsburgh.
Five others received bachelor degrees, another received an associate degree and yet another a
masters in nursing.
Of the 29 who started college, 18 went to four-year schools and 11 to two-year schools.
No less than 99 members of our class contributed $616,565 to the success of this initiative. Hats off to Bob, his 99 classmates and the many others who contributed to the success of this class venture.
Overheard at the reunion was the joy expressed by Janet and Bill Clark with the news that their granddaughter, Class of ’12, coxed the lightweight crew that beat Harvard and qualified for Henley, as well as the report from Werner Gossels and his wife Elaine of the depth of their ties to Yale Blue ( a grand son graduating in the class of 2011, with parents who both graduated in 1982). Good luck as well to the Rev Canon F. Hugh Magee who reports the publication of a new book, An Upgrader’s Guide: How to move on from Christianity and Rediscover Jesus, and to Jack McGregor and his wife Mary-Jane Foster. MJ is campaigning with vigor and determination to be elected Mayor of Bridgeport.
Now for the sad news concerning three more classmates who have passed away. Malcolm (Kim) Chase died June 23rd at Mass General. Kim was a vital member of the Class Executive Committee, and played a major role in helping to finance our 50th reunion. Widely known for his philanthropy, particularly at the Rhode Island School of Design where the Chase Center was dedicated in 2009. He is survived by his wife Elizabeth and a slew of children and grandchildren. Roger Hinkson, the captain of our wrestling team who established a successful medical career in Utica before retiring in 1996, passed away June 18. He was remembered as a “very special person” by his roommate and fellow Andover graduate, Myron Bromberg. Roger is survived by his wife Maureen. Philip Evans was reported to have passed away May 8 in Silver Spring, Maryland. He was a journalist who served as Managing Editor of The Washington Star in the 1970s, and is survived by his wife Dini Stewart.
REMEMBER: FOR GOOD FOOTBALL AND GOOD FELLOWSHIP CIRCLE NOVEMBER 19 ON YOUR CALENDAR AND ATTEND OUR CLASS DINNER IN NEW HAVEN.
MAY-JUNE 2011, Charles Lord, Class Secretary
Column deadline rapidly approaches, which means that I must interrupt my pleasure, reading Fred Brown’s magnificent biography, Flaubert, and start hunting and pecking on the computer. Why Flaubert at this advanced age, rather than secret tips on memory retention or the AARP Journal ? Gay and I are hosting our book club to discuss the naughty Madame Bovary. Oh to be young and French.
Now–here is your annual quiz. What do Turkey, Indonesia, and Newfoundland have in common? You guessed it. Our Davenport Fellowship winners are headed to these countries, following their selection by the Fellowship committees in Boston, Washington, and New York. (No one ever applies for a project in Perth Amboy.) Rae Ellen Bichell’s younger sister, Lena, headed off on a trip to Turkey; Rae Ellen is going to see Turkey through Lena’s eyes. Genny Ladiges “an absolute bird fanatic” is going to Newfoundland, ”hotbed for some of the most brilliant waterfowl on the planet.” Courtney Grafton, concerned that “the effects of Westernization are drastically altering emerging cultures” is “investigating the linguistic, social, and cultural marginalization of the original population” in Bali.
It is exciting to realize that we will hear about these wonderful trips at the Class Dinner after the Harvard game. I hope to see YOU there.
On the home front there is news. John Phair is still seeing patients part-time and continuing his NIH-sponsored research.
Marjorie and Howard Parker celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary three times: 1) A round-trip cruise from Seattle to Alaska and Victoria, B.C. 2) A four day trip to St. Augustine to visit friends of 32 years. 3) A celebration dinner near home in Georgia with their kids and their spouses.
Speaking of 50th anniversaries, Nikki Barranger reports on the 50th anniversary of Harriet and Al Koch on Nantucket. Fortunately, Nikki bought an ebony cane to help him navigate the Nantucket cobblestones. Other 56er’s in attendance with their spouses were: Shaun Ruddy, Jordy Cohen, Peter Randolph, Larry Hewes, and Chris Gates. I gather that the festivities could not be confused with a WCTU outing, but there were bus tours and shopping expeditions. Nikki comments: “It’s a great pity that house parties like this seem to be relegated to novels by Agatha Christie. Happily for us, no one turned up dead.”
Francis Compton’s wife, Florence, is “blessedly clear of lung cancer after surgery and chemotherapy treatments.” Francis still is active in the Illinois Retired Teachers Association and in his local church’s book and men’s club, also finding time to go to exercise class three days a week.
Warren Hutchins retired on December 31st, 2009, after “53 ½ years in the financial services industry, the last 28 ½ years at Merrill Lynch.”
Joe Williams also is enjoying retirement from his position as CEO of the Williams Companies, dividing his time between Charleston, S.C, and Linville, N.C., depending on time of year and temperature.
On the class web site, you will find Jim Downey’s fascinating, full report on the Alumni Chorus trip to Cuba. Our Class is well represented on that group: Martin Fenton, Pete Allee, , Marvin Berenblum , Bill Bourne, Ken Liebman, and Jim Kingsbury. Several spouses accompanied the singers. However, Florence and Gene McKelvey and Peggy Kingsbury also intended to go. However, three days before the departure their visas were revoked because they were not singers, only ‘humanitarian workers.’ Jim’s observations about how the “tyranny of Communism can squeeze the life out of what was once a glorious island” are very interesting. In addition to commenting on “the great camraderie , spontaneous singing on the steps of a government building, ocean swimming, a wonderful night at the Hotel Nacional, which dates from the days when the mob held sway in Cuba, Jim reported that the group also visited the Buena Vista Social Club and “had a high speed trip through Havana in pre-1959 convertibles to the smiles and encouragement of the locals.” Cuban rum and cigars were enjoyed…but it wasn’t debauchery, as the Eli’s also played baseball against the Cubans, who “excelled.”
Speaking of interesting trips, if you are tempted by the thought of a cruise, get hold of Sabin Robbins’s book: “A Cruiser’s Guide to Ocean Wonders”. Sabin grew up in the wilds of Cincinnati, raising a raccoon, crow and sea gulls. After Yale and Oxford, he worked at the National Geographic and the National Zoo in Washington, also leading safaris around the world and lecturing on over 100 world cruises.
“After nearly a decade, a true stalwart of the local (and national) preservation movement has retired from the Chairmanship of the Historic Preservation Review Board” -(NW Current newspaper).
Who? Tersh Boasberg, of course. Tersh (an attorney specializing in historic preservation, land use and environmental law) has an impressive list of accomplishments, including work as a trustee of the National Building Museum and President of the National Center for Preservation Law.
On March 5th several classmates gathered at a beautiful service in Washington, CT to celebrate the life of Charley West about whose life you read in a recent column. A widower, he is survived by his wonderful, loving daughters, Georgia and Peyton. Honoring Charley were Frances and Ed Barlow, Ted Robb, Judy and Gil Chapman, Francine and Larry Strauss, Bobbie and Jim Bishop, Mary Jane and Jack McGregor, and I. Jack, Charley’s friend virtually from birth, delivered a beautiful, thoughtful, and inspiring eulogy and Larry delivered a touching Bible reading. Those of us who knew and loved Charley will truly miss him.
George Linn Davis, a very distinguished global lawyer, died on March 2nd.In addition to serving five Citibank and Citicorp CEO’s, George was appointed by the US government as CEO of two rescued banks. George was Chairman of the National Stroke Association, the Central Park Conservancy, Lincoln Park Zoological Society, and the Chicago March of Dimes. He founded Scarborough, providing turn-around services and litigation support in financial services. George is survived by his, wife, Mary, and five sons.
I hope you are preparing to return for our 55th .