Hello to all fellow readers. Just wanted you to know that the graduates I check in with from the class of ’38 are down to two now. I am sure there are other gentlemen out there, but I have exhausted my options for finding them. Please— if you have, or know of, any news from someone I have missed, please do not hesitate to pass it along. My address is at the bottom of this column.
The news to report comes from my conversations with Curtis Smith and Art Kingsbury’s wife, Diane. First up, Curtis reports, for a person who is enjoying his 100th year, he’s doing pretty darn well. While he is still putting up with congestive heart failure, he stays mobile and enjoys his outings with his son, Phil, whom you might remember lives nearby. Curtis has continued with his singing and it clearly brings him joy. He has found a “small in number, but strong in voice” group that lives in his community. This makes it very convenient to get together and do something he has truly loved for many years. He has been blessed with visits from both of his daughters, who live on the West Coast. In the last issue you might remember we mentioned his daughter, Susanna, was dealing with some health issues. Curtis is glad to say she is back at work. They have some strong genes in their family. While we did discuss politics, Curtis is very respectful to the Wesleyan magazine and asked that we keep things brief. Rev. Smith has taught me a thing or two over the years. These times are challenging for me politically, and he gently reminds me to keep up the fight for the good of all humankind, putting my energies towards making a positive difference in this world. Thank you, Curtis, for reminding me and all those who read these words.
Apologies again are in order since I didn’t time it correctly to grab a moment with Art. Thankfully, Diane filled me in on the latest. Art’s 99th birthday was celebrated in April with four generations of family present! His sister, Mary, was also there to celebrate. It was a fun time and enjoyed by all. Art is now using newer technology with his phone that provides captions to his conversations. I am eager to chat with him next time. I know his hearing aids have frustrated him in the past and Diane says this technology has really helped out. Diane mentioned that Art still golfs and enjoys his walks. Right now they are getting through the hot weather and afternoon showers that are quite typical for this time of the year in Florida. Both she and Art wish everyone a very happy summer.
It is such a joy to share news from the fellows of the Class of ’38. Isn’t it amazing to think that 80 years ago, these men were enjoying their summer before their last year at Wesleyan began in the fall of ‘37? What a journey they have been on. I thank them for continuing to share it with us all.
Here’s to a happy summer, full of health and kindness for all.
GRACE BENNETT, daughter of the late Walter V. Bennett ’38
8104 39th Avenue, S.W., Seattle, WA 98136