CLASS OF 1952 | 2017 | ISSUE 2

Our 65th Reunion has come and gone, as have the 65 years since our graduation in 1952! Our commencement program listed 162 graduates in our class. The college’s current listing of our class numbers 90 survivors for whom there is good contact information. There were eight of us present for our class banquet, the highlight of Reunion. The years have taken a toll!

This was the first of our Reunions in memory without our esteemed Master of Ceremonies, the late Charlie “Rogo” Rogovin. No one could ever take his place as MC and no one tried on this occasion.

Present at the banquet were Joe Friedman and his wife, Barbara, of NYC.  Attending their own 35th Reunion were their daughter and son-in-law, Ellen ’82 and Sam Bender ’82, and two granddaughters. Joe is still fully engaged in the real estate title insurance business, serving as EVP and chief underwriting counsel of Regal Title. This was the first Reunion for Dwight Herrmann and his wife, Leslye, of Lemoyne, Pa. They are parents of Leslye Ash ’85 and Jane ’90. Dwight is a retired consultant with the Pennsylvania Bureau of Public Works. Ralph Moody and his wife, Lydia, came all the way from their home in Palm Harbor, Fla. Ralph is a retired lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Marine Corps, in which he spent his career.

Bob Porter of Canton, Conn., attended with his daughter, Sarah Porter ’86, and grandson. His wife, Connie, suffers from Lewy body disease and was not able to attend. Bob is retired from the Travelers. This was a special weekend for Al Ward. His daughter, Carolyn, attended our banquet. His granddaughter, Hyunji Ward ’17, graduated that weekend. Al’s daughter, Kathryn Ward Koch ’81, and grandson, Hyunwoo Ward ’20, were also on campus. Al resides in Lewes, Del., and, unfortunately, is a widower. He is a former Wesleyan trustee and is a retired partner of BakerHostetler, a leading international law firm.

Our class president, Bill Wasch, another former trustee and a recipient of Wesleyan’s highest alumni honor, the Baldwin Medal, was there in force with his children, Christina and Fred ’92, and two grandchildren. His late wife, Susie, never missed a Reunion and will always be an honorary member of our class. Bill is challenged with Parkinson’s, but with the help of a superb assistant, continues to carry on an active life. John Wood, his wife, Pat, and granddaughter, Megan, were there from Indianapolis. John has had a long and successful career practicing law, most recently with the Indiana Department of Child Services.

Jerry Bobruff, a retired physician now living in Naples, Fla., had planned to attend, but was forced to cancel due to some medical issues. Tom Collins and Mary Ellen, of East Hartford, Conn., had also signed up, but could not attend at the last moment. Believe it or not, Tom, who is now 94 and older than all of us, practiced law actively in the Hartford area right up to the end of 2016. Your scribe and his wife, Joyce, attended and led the singing at the banquet with gusto.  We live at Seabury Retirement Community in nearby Bloomfield, Conn.

It is with enormous regret that I report the death of John Jakobson on Apr. 7, 2017, in NYC. An Eclectic, John played tennis and squash at Wesleyan and graduated with honors and distinction. After Harvard Business School, he purchased a seat on the New York Stock Exchange and pursued a career as a personal investor. He served Wesleyan for years as a trustee and was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree. Among his immediate survivors is his son, Nicholas Jakobson ’05.

I am also sad to write of the death of Bruce Munro on Feb. 2, 2017.  Bruce was an Alpha Delt and, as a pre-med, could usually be found in the labs. He went on to Emory Medical School, became an obstetrician-gynecologist and practiced for over 40 years in New Jersey.  Of Scottish descent, Bruce was active for many years in all things Scottish.

We extend our deepest sympathy to all of John’s and Bruce’s families and loved ones on their great loss, in which we, too, share in our own way.

I have heard from Dick Kellom and Walter Grunsteidl, the latter a German Fulbright Scholar who was with us for only our senior year. Unfortunately, I have reached the 800-word limit imposed on class notes so cannot report further on them.

Finally, a significant highlight of the Reunion for me personally was the agreement of Joe Friedman to succeed us as scribe of these 1952 class notes. It has been a pleasure for me to stay in touch with so many of you while fulfilling this position and I look forward to the new insights that Joe will bring to our class notes.

Harold C. Buckingham Jr. |
400 Seabury Drive, Apt. 2114, Bloomfield, CT 06002

William K. Wasch |
150 Coleman Road, Middletown, CT 06457

[Ed. Note: We thank Hal and Bill for devoted service as class secretaries, and we warmly welcome Joe Friedman as he takes on the role. Joe can be reached at]