CLASS OF 1952 | 2018 | ISSUE 1

Class of 1952 Endowed Wesleyan Scholarship Fund

Nathanael Mathieu ’20, Freedom, NH

Thanks to those responding to my request for news. How about the rest of you?

Harry Collings has been living in a Sun City at Lincoln, Calif., east of Sacramento for 17 years. Sadly, after 65 years of marriage, his wife, Peg, died last year. He worked for the Du Pont Company for 36 years in the petroleum chemicals and pulp and paper divisions as an account manager in tech sales. He and a friend started an astronomy club 14 years ago that now has over 100 members meeting monthly.

Frank LaBella and wife Arlyne are ensconced in a retirement home, a drastic change after many enjoyable years in their horse farm outside Winnipeg, and is still involved in research and writing, with three recent publications in The Conversation.

In addition to the comments in Hal’s notes in Issue 2 2017, Alan Ward reports that he is fully retired from law practice but taught (“Rules/Regulations”) for U Del Lifelong Learning Program last fall, plays bridge, enjoys summers on Lake Michigan and usually attends a family fall NYC theater weekend (a tradition started in 1949 with Deke alumni Judge Arthur T. Vanderbilt 1910, former trustee (Judge wrote Wesleyan Admission on my behalf in 1949 when I applied), Tom Morningstar ’49, and Jim Stiles). He also wrote that the years have touched Hal and me very lightly; the rest of our group were clearly at their 65th Reunion.

Duncan Nelson wrote a moving poem which I record in its entirety:

Well hello, Joseph Friedman!

I’ll try to give you what you need, man,/ In the way of breaking news,

Amongst which you may pick and choose.

Although for metastatic cancer,/ 4th stage, there is as now no answer,

In being cared for at Dana Farber/ I have found as safe a harbor

As there is, and with Beebe, my wife,

We’ve taken such news as “a sentence of life”—

Finding in the diagnosis/ Ever more death-defying doses

Of reasons—and there are a tankful—/ For being wall-to-wall thankful

For each and every amazing gift,/ Such as 20 grandchildren to lift

Our spirits exponentially./ As for Duncan himself, providentially,

He has a wife he falls in love/ With more each day. Given all the above,

What I say to my ’52/ Classmates is not so much “adieu”

As “Valel” in the certain knowledge/ That the bells of old South College

In their ringing will carry me/ And all of us through eternity—

In that what we have done in our lives will have the staying power

To round out our echoes to sound along

With the yin-yang knells of those bells “ding-dong”

All of us send our best wish for his complete remission.

Seth Rosner had a great idea: Why wait until 2022 for our 70th? He would like to return to Middletown for Reunion weekend this spring and let’s see how many of our class will do the same so we can organize our own out-of-sync Reunion. Any comments? He also reports that the late Judith Kaye, former chief judge of the State of New York, and Norm Veasey, former chief justice of the Supreme Court of Delaware, both good friends for years, among others, nominated him for the A.B.A.’s Michael Franck Professional Award. He relates that he served for three-and-a-half years on active duty in the Navy as legal officer of the USS Intrepid and an officer of the deck underway, raced sports cars in California and France, has been a published photographer and occasionally wrote verse.

He adds, “My late brother Jon ’54 and I grew up to admonitions by our mom and dad that we were smart and if we worked hard could expect to make a good living, but that getting rich was not the name of the game, rather that we were put on Earth to do good, to leave our little corner of the world better when they planted us than when we got here. The very same message you and I got from our president, Vic Butterfield: service.” AMEN!

Finally, my wife, Barbara, (Smith ’56), my son-in-law, Samuel Bender ’82, daughter Ellen ’82, and granddaughters Madeline (Yale ’20), Eliza (Horace Mann ’20) and yours truly spent Christmas and New Years in Capetown, South Africa, and in two safari camps in Botswana, and had a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Joseph N. Friedman  |
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