Dear Classmates, thank you for some very good responses to the recent request for news:
Fred Newschwander writes: “I am reluctantly realizing and accepting that my body is no longer young, so I am trying to adapt and maximize what it can still do. The downside: A spouse’s horseback injury and health issues led to mental health problems which led to an unwanted and untimely divorce. Therefore, at a time when I was working on my bucket list I no longer had anyone to play with. My friends say they are too old for the kind of activities I like to do. Those who are young enough still have jobs and on weekends are busy with family activities. The upside: The Bucket List check-off continues. I have completed a book of stories from my 38 years as a mixed-practice veterinarian. Last year I did a 10-day wilderness horseback tour of Iceland, riding 20-40 miles per day in the rain between wilderness huts. This summer I am returning to Botswana for a rerun of a horseback camera safari where we ride across the veldt between rustic tent campsites. Continuing a love first developed by choir director Richard Winslow at Wesleyan, free moments are filled by singing at nursing homes in an a capella octet. My horses have already worn out a set of horseshoes this spring.”
Tony Schuman has been appointed interim dean of the college of architecture design at the New Jersey Institute of Technology. He observes: “At a time when a number of you are dialing it back a bit, I am dialing it up. The dean of my college retired last fall after 25 years on the job. I am not a candidate for the permanent position, but I agreed to steer the ship until the new chief is in place.”
Condolences to Paul Larson’s family. In a very fine obituary he is: “remembered for his compassion for others, his kindness, his spirit, and his generosity. His unconditional love for his family was always his first priority. He was quick-witted and always had a joke at-the-ready. He believed laughter was the remedy for all. He truly loved his country, Christmas, and the 4th of July, as well as boating and beach vacations in Maine. He also was a diehard Red Sox fan. He was a friend of Bill’s for 15 years, which brought him serenity and peace. He firmly believed in giving back to one’s community. He served as a Darien youth sports coach, Holmes School PTA co-chair, and Darien Boat Club officer. Paul served on the Darien RTM and the Board of Education. He was a member of Darien Kiwanis Club, Darien Men’s Association, the Country Club of Darien, and St. Luke’s Episcopal Church. After moving to Norwalk in 2004, Paul became an officer with the Norwalk Association of Silvermine Homeowners, a volunteer at the Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk, and a member of the Norwalk Community Chorale.”
Paul was born May 22, 1943, in Bristol, Conn. As a Cardinal, he captained the track and cross country team and was a member of Kappa Nu. Paul received his MBA from Rochester and was a U.S. Naval Reserve supply officer aboard the U.S.S. Caloosahatchee, and retired as a Lieutenant Commander. He began his career as a securities analyst at Chase Investors Corp., was then an assistant vice president at the General Electric Pension Fund, and finally an equity analyst/portfolio manager with General Reinsurance.
Steve Flance writes that Gary and the Wombats provided some of that good old rock and roll for the New Mexico Children’s Foundation in April. The Jacob’s Robe Wombats continue to serve worthy causes and to amaze all of their grateful fans! For me, anyway, one of my greatest college memories!
Bob MacLean writes: “Just passed my 40th year as a professional ski instructor. Still flying and part-time flight instructor with an interest in an air charter business out of Palo Alto.
“Two years ago started a new business in the food world. We are introducing Yolá yogurt topping in grocery stores, competing with Reddi Wip out of a pressurized can, bringing a yogurt product to that category. Check us out at yolawhip.com.
“Lots of travel, not unlike my life in high tech and medical devices from which I retired 12 years ago. Winter finds me in Colorado enjoying the outdoor life. Fall and spring in Baja, Mexico, and the rest of the year staying in touch with family and friends and challenging myself with an occasional golf game with Phil Russell, Pete Whiteley, and Lynn Edwards. Old roommate Ralph Jacobs remains a constant source of entertainment on and off the airwaves.”
Bertel Haarder spent his junior year at Wesleyan (1964-65) and credits his experience in Middletown as a positive influence in making policy as Danish minister for education and research for 15 years. He writes: “After more than 35 years in the Danish Parliament and 22 years as cabinet minister for ten different ministries, I’m now back in Parliament, running for a seat in the upcoming election. We have removed all age limits in the public administration so, my age—72— is no problem. I’m very engaged in European and Nordic cooperation. For seven years I was in the European Parliament, and recently I was president of the Nordic Council. In Denmark we note with satisfaction that the American president is not speaking for the American people nor his administration when he salutes Brexit and courts Marine le Pen. A century of warm and cold wars have taught Americans—I hope—to value European cooperation.”
Wolf Brueckmann writes: “This may be my first update for class notes in 50 years, but I have decided to follow the ‘better late than never’ precept. I am about to celebrate the first anniversary of my move to Luray, Va., from the Washington, D.C. area, where I spent most of my professional career since leaving Wesleyan. My work was centered around a variety of international economic and business themes, involving various roles such as association executive, lobbyist and university teacher.
“Luray lies in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley, and I now enjoy both river and mountain ranges from close up. An added bonus is having Nick Anderson as a close neighbor. My special retirement treat is that I can devote time to oil painting, which I was able to do only intermittently on weekends in the past. I am proudly following the progress of my daughter Loni, who is going into her third year at the University of Pittsburgh Medical School (she just passed her Medical Board exams). I very much enjoyed seeing classmates at the 50th Reunion, which already seems a long time ago.”
Peter Kelman shared that he and his wife, Therese Mageau, moved to Northfield, Vt., shortly after Reunion, in hopes that it would be easier for his mother-in-law who has dementia. His son, Sam Kelman ’03, lives there with his wife and children.
Peter also wrote of his travels over the past 18 months. “10 days on an education-focused stay in Cuba; an eye-opening month in China (primarily to visit our daughter and her children who are living in Shanghai while our son-in-law works for Apple Computer, but we also spent two weeks on a private tour of ethnic minority villages in southern China); two weeks on the West Coast (including the Turner Classic Movie Festival in Hollywood) and Southwest (to visit Therese’s Mom, combined with some walking and bird-watching); a 20-day walking trek across England, and another month in Asia to visit our daughter and grandkids (this time also seeing Beijing, as well as parts of Vietnam, and Cambodia—all quite inspiring, especially in contrast to the ugliness of our country at this time).”
He’s also blogging about the election, President Trump, the Republicans, the Democrats, etc.—“stressing the positive as much as I felt it.” He says, at its peak, he had over 150 readers, but since leaving for China in mid-March, he hasn’t had the time or the inclination to continue. For those who may be curious, his “optimistic-progressive blog” can be found at morningpete.com.
Bertel, Bob, Steve, Tony, Fred, Wolf, and Peter: Many thanks for your thoughtful communications and warmest wishes!
Philip L. Rockwell | firstname.lastname@example.org