Yale University

Class Notes

January/February 2014

by Tony Lavely

As we enter the new year, thoughts will turn increasingly to our 50th reunion that begins on May 29th.  The reunion committee, chaired by Pete Putzel, met in New Haven on September 27th to shape the four-day program.  You may be interested in some class statistics.  There were 1030 men in our original class; 150 have died; 46 severed ties with Yale; so there are 834 addressable classmates.  Larry Crutcher, who led a Herculean effort on the Class Book, reported that 503 classmates submitted personal essays.  Douglass Lea and Doane Perry posted their essays on Facebook.  Classmates will receive the Class Book before the reunion, with ample time to read about the journeys of other classmates.  Terry Holcombe emailed about the inauguration of President Peter Salovey on October 13th (captured on YouTube): "Whole weekend was spectacular! Len Baker was there, too, and Chris Getman led Handsome Dan in the 'parade of dogs' on Saturday."  Doane Perry shared Salovey's Inauguration speech on Facebook. 

Pete Putzel reported that the class table at the Yale Club of NYC luncheon on October 22nd was well-attended, where he crowed about his recent hole-in-one.  On Friday of that week, the usual suspects accepted Chris Getman's invitation to the Class Golf Outing on the Yale Course.  Excuses and fabrications can be found on our Class Website.  The Harvard Game on November 23rd is the anchor for Blue Leadership Ball and Yale Medal Awards.  On January 11th, your Class Council will meet in NYC to develop an order of business for the quinquennial class meeting on May 30th.

"Sound Off!" — the newest feature on our Class Website, organized by Tony Lee and Bill Galvin — is off to a lively start.  Forty-five classmates have posted topics, yet few have responded to create an online exchange of views.  So go ahead ... start a bar fight!

Jeremy Wood emailed: "Had a mini-reunion with roommates Laird Smith and Dave Plimpton at a NYC art gallery (my son's opening)."  Karl Ziegler is now CEO at Kinnerton Research Centre in the UK.  Robert Stilson's son was promoted to captain of the Stephen Scott, a tugboat out of NYC.  Chuck Mokriski wrote: "Four Book and Snake members gathered in NYC, Paul Ruden, Roy Regozin, Ed Massey, and me.  I'm moving to NYC and also had an audience with Pope Francis." 

Peter Hicks had double-hip replacement and wrote: "I just started Gerry Shea's Song without Words." Steve Grant wrote: "I remain active as financial/energy consultant to Canadian corporations."Cole Oehler wrote: "Judy and I are selling our Chicago home and building in Charleston, SC.  Just got a new gaff-rigged cutter."  Dick Berk's son, Michael, is attracting college recruiters for his baseball and basketball talent.  Dick had major back surgery but has fully recovered.  Sam Deloria (the second Indian to graduate from Yale) is an avid Facebook user.  Douglas Lea shared both an Onion Magazine article by Gus Speth and a Syd Lea Numéro Cinq article on Facebook.  Ron Parloto and Douglass Lea debated Obamacare on Facebook. 

Karl Ziegler and Nick Danforth attended a reunion in Cambridge.  Sam Francis (a Golden Shellback) and Tony Lee (a Blue Nose) reminisced about latitude crossings.  David Gillespie wrote: "I'm retired from teaching at a Catholic school in Southampton, NY."  Charles Ervin and John Wylie connected in Texas in October.  Sam Deloria posted: "Had the honor of mumbling at a Mayo Cancer Conference.  I need to talk once in a while to remember what I think about."Stan Thomas' son, Chip, appeared as a drummer in Boardwalk EmpireDouglass Lea shared a Yale Environment 360 article about underground heat on Facebook.  Ed Massey opines that  Harvard Magazine is better than YAM: "It kicks our butt, just like the football team."

Ron Parlato believes that online learning is "the wave of the future, and good riddance to old brick and mortar education."  David Swensen spoke at a Branford College Master's Tea in November. Facebook pundit, Douglass Lea, posted "Quitter, the hot new social media startup, topped 11 billion, proving how much useless crap is being slung around."  Dan Pollack posted a Facebook photo of his family hiking in Scottsdale.  Pat Caviness posted a stunning photo album of his home in Koh Samui on Google+.  Three permanent works of art by Sol LeWitt were hung in Edward P. Evans Hall, which opens in January 2014.  Doane Perry is on the board at Collage New Music, a 40-year-old classical music ensemble based in Boston. 

In the realm of publications (all available on our Class Website): Chas Freeman's book, Interesting Times, was reviewed in the China Quarterly in September; Jim Rogers was interviewed in Fortune in October; Syd Lea wrote an essay in Numéro Cinq in October.  Charles Ervin added two YouTube videos about Stradivarius violins to Class News.  In addition to books and articles, I have discovered that a number of classmates write blogs: Bruce Driver, John Jeavons, Ron Parlato, and John Wylie. Links may be found on our Website in "Publications."  One of Parlato's recent blogs had reunions as its themeEmail me if you write a blog.  In the Visual Arts section of the Website, you will find new art by Mike Mazer.

I suppose it is an indication of our age that "In Memoriam" is the most visited section of our Class Website, after the Home Page.  Sixty-four classmates have died since our last reunion.  Peter Carey died in September in San Diego, home of his beloved Padres.  In the course of submitting material for our Class Book, many classmates wrote remembrances for departed classmates.  A memorial service was held for Hoyt Wilson in September, attended by Terry Holcombe, Bill Manuel, and Randy LabbeSteve Clay emailed about the memorial service for John Wilbur: "Several Yale classmates spoke, including Bob Kaiser, Mac Deford, Howard Gillette, and me.  Sam Francis, Tom Rowe, Rick Kaminsky, Gene Van Loan, Jon McBride, and Tom Jones also attended."  I would also like to remember Don Tonry, the legendary gymnastics coach at Yale, who died in May.