Robert Maurer writes: “I am happy to report that I have finally retired! I just completed 10 years working in group homes for developmentally and intellectually disabled adults. I say to anyone ‘listening’ that, as a nation, we truly need far more mental health advocates and practitioners.”
Robert “Bob” A. Berger ’64 passed away on September 29, 2021. A full obituary can be found here.
Wade W. Badger ’64 passed away on June 11, 2021. A full obituary can be found here.
Steve Baker had two books published in September, entitled The Encyclopedia of Quizzes, Volume 1: Geography and History and The Encyclopedia of Quizzes, Volume 2: Sports, Culture, and Famous People. Each extensive volume contains over 700 quizzes to test your knowledge and expand your mind. One reader writes “These two books are a must for the COVID lockdown and the eventual return to the post-COVID travel with the trip to the airport, the wait for the flight to board, the long flights and the relaxation, wherever that may take you. Take Steve and his factual knowledge with you and you will be rewarded with contentment and will make your friends marvel at your expertise in Jeopardy and Trivial Pursuit whenever you play!” You can find them on Amazon!
Those with class notes, please contact:
Class Notes Editor
I hope that when my notes are published, we have an economy that’s working much better than the mitigating practices we are slowly getting through that has turned our sense of normalcy upside down. I’ve been sheltering down in my condo in Savannah, Ga., and time has an unfamiliar pace. I’ve heard from Russ Messing and Bill White, who are managing with the new normal. Recently, I spoke with Paul Lapuc, who is sheltering down in Chatham, Mass., on Cape Cod, and we shared our similar experiences. Fortunately, each of our spouses are doing well, and Bill is a bachelor reflecting on what the world is learning from each day.
Not much else to share, and I wish everyone well during a time we won’t soon forget.
TED MANOS, M.D. | email@example.com
Bill Medd wrote, “I retired from my internal medicine practice that Don Ware and I created in Norway, Maine, after 45 years. I just received news that I was named a master of the American College of Physicians.”
Rusty Messing wrote, “I have just finished my third book of poetry, The Inescapable Accretion of Less. A lot of memories came up re: of the support and advice I received from Kit and Joe Reed those many years ago in the writing of my senior thesis, Nine Short Stories. Though I went on to become a high school Spanish teacher then later to become a clinical psychologist, writing fiction, poetry, and haiku have been true loves of mine (in three separate years of my life I have written a haiku a day for an entire year). May this year bless us all with good health and continued passion.”
Roger Montgomery suffered a stroke in 2017. He said, “Thank God for the U.K. National Health Service which took excellent care of me for three months in hospital (three different hospitals, one month each; could now write a tour guide to the hospitals of north London).” He retired a few years ago after a stint as a visiting fellow at the London School of Economics Asia Research Centre for six years. Before that, he was a consultant to the World Bank and Asian Development Bank through a U.K. consulting firm. He finished with, “Any classmates are welcome to drop by and bend the elbow at 7 p.m. if coming through London. Just give a shout on the horn +44/2077/941254 and I will give directions on how to get here.”
Bill White wrote, “I tried out a sport last June that I used to look down upon as not really a sport at all: bowling. I am now bowling three times a week with other ‘seniors’ and have met lots of interesting people I would not otherwise have known. It is the only sport I have found that doesn’t seem to bother my lower back or neck, both of which have been the subject of multiple operations.
“I have also continued to date (at my late wife’s suggestion before she passed away 11 years ago) a classmate from my high school in what can only be described as an extremely long-distance relationship, as she lives near L.A., and I live outside Philadelphia. While it remains a delightfully romantic endeavor, I’m aware that it is an environmental disaster. My total carbon footprint for trips to L.A. and elsewhere with Irene is an embarrassing figure. It was made even worse in September, when we took a very enjoyable two-week trip to The Netherlands and Paris together.
“I have been fortunate enough to remain in contact with Richard Colton and Phil Bernstein, both through phone conversations and visits. I do miss seeing other classmates. Maybe more of us will show up at our 60th Reunion, should we be healthy enough to get there.”
Dan Davis retired from the FDA in 2016 and works part-time consulting for OB-GYN drugs in development and women’s reproductive health issues (access to affordable health care, state restrictions for health care, etc.). He wrote, “I still enjoying travel, tennis, golf, and theater. Hard to believe it has been 55-plus years since our Wesleyan graduation.”
TED MANOS, M.D. | firstname.lastname@example.org
There always seems to be something going on, other than the task at hand when I sit down to prepare my notes each quarter. It’s Labor Day and I’m concerned about Hurricane Dorian that is spinning in the Bahamas and threatens the southeast coast of the U.S. I’m sitting here in my condo in Savannah, Ga., concerned about my trailer in Central Florida. Oh well, I can’t get anywhere sharing my concerns.
I have an update from Mike Ehrmann after 19 years in Pittsburgh, with his wife, Esta, having just moved to Jersey City, N.J., to be close to their son, daughter-in-law, and grandchildren. He texted, “During my time in Pittsburgh, I was president of the Squirrel Hill Historical Society, the largest neighborhood historical society in the city. On May 14, when I ran my last meeting as president, the Pittsburgh City Council issued a proclamation celebrating my leadership of the society and named this date ‘Michael Ehrmann Day.’ In October the local neighborhood planning organization for Squirrel Hill is naming me as a ‘Treasure of Squirrel Hill.’”
Lou D’Ambrosio shared some news: “My family is doing fine. Elder granddaughter just graduated from Vassar in June, now working in Seattle. Oldest grandson working in Denver, graduate of the University of Colorado. Wife Christy is still working as a psychologist (hooray!) and still lovin’ it (another hooray!).” He had lunch with Edgie Russell and enclosed a photo. I noticed what a great smile Lou has. Finally, Lou closed by texting, “Just lovin’ everything. Still singing! Waiting for offer from the Yankees to sing the National Anthem at Yankee Stadium!”
Karen and Chris Chase decided in early 2018, for various reasons, to move to a continuing care retirement community in Hanover, N.H. Chris added, “There is much here to enjoy: Dartmouth adult education, concerts, opera, lectures, trail hiking, etc. There are also political action groups. I leave the politics to Karen. I’ve gotten back into singing and, new experience, am part of a poetry writing group. Having extra time sure helps the revision process! More prosaically, I’m in the process of preparing a lecture on pidgin and Creole varieties of English.”
He concluded, “Regrettably, I do not think it likely Karen and I will be able to attend Reunions in the future. I’m sure the discussions would be interesting. When we were at Wesleyan the world seemed so potentially positive. Maybe that was simply a youthful take on things. That’s not the impression of things that one has now. And I don’t think that it’s simply a case of o tempora o mores.”
Roger Montgomery reported, “I am alive and well in London but am lucky to be alive. Suffered a stroke in May 2017 but was rescued by the fantastic U.K. National Health Service which had me in hospitals for three months absolutely free. Also lucky to have survived four years in Viet Nam where colleagues such as Peter Hunting ’63 (Alpha Delta Phi) died. Went on to become a Southeastern Asia expert, consultant to World Bank and Asian Development Bank through a U.K.-based consulting company (Hunting Technical Services). After retirement continue to live in London where I spent six years at the London School of Economics pro bono in the Asia Research Centre. Any Wesleyan alumni most welcome to stop by for a cold one at 25 Belsize Crescent NW3 5QY. We bend the elbow at 7 p.m. sharp.”
Brian Murphy and wife Ginny are well and currently living in Los Gatos, Calif., near their two daughters. They spend most of their time hiking, birding, and traveling to places to view wildlife. They just got back from trip to Congo to see lowland gorillas, forest elephants, and forest buffalo as well as other wildlife. Fun!
TED MANOS, M.D. | email@example.com
Class of 1964 Endowed Wesleyan Scholarship
Dimitri Slory ’21, Brooklyn, NY
We hope many of you are planning to come to Reunion! Many of our classmates have been working for several months to plan special events and gatherings. It promises to be a great time to not only reconnect with old friends but also meet classmates whom you never knew. Registration and more information about the weekend can be found here: wesleyan.edu/rc.
Our Reunion committee has decided to have a closed-session event during Reunion Weekend that would consist of informal talks/presentations by classmates who would like to expound upon or explain to fellow classmates, family members, and guests a subject that is near and dear to your heart; something you feel passionate about. It might be a subject from your work, a remarkable life experience, or a passionate hobby that you have enjoyed.
Karen and Chris Chase have moved into a continuing care retirement community (CCRC). These are retirement communities with accommodations for independent living, assisted living, and nursing home care. Karen is part of a women’s action group and was charged with getting out the vote in the last election. Chris is involved with two choral groups, one of them off-campus. They are both enjoying the continuing ed courses offered by Dartmouth. He’s currently enrolled in a Beowulf course—rereading the text in Old English. It’s good to blow dust off the brain.
Becky and I have moved to a RV trailer here in Umatilla, Fla. It has the feel of a CCRC that Chris reported, with all sorts of programs. We still have our condo in Savannah, traveling back and forth every month.
Garry Fathman reports celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary with wife Ann (and three married children and three grandchildren) and will celebrate his 50-year graduation from Washington University School of Medicine this year.
Steve Huepper and wife Marian celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary and rented a home in Saluda, N.C., on a lake for something special! They played golf in Hendersonville, saw a show in Flat Rock, and of course went out to dinner several nights. The show was a treat and the golf was just to see how another course compared to their two courses close to home in Carolina Trace in Sanford, N.C. Steve shared, “I am sad to report my golf game would earn me a D-minus, the same grade I got in freshman calculus.”
In March, Steve Oleskey, Jim Howard, and Nick Puner gathered for a long weekend at the small farm of David Skaggs outside Niwot, Colo. While at Wesleyan, the four imagined going to law school and then joining to found a new “white shoe” law firm: Puner, Oleskey, Skaggs & Howard, or POSH. While they all got through law school, the law firm, alas, lived on only in their imaginations. Better late than never, they have now initiated an annual reunion to discuss pressing issues in the law, ruminate about the state of the nation, and sample local craft brews.
Rusty Messing retired from his clinical psychology practice and from the board of Synergy, the elementary school he cofounded 45 years ago.
“My days consist of going to the gym, running and/or lifting some weights, then off to the coffee shop with my newspaper to sit with other locals, then off to do some honey-dos, to go back home to work at my desk, write and edit more poems (I am soon to finish my third book of poetry!), fill the wheelbarrow with last year’s cut and split wood to keep the wood stove happy and the home warm.” He has six grandchildren ranging from 6 months to 18. “The fires in NorCal are out and we settle into my favorite time of year: easier days, no harsh heat, no fire-fear, easy rain,” he writes. “This was a particularly bad year for our olive harvest—the worst we’ve ever had after last year’s which was the best. Oh, well. If any of you classmates would like some of our award-winning, delicious oil I would be more than willing to send you some at a discount plus shipping.”
TED MANOS, M.D. | firstname.lastname@example.org
I started to work on my notes on Oct. 3, 2018, exactly 67 years since the baseball world experienced “the shot heard round the world.” Most of our class was around 8 years old, and the future was a long way off. Every Oct. 3, I think about the sudden end to the 1951 baseball season for the Brooklyn Dodgers, when their pitcher, Ralph Branca, threw a high fastball that he couldn’t take back, and the batter launched it into the left field stands for a walk-off homerun. The echoes of the broadcaster’s excitement can still be heard today. “The Giants win the pennant!” It was the radio version of the game the broadcaster was delivering, and there was no recording of his memorable call. Amazingly, a Dodgers fan was anticipating a Brooklyn victory, and was recording the radio coverage on a new tape recorder. It became a part of history.
It’s now Oct. 10 and I’ve not had much class news to share. My deadline has been extended, as my mind had been occupied by Hurricane Florence threatening us here in Savannah. We were just south and west of the storm’s path, where we escaped the storm surge, and we had no power outage. However, there is Hurricane Michael on our radar, and it reminds me of Hurricane Andrew that devastated the area south of Miami.
Sadly, our classmate, Robert “Bob” Rugg, passed on June 25 and he was a remarkable human being. Multitalented, he left a legacy of commitment to the Richmond, Va., community he was part of for many decades.
I reflect on my own contribution to communities I have served for many years, delivering thousands of babies and mothers through the birth process. I have found it humorous, how God had a plan for me to go from a freshman student planning to be a professional baseball player, to an obstetrician. My father knew a merchant on his policeman’s beat, who had a son attending Wesleyan. Dad thought I could go to Wesleyan, get “the piece of paper to fall back on,” in case the baseball dream didn’t materialize. Amazingly, we needed a catcher on our varsity baseball team my sophomore year, and I found the position that fitted my hands and throwing ability. Academically, I found myself learning how to answer questions, and examinations became something I could do well.
The final piece to the puzzle came in the summer of 1962, when my summer baseball season was ended by an appendectomy. I was recovering at a Brooklyn hospital, when young resident doctors were making rounds. They weren’t the image of my family doctor, peering through eyeglasses propped over his nose. They were young men who looked like my classmates at Wesleyan. I realized, for the first time in my life, that I could do what these residents were doing. Fast forward through Albany Medical College and a medical degree, to a choice between cardiology or obstetrics.
I chose obstetrics by flipping a coin, but there was nothing by chance in my story. I self-published a book recently, titled Baseball and Babies: My Life as a Catcher. Wesleyan needed a catcher my sophomore year, and I had a strong throwing arm and a comfort for using the “tools of ignorance” catchers required. I had the “piece of paper” I needed to get accepted to medical school. It certainly helped my career as a physician, to answer questions on exams at Wesleyan. Physicians are examined every day, and we are marked by society and held accountable for our decisions. As a catcher, I was responsible for choosing the right pitch to have my pitcher throw. I was thinking about various options every moment during the game.
Catching every game, during my three years of varsity baseball, prepared me for my career as an obstetrician-gynecologist. Coach Norm Daniels allowed me to call all of our pitches, as I weighed the talents of the opposition, and the skill of our pitchers. I realized that I had a selfish streak, but the catcher has the weight of the pitching staff, and the success of the team at heart. This realization was more valuable than any personal glory achieved reaching the major leagues.
Being on the team that was Little Three champions in 1963-64 was a dream come true. Recently, I learned of the existence of the Wesleyan Baseball Wall of Fame, located behind home plate. Two pitchers I caught at Wesleyan, Phil Rockwell ’65 and Jeff Hopkins ’66, were on the wall. I attended the induction of another pitcher I caught at Wesleyan in early May this year, Steve Humphrey ’63. In 1963 and 1964, our teams were good enough to be invited to the NCAA regional playoffs for an opportunity to reach the College World Series, but the university was fearful it would overemphasize sports. Liberal arts colleges have learned that sports contribute to maturity and commitment to community. Three pitchers’ names on the wall is a testimony to Coach Daniels and players that were a special family at Wesleyan.
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