CLASS OF 1953 | 2019 | ISSUE 1

The most widely known member of our class, Herbert David “Herb” Kelleher, 87, died Jan. 3, 2019. He was remembered in the Wall Street Journal for his friendship and incredible inspiration with a half-page obituary with photographs and a full page ad by the employees and retirees of Southwest Airlines and by Chase. He “democratized the skies” as Southwest claims. “The affordability and availability of airline travel is now taken for granted for one reason—the tenacity of Herb”(WSJ editorial). Herb was an English major, a DKE, college body president, a student-athlete in football and basketball, and NYU law school graduate. Each member of the class has his own memory of Herb as an undergraduate. Mine is his catching for a touchdown, a tipped pass in the Amherst end zone to tie the score and end the game. Unable to attend our 65th because of a doctor’s travel restriction, Herb asked me to pass along his greetings to all. Herb is survived by his wife, Joan, three children, and many grandchildren.

George Alfred Lewis, 87, of Westfield, N.J., passed away Dec. 22, 2018. George was a history major, an Alpha Delta Phi, and four-year baseball player. After Army service he embarked on a career in data processing management with New York Telephone and then AT&T, even though he never touched a computer and struggled with technology. A longtime tennis player, he umpired around the state including the US Open in New York. George had a passion for history, especially 1920-1945 and Winston Churchill, having served on the board of the International Churchill Society. His son, Peter ’78, said if George could pass a message to the alumni it would be: “Next time you come upon a homeless person, instead of walking past, reach into your wallet and pull out a $10 bill.” He was thrilled to hold his great-grandson shortly before he died. George is survived by his wife, Barbara; son Peter; daughter Amy; and a granddaughter.

Jerry Zackin became a great-grandfather of William, son of Katie Zackin ’10 and Robert Roose ’04 and grandson of Michael Zackin ’80 and Mary Nastuk-Zackin ’80 in December, while Sandy and he were on a cruise/expedition to Antarctica “making ‘wet’ (water up to our calves) landings every day, seeing lots of penguins, whales, and seals.” In May they cruised from Dubai to Rome with stops in Egypt, Jordan, Israel, and others.

Ed Lifset’s note described his recovery from a fall three years ago that resulted in a fractured right hip, elbow, and tibia. This caused him to abandon a planned trip, two days later, to Afghanistan and central Asia. This would have been his 54th trip out of the country. With a titanium rod in his leg from hip to knee and plenty of screws, he is relatively mobile, with the aid of a cane. Ed hopes to visit the campus one more time if an occasion arises.

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