Wheelock College Commencement 2018!

Commencement was Friday, May 18! See taped versions of the full Undergraduate and Graduate ceremonies and more at wheelock.edu/commencement.

Fall 2011 Undergraduate Class Notes


Lora Erhard Crouss wrote to Wheelock back in April to say that she was already thinking ahead to her 75th Reunion in 2012! She'd like to know if any other classmates are considering returning to campus to celebrate next spring. I (Lori Ann in Alumni Relations) sent her a list of those of you from 1937 living in Massachusetts. If any of you are thinking about attending Reunion, please let me know at (617) 879-2123. Thank you.


Estelle Levy Dine was very fortunate to have been able to have a mini reunion with Elizabeth Weitz Faulb at Wheelock in May, five months before Elizabeth passed away. "We were in Boston for [Estelle's] grandson's wedding," Elizabeth's daughter, Carol, writes. "The three of us spent one day touring Boston - starting with Wheelock. My mother and Estelle talked about former teachers and were proud of the fact that they had actually met Lucy Wheelock. As you can see from the picture in the Photo Gallery, it was a magical day."


Inez Gianfranchi Snowdon is well and still volunteers at her church "Bright Box," a second-time-around store that sells "clothing, dishes, and most anything," she writes. "The shop is doing very well. We give some money to the church and various organizations."


Submitted by Lucy Parton Miller:

Joanne Lilly Abbott writes: "I'm still here and grateful for my ability to enjoy life and see my family. I'm grateful that they all live in Colorado and mostly in the Denver area. My 6-month-old great-grandson is the newest addition and a darling." Joanne would be glad to welcome any Wheelock grad who is visiting in Denver. Alice Johnson Talbot says everything is about the same with her. She visits her children and grandchildren as often as she can, and she does volunteer work and is in craft fairs when she's in New Jersey.


Submitted by Jean Reilly Cushing:

Sophy Church Hansen called Wheelock in late May to share her news. At 89, she is still leading an independent life. Her adult family members live nearby and are very helpful, and her four grandchildren have all done well after graduating from college. Sophy's sister, Frances, broke her leg and wrist and has been in a nursing home for two years. Mary "Polly" Davies Wolff has been busy working at the hospital as a volunteer for many years and also works at the Woman's Club and church as a volunteer. She has a son with two children in Florida and a daughter with two children living near her; the grandchildren are all in college.


Submitted by Edith "Anne" Runk Wright:

Nancy Spencer Adams keeps in touch with Bev Maurath Newell, Kent Wright Holt, and Barbara Thompson Trainor. They are all living in, or in the process of moving into, condos. While owning a condo may be "the way to go," Nancy still has her same house and mows her own lawn, which seems to grow larger each year. However, her views of nature include watching a pair of Canadian geese walk over the freshly mowed grass with five goslings this May and having a nesting swan in her front yard. The hatching date for three cygnets was June 10, 2011. I (Anne) rename you Swan Lady, Nancy.

Still active and able to travel, Marjorie Johnson Cilley and her husband are very thankful for their health and many blessings. They spend the summer months in Illinois and the winters in Arizona. Marjorie writes: "This spring we had the privilege of spending the the month of May in Austria and Czech Republic. This was a combined trip to visit our grandson and his family in Vienna and do mission work in Czech Republic. Our grandson teaches at the International Christian School of Vienna. Our grandson and wife have two little boys, and we were able to get to know our little great-grandsons better. While in Czech, we were able to speak and minister in six different churches." Summer 2011 plans for Marjorie and Charles included traveling to California for a grandson's wedding and celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary while there. Polly Page Cobb writes that she's very busy with her growing family of 15 wonderful grandchildren and six super grands. Grandson Chris, doctor of osteopathy, met Mary Hartwell Truesdell '57, who joined in a "fun" conversation about Wheelock College back in the '50s.

Janet Cole Crohn says all is well in her "octogenarian world"! Her two grandchildren, Nolan (27) and Leah (25), are both third-generation teachers. Their mother teaches third grade in Mount Kisco, NY; Nolan is a science teacher in a private school in New York City; and Leah is a kindergarten teacher in Marblehead, MA. Three cheers for them - NO, make it 1,000 cheers! Janet keeps busy playing bridge, has joined a book club, and partakes in other "senior activities." Jean Rogers Duval loved the addition of our class Ode. Thank you, Jean.

Barbara "Buzz" Moog Finlay and Jack are "chugging along" after having a lovely 60th wedding anniversary gathering with family at the Wayside Inn in Sudbury, MA. They also had a terrific trip along the Rhine and Mosel rivers, seeing "cathedrals by the hundreds and vineyards by the thousands!" Buzz wrote of having gone to the Class of 1951's Reunion and having had a grand time seeing Sally McKey Pieksen '51. Dot Hutchens Seelow was supposed to join her but was ill at the last moment. "And where were the other Carlton girls?" Buzz wonders. Jane Munroe Rice's husband, Norman, called Wheelock during the summer to let them know of Jane's passing in mid-June. A longtime resident of Reading, MA, she taught kindergarten in Melrose and Reading and was an officer of Wheelock's Longview Club in the 1970s.

Sydney Weaver Schultheis and husband Walt celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary at the elegant Ocean House in Watch Hill, RI, on June 30. Their lovely party was beautifully planned and executed by Walt. We (I [Anne] attended) had cocktails on the deck overlooking the ocean followed by a delicious buffet dinner. Then came dancing and a special live music selection of songs selected by Walt, which included his own version of "Once in Love with Amy" changed to "Once in Love with Sydney." There were many toasts and tributes, including those by the three Schultheis sons. As Sydney's maid of honor, I found it indeed an honor to be there to see Sydney and Walt dancing with the true loves of their lives - each other. Viva! Katie Hargrave Sykes and husband Bob celebrated their 60th anniversary by taking 25 from their family to Alaska in July. They were on a cruise ship for a week - "fabulous, perfect weather!" - and then went to see Denali National Park for three days. Katie connects with Nancy Sayles-Evarts on Facebook. "Love that with getting all the pictures," she writes.

Edith Nowers White and husband Russ continue to enjoy life in Florida but do get the opportunity to travel to the North on occasion. They spent Christmas 2010 and New Year's in Kennebunkport, ME, with daughter Susan and her family, enjoying lots of lobster and lots of snow! With no problem keeping busy, Edie attends the Venice Theatre; is a member of the Venice College Club, where she serves as friendship chairman; enjoys many church activities; and watches Red Sox games when they're on TV. They are so happy they made the move to Florida (more than 11 years ago now)! "With daughter Carol [White Jones '75] and husband Bill here in Florida, and only 75 miles away, we see them fairly regularly," Edie writes. "The others - in Georgia, Pennsylvania, and Maine - call regularly. Travel plans at this point call for being in Massachusetts in mid-September [2011] to attend our 65th Sharon High School reunion - we were both members of the Class of 1946. Then in October we expect to be in Pennsylvania for a baby shower: Our granddaughter Jennifer is expecting in January of 2012, making us great-grandparents for the first time."

This summer I (Anne) found it good to be back in Paradise, RI, after a long, cold, snowy winter in New York. However, I'd kept up my spirits with stimulating and delightful visits to Nancy Sayles-Evarts in nearby Garrison and a week with Carolyn Livingston Epes and husband Morgan in Buffalo, NY. The Epeses plan to move into their own quarters at the home of son Charlie and wife Stephanie. I also see my former roommate Mary Hathaway Hayter frequently. We are both fans of the opera, concerts, theater, and any movie that stars George Clooney.

My hair may be turning white and my energy level has lowered, but I'm still burning with enthusiasm. This flame took me to Paris for 10 days in July, and right after returning, I was ready for an immediate trip back!


Submitted by Louise Butts:

On a cool, sunny June weekend, 12 of us attended the 60th class reunion. We were delighted to have Mr. Meredith travel from New Hampshire and join our class for the Alumni Luncheon!

Our last class notes appeared on pages 6 and 7 in your brochure received in late spring announcing Class of 1951 60th Reunion (it had the small photo of 2006's 55th Reunion "group of eight"). In the summer mailing, Reunion 2011 Recap, the last page includes a photo of the 60th group. We hope you all saw these!

Priscilla Janeway Sherwood and Jerry Walsh Clauss led our class in the annual procession along the Riverway - we were the next-to-oldest class at Reunion! They were joined by Pat Gindele Guild, Judith Handley Garvey, Sally McKey Pieksen, Laura Richardson Payson, Louise Butts, and Nancy Williams Mohn. They were all joined a bit later by Betty Cahill Haskell, Gloria Aisenberg Sonnabend, Robbie Rothwell Wattles, and Joanne Eastwood Tainsh

Three of us stayed in the new Campus Center and Student Residence (CCSR), which was so convenient to all the events. We were guided, watched over, and treated to a very well organized Reunion Weekend by the energetic and dedicated members of our Alumni Office / Committee / Staff. The Wheelock spirit we knew 60 years ago is so alive today. It was exciting and reassuring to learn how it is reaching out to and meeting challenges facing children and families in places worldwide - such a proud and giant step from our freshman class of Community Backgrounds!  

Pat Gindele Guild shared that, like many of us, she is slowing down a bit - less garden work, minimum subbing but enjoys going to schools on occasion, pleased with some programs, frustrated with others. And sadly, news reached us that Charlotte "Charley" Sears MacVane recently lost her longtime battle with Lyme disease. Our thoughts are with classmates and families of classmates whose loved ones have passed on.

"What fun to be back at Wheelock for our 60th Reunion!" writes Judy Handley Garvey. "The new building is fabulous! It was good to see a few more members of our class than at the 55th. We were treated royally." Judy treasured the time she spent that same weekend with daughter Elizabeth and her husband, who live in Jamaica Plain. Good health allows her to be very active with her family and in her community.

Due to illness and/or other events, some classmates sent word they were not able to attend - we missed you all. Beverly Boardman Brekke-Bailey has moved to Springfield, IL, to be nearer her family. Sydney Snell Fulford enjoyed reading about "the Zallen's grilled cheese members" - she was one of those saying they also went on to Brigham's for ice cream! We learned that Connie Brennan Ryan was recovering from knee surgery, and a health problem kept Sue Post Day from attending the Reunion. Jane Steele Milchen '51/'69MS moved to Amherst, NH, after her husband Al's death. She lives in her own wing of her daughter's home, has given up tennis after 70 years, takes trips with church and Red Hats groups, plays bridge three days a week, and keeps up with grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Jane visits often with Sally McKey Pieksen, who has hopefully told Jane all about Reunion. Congratulations to Joan Wiggin, who wrote that she received a lovely pewter bell in honor of 40 years as director of her church's handbell choir.

Our next class reunion - the 65th - is only five years away! Do some long-range planning, but in the meantime, stay in touch by snail mail, email, telephone - so that we'll keep information coming in Wheelock's Class Notes for the Class of 1951!


Submitted by Libby Gerow Peterson:

"Living in two places makes the year speed by, making both areas too short," writes Ruth Flink Ades, who lives in Sarasota, FL, for seven months and at the beach in Padanaram, South Dartmouth, MA, for the remainder of the year. She and husband Alan enjoyed another very busy summer in the North with all 15 of their grandchildren: "They keep us all running!" The oldest are in college, and the youngest, daughter Andrea Ades Woolner's ('88) two, are 2 and 5. Ruth wrote in early July, when she and Alan were about to leave to visit the southern National Parks out West and were planning their 43rd trip to Israel for the fall. Patricia Russell Amendola and husband Warren are "completely happy and content" with their lovely home, their boat (The PAT-SEAS), and their cocker spaniel, Patch. Their three boys are all close by, and their six grandchildren, ages 8 to 34, are great! Pat and Warren's main interests now are gardening, golfing, and especially family and friends.

"I'm climbing up from three operations in the last year," Peggy Ann Benisch Anderson writes. "My goal is to walk alone and drive again." She talks with some Colchester girls frequently, and all is well with them. "We don't mention the word 'age,'" she says. Peggy Ann's oldest granddaughter, Brooke Anderson, has applied to Wheelock for her master's degree and a scholarship. "Don't forget annual giving every year," she adds, "and that, yes, girls, our 60th Reunion is coming in 2013 - save the date!" Cynthia Cranton Dygert still enjoys living in the Southwest and having all three children and two great grandchildren nearby. She has done a little traveling and has loved entertaining friends and family from the East during the winter months. "It's always fun to visit with Janet Knightly Jones and her husband, Bob," she writes. "We eat together at one of our many favorite restaurants once a month." Cynthia still works in downtown Phoenix three days a week and finds being in the midst of all of the ASU students - and ASU's growth - exciting!

Betsy Dewey Giles and husband Ed celebrated their 58th wedding anniversary this year and are happy and well! In July they were headed to a family wedding in Oregon and also planned to spend some time touring in that area and go up into Washington to visit more family. "In talking with Peggy Ann Benisch Anderson," Betsy writes, "we both agree that our 60th Reunion isn't far off. Hope we get a great turnout in '13!"

We are sorry to have to pass on the sad news that Josepha Loskill Jenks' husband, Ken, passed away in February from a massive stroke. "We had 40 wonderful years together," Jo writes. "We shared many interests and particularly loved to travel. We have been to many places far and wide, and I will always treasure our years together." Regina Daly Lundstrom and husband Robert have enjoyed living in Wisconsin and seeing their Chicago-area children more often, but they do miss Cape Cod and think often of their wonderful 10 years there.

I (Libby) was so very happy to hear from you all and enjoy catching up on "the news." I had another chip taken out of my heart when I lost my Japanese Chin, "Nikki," in the spring. She was my pal. I enjoy keeping in touch with my Wheelock pals. It is a blessing! I flew up to George and Sue Terry Curry's in July and spent a wonderful week with them at their lovely home in Merrimac, MA. The weather was quite warm but every minute was delightful, from seeing daughter Jane's new horses and farm to having lobster rolls on the coast of Maine. My son, Joe, and his wife, Joanne, joined us from their home in Denver for two of the days. Joanne's parents live in Beverly, MA. It was a visit full of fun and recalling old memories.


Submitted by Ginger Mercer Bates and Elizabeth Bassett Wolf:

We were so sorry to hear that Elsa Weyer Williams' husband, Don, died in August. 


Submitted by Penny Kickham Reilly and Nancy Cerruti Humphreys

Anne Vermillion Gleason and husband Ted now live in an apartment three blocks from the Washington National Cathedral in D.C. Both retired from "various teaching jobs," they still find time to write, and Anne recently self-published a book of poetry titled Pay Attention. Their youngest daughter and her family live nearby, and they have two other married daughters - and seven grandchildren who make them very happy. Anne and Ted's travel is now limited because of a muscle disease Ted has, so they welcome friends to visit them. "This carries much love to all," Anne writes. "I am ever grateful for my Wheelock education which led to very special teaching experiences both here and in Boston."

Louise Baldridge Lytle is "feeling very much at home" in her retirement community in Verona, PA, especially now that more and more people she has known for a long time are moving there, too. In addition to enjoying serving as editor of the quarterly publication to which the residents contribute original prose and poetry, she also still reads to the health care residents occasionally. In the spring Louise traveled to North Carolina to help her daughter celebrate her birthday and see a new puppy! This fall she took a cruise from New York City to Montreal. When Kathleen Rooney and husband Douglas weren't traveling (to Portugal and Florida) in late 2010 and early 2011, they were spending time with children and grandchildren and participating in "interesting, sometimes challenging volunteer activities." She adds: "While our health remains good, our nephew was diagnosed with metastatic kidney cancer. This was stunning news. Because he and his family live in town, we are blessed to be able to help. We just never know. He has successfully completed two surgeries and radiation, but the future is far from clear."


Submitted by Margaret "Maggie" Weinheimer Sherwin:

In September, nine of us convened, reuned, or whatever in Mystic, CT. The group included Marcia Potter, Nancy Alexander, Sandy MacDonald, Judy Littlefield, Gloria Bechtel, Sally Beckwith, and me (Maggie) from '58; Margot Moore '59; and Sara Sibley '57. It was Sandy's birthday, so we had a party for her in the hotel lobby - a coffee cake with candles and all the trimmings. The weather was perfect, and we all had a wonderful time. I can't wait to do it again next year.


Submitted by Deanne Williams Morse:

Greetings, classmates! At our 50th Reunion I agreed to be the class scribe and was looking forward to getting in touch with all of you on a regular basis. Unfortunately, life took an unhappy turn and my husband, Steve, died in November 2010. Since then I have been busy grieving, selling our home of 35 years, and finding a new place to live. I have been blessed with wonderful love and support from many, many people, including many of you. You have my heartfelt thanks.

I have recently moved and am thrilled to have been welcomed back to the Wheelock Institutional Advancement Office on a part-time basis. I am ready to pick up my scribe responsibilities. I sent out a quick email to those for whom the College has an email address and was so happy to hear from many of you.

Thanks to all who responded, including Libby Brown Hall and Nancy Brooks Nelson. I enjoyed seeing Libby at a Wheelock brunch at Ellen Cluett Burnham's last year. I also heard from Susan Robbins Berger, who promises to send news next time.

Delma Romano de Comellas writes: "No matter the distance, all of you are so close to me. I appreciate, so deep in my heart, your friendship. I hope we could get together in the near future." Thoughtful Delma was also in touch with the College just to check in and make sure everything was all right after the Virginia-centered earthquake in late August. Sue Rideout Jewett writes, "As for Wheelock news,  I have none. We are much the same as at Reunion time - no major changes and not much new. However, I do love to read about my classmates." I (Dee) hope to see Sue on one of my trips to Vermont to visit my daughter who is a professor at Middlebury College.

Jane Coulter Langmaid wrote in August, as she was anticipating being asked to evacuate from their place in Scituate, MA (Humarock Beach) due to Hurricane Irene. She was headed to her son's home in Merrimack, NH. She wrote: "In March, Brad and I, still eager for adventure, took a two-week trip to Macchu Picchu with Overseas Adventure Travel. We returned with chilling tales of raging rivers, 14,000-foot altitudes along with hair-raising switchbacks, all without guardrails anywhere. Our second week was spent at a more relaxed pace in the Galapagos Islands photographing some beautiful birds highlighted by the unusual-looking blue-footed booby! The summer passes too quickly but is filled with good times with family and friends in New England. We find that the D.C. area suits our maturing joints and need for warmth these days."

Carol Reed Newsome, Ellen Cluett Burnham, Reta Schoonmaker King, and I (Dee) had a mini reunion in April down on the Cape. We attended a fabulous Cape Cod Symphony concert. Carol's husband, John, is on the Symphony Board. Maryann Mylott O'Rourke '60/'98MS came out of retirement to spend the year as interim director of the Y Children's Center in Greenwich, CT. Sara Thompson Orton writes: "My husband, Eliot, and I celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary on July 15 in Las Cruces. Our two children, spouses, and two grandchildren came, as well as one of my brothers and my husband's cousin, and friends from our 41 years in Las Cruces. We enjoyed dinner, dancing, a live band, an original song performed by our son and two granddaughters (ages 15 and 18), and fabulous food. It was a regular love fest, and incredibly fun! These celebrations become more precious the older we get ... and older we do get!" Jean Randlett spent the summer in Winchester, MA. She and I had a lovely visit in Florida last winter.

Antonia Reardon writes: "My husband, Bob, continues to battle mesothelioma. I don't know what I would do without the support of my friends, especially my 'girlfriends,' so very important to have. I recently had a vacation with my family in Lewes, DE -- a welcome respite staying with my brother, Dennis, and his wife, Allison. Bob's kids took care of him in my absence. Being among friends and relatives is like having a giant hug, rejuvenating my spirit!" Joyce Small Sherr is still on Martha's Vineyard six months of the year and keeps busy kayaking and playing tennis. She also has a studio space there and is painting and always trying new techniques. She often speaks to Betty Ann Ludington, who spent the summer in Rhode Island. Janet Burt Slaton and husband Paul have three children and 10 grandchildren and feel very fortunate that they all live nearby. "It is nice because we can go to all their football and baseball games ... and can meet for dinner anytime," she writes. Having her oldest grandchild, Tyler, now at Clemson (on a baseball scholarship) makes Janet think that maybe she'll get her master's there!

Bobbie Underwood Walker wrote: "I loved being back in Boston for the first time in 50 years last June. And I know that it sounds ridiculous that I have no news from this past year, but nothing worth reporting - just a new baby and a niece's wedding, which meant that I traveled to Hilton Head Island twice, once in April to meet our son and wife and three kids who live in London and then in June for the wedding. Our three sons and all of their children plus the Londoner's in-laws will be with us on the big island of Hawaii for Christmas. It'll be very exciting to get that many people together at such a distance."

I hope that those of you who are not emailers will please write so we can all keep in touch. Write early and often to our Class Notes section of the Wheelock Magazine and website. Write to me at dmorse@wheelock.edu or Deanne Morse, Alumni Office, Wheelock College, 200 The Riverway, Boston MA 02215.


Submitted by Ginnie Colquitt Schroder:

Twenty-two of us gathered at Wheelock for our 50th Class Reunion in early June. Actually, there were 23 of us, counting Philip Burnham, husband of Louise Hassel Burnham, who passed away nine years ago. (He is listed as an official "alum" by the Alumni Office!) Philip joined us for the Cabaret show at the Wheelock Family Theatre on Friday night, and for the Class Dinner on Saturday night, where he read his poem about proposing to Louise in Muddy River Park.

From the notes and emails I've received since the Reunion, all are in agreement that it was a wonderful weekend, well planned by the efficient and most cordial Alumni Office staff and assisted by a student crew that reminded more than one of us of who we were 50 years ago ... Wheelock girls through and through. Though things have certainly changed on the Wheelock campus, the students remain caring, passionate about their school, and friendly in every way. Those in our class who were housed on the fifth floor of the new (two years old) Campus Center and Student Residence had an opportunity to get to know some of the students and staff firsthand. They helped to make our time on campus very special.

Ellen Tague Dwinell, Joan Nolet Bennert, Julie Miller Moynihan, and Linda Shemwick Lindquist commented especially on the wonderful conversations and reminiscences that seemed to go on and on throughout the weekend. We decided that the joy of seeing each other and reconnecting was more important than what house we were in, or where our life journey took us after graduation. I think Ellen said it particularly well: "We picked up where we left off. ... We do feel the same inside as we felt 50 years ago, a little wiser and more experienced - we hope."

Everyone shared news of travels, family, and health, as well as plans for the coming months. Avery Thompson Funkhouser reports that she and John were soon to welcome a new grandson into their family. John Funkhouser has been experiencing some health issues, so it was especially nice to see him. Norma Brawley Dugger and her husband, John, were planning a rail trip through Canada and then on to Seattle for a wedding in mid-July, plus (for Norma) a trip to Australia with her sister in August. Norma is still singing with the Choral Arts Society of Washington, D.C. - 45 years of participation and still going strong! Susan Schaefer Goodnough is pursuing publication of a children's book she has written and illustrated.

Julie Miller Moynihan and husband Dick used their RV to make the trip to Boston, stopping along the way in Baton Rouge, LA; Asheville, NC; Williamsburg, VA; Washington, D.C.; and Mystic, CT, to mention just a few spots of interest. Sara Jane Goldstein Drescher and husband Ira also took this opportunity to visit with family and friends on the way to Boston. Their trip included a stop in the Washington, D.C., area to see Jaye Kwok and to visit with a cousin, plus a stay in Katonah, NY, to visit a daughter. By the way, Jaye had hip surgery on July 19 and wrote shortly afterward that she was doing very well with her recovery. Many of us had a chance to speak with her during the Reunion Weekend. She was so wishing she could be there, too.

The longest trip back to Boston was clearly that made by Diana Cobb Mead, who, along with husband John, made the trek from Auckland, New Zealand! I was fortunate enough to have Judy Johnston Laurens fly from Santa Fe, NM, to join me on St. Simons Island, GA, for a few days before we made the flight to Boston. Linda Shemwick Lindquist notes that she and four other classmates (Joan Nolet Bennert, Ginny Roswell Riegel, Helen Lampros Eddings [now deceased], and Gail Spivack Sandler) have maintained a round-robin letter throughout these 50 years. Linda and Peter Lindquist were hosts for Chuck and Martha Young Hansen over the weekend, while Fred and Ginny Roswell Riegel stayed just around the corner from the Lindquists' B&B.

It was also great to see Helen Clark, Nancy Miller, Taffy Burnham Winans with husband Bill, Judy O'Connell Perkins and husband Jim, Elizabeth Han Fung and husband Chris (along with their son and daughter-in-law and a darling baby granddaughter!),  and Dotty Sideris Davis and husband Peter. Mary Rees Nann and husband John and Barbara Grogins Sallick and husband Bob were not able to be with us for the entire weekend but made the effort to be there for the Class Dinner. What a great group! You'll be proud to know that we gave $2,000 from our treasury toward the class gift, bringing our total donation to approximately $27,000! Bravo!

This column would not be complete without a heartfelt "thank-you" to all classmates who worked through phone calls and emails to help make our 50th such a well-attended event. Helen Clark, Mary Jo Severson Fenyn, Judy Johnston Laurens, Sara Jane Goldstein Drescher, Linda Shemwick Lindquist, Avery Thompson Funkhouser, Ellen Tague Dwinell, Norma Brawley Dugger, Joan Nolet Bennert, Elizabeth Han Fung, Helen Parker Tucker, and Jaye Kwok.

Please look for your classmates in the Photo Gallery!

Carol Engster Calapso had hoped to get to Reunion but broke her wrist in early spring and didn't end up being able to travel. She is a retired schoolteacher who is living with her husband in Rome, where she's been for many years. She taught at Marymount International School there for 30 years and at a private nursery school before that. She writes: "Now I give some private lessons and assist a friend, the mother of one of my former students, who is a guide here. We have a group of English-speaking walkers who reside here in Rome for a few years and enjoy getting to know the city better. I get to see all of the sites that I had never seen because I was teaching, but I enjoyed that as well." Carol has a son, a project engineer, who was married in Milan last October and a daughter who is a teacher.

In October, Judy O'Connell Perkins sent photos from two get-togethers she'd recently had. In August, she and her husband visited college friends in Napa, CA, including one of her roommates, Linda Gordon Kendall. Judy also had lunch in Napa with Ann Manfuso Paras '58.


Submitted by Roberta Weiss Goorno:

Roberta Loveland Vest's daughter, Amy, emailed to let Wheelock know of Roberta's passing on June 23. Her obituary spoke of her many years working as a reading specialist in the Fairfax County (VA) Public Schools: "Sharing her lifelong love of books, Bobbi dedicated her career to nurturing reading and writing skills in elementary school children." She also taught in Maryland, in Okinawa for the Department of Defense, and as a Title I specialist. In retirement, Bobbi was very active in the Fairfax County Retired Educators and read to children in housing crisis through The Reading Connection. We will miss hearing about her activities in and around Reston and her travels and visits with children and grandchildren.


Submitted by Jane Kuehn Kittredge:

It was great to receive news from Martha Bucknam Brogan. She and Jack welcomed their sixth grandchild and will babysit Kate's Jack while she works.

As always, it was wonderful to chat with my (Jane's) Riverway roommate Susan Memery Bruce. She and Bill are caring for his two grandsons, ages 8 and 10, and find it quite a change overseeing their school and other activities. The boys are fortunate to have such good loving care. Susan and Bill were to have a much-needed vacation to Florida for a week. Susan sees her son and wife, who are happily situated in Weare, NH, and even more of her daughter, who is a librarian closer to home.

Nan Ware Morrow writes: "Yes, Jane is right to remind ALL our classmates to be setting aside the end of May 2013 for our 50th Reunion. It does not seem possible that we are going to be celebrating our 50-year friendships! WOW! Let's see if we can break all attendance records for Wheelock for a 50th Reunion. That is our goal: to encourage all our classmates to return to Boston in May 2013." In the spring, Nan and Bob had a "grand little driving trip" (Bob drove more than 2,200 kilometers) around the southeastern corner of France from Mont Blanc to Aix en Provence and back to Geneva, Switzerland. After two weeks in France, they flew to Istanbul, Turkey, for a week and enjoyed exploring a new city and experiencing another culture. "This autumn we will visit South Africa for a month," she wrote in June. "It will be spring there, and we hope to see lots of animals and their offspring!"

Elsie Kellogg Morse writes that she, Lorna Waterhouse Chafe, Peggy Fenner, and Susie Steele Weems are happy to be able to get together occasionally to share the beauties of the Maine coast. "Doug and I continue to enjoy our teaching," Elsie writes, "though less of it is in the category of 'fee for service.' The loveliest part of volunteer work is the chance it gives you to name your hours and especially your getaway times." Last winter they had a spectacular trip down the Nile with Wilderness Travel - ending the week before January's demonstrations. This year they're treating themselves to one of their trips in the Caucasus. Elsie is also enjoying getting back into docent work at the RISD Museum in Providence. If anyone would like to arrange a tour, just let her know!

Wonderful family Christmas pictures arrived from Bonnie LaBrecque Enders and Sally Weatherbee O'Neill, who are fortunate to get their families, each numbering more than a dozen, together for gatherings.

My most frequent contact is Lynn Sanchez Paquin. Once again she is busy with her cottage rentals on Block Island along with visiting friends and family and getting a little time on the beach. She celebrated her big "seven-decade" birthday at her and Gordon's Fort Lauderdale, FL, condo during the winter. "[It] wasn't too painful," she writes, "because I had broadcast my coming age during the year to get comfortable with the number." Now she wonders how one prepares for a 50th college reunion. If there's a cake involved, she's thinking it should have just five candles total - one to represent each decade - instead of 50! Also last winter, Lynn enjoyed a visit in her home in Florida with her daughter and two granddaughters, who at the time were first- and fifth-graders. It was a time to just relax and spend time with these active and interesting girls. Lynn's mom lives in the same complex and has a companion, which affords Lynn the opportunity to travel with Gordon. Doing all they can to see the world in "cruising segments," they had a trans-Atlantic cruise which included the British Isles and four days in Paris. This November (2011) they were looking forward to a European riverboat cruise which will take them to the Christmas markets.

Wheelock roommates Marjorie Sanek Platzker, Lani Tomita Sakoda, and Susan Wise Miller recently got together for dinner in Los Angeles. "We are still working in different disciplines and enjoy each other and life!" Marjorie writes.

Eleanor Starkweather Snelgrove sent a picture card and newsletter. John passed away in November 2010 but was able to enjoy Thanksgiving with the family. Laura's (Wheelock '96) baby, Sarah, is thriving, and daughter Becky, also Wheelock '96, has moved back with Ellie as she is taking classes for a doctorate and interning in Worcester, MA. In January, Ellie went on a Grand Circle Tour trip to Vietnam, which included Laos, Saigon, and Cambodia. In March her plan was to go to visit Ireland. (If all went as planned, Ellie, Nan Ware Morrow, Zee Makepeace Douhan '63/'75MS, and I [Jane] met this fall to begin making plans for our 2013 Reunion. Reserve the dates of May 31 to June 2.)

Greetings for my (Jane's) new decade birthday arrived from Laurie Nettleton Watson, who feels 25 years old, and Alice "Pixie" Parke Watson, who is enjoying life and taking some mini vacations. I celebrated my birthday with granddaughter Emily, who turned 13 on the same day. Dave and I spent a week in Michigan with our daughter and family at that time. Lauren, who is now enjoying her second career as a registered nurse, and her husband, who has been a strength and conditioning trainer for more than 15 years at the University of Michigan, rented a cottage in Grand Haven near Lake Michigan. The weather was gorgeous and we enjoyed the beach, shops, restaurants, and musical fireworks display immensely.

Last fall I and three other women went on a weeklong Alpine Tour, which included magnificent scenery and short stays in Italy, Switzerland, Austria, and Germany. It culminated with two days in Oberammergau, where it was a thrill to see the Passion Play (presented only every 10 years). Mother's Day week Dave and I spent in Venice, FL, visiting his 104-year-old mom. Since that time, she passed away peacefully in her sleep, and a family committal service was held as she requested.

It was a pleasure to have lunch with Terri Houston from Wheelock, who is director of major gifts and planned giving. She shared with me information regarding her membership in Altrusa International. The group is anxious to form a chapter in the Greater Manchester, NH, area, and that avenue is being explored. It was enjoyable working with the women on a diaper drive to benefit New Horizons here in town. Dave keeps busy with various sports all year round, and I continue to participate in church and organizational activities along with weekly yoga class and the gym when I feel really motivated. 

All of us look forward to class news, so keep it coming my way.

Wishing you all good health and happiness in the days ahead.


Submitted by Phyllis Forbes Kerr and Roberta Gilbert Marianella

Nice summer weather in Maine this year allowed Mary Ellen Freeman Smith to enjoy golfing, a family gathering, and time at the lake with her grandkids. She also had a fun Alaskan "trip of a lifetime" (cruise included) with five family members from Colorado in May. "I was very saddened to learn of Sandy Perry's passing this past winter," Mary Ellen writes. "Such a wonderful, vibrant person and very close friend. She contributed much to children in her teaching and Wheelock with her energy and ideas in several capacities. She'll be missed, but remembered with her smile."


Submitted by Taffy Hastings Wilcox

"I continue to travel the world as my children aren't very cooperative about producing grandchildren," writes Trina Wilson Mallet. "I was in Bahrain three days before they started demonstrating there - a very exciting time to be in the Middle East. I also visited Qatar, Oman, and the U.A.E. I will visit Cuba in September." Trina still attends Wheelock's Alumni Book Group, where she sees Joan Anderson Watts '65/'83MS and Sue Bright Belanger. She was planning to go up to Maine sometime during the summer to spend time at Ann Tribou Kuhns' camp on Lake Webb (in Weld). 

In their 69th years and in "reasonably good health," Joan Tulis Trisko and husband Ralph divide their time between their lovely home in Bowie, MD, and their beach cottage on Sandy Neck, Barnstable, MA. Every March they travel to Europe to enjoy "the beautiful German/Austrian Alps, the wonders of Venice, and the culinary delights of Paris." Participating in their five grandchildren's school and recreational activities helps them recapture their youth, and Joan's volunteer activities include a book club and Bible study at her church, reading to children at a day care, and acting as treasurer for Fish of Greater Bowie, a senior volunteer service group. "A special thank-you to all of you for the great Reunion in June 2010," Joan writes. "I look forward to the next one in 2015."

I (Taffy) am in close touch with my college roommate and longtime friend, Barbara Curtis Baker, and her husband, Ellis. They enjoy a very busy life of retirement on Cape Cod. They are involved in theater, church leadership, Williston Northampton alumni activities, and hosting a stream of guests. In addition, they travel to Milton one day a week to care for their youngest grandchild. A trip to Alaska to visit their daughter and her family is also a yearly event.

I was saddened to learn of the recent death of another old Riverway friend, Adele Abate Manfredi, from her roommate, Nancy Bonner Ceccarelli. Nancy wrote, "I feel fortunate to have been her friend since Wheelock matched us as roommates 50 years ago." Adele's commitment and contribution to education and her town, even in the last few months, as she battled cancer, make Wheelock proud. Her kids have said of their mom's legacy, "If you want to honor our mom, get involved and give back to your community."

Bibi, which is Swahili for grandmother, and my two cocker spaniels spent a glorious two weeks in the Blue Ridge Mountains, where I rented my own cottage about 20 minutes outside of Charlottesville. It was the perfect way to visit my son and his wife and their eight children. (Yes, they welcomed their eighth child in May, and I have 11 grands altogether.) My daughter and her family joined us for three days, too. I ran "Bibi's Day Camp" by mustering up all my good Wheelock training, and the kids - age 11 and under - had a great time.


Submitted by Margery Conley Mars:

Lynne Wyluda Beasley is happily settled into her retirement home in Cape Elizabeth, ME. And by the time you are reading this, Laurie Knowles Carter and Bob should be settled into their "small, comfortable home with its lovely view" in Ashland, OR. Pam Miller Callard became a first-time grandmother on Sept. 2, 2011, when she welcomed Owen into her heart and family. So it is ribbons and bows and baby toes - congratulations on his birth!

Sharon Jenks Collinson took the "trip of a lifetime" to Kenya this past summer (with the original Ker and Downey Safaris) to celebrate her and her husband's 45th anniversary, taking all three kids and spouses and two grandchildren. "We camped and stayed in conservation lodges, and everyone wishes they could go back soon," she writes. "One daughter adopted an orphaned elephant in Nairobi, a very worthwhile cause, and we slept with lions roaring and hippos bellowing right outside our tents. This is in the Masai Mara during the Great Migration."

Last summer Marianne Hawkey Langenbach and husband Read moved from Medina, WA, their home of 40 years, across Lake Washington to a house in Seattle. It took a year to rework it and the garden, but now they are settled, happy, and ready for visitors. After they moved, Marianne retired, but Read continues to work as an attorney in Seattle. Phoebe O'Mara and Di Truesdale Haywood got together and had fun catching up on class news. And shortly after that mini reunion, Phoebe and Beth Zwirner Ruggiero had a lunch date, just prior to Beth's leaving for a trip to Egypt. (This was all before the unrest in that country in late November.) Phoebe is busy advocating for the elderly and doing her political work. In addition, she is in the process of forming a panel of educators to discuss "What is the Boston Public Schools doing to achieve academic excellence despite the budget cuts?"

Kay "Wink" Winkler Page had open-heart surgery in June. She is recovering nicely and has completed cardio rehabilitation. Heather Robinson Reimann and husband Joe created a fantastic blog, boldlygoingnowheretogether, for many of us to follow on their adventures as they explored America, the Beautiful this summer and early fall. They enjoyed a wonderful weekend in Southern California with Mike and Sylvia Thorndike Sheriff. Also on the road at the same time but doing the cross-country trip east solo in her van was Connie Muther! She had quite a few wonderful reunions along the way, and lots of exquisite scenery to photograph, before reaching her destination in Connecticut to attend a wedding.

Marcia Carlson Rintoul spent some wonderful time with Sue Gianis Crones on the Cape this summer, and the two of them had lunch with Karen Kuhl Schwalm, who is living in Chatham. "None of us had been able to attend our 45th Reunion," Marcia writes, "so it was fun to have a mini reunion in Chatham. Sue and I stopped at a wonderful store in Brewster which happens to be owned by a Wheelock graduate and her husband. The shop also has a line of Margery's lovely notecards!" Marcia has also had the opportunity to meet Ruth Ann Welsh Rooney in New York City to have "long chatty lunches" and then go to the theater. Marcia has also kept in touch with her roommate, Joan Austin Yocum, who lives in Arlington, VA. "Andrea Murphy Powning was also in the area to spend some time with Joyce Nothacker Robinson's family," Marcia writes. "We remember Joyce with such a deep sense of love and loss. It always impresses me how very refreshing and interesting it is to be with old and dear friends from Wheelock."

Hope Binner Esparolini's husband, Ramon, passed away on June 25. I (Margery) know this is a great loss for Hope and the family. May she know that we all are thinking of her with special love at this difficult time.

And it was with great sadness that we learned of the death of our classmate Joan Carey Noble. She was the roommate of Andrea Murphy Powning and Joyce Nothacker Robinson. Sadly, both Joan and Joyce died of pancreatic cancer less than two years apart. As Marcia Carlson Rintoul wrote, "More research, funding, and attention need to be directed to the cure for this dreaded disease."

We got to the Southern Caribbean as planned in November. We cruised for 12 days and had four ports of call - Grand Turk, the Dominican Republic, Aruba, and Curacao. Curacao was my very favorite port of call with its beautiful pastel buildings and Dutch architecture and influence.


Submitted by Marilyn Rupinski Rotondo and Cynthia Carpenter Sheehan

I (Marilyn) changed careers in the '80s and earned my M.S.W. from University of Connecticut. Since then I've had a private psychotherapy practice as well as worked with troubled teens. My area of interest has been eating disorders. In 2002 I took an adult acting class at Hartford Stage Co. and was really bitten by the acting bug! Since then I've been in plays and even an indie movie. I played a zombie in the movie and was apparently a good one! Who knew? Usually, I get cast as the mother or aunt, which makes sense agewise. I wish I'd done this years ago at Wheelock. Who knows? Maybe it can still happen. I also do voiceover work. My time at Wheelock has actually been a help in both social work and the acting gigs. My two children are married and live near Boston and up in New Hampshire. I'm not a grandmother yet but keep hoping. I get up to the Boston area once in a while. The campus really looks fabulous! I love reading about people I remember from Wheelock and would love to hear from anyone.


Linda Bullock Owens and Tasha Lowell Allan

C.E. Smith Tomlinson is studying with Los Angeles acting coaches, has an agent, and is auditioning for film/TV (Army Wives and Homeland), commercials, and voice-over spots. She has also done narration and some cartoon characters, and she did a Cancer Awareness project for Lifetime Television and some North Carolina and South Carolina lottery commercials. She is waiting to hear about a role in a feature film being shot in Georgia in addition to some TV roles. C.E.'s "day job" involves working with children with special needs in an elementary charter school. She recently visited her older son, "Dr. Jack," who is doing a "postdoc" in psycholinguistics at Cardiff University in Wales, and spent a wonderful time in London with her sister-in-law. Son Clark (Chapman Film School, M.F.A.) is finishing his last year at Teach For America in Texas.


Jackie Hanifl Carnevali writes: "Working hard to develop our fourth campus school project in slums of India. On the family front, son Ben is getting married in September, with lots of friends and family coming to Cape Cod for the celebration. Had great skiing last winter and are expecting to live again this coming year in the Dolomites so Giuseppe can further develop his ski app for smartphones."

"We are 'over the moon,' as they say!" writes Mary Ann Allen Cowherd after the June birth of her and Leonard's first grandchild. Their busy summer began when son Leonard's twin, Charles, spoke - and received a standing ovation - at the Wall of Honor Ceremony at the Virginia Capitol just before Memorial Day weekend. July activities included getting together with family for the Bishop's Bluegrass Festival at Shrine Mont, their diocesan retreat center in Orkney Springs, VA, over Fourth of July weekend; a trip to Chicago to see another showing of Letters Home; and a wedding in Albuquerque, NM. They were planning to rest in Old Saybrook, CT, for the month of August. Mary Curtis Skelton loves being a grandmother of three, and she now has her 98- and 101-year-old parents living with her. "In addition to managing a bath showplace, I am their major caregiver and organize their full-time care," she writes. "Note: Our generation is the last one that is expected to outlive our parents, by five years, according to insurance professionals. We'd all better start saving more money!"


Submitted by Gwynne DeLong:

Morgan Shannon Butler attended Reunion this year for the first time and writes that she is sorry she waited so long. "It was great fun seeing classmates, touring the old and new parts of the campus, and attending the wonderful events that the College planned for the weekend," she writes. "It would be great to see even more of our class at the 45th!" Julia Ellen Davis asked to say hi to all. She continues to live in Charleston, SC. She and her sister are making arrangements to celebrate the life of their mother, who recently passed away. Felice Shapiro Friedman sent regrets for this year's Reunion as she and her husband were in Paris. She asked to send love to everyone and has fond memories of Peabody and of getting ice cream at the Dirty Drug. She writes that her life is wonderful in Manhattan, where she and her husband returned after 20 years in Baltimore. She has three children and four grandchildren, and she is still busy and active in New York with educational issues and various not-for-profit boards and organizations. Priscilla Jeffery wrote some more about the NGO she is in the process of starting up, Community Partnership of Akuapim South, in Ghana. "It is a community organization which will focus on microfinance, education, and sustainable agriculture," she writes. Priscilla retired from teaching in 2009, and the following year she moved from Denver to Connecticut to be near her children and grandchildren.

In keeping with tradition, our class was having so much fun at the luncheon catching up that we "missed" our class meeting. Sound familiar? I (Gwynne) will be happy to continue as scribe for another five years as long as you continue to share with me. It's been a pleasure, actually. Reunion this year was very special, and more so because one of our own, Betty Bain Pearsall, was honored by her longtime friend and classmate, Beverly Granger. Beverly nominated Betty for a "Making a Difference" Service Award and did a lovely job presenting it to her that Saturday. For those of you who did not attend, I wish I could adequately share how welcome, appreciated, and catered to our College made us all feel during the entire weekend.

On a personal note, my mother, a Wheelock alumna from the Class of '42/'43, passed away in December, but her college roommate is still going strong and has asked me to bring her to Reunion next year. So, if all goes well, I'll have stories to tell.

Blessings to you all!


Submitted by Jaci Fowle Holmes and Regina Frisch Lobree

Lynn Beebe turned 60 this year and says she still rides her bike everywhere within a 10-mile radius of her home, using her car only about twice a month. ("I rode my bike to Roxbury and South Boston for student teaching and work while at Wheelock," she writes.) "Trying to live a bit closer to the land here in Skagit Valley [WA]," she is happy to report that her garden is taking off after three years of work. Lynn still volunteers with the Swinomish Tribe after-school support program as well as (volunteer) teaches science to the tribal preschoolers one day a week and subs in the preschool. Having completed her term as president of the docents of the Museum of Northwest Art, she continues to volunteer as a school tour leader. She loves being a stepgrandmother to a 4-year-old who comes to stay with her and her husband for a few days every couple of months. They get away for two or three trips a year and most recently have been to the Yucatan, the San Diego area, and Italy.

"My life is rich and full and very happy," writes Deb D'Amico '73/'79MS, who married Tom Musco in 2008 and instantly became stepmother to his two grown children. Now in her sixth year as principal at Hardy Elementary School in Arlington, MA, she adds: "This is by far the most challenging work I've done in my nearly 40-year career. It is satisfying to work hard at such important work. The school community is vibrant and very supportive of children and teachers. The kids continue to amaze and delight me. At the end of the day, it is how children think and learn that fascinates me the most, a legacy from my years at Wheelock." Amanda Griggs Miles retired from Broward County (FL) Schools at the end of last year. Her twin boys graduated from high school in June and are now in college - Michael in Orlando and Rob in Boulder, CO. "Life is good at 60!" Amanda says. Abby Squires Perelman and husband Steve retired in June 2008, sold their house in Connecticut, and now split their time between Nantucket, MA, and West Palm Beach, FL. They are loving retirement! Both of their sons are married, and they have two sons each; one lives in Manhattan, and the other recently moved from Manhattan to Scarsdale.

All continues to be well for me (Regina) in North Carolina, and I am teaching again this year. I have been enjoying my two grandchildren, Trey and Samantha, and feel lucky to have both of my adult children still living in North Carolina as well. 


Submitted by Leslie Hayter Maxfield:

"Lordy, are we old!" writes Judith Black. "In the '60s it was hard to imagine we would live this long. I continue to create and tell stories around the world. This past spring I offered performance programs and workshops for adults and students in Finland, Amsterdam, and Paris, and then joined friends and family in Tuscany to enjoy a house won in the MassMouth big 'Mouthoff.' To view this four-minute story about waiting for my son to return from combat duty in Iraq, go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lOVgkVCQ2AQ." (That son, Solomon, now lives in D.C. and works for the DOD.) Back home in the Marblehead, MA, area, Judith runs a peer mentoring program, sings with a women's chorus called Calla Lily, cooks at a homeless shelter, raises a big organic garden, and "[continues] to try to earn a living." She adds, "The education received at Wheelock continues to resonate through all my work."

Dorothy Cresswell is in her final year of teaching kindergarten in Leverett, MA, and has loved it. Her children are grown, and she is a grandmother to four delightful little girls, ages 6 months to 4 years. "I'm still in a five-part women's band, and we produced our third CD last year," Dorothy writes. "My wife, Dusty, and I live on a lake in western Massachusetts and plan to start 'A Space for Grace' when I retire, a support network for those with chronic illness and their caregivers. At this time we lead The Healing Circle Singers and are Caring Companions in our church. So my life is in transition, but it's all about love and taking care of one another, isn't it?"

Stephanie "Abbi" Fletcher Deeran got a kick out of the reference to someone from '75 having "given birth to Hope" in this year's scribe note. "Yes, I gave birth to Hope in October 1991," she writes, "and she is now a junior at UMass-Amherst, majoring in chemistry. Time doesn't just fly - it goes at warp speed!" Abbi lives in a gorgeous condo in Salem, MA, and is a full-time special education English and reading teacher in the Lynn public school system. She works with inner-city middle school students, primarily boys, with social and emotional issues. "It has taken me a while, but I now have four professional-level teaching licenses and am closing in on number five," she writes. "Of the several positions I've had in my life, this particular public school teaching is by far the most challenging and, at the same time, the most rewarding. It saddens me that teachers are shouldering so much criticism now and are being made scapegoats of the failing economy. It puzzles me that teachers will be held accountable (and now, fired) for students' failing MCAS scores, when there are so many other factors that affect successful learning."

In the spring, Patricia Gardiner Hill wrote, "I have just completed my 25th year teaching fourth grade at Agnes Irwin [Rosemont, PA], making my total teaching years ... 35!"

Which '75 alum is "busy wearing six different hats these days"? That would be Debbie Cann Westcott. Monday to Friday she sells air time for Pat Sajak's 1430 WNAV AM radio in Annapolis, MD, and every weekend she is a comfort consultant at HealthyBack, a store providing back, neck, and shoulder relief to baby boomers. "In and around all of that," she writes, "I consign clothing and household items at two local consignment stores, rent out the lower level of my home on a monthly basis, kitty cat sit locally, and I'm still running my Wheelock B&B [most guests have family at the Naval Academy or go to the area for boat shows]." Last December Debbie fell and fractured her right shoulder, and she is still trying to get back to 100 percent mobility.


Submitted by Angela Barresi Yakovleff:

Maryanne Galvin wrote back in November about her project Urban Odyssey, a short documentary that follows three Boston teens and three retirees and chronicles four seasons of their "inspired outdoor activities." According to Maryanne, the film shows how they are "joined by the shared belief that their combined 'green' efforts will return those of us who've lost touch with nature back to the garden."


Submitted by Elizabeth Corning DeMille and Kathy Formica Harris:

"My strong educational foundation from Wheelock has certainly helped me get this far along in my career!" writes Ann Marie Christian Dargon, who became the superintendent of schools in Ashland, MA, in May 2010 and enjoyed her first year in the position very much.

The biggest news in Cindy Richardson Wallace's life in the spring was that daughter Dayna graduated from High Tech High North County, "an AMAZING charter high school."  She continues, "I love the culture of this school - project-based learning, team effort, true friendships between teachers and students. It is a model for powerful youth education." In August Dayna was off to Humboldt State University in northern California. "I prefer The Riverway as a college address, but she likes redwoods!" Cindy writes.


Kathy Walsh Berube had a visit from Wheelock roommate Donna Williamson Garner (from New Zealand!) in July. They met at York Beach in Maine. Both child life majors at Wheelock, Kathy is the director of volunteer services at Maine Medical Center in Portland, and Donna is a lecturer at the School of Maori in Christchurch. Janet Zung Craddock writes: "The Reunion was lovely, the weather was gorgeous, Boston was beautiful, and the company of friends was amazing. Cindy Brookings Bachman, Karen Gunnerfeldt Banks, Rosemary James Wolpe, and I enjoyed a wonderful time!"

Since last August, Marion Ferguson (Newton) Heller '81/'81MS has been a "German-learning homemaker" living in Munich with husband Chris and son Max, 10. Max is attending a German Montessori school as a fifth-grader. Marion says they will be there for a minimum of two years.

"This is a very exciting time," Jean Ricciardelli wrote in May. "My daughter will be attending Wheelock in the fall! My son, Cameron, is finishing his sophomore year at the University of Southern Maine, and Maddy is in middle school." An "ed tech" at a local high school, Jean works with special education students who are mainstreamed, helping them in math and biology. She loves her work.

Spring 2011 was a very busy season in Colleen Miller Rumsey's house. Husband Stuart started a new job, Sean graduated from high school, and Erin graduated from college. "It's hard to believe I have a college graduate as I still remember our '81 Wheelock graduation vividly!" Colleen writes. "Truly, where does the time go? I was sorry to miss Reunion, but I was busy with all the spring traditions of prom and beach night for Sean, and as much as he would have loved a weekend alone at our house, I still also vividly remember being an 18-year-old!" Colleen is thankful to be teaching first grade and to have enough seniority not to be laid off. "I hope the current Wheelock graduates are able to find teaching jobs," she adds. "Our class graduated into a recession, and I recall being thrilled that I finally was hired by Head Start to teach in the fall of '81." 

Colleen has decided that - after 30 years! - she would like to pass the class scribe job on to someone else. (Thank you for your outstanding service, Colleen!) If anyone is interested in taking that on, please contact Lori Ann Saslav in the Alumni Relations Office at (617) 879-2123 or lsaslav@wheelock.edu. Thanks!


Submitted by Carol Rubin Fishman:

"Life is great!" writes Laurie Wartenberg Finkle. When not subbing in the local elementary school (which is basically a full-time job), she helps out in a kindergarten class in the inner city in Albany and has dabbled in some catering jobs ("a LOT of work for one person"). Son Josh graduated from Carnegie Mellon in May 2010 and loves his job designing toys for Little Tykes. "He often goes to local day cares just to watch the kids interact," she writes. "Remember all those times WE did that?!" Son Justin just graduated from Cornell and either will work in Boston or will go to grad school at Imperial College in London. After a semester in Sevilla, Spain, and then an internship in Buenos Aires, daughter Jessica is a junior at the University of Vermont in Burlington. Sara Grande Gavens has been working as an instructional coordinator for the Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) for the past four years. She writes: "Through our BOCES, I deliver training to teachers and work with school district administrators in the Greater Capital Region of New York on the integration of educational technology with classroom curriculum. This is actually something I have dreamt of doing since my Wheelock days when I was one of the first students to take advantage of the new Computers in Education courses that Wheelock offered on their very first PCs - Radio Shack versions with a tape deck to record our data!" Sara and husband Andy continue to be very active in their synagogue, and Sara recently completed her term as vice president of education on its board of trustees. They spend a lot of their free time on the soccer fields watching their daughters play.

Laid off in 2010, Laurel Massey Leibowitz has done lots of long-term subbing since then - as a full-time reading consultant, a K-1 special educator, and a kindergarten teacher. She didn't think it was too likely that a permanent kindergarten position would open up for her for this year, but she is thankful that she got herself "back into the realm of regular and special ed" and continues to be busy running their special needs baseball and bowling. This year Laurel and husband Steve bought two kayaks - "a 50th birthday bucket list checkoff" - and in late June they christened them on Cape Cod. Laurel had a lovely visit with Mary Sienkiewicz Minalga earlier that month, and she was excited that Mary's son, Alex, was headed to UConn (honors program, studying biology) in the fall because that's only about 12 minutes from her! Mary herself checked in early in the summer and also wrote of her great visit with Laurel. She continues to enjoy her private clinical social work practice. "It focuses on the treatment of children and adolescents," she writes, "though I occasionally see adults with medical concerns." She feels she's had a wonderful and rewarding career and feels lucky to have been able to be flexible so she could "'be there' for all of Alex's pursuits" (e.g., playing viola and tennis). Mary and husband Bob celebrated 24 years of marriage in August and were looking ahead to having more time on their hands - with Alex's going off to college - as "bittersweet."

Congratulations to Carrie Sobel Rubin, who finished her Ph.D. in Social Work and is working full time at Fairfield Ludlowe High School (Fairfield, CT). Sam graduated from Clark University and is living in Brooklyn trying to break into entertainment production; Josh is in California studying transportation design; and Sara is a junior in high school. Claudia Tillis Weger has started an intergenerational program at Ossining Children's Center, where she works as director. She was hoping to see Wheelock friends in New York during the summer. Her daughter, Emily Weger '10, graduated from Bank Street College of Education in July and now teaches first grade at Little Red School House in New York City. Son Ben is at Ithaca College and wants to be a high school history teacher.

Greetings, '83ers!  I (Carol) am still subbing and job hunting locally and may resort to looking for employment outside our field. With the recession and my age, interviews are few and far between. My oldest, Rachel, headed for college (Muhlenberg) in August to study psychology, get an elementary ed. certificate, and minor in dance. I think she takes after me! Josh, now in ninth grade, hopes for more solos in chorus and a reasonable homework load to allow for participation on the squash and baseball teams as well as in the school play. Subaru of America has been good to Charlie and vice versa. I'm looking forward to seeing you at our next gathering!


Submitted by Linda Edwards Beal:

"New adventures daily ... new lessons to be learned at every turn" is how Nancy Olson Disharoon described her work in May as she was completing her second year as principal in a public middle school. "My husband of 26 years, Ben, continues to be my main supporter!" Her younger child, El, was graduating from high school at the time, and her 21-year-old daughter was finishing her second year of college. Michele Yefsky Charm, JoAnn Chambers Meehan, and Stephanie Poly Zapatka met for their yearly lunch during the summer and caught up on careers and families.


The Alumni Relations Office is looking for a new class scribe to- - at Wheelock's expense and with help from the College -- gather news from classmates once a year for the Wheelock Magazine and the Class Notes that Wheelock updates on the website a couple of times a year. If anyone is interested in taking that on, please contact Lori Ann Saslav in the Alumni Relations Office at (617) 879-2123 or lsaslav@wheelock.edu. Thanks!


Cindy Cotter Lahey still enjoys her job in the call center at Verizon Wireless in Lincoln, NE, and has been promoted to senior representative. She also volunteers as much as she can for several organizations in her area. Cindy attended son Matt's graduation from Army National Guard boot camp in Missouri in October, after which Matt was to be away for training until mid-December and then begin attending the University of Nebraska at Lincoln in January. "How did I become old enough to have a child in college?" Cindy asks. Son Ben is a sophomore in high school and is planning on a career in computers ("the next Steve Jobs" perhaps, Cindy says).


Congratulations to Gretchen Carney and Ed Geary Jr., who are engaged to be married next March 17 at the Daniel Webster Estate in Marshfield, MA. They have been together for more than 12 years! Gretchen mentioned that she passes by Wheelock's Hawes Street location - opened in 2003 but still "new" for her - daily. Kimberly Lawther Jackson, district facilitator of Family Education Services in the Consolidated School District of New Britain, CT, writes: "In September I was nominated as an honoree by Connecticut Sen. Terry Gerratana and received recognition at the 14th Biennial YWCA Women in Leadership luncheon. Sen. Gerratana acknowledged the importance of my role in family education, encouraging families to continue to partner with the schools and community to support their children's education. She also noted that I have been 'a persuasive and compelling voice to the state legislature about the value of the Family Resource Center model ... with a wide breadth of knowledge about child and family services that has enriched each group with whom she has worked in New Britain.' It was humbling to receive recognition for the work I love to do. As a Wheelock alum, I am proud to serve as a leader and to serve as a gateway to education for the diverse population in New Britain."


Rachelle Basich Doring is still living in Patterson, NY; has been married to Billy since 1997; and has two boys, 7 and 11. The past few years she has been home with her boys a lot but also has cared for another baby, has done some substitute teaching in her district, and has worked at her second career - photography. She invites classmates to check out some of the work she's done (weddings, bar/bat mitzvahs, etc.) with her boss at www.glenncuddihyphotography.com. Rachelle has enjoyed reconnecting with several old '95 and '96 Wheelock friends through Facebook and was especially glad that she and her kids were able to get together with Jennifer Clark Leach '96 and her kids early this past summer at Jen's lovely lakefront summer home. As schedules allow, she'd love to spend time with other Wheelock friends.


Aimee Farrell Dos Santos was recently featured on the BIO channel's I Survived Beyond & Back, where she spoke about her near-death experience as a child. You can see it and read about her experience on her blog, www.seekingup.wordpress.com. Staci Ruben married Rich Federman on June 18 and they went to Greece for their honeymoon.


Sara McGarry recently bought her first house with her longtime boyfriend.


Amy Mitchell was married to Joseph Lauro in the Grand Cayman Islands on April 21, and now they live in their new home in Hudson, NH. "Surrounded by our closest family and friends, we celebrated this new chapter in our lives with a Caribbean flair," Amy writes. She continues to teach mathematics in Lowell, MA.


Daniel Joseph Gonzalez recently founded Color Continuum, a nonprofit media and arts company. "Color Continuum's mission is to support individual and community arts for the LGBT community throughout North Carolina and beyond," he writes. "By supporting and creating new art including but not limited to photography, film, theater, television, print, etc., Color Continuum promotes equality and advocates for the LGBT community. Website to come soon."


Kate Needham joined the Peace Corps in July 2010 and has been in Mali (Africa) for more than a year and will be there for another year. An education and literacy volunteer working in a town of about 8,000 people, she spent her first year there helping the local English teachers enhance their curriculum, training the school board, holding a girls empowerment conference, and starting a girls soccer team, among other things. More recently, after conducting a needs assessment in the primary school and secondary school in her area and deciding she wanted to do something to help their class size problem, she has been working and fundraising to build two new classrooms. "My job as a volunteer is to help children have the opportunity to receive a basic education, which will directly affect the future development of the country," she writes. Best wishes to Kate as she works on her important and impressive service project, "Bettering Basic Education: Build a School in Mali"!


Chela Vastey, a family advocate at Associated Early Care and Education, has an office is in Roxbury, MA, but works in all six of the center-based programs located in Roxbury, Jamaica Plain, Boston, and Cambridge.

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