CLASS OF 1956 | 2018 | ISSUE 1

Sad news: Harry Barr, surrounded by his loving wife, Judy, and their family, died peacefully on Dec. 25. After Wesleyan, Harry graduated from Harvard Business School. He enjoyed a long career in investments at several firms in Boston and later volunteered on several nonprofit boards. He was a true friend of Wesleyan, always a familiar face at Reunions. Among his generous gifts to Alma Mater were three offspring, Pam ’81, David ’85, and Gregory ’87, as well as Gregory’s wife Elizabeth [Wendy] Trippe Barr ’89, and a grandson, Tyler ’21. Somehow son Douglas got away.

Fred Boynton’s book, Tales from the Annals of America: Things That You May Not Have Been Taught in Your High School American History Class, has been published and is available from Create Space, Amazon, and through local bookstores.

It’s a collection of essays on topics and people in the early history of our country that were important in shaping the nation that we live in today, but that get little or no exposure in conventional history courses. Books are printed to order. It’s big—7” x 10” and nearly 600 pages; the price is $21.95. It’s also available on Kindle for those who prefer that format, at a lower price. I’ve read parts of it. So far, so good.

Fred reports: “Beverly and I took a long road trip through the Southwest back to Kansas City for my 65th high school reunion. High point of that part was a visit to the Eisenhower home site and museum in Abilene, something I recommend to everyone regardless of their politics. Much fun in KC seeing an unfortunately dwindling company of old friends. Then back through the Northwest including Loup City, Neb., a stop in North Dakota (my 50th state), and down the West Coast (before the wildfires hit), to the San Francisco Bay area to visit with a son there and then home. Picked up a few good bottles of wine along the way. We are currently almost recovered from the holidays and are beginning to break our resolutions for 2018.”

From John Foster: “My loving wife, Lila, and I have lived happily for most of our 50-plus years together in Marblehead, Mass., a lovely community on the north shore of Boston. I’m happy to report Fred Boynton and his bride joined us here for a visit a few years ago. We are most fortunate to have both our sons and families here, too. Just gave my mooring to one of them as last year was my last sailing…not as steady on my feet as I used to be. Moorings are prized possessions here, with a reported 23-year wait list. Put your newborn on the list as they leave the hospital.”

And Mort Paterson: “My three sons and their wives/girlfriends and two granddaughters (from California) were here with Susan and me for Christmas in Philadelphia. We cooked for 10 for three days. It was worth it. Flew to Raleigh for New Year’s with Susan’s family. How about those Carolina Hurricanes! They beat the Pittsburgh Penguins. Ice hockey is a very fast game, I learned, often interrupted by overhead speakers blasting dithyrambic music. All about a black puck you can’t see.

“Before Christmas, I had been resting up after playing the lead in Shakespeare’s Winter’s Tale with a local drama group. He should look 55. Died my gray hair. Took off 25 years. Crazy man! It worked out. Good reviews. Did two other big roles earlier last year. Addicted, can’t quit.

“No shows right now. Time to get back to work figuring out annuities.”

Tom Plimpton is “still alive and well. For how much longer, who knows? I am planning to go with my daughter, Liz, and her husband to the Dry Tortugas this coming October. If we do it, I will write you a little report. Peace and joy!”

Biff Bevins: “I had all five grown offspring and six (ages 12 to 24) grand-offspring here in Chapel Hill at Christmastime. My dear wife, Priscilla, died eight years ago, one day after my 74th birthday. I will never really get over that, but carry on with an incredible compendium of memories through the thick and thin of our 51 years together. My pulmonary health is poor, which prevents me from traveling, but I cope with that pretty well. Other organs are doing just fine, save for an appendix and a prostate which I sacrificed to colleague surgeons many years ago, but I am happy to say I am surviving and have no complaints, having made it this far.”

That’s all for now, folks.

George Chien |