CLASS OF 1961 | 2019 | ISSUE 3

A question was posed to the Class of ’61 membership dealing with the future as we all foresee it, particularly in relation to advice for our grandchildren. Emil Frankel provided his predictions as follows: “We don’t have grandchildren (or children, for that matter), but my message to my grandnieces and -nephews and to your grandchildren is one of cautious optimism about the survival of the basic norms and values of American democracy. I wish that I could be hopeful about the quality of their physical lives. The catastrophic risks of climate change and environmental degradation seem irreversible and are already having effects on our lives. It’s hard to imagine how different (and unpleasant) the lives of our grandchildren will be. Sorry to be so gloomy.”

Emil continues: “Kathryn and I are living quietly in Washington D.C. I remain engaged in transportation policy issues, although at a reduced level, as a senior fellow at a small transportation policy think tank here in Washington, the Eno Center for Transportation. I continue to visit Wesleyan two or three times a year for various meetings and to attend the annual lecture on Jewish culture and history that we established at Wesleyan in my parents’ memories 35 years ago. Those lectures are always a source of great pleasure and interest, and provide me with the opportunity to reconnect with Wesleyan friends, faculty, and staff.”

An unexpected response came from Richard Poulton who wrote: “I doubt very much that you will remember me, but I had the privilege of being the Englishman who won a one-year overseas student scholarship in 1957-58, before returning to Cambridge in the U.K. and a lifetime of teaching. My year at Wesleyan was hugely enjoyable and extremely formative; I have been grateful ever since. My very best wishes to anyone who might remember me.”

Travel has played a significant role for a few classmates. Jack Mitchell writes: “Last summer Linda and I took six of our adult grandchildren plus a girlfriend (including Lyle ’16 and Dana ’18) to Australia for two weeks. First Sydney, then diving on the Great Barrier Reef, the rain forest, then Ayres Rock. A dream family fun trip of our lifetime. Three meals together every day. We shared and learned so much!”

Phil Rodd claims: “My wife and I just got back from 24 days touring Norway, Denmark, and Sweden. I wish I had something more exciting to tell you.”

A final comment comes from Pete Drayer: “I have been retired as a judge for three years. We still have our house in the Poconos in the same community where the children of Hank Hilles have a house. We have two wonderful daughters. One of them is divorced, and has two children. Hope things are well with you.”

Respectfully submitted,

Jon K. Magendanz, DDS |
902 39th Avenue West, Bradenton, FL 34205