Yale University

Class Notes

November/December 2014

by Tony Lavely

Every time I sit down to write this column, I find that I must put myself into a "time warp," since I'm addressing some of you who will read it online in September ("Go Bulldogs! Beat Army!") and others who will read the printed magazine in December ("Happy Holidays!").  Both are valued media, but it does have a way of dislocating the writer!  There is one difference. With no word limit on our Class Website, I am able to include more news about classmates with many links to related material.

Since I just mentioned our Class Website, that's a good place to start.  With lots of new material from our 50th Reunion, we've redesigned the home page and reorganized the primary topics to make it easier to navigate.  Two sections are noteworthy:

  1. Drawing on the albums of Pat Caviness and Frederique Deleage, Waldo Johnston and Candy, Dan Pollack and Nancy, Kip Burgweger, and Bill Kridel, Sam Francis has produced a video montage with background music by our very own Whiffenpoofs.  Gerry Shea got an early look and emailed: "I loved the photo review of the reunion and I know all the Whiffs are honored that our songs serve as the background." If you see photos you want to have, there is a separate PDF file containing all the photos. And you can download mp3 files of any of the Whiffenpoof songs, too.

  2. Since our reunion, many classmates have commented on how much they enjoyed the Kaleidoscope of Passions talks that were wonderfully orchestrated by Ed Massey.  With thanks again to Sam Francis, each presenter was given an audio/visual tutorial for producing an online video version.  I'm delighted to say that four of the Passion talks are now on our Class Website, and we hope all the others will be sending their material soon.  So now you can relive that part of the reunion!

There is more good news coming out of the reunion.  The final tally for our Class Gift was $74,249,256, making it the third largest 50th Reunion Gift ever!  Thanks again to Paul Balser and the rest of the Class Gift Committee.  And your Reunion Committee brought the reunion in under budget, so there is a working surplus in the Class Treasury to subsidize future Class events (none of which is used, btw, for travel expenses of the Class Council). Many of you ordered a Class tie to show off your (Roman) numerals.  There are a few left at $50; contact Bob Buchanan if you want one.

Enough about the past!  We have lots of opportunities for class gatherings ahead.  Some classmates will be attending the Yale-Army football game on September 27th where the 100th anniversary of the Yale Bowl will be celebrated.  Contact Chris Getman if you're planning to attend.  For those of you in the Northeast, there is the Class table at The Yale Club of NYC on the fourth Tuesday of the month.  Contact Pete Putzel to get on his list.  The Fall Golf Outing will be on October 9th at the Yale Course. Contact Neil Hoffmann if you're interested.  On January 10th the Yale men's hockey team will face Harvard in "Rivalry on Ice II" in Madison Square Garden.  Tickets are limited, so please contact me asap if you're interested.  Our Annual Class Council meeting (eight hours of work; some play) will take place on Saturday, February 7, 2015, in New Haven.  Both Friday and Saturday offer men's hockey games.  Any classmate is welcome.  One of the important topics on our agenda is the conceptualizing and scheduling of "mini-reunions" in as many different venues as imagination (and organization) will permit.  If you would like to suggest a location and theme for a mini-reunion, please let me or any Council member know.  Also, please contact me if you're interested in serving on the Class Council.

Steve Norman has served as our Class AYA Representative for the past three years, and he has done a terrific job both with his attendance at AYA Assemblies and also with his excellent reports on our Class Website.  I am delighted to announce that Larry Crutcher will serve as our Class AYA Representative for the next three years.  He must have too much time on his hands with the Reunion Book project now complete! Seriously, it's another labor of love since Larry makes a cross-country trip to attend.  Assembly LXXIV takes place on November 13-15 with the theme: "The Entrepreneurial Spirit at Yale."

Sam Brookfield circulated a photo of himself with Sam Crocker and Jay Huffard (who had just finished a 7K run) in the Adirondacks.  Upon seeing the photo, Chris Getman remarked, "The glare off their foreheads makes it difficult to tell who is who."  Not to be outdone, Getman posted a video on Facebook wherein his grandchildren indoctrinated him to the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.  Gerry Shea had prostate surgery in June but is OK now.  He had one of the best observations on our 50th Reunion: "Every time I turned around, I found myself conversing with someone more interesting and talented. And no one is envious any more. We're all admirers!"

Paul Manchester emailed: "In May, Ruth and I took a most enjoyable cruise on the American Empress steamboat from Portland OR along the Columbia and Snake Rivers.  Prior to the cruise, we had an excellent dinner with Norm Clark and Mona. Norm is now retired from the Bonneville Power Administration."  Frank Franklin and Cindy traveled to Little Switzerland NC for a week-long clay-sculpture class and stopped at Chateau Elan for their vineyard fest on the way back to Birmingham.  Sam Francis will be sailing in the Bahamas in early November. His crew includes John Evans and Claire and Gerry Shea.

Jim Baxter had hip surgery in Greenwich in August, where he reported: "I gained some notoriety by becoming a 'Code Blue'."  Jim is now back to the safer of our two alma mater colors!  Bob Jacobs emailed: "Eric Woglom, Peter Hutchings, and I with our wives spent two very enjoyable evenings celebrating the wedding of Jim Bowers' and Lucy's son, Ben.  As if Larry Crutcher's Class responsibilities were not enough to keep him occupied, he and Hannah have been dealing with "real estate madness." Larry emailed, "We sold, bought, and undertook a major renovation of our new beach house ... sold our home in San Francisco and bought an apartment ... nine months of chaos!"  Steve Norman and Jacqueline traveled to Turkey in September.  Dave Kalayjian and Marcia will be traveling to Mexico in February.

The reunion exhibit of classmates' books (organized by Waldo Johnston) in Sterling Memorial Library has barely been packed up, and authors are at it again.  Gus Speth has a memoir coming out in late October.  You can pre-order it here. Gerry Shea has another glowing review for his book, Song Without Words.  We've added Mac Deford to our growing list of bloggers for his wonderful online column in the Rockland ME Free Press.  Another blogger, Jim Rogers, cheered us up with an August blog headlined: "They say everything is okay, but things will get worse."

For those of you, like me, who have not published anything yet, here's your chance!  How about volunteering to write a guest column in this space in 2015?

I am saddened to close this column with the news of the death of Bert Cooper on July 27th in Encinitas CA.  Burt and his family struggled with his debilitating illness in recent years.  He is remembered on our Website by a beautiful poem written by his classmate and friend, Tom Barton, that was sent to me by Pat Caviness, another close friend of Bert's.