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Fall 2002

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  1940 | 1941 | 1942 | 1943 | 1944 | 1945 | 1946 | 1947 | 1948 | 1949


Genevieve Oliver Littlefield

Despite needing to curtail her activities, Jane VanAlst Bonnert still loves residing in Heritage Village in Connecticut, noting stoically, “Who in the Class of ’40 is not in the same boat?” She adds, “Hearing about my classmates is so important to me—those truly were my golden years, and my memories of them are still vivid and clear.”

Marion Kiep Morrison and husband John enjoy living at Freedom Village in Coatsville, PA, where, she quips, “we lose our car keys and glasses on a regular basis.” The couple celebrated their 60th anniversary in March, surrounded by family members who flew in from around the country.

Christine Legge Sheridan and husband Jack epitomize the concept of “lifelong learning.” After studying archaeology in the 1970s and ’80s, Christine went to William and Mary to direct the archaeology lab. Both Sheridans earned bachelor’s degrees in anthropology and archaeology at Western Carolina University in their seventies, visited Mayan sites in Mexico, and worked at sites in the Carolinas and Virginia. Christine, also a cloisonné enamel artist for more than 50 years, was recently diagnosed with progressive supranuclear palsy and is now living in a care facility in Brevard, N.C.

Barbara Borst Stowe resides in a nursing facility in North Haven, CT.

Mary MacLachlin Rich and husband Eldon live in Petaluma, CA, where daughter Alice and son John live nearby and “keep close tabs” on them.

Edith Marie Switzer Cox’s children are spread along the East Coast and still spend time with her. She stays busy doing volunteer work and enjoys making crafts and playing bridge. Her husband, Cameron, lives in a nursing home.


Miriam Ogden Cudmore

In Laurel Harbor, NY, Ellie Colburn Zoller enjoys playing bridge and learning new rug-hooking techniques—like shading.

Jane Dewey Cash sold her home in Melrose, MA, and lives in a retirement community in North Andover.

In June, Edith Lichtman Altschuler of Sun City, AZ, visited her daughter and son-in-law in Anchorage, AK, and attended a grandson’s bar mitzvah.

John and Janet “Happy” Rich Bradley have decided to stay in their large home in Tulsa, OK, instead of moving.

In early July, Paul and Pat Wakeley Mara traveled to Paris and took a trip down the Rhône River, making leisurely stops in Lyon, Arles, Avignon, and Nice.

In May, Ken and I spent a week in Estes Park, CO, with daughter Linda and family and visited Rocky Mountain National Park. In June I held the fort at home while Ken attended his 65th reunion at Tilton (N.H.) School, accompanied by daughter Wendy Cudmore ’72.


Cynthia Taft Lathrop

Reunion was great. Helena Ritter Fitzsimmons, Janice Hackenburg Flath, Doris Callaghan Gillingham and husband, Ellie Sloss Schatz and husband, Helen Rickenback Scott, Jane Herbert Williams and husband, and I had a great time chatting it up, getting reacquainted, and talking about those of you who didn’t make it! We really enjoyed the pictures some of you sent, showing how well you have aged and what you are doing. We were duly impressed by the Tang Museum, which has received considerable media recognition lately. We were well taken care of by a handsome young man from the Office of Alumni Affairs, and we were treated to a variety of interesting classes.

In Columbus, OH, Lucy Armstrong Davis is fine, although her husband is not in good health. While visiting a friend in a nursing home in Erie, PA, Lucy discovered that Betty Zabriskie Bull lives next door. They had a wonderful time catching up. Betty has completely lost her hearing but does well with lip-reading; she has three children and eight grandchildren.

Beverly Blickman Yunich, who lost her husband in September 2001, spends time with her twin sister, Gloria, in Rochester and Westchester, NY. One of Beverly’s sons has three children; the other is a sports editor.

Gloria Blickman Horwitz “Amtraks” to see sister Beverly. She is having a hard time learning to play bridge, a skill she neglected during college. A torn rotator cuff, bruised rib, and arthritic knee are inconveniences that “weren’t a result of pitching for the Yankees!”

Janet Bloom Harrington is “aiming to get to our 65th reunion—it should be a requirement!” In April she spent a week in Cuba and met many interesting people.

Eunice Edwards Tenney divides her time between Ponte Vedra Beach, FL, and Old Saybrook, CT. A granddaughter’s graduation kept her from attending reunion this spring. Husband Tom is recuperating after heart surgery last November. Euny, who’s given up tennis but still plays golf, is debating whether to join the bionic crowd by acquiring new knees. Earlier this year, she enjoyed a minireunion with Ellen Mathewson Patterson, Janet Harrington, Adrienne Sammet Hudson, and Rie vonLengerke Blaisdell.

Ginny Fowler Gurney of Pittsboro, NC, sent a picture taken in Denali National Park in Alaska; she still looks as youthful as always and continues to play golf. Ginny and her husband enjoy visiting their sons in Wheaton, IL, and Sun Valley, CA. A grandson attends Lewis and Clark in Portland, OR.

Ellen Gandsey Cornwell’s son was appointed vice president and dean of the faculty of St. Lawrence University, making Ellen and her husband extremely proud.

Janice Hackenburg Flath, who had not seen Saratoga since graduation, returned to Skidmore twice this year—once for Reunion and once to see grandson John Flath ’02 graduate. Janice took a trip to Alaska this summer with her two sons and their families, a total of nine.

Judy Helmick Settle also had a grandchild graduate from college this spring. She spends winters in California and the rest of the year in Colorado, where she visits daughters in Steamboat Springs and Leadville. Judy, who says she “doesn’t feel old yet,” keeps busy with golf, bridge, quilting, sewing, and knitting. She also helps raise money for a medical clinic and tutors a third-grader with non-English-speaking parents.

Rie vonLengerke Blaisdell too had a grandchild graduate during our reunion weekend. Rie continues to trap and skeet shoot, challenging her daughters to join her. She is putting off potential knee and hip replacements because she doesn’t want to slow down. With three screws and bone grafts in her ankle and two remodeled shoulders, Ries insists that already “she rings all kinds of bells.”

Alathena Smith Miller is sorry to have missed our 60th, but stays in touch with classmates throughout the year. She “treasures her phone chats with Euny and Rie.” Alathena’s son-in-law, Tim, died suddenly in June. A granddaughter is critiquing scripts at Fox Studios. Alathena is still working, sending people off on Seabourne and Silversia cruises; she herself has taken five trips around the world, two of them alone.

Katherine Lahr Hill’s health concerns prevented her from attending Reunion. She hears from Dottie Schanck Fehr, who lives in a retirement community in Pennsylvania, and Barbara Lee, who lives in Branford, CT.

Mary Mayo Lewis-Thorne’s clan includes 13 children, 18 grandchildren, and 7 great-grandchildren. With that many birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, and graduations to attend, reunions sometimes take a back seat. This year Mary and husband Steve celebrated 25 years together, with 30 family members ranging in age from 1 to 88. Blessed with good health, the couple stays active by participating in cultural events offered at a nearby college.

Dottie Lodgen Halpern of Auburndale, MA, sent the program from a piano concert earlier this year, including a photo of her at the keys.

Ellen Mathewson Patterson and husband Herb had a conflict in reunions. Herb’s 60th at Bowdoin was held the same weekend as ours. Since Herb attended our 55th, Ellen decided it was her turn to oblige—but she insists it will be Skidmore’s turn next time. The Pattersons enjoyed visiting a son and daughter-in-law on a tiny island in the Turks and Caicos Islands, southeast of the Bahamas, where their son is “turning a 150-year-old salt shed ruin into a house.”

Connie Nathan Tupper lives in Charlottesville, VA. At my request, she sent a copy of her collected poems, Legacy, which I donated to Skidmore’s archives during Reunion. Connie’s talent impressed us all.

Jane Seeman Pearce’s grandson was married in June, preventing her from attending Reunion. To help explain why her free time is limited, Jane sent pictures of her 14 great-grandchildren.

During Reunion Maggie Peelor Grover was visiting one of her children, who was recovering from hip surgery. During a spring trip to Stuart, FL, she was delighted to come across “an enthusiastic bunch” of Skidmore girls singing a cappella.

Peggy Rose Kuhn has lived in a Palms City, FL, community called Harbour Ridge for the last 16 years and “thoroughly enjoys it.” An avid golfer and bridge player, she volunteers for Hospice.

Jean Simpson Grebe’s husband, Francis, informed me that Jean has been coping with Alzheimer’s for the past three years. Although living in a nursing home, she remains in good spirits. The couple has three children, two grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.

In Toledo, OH, Shirley Stockwell Wade is struggling with shingles and neuralgia. A granddaughter was high-school valedictorian in Woodstock, VT, and plans to attend Dartmouth.

My husband, Fran, and I are fortunate that we can still do the things we enjoy—like playing tennis and skiing—despite Fran’s “problem heart.” We do move at a considerably more moderate pace than in days of yore! Our 13 grandchildren and great-grandson keep family gatherings lively.


Reunion ’03!

Mary Sinon Sayer

I was playing repairman to my garage door and had a nasty fall due to a rope breaking. I broke both bones in my arm near the wrist and had to wear a cast for many weeks. Typing this column (with one hand) was truly a labor of love!

Alice Mazuzan Pollard and I returned to Skidmore in August to start preliminary planning for our 60th reunion next May. We are open to any suggestions for activities, so fire away.

New Hampshire was the site of a minireunion for Mary Folsom Crocker, Jane Savage Stohn, Rachel Bennett Bloomfield (who summers in Exeter), and Jane Smith Austin, who met for lunch in July and agreed they would all attend our 60th.

Have you heard about the Red Hat Society? A woman from California thought she and her friends should heed the advice offered in the Jenny Joseph poem, “When I am an old woman I shall wear purple/ With a red hat which doesn’t go and doesn’t suit me… But maybe I ought to practice a little now?…” The idea has spawned chapters of the Red Hat Society nationwide. Several friends and I attended a meeting in Florida—we had a ball!


Barbara Conlon Bulger

The class extends sympathy to Dorothy Burgess Everett on the death of her husband, Everett, in July.

Olive Williams Kamnitzer, who possessed remarkable creativity and a talent for design, died in May 2001.

Mimi Burnham Douglas died in April; she is remembered as a devoted homemaker and friend.


Olga Massimiano Gigante

Phyllis Friedman Levenson
recovered well from emergency heart surgery last fall. She volunteers with Hospice and at a children’s charity. Still playing piano for local groups and social gatherings, Phyl had kept in contact with former Skidmore piano professor Stanley Saxton until his death in July.

Most of Jeanne Kimball Carrazzone’s “traveling” is done by e-mail, which she considers a blessing! Her son Dennis called while sailing in the Florida Keys. In July, the Carrazzones hosted their annual family reunion, attended by 75 people.

Marjorie Ploger Eger and husband Bill are involved with the Groton, MA, town government. They are focusing more on health (Jo had a hip replaced, and Bill takes diabetes and heart medication) and attend strength-training classes at the Groton Senior Center, where they met a woman who has two grandsons at Skidmore!

Williamstown, MA, residents Jan Sharp Adkins and husband Bill have enjoyed visits from son Hugh, son Leonard and wife Joyce, and daughter Liz and husband Rick. They toured the Tang Museum with their guests, who were delighted by the architecture and beauty of the campus.

Marge Duffelt Reid and Lew still travel in their RV. Last summer they joined a caravan of 20 Winnebagos and toured together for a month along the entire length of the Mississippi River. They are camping in Cape Cod this fall.

Ann O’Brien Redmond and her husband of 47 years, Herman, have four children and five grandchildren. In 1980 Ann started working for Mercy College, where she organized a union for the nonteaching employees, which almost cost her her job. “It was a wild six-year fight” that ended successfully, she reports. Ann resigned from the college in 2000 and started working for the union, which she continues to do. She sends her best wishes to the Class of 1945.

Marjorie Hill Laughton and Jim spent the Christmas holidays with son David and family in Mexico. In January they enjoyed a three-week cruise around Chile and Argentina. They also took daughter Debby and grandchildren on a Caribbean cruise and visited a granddaughter who teaches English in Tokyo. Between trips, Marjorie is a substitute teacher at a middle school and high school. She observes, “The best way I know to avoid rigor mortis is to keep moving!”

Terry Peyri Pi-Sunyer says hello from Barcelona, Spain. Her husband, Peter, died in May; her three daughters and seven grandchildren keep her company. Terry often misses her Skidmore friends, sends her love, and invites you to visit her.

In 1997 Ruth Peters Doyle and husband Henry moved from their house of nearly 43 years. They planned to travel but barely got started when Henry died in ’98. Ruth has been keeping busy with 11 grandchildren, gardening, volunteering, swimming, and playing tennis.

Meg Noble Evans, who’s lived in Colorado since 1956, offered this eyewitness account of the wildfires that raged there throughout the summer: “We pray for rain. I have never…seen it so dry.…The photographic expertise of the sky news teams is spectacular. But I sit and cry to see the destruction and devastation of trees, whole forests, grasslands, wildflowers, wildlife, and beautiful mountain homes. Sometimes there is a pall of smoke over Denver in the mornings, until the winds kick up to blow the sky clear again. We are desperately in need of soaking rains of long duration. Send us your clouds!”

Our sympathy goes out to Claire LaRose Leverault, whose husband of 54 years, Maurice, died July 2. She writes, “Those 54 years of memories will sustain me.”

Marsha Rose informed us that her mother, Margaret Shryer Rose, died after a brief but valiant struggle with cancer. Margaret attended our 50th reunion.

Helaine Nelkin Straus died in April; we remember her as a devoted student of psychology and a good friend.


Miriam Blechman Grimes

In April Joan Mahoney Hicks and Ed visited Henrietta Wendholt VanZoelen in Rotterdam, Holland. They found Hank looking lovely and sharp, having recovered from some serious health problems. The Hickses’ trip on the River Odyssey took them from the Netherlands up to Arnhem, where they saw the museum devoted to the Arnhem WW II disaster. Before boarding, they spent a few days in Brussels and Bruges, one of their favorite places in Europe.

Jinnie Copithorne Pollin and Jack, seasoned world travelers, had their September 2001 trip to Japan cancelled by the 9/11 disaster, but have rescheduled with a small travel group, Odysseys Unlimited. Jinnie often sees Joann McCarthy Stoneman, who attends the same church.

In June Jean Alvord Donahue and Priscilla Smith Osbourne enjoyed a 60th high-school reunion in Buffalo. The pair graduated from grammar school, high school, and Skidmore together. Pris and Earl visited the Donahues in Seattle in July. The Donahues celebrated their 50th anniversary with a Panama Canal trip. Their Buffalo trip also included visits to Dick’s family and an Alvord family reunion attended by 103 people representing five generations.

Faith Hope Barnard also enjoyed a summer family reunion. After attending a high-school reunion in Oneida in August, she headed for the cool of Quebec and Gaspé.

Connie Wallace Caldwell and Dave are enjoying the condo they moved to three years ago. Connie, retired from 11 years as a zoo volunteer, is looking for a new passion. She is doing well after three surgeries this year and asks, as many of us do: “Where does the time go? Where is all the energy that used to be part of me? Where is that name or word I’m looking for?” The Caldwells have eight grandchildren.

In Hanover, NH, Fran Schermerhorn Sherley finds many cultural activities via Dartmouth College. She plays tennis, works out three times a week with Warren at a fitness center, volunteers at the Dartmouth Medical Center, and is involved with the Friends of the Hood Museum and Hopkins Center, the Hanover Garden Club, and the International Women’s Club.

Phoebe Darling Harper has sold about 15 small watercolor landscapes of her Montana area. She also sells her photo notecards through local art galleries and at summer art fairs and Indian powwows. Twice a week she teaches a tai chi class at her home. She says, “Life is good, and I feel great at 77.”

Betty Bryan Rosenbaum and Gil were in chaos as they downsized from their overstuffed seven-room house and garage to a one-bedroom apartment. While their children were a big help, Betty found she had to make most of the decisions about what to keep or dispose of. Their new address is: 150 Cook Hill Road, Apt. 1105, Cheshire, CT 06410-3763.

Andrea Flynn McCarthy likes retirement life. Pete and husband John have done a lot of world traveling and are now ready to explore the wonderful sites of the U.S., avoiding the long flights overseas.

Jo Sperry Gardner drives a red Honda with the license plate “I WEED” and reports that she’s been doing a lot of that in her home gardens, the Audubon Herb Garden and greenhouse, and their Berkshire retreat. Jo is proud that she and Charles have a conservation restriction on 90 acres of their land, meaning it can never be developed or built upon. She is also proud of daughter Sarah, now an assistant professor of environmental studies at Williams. Jo still plays tennis and reports younger players admire her group because “we still can get around.” A high point of every summer, she says, is meeting up with Carolyn Lipman Rothschild and husband David in Wellfleet. The last three summers have also included vacations on a canal barge in France and in a villa high in the mountains in Tuscany with family members.

In June Joy Miller Brown and Ralph celebrated an anniversary at the Sagamore Resort on Lake George in upstate New York. On the way there they stopped for a visit with Betty Simpson Ellard and John in Cambridge, NY, where on a sunny day they have a beautiful vista of the Berkshires and the Green Mountains beyond.

Rae Eno Werner enjoys life in Georgia, where she has made great friends playing golf and bridge and enjoying local cultural activities. A small stroke suffered last fall has limited her traveling, but she still visits her two daughters and son in the DC area. In August, her children and their families vacationed together in Wrightsville Beach, NC.

Marjorie Garton Monski’s son Paul is a minister in Germany and has 14 children; daughter Martha has entered the field of real estate after 20 years as a music teacher and has two children and two grandchildren; daughter Judy has a B.S. in nursing and three sons—one a lawyer and the other two in college; daughter Nancy has a construction business and three daughters, two of whom are married and the third a senior in college; and daughter Carol has two children, both at Purdue. Does this take the prize for family size?! As for herself and husband Bill, Midge observes, “We keep going, getting older and stiffer; still play golf and eat out a lot.” Midge welcomes e-mail at mm5551BBY@prodigy.net.

Janet Peters Gardiner and Dick still play golf two or three times a week and enjoy being on the course, “but our games are not good.” Jan rides in a cart, and Dick walks nine holes and rides nine holes. Concerned and discouraged with global conditions, she attributes many of our world problems to too many people and poor education.

Blanche Meehan enjoyed a 97-day around-the-world trip aboard the MS Rotterdam last year, starting in Los Angeles and ending in Fort Lauderdale.

I had lunch with Kay Krauskopf Brylawski ’45, whom I got to know years ago when I used her services as a travel agent. She continues to work, mostly out of her condo. Mary Wolfe DiRenza invited Betty Morley Williams ’42, Kay, and me for lunch at her snug cottage at a retirement community. Mary joined the Abington Club, where I work out, to play golf; it is the course she learned on in her pre-college days.

Janet Hamilton Muyskens’s husband, Bill, died in May after a long battle with congestive heart failure. Bill had many fond memories of Skidmore, spending many weekends here during our freshman year, the same year he entered Colgate. Daughter Lisa lives in Arunba, DWI, and son Derek lives in Santa Clarita, CA.

Ellen Hinds McGrath’s husband, Bernie, died in August 2001. Bernie had visited Ellen several times at Skidmore after he came home from the Pacific war theater. He was disabled for the past 18 years, so there has been a big change in Ellen’s life. A son lives with her for the time being; her other two children are nearby and help her maintain her home and yard.

My husband, Paul, died in April. His 30-year career with the New York Times included stints as a foreign correspondent covering South Asia and assistant foreign news editor. He was the originator of The Practical Traveler column in the Sunday travel section. Paul was a regular at our class reunions.


Jane Geibel Morton

There were 31 of us at our 55th reunion, shining bright in the parade of classes with our yellow silk scarves and yellow-and-white golf umbrellas. Our class picture shows a happy group of mostly gray and white heads, but the faces are familiar. Do Dunkel Jerman was in Saratoga early on, having rented a house for a month in town. Our prez, Betty Noyes McMath, and her companion, Gil, have tended our class garden, donated at our 50th. On Saturday afternoon, President Studley hosted us for tea at the Surrey; afterwards a bus transported us to the garden and then to a recital hall to see and hear the Steinway grand piano that our class donated. Joan Schimpf Root, Mary Jane Ullman Getty, and their husbands played golf in between events. Twins Virginia Miller Krueger and Mary Miller Solari were full of enthusiasm; being legally blind hasn’t slowed them down a bit. Bette “Tavey” Avery Applegate drove up from Annapolis (stopping over in the Poconos) and brought her albums of past reunions. A special program honoring nursing majors drew Elizabeth Haines Williamson from New Hampshire. Cilla Wheeler Vickery and Bobbie Sidd Behan came together, from Cape Cod. Cilla’s daughter continues to battle cancer, and Cilla and Dunda stay with her every few weeks. Ann Morse West is having fun and turning a profit buying and selling houses; she herself lives in an 1800s house in Essex, CT. Ann also boasts of having the most up-to-date pacemaker there is. Yours truly got her first speeding ticket on the Taconic driving up—for going 70 mph.

Reunion highlights included wonderful student a cappella performances, the alumni awards and recognition ceremony, good food and being cared for just like we were 55 years ago, and finally—seeing everyone again! We also enjoyed the beautiful campus and charming Saratoga Springs, the view from the 11th floor of Jonsson Tower as we watched a sudden storm roll in over the treetops, the memorial service during which we sang our alma mater, and being the third oldest class there.

Remember, Schleik (Ruth Schleicher Kroon) is your new secretary for the next five years—so send her your news (4 Jedidiah Way, Chatham, MA 02633; 508-945-5619; Kjedidiah@aol.com). The past five years have gone fast, and it has been great fun being class secretary. Thanks for all your help and for staying in touch.


Reunion ’03!

Esther Anderson Lacey

Verna Dick Stassevitch
suffered a viral infection in the cartilage that joins the rib cage to the breastbone (known as Tietze’s Syndrome); it was very painful and complicated by drug reactions and pneumonia. Still, she has made a satisfactory transition to her new surroundings in California, where she is active in the League of Women Voters, the San Francisco Music Center, and the Bay Area Skidmore Club.

Our globe-trotting Nancy “Leggie” D’Wolf spent last January in Paris, where she rented an apartment with her cousin and a friend. In March, she attended a weeklong Elderhostel in Spain, studying Spanish artists.

Gretchen Eisner Rachlin reports from the environs of NYC, where Billie Stein Tisch hosted a lively luncheon and minireunion at the Regency Hotel in May. Present were Sue Strauss Kraus (who started it all), Leila Goldstein Garlock (the chief architect), Louise Samuels Schindler, Joan Cummings Koven, Sandy Vinick Shapiro (coming from Pittsfield, MA), Ruth Bloch Baltimore (from Pennsylvania), and Gretchen. Leila Goldstein Garlock showed a tape of our graduation processional and other images from Skidmore days.

Suzanne Menzel Snyder recently appeared on a live awards presentation of the TV Access Channel in Austin, TX, to accept second-place honors in the community service category for Gifts of International Friendships for Peace, a TV film she co-produced. For Suzy, who was “thrilled just to be nominated,” the award was “much more than I ever dreamed of.”

We send condolences to Patricia Williams DeBlasio, who lost husband Guido earlier this year.


Edith Armend Holtermann

Mary Lou Woodruff Thompson
’s grandson is a freshman at Dartmouth.

I was sorry to hear that Pat Hickey Powell suffered a stroke earlier this year. Happily, she is recovering her speech and mobility. We send her our best wishes for full recuperation.

Mary Hazzard tells me that two of her poems are appearing in We Used to Be Wives, an anthology of divorce poems by women. The book is published by Daniel & Daniel and is available on amazon.com.

Alice Ziegler Bomer took a trip to the Netherlands this summer. She is still quilting and doing needlework.

My husband, Al, died in May of acute myeloid leukemia. He was diagnosed in December and given two to three months to live. It leaves a big hole in my heart. I am keeping busy. I join the rest of you widows and don’t like it.


© 2002 Skidmore College