2024

January/February

Happy New Year!!  I hope you are looking forward to a healthy and eventful 2024.

I recently received the financial statement for our class treasury as of June 30, 2023 which reports a balance of $47,559 after accounting for the approximate $28,000 charge for the subsidy we provided for our 65the reunion held in June, 2022.  That, coupled with the dues that we have begun collecting again, should keep us solvent at least through our 70th reunion to be held over Memorial Day weekend in 2026.  Plans are also under consideration to hold a mini-reunion in New Haven during the weekend of September 28, 2024.  More details later.

Bill Rees has continued to enhance our class web page with the addition of the Class of 1956 Whiffenpoofs’ record which can be found at https://yale56.org/the-56-whiffenpoofs/.

Bill Poorvu’s wife Lia has reported that our former class secretary, Ted Robb, has moved to an assisted living facility in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  There he met a fellow Yalie, Class of ’57, who had attended the same grade school in New York City as Ted had.  Ted won’t lack for friends given his warm and welcoming nature.

Previously, I had praised Jordan Cohen for having five great grandchildren and challenged others to claim more.  John Rindlaub and Bob Hoerle claimed 10 each, but Bill Hinkes now holds the class record reporting “now up to 15” having eight children and their offspring to produce that impressive number.  Apparently, he expects more to come.

Arnold (Arnie) Kaplan recently returned from a two week safari in Tanzania accompanied by his son and daughter and their spouses.  He has been a practicing psychiatrist for the past 59 years and still delights in seeing patients 3 ½ days a week.  He expects to be carried out of his office “kicking and screaming” before he voluntarily retires.

In my last notes I reported that Jim Kern planned to hike in the Kashmir area of Pakistan in late 2023.  He has made that trip but had an unexpected ordeal getting there.  When he arrived in Islamabad, Pakistan, expecting to explore the peaks and valleys of the Himalayas, he was informed that he could not leave the airport as he didn’t have a visa for Pakistan.  He had to await a flight back to Paris, France, to get the visa which resulted in four nights and days of sleeping on planes and in airports.  Once back in Paris, the security police returned his passport, and he obtained his visa.  He then returned to Pakistan where he spent four days on the shoulder of Nanga Parbat, the ninth highest mountain on earth.  He then began a five hour hike to base camp for the mountain climb, but only made two of the five hours before calling it quits.  He is looking forward to returning next year with his visa to explore Pakistan’s Hunza Valley.  And he is 89!

Milton Gaines reported that Dr. Es Esselstyn and his family were featured on a podcast produced by The Exam Room in Washington, D.C. covering their pioneering efforts in studying plant-based diets to prevent and reverse heart disease. Es’s research on the subject was also featured in the groundbreaking 2011 documentary film Forks over Knives available to be streamed on Amazon Prime and other sources.

On a sad note, James G. (Jim) Glenn died unexpectedly on August 27, 2023.  While he majored in engineering at Yale and worked in that field in Texas and Louisiana after graduation, he returned to his home state, Pennsylvania, in 1959 to take over his father’s Buick dealership in New Kensington.  He thus became the youngest automobile dealer in the U.S.  He became a very respected civic and business leader in the community, serving on numerous boards of directors. With fellow community leaders, he founded the Downtown Development Group to help revitalize and beautify the town’s business district.  He was an avid fisherman, fly-fishing streams in Pennsylvania and major rivers in Colorado, Montana, Wyoming, and New Zealand.  He and his wife Jane traveled extensively in Europe and Central America, and he was active until his death as a swimmer and tennis player.

Laurence J. (Larry) McCarthy died on September 6, 2023, following a three year battle with prostate cancer. His wife Cynthia (Cindy) was by his side  Following Yale, Larry attended Georgetown Medical School and received his M.D. from Harvard Medical School in 1960.  He then went on to receive an M.S. in pathology from the University of Minnesota and completed his residency in anatomic and clinical pathology at the Mayo Clinic in 1965.  He became Director of Pathology and Laboratory at the A.R. Gould Hospital in Presque Isle, Maine, where he met Cindy.  Shortly after their marriage in 1978, they moved to Honolulu, Hawaii, where he served for 28 years as Associate Pathologist at Kuakini Medical Center.  Following his retirement, he and Cindy moved to Bainbridge Island, Washington, where they lived for 17 years.  Larry enjoyed sailing, cruising to Alaska and other destinations, coin collecting, fantasy baseball and football, trips to the local casino, and watching movies of World War II, especially Band of Brothers.

March/April

It is always a pleasure to start these notes with good news. The first is to report that Jack Silliman, who had been laid up for several months and opted to step down as our chairman of class agents, has recovered and resumed his role as chairman. Thanks go to Marv Berenblum for stepping in for Jack. Marv will continue as one of our class agents.

On Saturday night following The Game with Harvard we had our annual class dinner at the Elm City Club. It was fun to celebrate another Yale win over Harvard! Classmates present were Ed Barlow, Marv Berenblum, Tersh Boasberg, Ray Foote, Joe McNay, Bill Reese, Burt Strauss, and myself. Several spouses were also in attendance.

Charlie Luthy sent a happy note along with his class dues payment, reporting, “Do a little corn, beans, and cattle; drum in a German band. Have a wonderful wife and great kids. Life is good. Yale was a blessing.”

Yale’s recording secretary recently reported that this year’s recipient of the Class of 1956 Memorial Scholarship is Madeline L. Poole ’25. She is the granddaughter of Richard Lynton ’66. Apparently, no student with a 1956 heritage qualified for our scholarship this year.

But we also have too much sad news. James M. (JimCoyle died on November 8, 2023. After Yale, Jim began 40-plus years in education which began at his alma mater, Taft School. He left Taft after two years to serve in counterintelligence with the US Army for three years. Upon his discharge, he joined the faculty of the King School, serving there for 13 years as a teacher, coach, admissions director, and acting headmaster. During this time, he obtained his MA from Columbia University, married Margaret (who survives), and began his family. After King School, Jim accepted the position as headmaster of Greens Farms Academy, where he spent the next 26 years. During his tenure, the school’s enrollment grew from 305 students, mostly girls, to 535 with a 50–50 ratio of girls to boys. Following retirement, Jim and his wife moved to Tucson, Arizona, so he could play more golf, watch baseball, and, he claims, make the best daiquiris in the nation.

Mary Dunphy just reported that her husband of 68 years, Barry E. Dunphy, died on May 9, 2021. They met while she was working at Yale’s Laboratory of Applied Science during his sophomore year. Barry went on to the University of Washington to obtain his medical degree in 1960 with further studies that led to a master of public health degree. Following service in the Navy, Jim was employed by Boeing as medical director, retiring after 26 years.

John F. Horn, a partner for many years of Wagner Stott and Company, a specialist firm on the New York Stock Exchange, died on October 20, 2023. John was an avid golfer and a member of several world-renowned golf clubs including the Royal & Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews. He cherished his 800-year-old house in Scotland where he entertained frequently, and he followed this hospitality by entertaining friends in later years in Vero Beach, Florida. He enjoyed cooking and had success in National Hunt racing in England. John is survived by his wife Betsy, three sons, and two stepdaughters.

Perhaps the classmate whose demise has received the most national attention in quite a while is Kenneth P. (KenMacKenzie who died December 14, 2023, at his home in Guilford, Connecticut. A Canadian by birth, Ken came to Yale rather than enrolling in a Canadian university and began an outstanding career as both an accomplished university hockey player and a baseball standout. As a graduating senior in 1956, Ken won second-team All-Ivy honors for hockey and served as captain of the baseball team. Upon graduation, Ken began his pitching career in the minor leagues, first in Canada for a year and then with double- and triple-A teams in the US. His overall statistics in the minors were impressive. It wasn’t until 1962 that he landed a permanent position on a major league team when he joined the New York Mets, a newly formed expansion team. In that first year with the Mets, Ken had the only winning record for a Mets pitcher, going 5–4 for the season. Following his retirement from baseball in 1967, Ken came back to Yale as its freshman baseball and hockey coach. He succeeded Ethan Allen as Yale’s varsity baseball coach in 1969 and held that position until 1978. He then joined the staff of the Yale Alumni Association which he served until his retirement in 1984. A very good biography of Ken is contained in an article by the Society for American Baseball Research.

E. Dennis McCarthy II of Williamsville, New York, died August 22, 2023. Regrettably, there is very limited information in the obituary I received. His wife Sandra survives, and donations may be made to the Nichols School McCarthy Fund and the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra.

Joseph B. (Joe) Wennik died November 26, 2023, in Newburyport, Massachusetts. A graduate of Phillips Andover Academy, Joe spent most of his life after Yale serving his high school alma mater. Before joining the faculty at Andover, Joe served in the US Army for four years and studied Hungarian at the Army Language School in Monterey, California, which led to an assignment on the German-Hungarian border during the Cold War. Upon discharge, Joe joined the faculty of Holderness School in Plymouth, New Hampshire, as an English teacher and studied for his MA in German at Middlebury College. He earned a Fulbright Scholarship to the University of Mainz in Germany, and, eventually, taught German and pursued his PhD in Medieval German at the University of Virginia. In 1967, he was offered a position at Andover which he joyfully accepted, spending the next 33 years there serving as teacher, coach, housemaster, and administrator. He is survived by Inga, his wife of 62 years.

Last but not least is George M. Woloch who died November 8, 2023, with his wife of nearly 50 years by his side. George developed diabetes just before our final exams in 1956 and credited his diagnosis in large part to having concurrently completed courses in intermediate and advanced ancient Greek. Upon graduation he went to teach Greek at Brooklyn College in New York for a year. He continued his education by spending several years at Saint Peter’s College, Oxford University, in England, earning both a BA and an MA in 1963. With those credentials, he began a 35-year career teaching Latin and Roman history in the classics department at McGill University, though he spent time from 1963 to 1966 obtaining his PhD at Johns Hopkins University. He became a full professor at McGill in 1988. In 1996, George was named an adjunct professor in the McGill Faculty of Science as a result of his work on the Roman coins in McGill’s museum. He became an emeritus professor in 2009. Though raised in a secular family, in 2004 George joined the Reorganized Mormon Church in Montreal, a congregation composed largely of Haitians. He learned basic Haitian Creole so as to participate more fully in the church services.

May/June

In previous notes, I had reported that we were exploring the possibility of holding a mini-reunion in late September in New Haven.  After much discussion, we have decided not to pursue that idea.  Instead, we will continue to hold a class dinner after the final home football game (Princeton, Saturday, November 16), and those who will be in town the night before will receive information about joining classmates for dinner at Mory’s on Friday night.

Werner Gossels added a note with his annual dues payment that his family had added two more great grandchildren over the past two years, bringing the total to 11.  That number of great grandchildren now puts Werner in second place behind Bill Hinkes who still holds the class record of 15.

Joe Paquette’s son Christopher sent me an email reporting that Joe had lived his life to the fullest until 2020, living independently in Gladwyne, Pennsylvania, and wintering in Vero Beach, Florida.  Sadly, he began to suffer from dementia about the time the Covid pandemic started, requiring a move about 18 months ago to an assisted living facility with a further move late last year to a skilled nursing facility.  Christopher noted that Joe remains “incredibly sharp,” but his body is shutting down.  Fortunately, he still looks forward to the Yale Alumni Magazine and our class notes.  He can be reached at christopherpaquette@gmail.com.

Raymond G. (Ray) Carlson, a native of New Haven, died January 10, 2024.  He took up fencing at Yale and was on the varsity fencing team for three years, winning the Harvard-Yale-Princeton Championships and placing third in the Eastern Championships twice.  After graduation with a B.E., he stayed at Yale to get both his Masters and Doctorate in Mechanical Engineering.  An internship with Sikorsky Helicopter led to his being hired by Igor Sikorsky and a 33-year career with the company, eventually retiring as Head of Advanced Research and Development in 1997.  He was proud to be a part of the award-winning team that developed the Health Usage & Monitoring System for helicopters, a safety system now found on almost all new large helicopters.  He also patented several inventions and led the design team for the Defense Department’s Black Hawk Helicopter.  Ray served 38 years as the treasurer of the Swedish Aid Society, distributing aid to needy families in the New Haven area.  He was a judge for the Connecticut High School Science Fair and was a leader in local Boy Scout troops in Orange, Connecticut.

I just learned that W. Austin Cooper died October 16, 2022, in Sacramento, California.  Austin was born in Dayton, Ohio, where his father was stationed at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.  Austin remembered throughout his life attending Orville Wright’s funeral in 1947.  In 1950, his father was transferred to Arnold Engineering and Development Center in Tullahoma, Tennessee.  Austin, a Boy Scout, was selected to be President Harry Truman’s guide when he came to dedicate the facility in 1951.  After graduating from Yale, Austin attended the University of Virginia Law School where he formed friendships with Ted Kennedy, John Tunney, and George W. Bush.  He later met Presidents John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, and Bill Clinton.  Austin spent most of his life practicing law in Sacramento.  His friendship with Senator Ted Kennedy resulted in the Senator’s seeking advice on how to react to Reagan’s nomination of Anthony Kennedy, a Sacramento lawyer, to the U.S. Supreme Court.  Austin gave Mr. Kennedy a favorable endorsement, and the Senator did not oppose the nomination.  Austin considered this advice to the Senator to be his most important political achievement. 

Ed Barlow sent me the following regarding Dr. John Phair, the renowned infectious diseases physician and professor, who died of a heart attack on February 19, 2024. At Yale, John was Captain of the 1955-56 Swimming Team which came in second to Ohio State in the NCAA Championships that year.  He was named to the All-American Team. John interned in internal medicine at Yale following which he and his wife Nancy spent two years in Hiroshima, Japan, studying the human effects of nuclear radiation and treating survivors. In 1976 he became Chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases at Northwestern University Medical School, at the time when the AIDS virus was emerging. John assumed a major role for the rest of his career as a world leader in researching the virus and treating its patients. As John’s daughter Liz said in the Chicago Tribune, he championed AIDS patients early on when “no one wanted to treat them.”  John’s wife Nancy Phair, a former teacher at the Art Institute of Chicago, survives, as do their daughter Liz Phair, the famous rock singer and song writer, and their son Philip.

Robert P. Stevens’s wife Mary Beth reported that he died on December 28, 2023.  She reported that he requested no obituary or memorial service.  She did say, “Robert was a gentleman to the last, who lived a good life and died knowing that he was deeply loved.”

Joseph P. McCarthy died November 17, 2023, and Charles R. Schulze of North Branford, Connecticut, died January 18, 2024.  Regrettably, I have been unable to find anything to report about either after they graduated from Yale.

July/August

Following a discussion by several members of our executive committee, we will not have a mini-reunion this year.  We will, however, have a class dinner following the last home football game which will be against Princeton on Saturday, November 16.  More details on that will be sent in early fall for registration.  I hope to see you then.

The Zoom meetings that Ken Liebman and Peter Braun have facilitated on the third Wednesday of each month has been rescheduled to the second Wednesday, and the format has been changed to have a classmate make a presentation every other month, alternating with the original format of an informal, social gathering.  The first of these planned programs was held in the March meeting when Peter Hutt, senior counsel for Covington & Burling, made a presentation about the many accomplishments he achieved while serving as General Counsel for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration from 1971 to 1975.  His talk was very well received.

I am pleased to include news of interest from several classmates.  Roger Bullard spent six days last April trout fishing in Patagonia and returned to his Denver home via Sao Paulo, Brazil, to visit former associates at Russell Reynolds Associates-Brazil.  In October, he has plans to “wet my fly line” in New Zealand and travel on to Australia to visit his late wife’s extended family there.  His 2025 plans include touring English cathedrals and two weeks in Jerusalem.

Don Chatfield sent me a very thoughtful email expressing his appreciation for the updates I give on classmates and apologizing for not being able to attend any of our class activities.  He now lives in California, making travel difficult for him.  He received his BD at Princeton Seminary and his PhD at Edinburgh (Scotland) University and then taught for many years in the theological seminary on the Northwestern University campus in Evanston, Illinois.

Bob MacLean, a graduate of Yale Law School with an MD from Cornell, reported that many years ago he was sent to Houston by his employer, the U.S. Public Health Service.  After his two year obligation, he and his wife had enjoyed Houston so much that they stayed. He achieved many accomplishments there serving as city health director, Texas regional director of public health, and both Deputy Commissioner and Commissioner of the Texas Health Department, from which he retired.  He kept his home in Houston but had an apartment in Austin from which he commuted back home on weekends.  He retired back to Houston where he currently resides.

And, sadly, we have lost some classmates.  Richard P. (Dick) Goldman died on September 6, 2021.  Following Yale, he obtained a Master of Arts at Middlebury College in 1965 and began a career in secondary education as a teacher and administrator.  He taught at Wilbraham (Massachusetts) Academy from 1959 to 1972, and then served as assistant headmaster of Germantown Friends School in Philadelphia from 1972 to 1992.  During his tenure there he served for two years as interim head of school and then as associate head from 1993 until his retirement.  He was a Trustee of Wilbraham and Monson Academy.  He is survived by his wife Claire.

James C. (Jim) Hobart, III died suddenly on October 20, 2023 in Sun City, Arizona.   Jim held a Master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Colorado and became an accomplished public servant with a talent for finance and efficiency.  His almost 40-year career in city and university administration took him from Tucson, Arizona, to New Hampshire where he was City Manager of Keene, New Hampshire.  That position was followed by positions at Keene State College as Director of Administration and Plymouth State College as Director of Finance.  His inquisitive mind and intellectual approach served him well in everything he did.  He is survived by his wife of 67 years, Sarah.

Edward I. (Ed) Selig, loving husband, father, and grandfather, died on April 8, 2024, after a long illness.  After studying English literature at Yale, Ed studied philosophy at Merton College, Oxford University, as a Rhodes Scholar.  He also studied at the Jewish Theological School and earned a law degree at Harvard.  He moved to Washington, D.C., to work at Covington & Burling before joining the U.S. Department of Justice.  He moved back to the Boston area to help run the Council on Law Related Studies at Harvard Law School.  That work led him to an interest in the emerging field of environmental law in which he became an early expert, focusing on water and air pollution control.  A proud achievement was drafting the original Massachusetts Clean Water Act which was more comprehensive than the federal law.  He also taught environmental law at Boston University and Harvard.  After retirement from practicing law, Ed pursued other passions, serving as a mediator, volunteering with the Executive Service Corps, and returning to English literature leading classes on poetry, short stories, and philosophy for adult learners.  He is survived by Renata, his wife of nearly 64 years.  Among his many accolades is one I received from Dick Parke, but space limitations will require I include it next time.