CLASS OF 1951 | 2019 | ISSUE 2

Howard Goodrich wrote me 27 lines of verse and perhaps he’ll allow me to quote from two of them, as following: “Is hope learned from others? Is it the outcome of forgiveness? / Perhaps an attribute of love.”

This was Howard’s first offering and I trust it will not be the last. He and his wife Darlene are 90 and 87 and enjoying full health. Five months ago, he received a surprise phone call from Dave Welsh, who, Howard said, was apparently in good shape. Dave played football at Wesleyan.

Dick De Gennaro ’51, MALS ’60 wrote from Florida with the sad news that his brother George DeGenaro had passed away at age 94. Dick indulged in a multifaceted career, as I’m sure is true of others who have lived past 90.

Frank Hassell passed away last Nov. 29 after a bout of pneumonia. Frank’s youngest son and daughter-in-law were with him at the end. He was a great asset and friend to all who knew him.

Bill Stewart wrote in from Fort Wayne, Ind., and would be glad to hear from other Wesmen.

Walt Cook wrote from Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., and judging from the many activities he listed, he hasn’t slowed down a bit. He sets an example for the rest of us.

Dr. Bill Hillis, wrote from Wallingford, Conn., from a retirement community where he had been living with his wife for 15 years. He earned his MD from Cornell University, went to Cleveland to start medical training, then practiced general surgery in Greenwich, Conn. He retired in 1997 and moved to Goshen, Conn. The Hillis family includes six daughters, eight grandchildren, and five great-grandchildren. He also served two years in the Navy, a good chunk of it aboard the USS Midway.

Ken Barratt in Green Valley, Ariz., wrote in, too, as did Bob Willett from an assisted living facility on the West Coast. His wife, Martha, visits him every day and his daughter visits and takes care of his estate. Bob wanted to know how many attended the 65th Reunion and it was 20, give or take.

Dave Briggs also wrote in: “In answer to your recent note and belated answer to your letter from last September, I have not been in contact with Wesleyan classmates in many years. To provide a brief biography: after attending Wesleyan for two years, I transferred to Swarthmore College and graduated two years later with a BA in psychology. Then I worked as an aide at McLean Hospital and studied for a MS in psychology at Boston University for about a year before spending two years in alternative service with the Brethren Service Commission during the Korean War. They sent me to Germany where, during a peace seminar of which I was co-director, I met Gertrude Heine of Bremen. She agreed to come to America, where we were married in 1956. We have four children (three girls and a boy), all who are now doing well in their chosen professions, and two grandsons, one who is a lawyer and one who has just completed a combined MD-PhD degree in bio-medicine. After completing a doctorate in psychology from BU, we moved to Augusta, Maine, where I worked for 40 years for the Togus VA Center. After retiring, we moved to Marion, Mass., in 2006 where we have been living in a renovated family cottage. This has been my life since Wesleyan.”

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