Classmates and friends of the Notre Dame Class of 1968,
In addition to reading new and old class notes – with the ability to search for names – you can submit photos and comments of your own.
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If you attend a game, look for the Class of 1968 flag. There, between the stadium and Legends (once the Senior Bar), you will find many of your friends.
(Class of 1968 notes submitted April, 2020 for publication in Notre Dame Magazine, approximately June, 2020)
We know social distancing, don’t we? We know the disappointment of St. Mary’s women abruptly canceling Friday night dates, the misery of pointless Rathskellar circling, the envy as lovely Barat or Xavier students alighted from their busses and rushed past us to the likes of fortunate Tom Gibbs or our charismatic future Class President Tom Weyer. There were other exceptions, men such as Rocky Bleier, Dave Martin, Dan Harshman and Jim Smithberger, whose athleticism complemented their good looks. There were those who self-medicated and married during senior year: Pat Hermann, Mike Baroody, Jay Schwartz. In those days, social distancing had another hardship: many had to endure it in forced triples, for this was in the time before rooms meant suites with kitchenettes. We survived then, and we are surviving now.
Joe Blake, former Marine officer, triathlete, grandfather, sent a photo of a project he took on during the early days of the national lockdown: the baking of an apple pie.
Just before the lockdown curtain fell in Florida, Bob Brady and his friend Kathleen hosted a dinner for ten in his Naples home. Neighbors Jeff Keyes and Meg were there, as were Will Dunfey and Joan, Elise Stephens Reeder, Julie Ann Bodner, Tom Figel and Nancy Carlin. Anyone expecting to find Bob and Jeff at the beach each day, busy with metal detectors in search of coins, maybe competing for same with other Naples winter visitors Chris Murphy, Bob Ptak and Paul Dunn, would be wrong. To their own amazement, too, Bob and Jeff have a regimen of daily tennis and golf. Bob’s friend Kathleen flavored that one day with a 37-mile bike ride. Somehow, Crossfit evangelist Mike Burgener is having an effect from Southern California.
When her winter sojourn ended in late March, the Boston Globe quoted Joan Dunfey’s observation that the corona virus could be “devastating” in Florida because “Everybody’s over 70.” No doubt, Florida’s median age rose when Joan, Will and the others returned to northern homes.
Prior to the quarantine and prior to Rich Roger‘s Easter note, Brian Sullivan and Nancy met for unmasked dinner in Bal Harbour, FL with Mike Ryan and Rich Rogers. While watching Easter Mass online from the Vatican, Brian passed away. John Walsh and Dia, the news of Brian’s death fresh, were unpacking boxes at their new condominium home when John came across a first grade photo of himself flanked by Brian Sullivan and Mike McCarthy.
Jim O’Rourke, Mendoza Business School Professor of Management, endorsed the leadership of Queen Elizabeth upon her address to an English people grappling with the corona virus pandemic. Jim’s remarks, carried in an Associated Press article published globally, included: “Now, more than ever, the people of the U.K. must have someone to reply upon, someone whose word they can trust.”
When Chris Murphy praised Drs. Fred Ferlic and Steve Anderson in a message sent widely over the Bryan Dunigan network, the email not only produced additional testaments to both physicians, it sparked a clarification from modest Steve: “I had been doing administrative work as the CMO at St. Joe’s in Mishawaka until July, 2018. This was long enough to ensure that Fred avoided Stark Act investigations between his orthopedic business and his Tayco Brace sales. I then retired from full time administrative work and began spending five months annually in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, with winters down south in South Bend. Inspired by the frenetic work of my ND ’69 colleague, Mark Walsh, who is doing both emergency department and hospitalist work at St. Joe, I went back into working one shift a week as a hospitalist at St. Joe this past November.” A note from Bryan Dunigan soon followed: “Who goes to South Bend for the winter?”
As a member of the medical team addressing the corona virus problem, Dr. Fred Ferlic has advised Dr. Anthony Fauci that the Tayco Brace requires additional testing before application against the disease.
Email from Dan Kimball, Port Townsend, WA, indicates that ND68 has good representation on the Notre Dame Senior Advisory board: e.g., Dan is chairman and, ex officio, sits on the Notre Dame Alumni Advisory Board; Tom McGrath is Rick Gutowski‘s successor representing the Southeast Region. Dan’s year regularly includes game attendance with Herb Kaler and Ken Larson. Ready to golf and visit for the benefit of scholarships for veterans and children of veterans? Watch www.ndsa.undgroup.org for the Warren Golf Course, Thursday, September 17th sign-up information and raffle tickets.
Tom Dorsel, on Hilton Head Island, SC, has provided the guitar/vocal Irish music for St. Patrick’s Day at Reilley’s North End Pub for the last three years. Tom claims he learned the songs from the juke box at Sweeney’s, while there with Kevin Doyle, Tom Duxbury and Jim LaTerza.
The Observer student newspaper dipped into its archives for a November, 1966 Dennis O’Dea article about the arrest and beating Brian McTigue suffered as a civil rights worker in Georgia during summer, 1966. Brian, now a lawyer advocating for clients protesting unfair banking treatment, works in Washington, DC.
Even with Tom Gibbs‘ blunt recommendation of a live-streamed viewing because of virus concerns, Sheila Gates Gibbs’ funeral brought a crowd to St. Luke’s, River Forest, IL on March 18, 2020. “The Great ’68 was well-represented,” said Tom Weyer. “Rick McPartlin, Kathy McCann. . .” Sheila, the Barat grad who became Tom’s wife and enthusiastic center of myriad class gatherings, had not let her illness diminish any family or class life.
Easter had additional news from Bryan Dunigan: his Badin Hall roommate Mick McKeon, who suffers from cancer, had entered home hospice care in Butte, MN. There was hardly time to say good-by, something Brian McManus managed with Facetime before Mick died April 15th. Please remember Mick, his wife Carol and their two children in your prayers.
Mick McKeon from the 1968 yearbook. Bryan Dunigan says the room they shared in Badin Hall has become part of a stairwell.
On January 17, 2020, Tom Condon’s sister Pat, a celebrated, longtime financial manager for the government of her native New London, CT, succumbed to an illness resembling ALS, one that had caused her six years of intense suffering. See a following post.
Paul Zalesky wrote of the sudden January 19, 2020 death of Richard Jurjevic. At Notre Dame, said Paul, ”Rick and I worked, as student part-time technicians under the direction of the department head, in the Aerospace facility studying (under confidentiality) fluid dynamics for various-shaped vehicles that evolved into the Apollo mission selections. We used what, at the time, was pretty unique high speed cinematography in the smoke wind tunnel.” Found at www.ndclass1968.com, Rich’s obituary celebrates a classmate who figured significantly in his family, his work, his parish and his community. See a following post.
Please pray for our deceased classmates and their families. And please send news and photos to: Tom Figel, 1054 West North Shore, Apt. 3E, Chicago, IL 60626, tel. 773-764-4898, firstname.lastname@example.org. The class blog www.ndclass1968.com has additional news.
(August 22. 1946 – April 12,2020) Sullivan, Brian P. Bal Harbour formerlyof Chicago, Illinois passed away suddenly on April 12, 2020. Cherished husband of Nancy Sullivan and devoted father of Edward Sullivan, Brian was the loving son of William and Lillian Sullilvan. He is survived by his sister, Suzanne Sullivan Brennan, and predeceased by his brother, William and sister, Shannon Sullivan. Brian was the brother-in-law of Bridget Edwards, Kathleen Soeder, and Patrick, Ned and Tim Hyland. He was the beloved Uncle B to his many nieces, nephews and cousins. Brian was a highly respected retired Senior VP at Raymond James Financial Advisors and had a distinguished career as a Stockbrokerfor over 45 years. A proud graduate of his beloved Alma Mater, the University of Notre Dame Class of 1968, he placed a high premium on his faith, family and friends. He will be remembered as a loving husband and father and a kind and generous friend to many. A Mass of the Resurrectionwill be celebrated at a private ceremony at St. Rose of Lima on Saturday, April 18th at 2:00pm. Interment immediately to follow. A Memorial Mass and celebration of life will beheld at a later date due to the current pandemic. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the Scholarship Funds at St. Rose of Lima School, Miami Shores or Chaminade Madonna College Prep, Hollywood. Gregg L Mason Funeral Home Miami, Florida 305-757-9000
ORLANDO, FL– New England picked up its first USTA League National Championship of the year thanks to one of Cape Cod’s most consistent teams. The Outer Cape Stripers, from Willy’s Gym in Eastham, MA, won the 65 & Over 7.0 Men’s National Invitational on February 9 at USTA’s National Campus in Orlando, FL, headlining New England’s success at the two-weekend Invitational.
In their five years as a team, the men from the Cape have won the last three New England Sectional Championships and earned as high as a third-place National finish in 2017.
This year’s road to Nationals may have been their toughest yet, as the team faced unthinkable adversity.
Following New England Sectionals in September, Captain Jim Bisceglia and his team committed to 30 practices to prepare ahead of Nationals. But in December, their home court, Willy’s Gym, temporarily closed, forcing the team to relocate to Mid-Cape Athletic Club in Yarmouth.
“So many things had to go just right for us to win this year. It almost seemed like it was destined to happen,” said Bisceglia said. The key for us was this year was a total commitment to practicing and to the team-first concept.”
Things didn’t get any easier in Orlando, as the Stripers were faced with powerhouses USTA Florida and Middle States over the first two days, both of which reached the semifinals.
New England split its day one slate, sweeping Northern California, 3-0 but dropping the Florida match, 1-2.
“When our record was 1-1 after the first day, we knew we had to sweep all three lines in our next match and at least two out of three in our last, and that’s exactly what we did,” Bisceglia said.
The men bounced back with a 3-0 drubbing of Intermountain and, in a must-win match, defeated Middle States, 3-0. The pairs of Jim Bisceglia/Dave Kenney and Peter Weinman/Chad Small eked out two, third-set tiebreak wins.
New England advanced to the semifinals as the No. 3 seed and matched up once again with Florida, which claimed the No. 2 spot. New England had the home team’s number this time around, as they swept the Floridians, 3-0.
In a shocking upset, Middle States defeated top-finishing Southern in the other semifinal, setting up another rematch from early-round play.
In a similar result, New England took the match, 2-1, thanks to wins at the Nos. 2 and 3 positions from the pairs of Weinman & Small and David Bernstein & Jerry Haigh respectively.
“The deciding match of the tournament featured Dave Bernstein and Jerry Haigh playing a tiebreak. There must have been 60 people watching from an adjoining court,” Bisceglia recalled. “When we eventually won the tiebreak, 20 of our players and team supporters rushed the court for a group hug with Jerry and David. It was reminiscent of the Red Sox winning the World Series, only better.”
Weinman and Small led the way the entire tournament for the Stripers, finishing 6-0 as a duo.
“Tennis on Cape Cod has brought so much joy to all of us; fostering friendships that will endure,” Bisceglia said. “Our late dear coach, Joe Abbott, is responsible for introducing many of us to each other and teaching us how to play the game the right way and to not take the game or ourselves too seriously.”
Can the emissions of the jets transporting so many classmates south to Naples, FL this winter be an unremarked contributor to the global climate change? Tanned Bob Ptak and Donna were back in the Chicago area for holiday celebrating with Class President Tom Weyer, Tom Gibbs, John Walsh, Gene Cavanaugh and Pat, Dennis Toolan and Mary Lou, Matt Walsh, Roger Guerin and Jean, Ted Nebel and other Bryan Dunigan guests. Ted Nebel spoke of January, 2020 retirement, though he then told of a prodigious “reduced” schedule of tax form preparations.
whose Navy service was submarine duty, now is seeing the world from
above the waves. Brian and Sue took a cruise ship along the
Norwegian coast, around the North Cape and into Murmansk, Russia,
where they toured the Russian Northern Fleet Museum. Said Brian:
imagined back in ROTC, I would pay my respects at a memorial to the
Russian submarine Kursk.” The Schannings had lunch with Bob
and Barb when the two came to Boston from Ft. Myers, FL for Christmas
with their daughter and grandchildren.
former Farley Hall roommate, was also traveling – and writing about
what he found in Egypt: https://robertlindsaybrady.wordpress.com.
and Ellen will make a bucket list trip to New Zealand, their third ND
trip. They meant to see New Zealand while in Australia years ago but
then 9/11 occurred. Gene is “still
working, but finding the time to do things like this before age takes
and Eileen had fun with Jerry
and Mary Ellen at the Duke game. Jerry, said Jim, has a bad knee
ran 40 yards in 4.3 seconds when I mentioned ‘Manhattans’.”
In Western New York, Walt Moxham and his Vietnam Veterans group are hosting Rocky Bleier’s performance at North Tonawanda’s Riviera Theatre on August 8, 2020. The four-minute video Steve Anderson sent of Rocky’s NCAA award supports everyone’s admiration for our classmate. Click on https://youtu.be/IIxXaFGY4lk.
From San Francisco, John O’Connor sent an effulgent shout-out to Tom Condon and Pat Collins: “They were two of the most insightful, pull-no-punch reporters during Watergate.” John’s new book, “Postgate: How the Washington Post Betrayed Deep Throat”, similarly is a pull-no-punch appraisal of Watergate cover up and the initiation of today’s partisan climate. Tom Condon piled on with “Beat Reporter”, an online ND Magazine feature about Pat Collins’ journalism career: https://magazine.nd.edu/stories/beat-reporter/Bryan Dunigan‘s alert to his list (if Bryan had a dollar for every name, he would qualify for the Democratic Party’s national debates), Bob Noonan wrote: Enjoyed Tom’s article and it’s spot on. I have three grandchildren who live in the DC Virginia suburbs and after identifying Pat as he measured snow on TV one day as one of my classmates, they now refer to him as ‘that Notre Dame guy who measures snow’. I told them he did other things but we are all known for something special.” (Note that space in the printed version of the magazine was not available for the feature about Pat. Exhibiting something of the Scholastic‘s famous work ethic as they struggle to produce four issues per year, the editors selected, for example, the current issue’s feature about two Chicago alumni who design cocktails. So, go Irish there. )
In the parallel universe our General Program classmates occupy, a long email exchange begun with Tom Durkin’s recommendation of a New Republic article by alumnus Tom Geoghegan, “Educated Fools”, produced Ned Buchbinder’s hope for a General Program reunion before the 2020 Presidential election. Ned included: “I guess I am retired from getting up every morn and “going to work” (and getting paid moola.)….but, I teach kids (volunteer) one day a week, audit one or two courses for free at two-year campus of U. of Wisconsin.”
After hosting Jim Smithberger the weekend of the Virginia Tech game, Larry “Monk” Forness sent a funny recollection of a first class, Language and Logic: “The prof was Fr. Brennan. Smithberger was from the tough area of West Virginia. And, Fr. Brennan, first day of class, he asked every student to give his name, where he was from, and something about himself. Smithbeger was called, and gave the info. Then, it was dead silent for many seconds, and Fr. Brennan finally said: ‘Did even one guy in this class understood even a single word of what that hillbilly just said?’ Place went nuts!”
correspondence also included sorrow: Brian and Ben
saw each other at the New Mexico game Ben attended with his daughter.
Then, Brian heard from Ben again: news in late November, 2019 that
Ben’s daughter Nancy Marie had died. May Ben and his family have
the help of all of our condolences and our prayers.
On January 17, 2020, Tom Condon’s sister Pat, a celebrated, longtime financial manager for the government of her native New London, CT, succumbed to an illness resembling ALS, one that had caused her six years of intense suffering. Tom expressed a feeling similar to his sister Dede’s: “It’s an awfully sad thing to be glad for her sake of her passing, but the past month must have been torture for her. Now she is released from that. Prayers greatly appreciated.” See Pat’s obituary in a following post.)
Sunday morning, January 26, 2020 began with a note and obituary from Paul Zalesky, who had learned of the sudden January 19, 2020 death of Richard Jurjevic. At Notre Dame, said Paul, ” Rick and I worked, as student part-time technicians under the direction of the department head, in the Aerospace facility studying (under confidentiality) fluid dynamics for various-shaped vehicles that evolved into the Apollo mission selections. We used what, at the time, was pretty unique high speed cinematography in the smoke wind tunnel.” Rich’s obituary, a celebration of a classmate who figured significantly in his family, his work, his parish and his community, is now available in a following post. Know Rich and his family? Please say prayers and console them.
A thudding email from Dennis Gallagher January 9, 2020 had the shocking message line “John McCoy Death”: “A few minutes ago, I received a telephone call from John McCoy’s sister Anne. John returned to Taos on New Year’s Day after spending the holidays with family. After being unable to reach him for several days, his sister called the Taos police, who found that he had signed in to ski on January 2 and his car was still there. Given the passage of time, it’s presumed he had a fatal skiing accident and a search for him is under way. His sister says she will keep me informed of developments, which I will pass on to the group. I’m kind of in shock, so I’ll just end here for now.”
On January 23, Dennis sent a second email, this one with an obituary (see in a following post) and the news that the search for John had ended with police issuing a “presumed dead” document. John’s family is holding a memorial service in Annapolis on Saturday, February 15.
Anyone who knows Dennis knows that his remarkable intelligence extends to sports and the arts, two interests he and John shared through conversation and through attendance at years of DC concerts and sporting events. They were friends, great friends, with an early link formed in a dispute over which one had come to South Bend for an improvement in climate: Dennis’ Oswego, NY hometown prevailed over John’s hometown, near Erie, PA.
Missing now, how present John was in his years. Absorbed into the small group Pat Collins assembled for publishing of three Observer issues per week (Note that, Notre Dame Magazine), John applied himself to whatever tasks were given him. Most often, the duties came from Bill Kelly, the business manager, or Bill Knapp, the paper’s advertising salesman. While columnists such as I pontificated about the world, John worked to correct it: without any fanfare, he began helping South Bend families who needed guidance with household budgeting. After graduation in 1969 (a class affiliation John would set aside in favor of 1968), John joined the Peace Corps for two years of service in Lesotho, Africa, a country surrounded by South Africa. He began his professional career as an Arthur Andersen accountant in DC before earning a law degree and joining Arent Fox. More than once, during Chicago visits, Nancy and I saw John receive an email, begin pacing, begin noodling for a couple of hours, and emerge with a way for a mogul to pass through the needle of the US and global tax codes.
Too many classmates remain out of contact, their achievements and thoughts going uncelebrated. If Joe Ferry could come back – twice in recent years – from the gravitational pull of Philadelphia, what about others: e.g., Mike Bylebyl, Mike Botti, Edward Wilbraham, Thomas Weiford, Paul Ramsey, Sam Misuraca, Thomas D. McCloskey? Come into the light, friends from 1968.
or otherwise, please send news and photos to: Tom
1054 West North Shore, Apt. 3E, Chicago, IL 60626, tel. 773-764-4898,
Sunday January 19th 2020 Richard Anthony Jurjevic passed away unexpectedly Sunday, January 19, 2020 surrounded by his loving family. Richard was born June 3, 1946 to Rudolph Anthony and Pearl Mary Trumbic Jurjevic in Hammond, Indiana. His childhood was spent in Hegewisch, Illinois where he attended St. Columba Parish and grammar school. There, Richard served as an altar boy and Grand Knight of the Altar. He then attended Mendel High School in Chicago where he graduated with honors. Richard’s childhood dream was to attend West Point and he received an appointment there or to any of the military academies from Senator Everett Dirksen. However, he was unable to attend when he became diabetic. He received his Undergraduate degree ‘68 and his Master’s Degree ‘70 in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Notre Dame where he made several lifelong friendships. As a professional, Richard became a patented engineer working mainly in the rubber industry. In 1974, he married Susan Caley. Together, they spent 45 devoted, loving and fun-filled years together. Throughout his life, he enjoyed all the holidays with his family, fishing, golfing, rooting for Notre Dame, and watching his family participate in athletics and school activities. He was active in the Knights of Columbus where he was proud to manage three outreach programs. He was most proud of his work to assist Associated Charities during the Christmas season. He is survived by his wonderful family, wife Sue, son Todd and Heather Jurjevic, Daughter Sara and Jake Castle with grandchildren Natalie, Luke, Owen, and Ethan Jurjevic, Miki and Jacob Castle, Shea and John Happ, great grandson Jameson Happ, brother and sister-in-laws, as well as, a very loving extended family. He was preceded in death by his parents, his in-laws Fred and Goldie Caley, his beloved uncles and aunts Anthony and Anna Kovacic, Frank and Angeline Trumbich, Rudolph and Dorothy Kovacic, his cousin and childhood best friend Dickie Tomich, and his nephew Jeff Rickett. Funeral services will be held Saturday, January 25, 2020 at 2:00 p.m. at the Denbow-Gasche Funeral Home with Rev. Kevin McClain officiating. Burial will be in the Nankin Cemetery. Friends may visit with the family on Friday, January 24, 2020 from 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. at the Denbow-Gasche Funeral Home and on Saturday, January 25, from 1:00 p.m. until the time of the service. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Associated Charities, 240 Cleveland Ave., Ashland, Ohio 44805 or to the Notre Dame Club of Greater Sarasota Scholarship Fund, P.O. Box 49453, Sarasota, FL. 34230. Expressions of sympathy may be made to the family by visiting denbowfh.com
of Annapolis, Maryland and Taos New Mexico is presumed dead. He
disappeared while skiing alone in Taos, NM on January 2nd.
John was born on July 22, 1947 to John Christy McCoy senior and
Madeleine Lesser McCoy, both of whom preceded him in death. He is
survived by his sisters Ann Ziegler (Jim) of Chester MD and Mary
Micket (Wes) of Rochester NY, two nephews Samuel Ziegler (Rachel
Chellappa) of San Jose CA and Matthias Ziegler (Charlotte Liu) of
Oakton VA and great nephews, Oliver, Sebastian and Quentin and great
nieces, Lorelei and Adriana.
attended Notre Dame University and was a life-long Notre Dame fan
returning every year for football games. After graduating from Notre
Dame, John spent two years in the Peace Corps in Lesotho, Africa. He
returned to the Washington area and recieved a law degree from George
Washington University, and then spent his law career with the firm of
Arent-Fox in Washington, becoming a partner early in his career.
Upon retiring he moved to Annapolis, MD, and divided his time between
Annapolis and Taos.
was an avid skiier and had skiied several times in the Alps and the
Andes and returned annually for many years to spend four months
skiing in Taos. He also was an accomplished scuba diver, diving on
several occasions every year in the Carribean. He had also dived in
the Galapago Islands, on the Australian Great Barrier Reef and in New
Guinea. He climbed Mount Kilimanjaro when he was in his sixties.
Since the 1970’s, he had sailed – keeping his boat in Annapolis.
He was a thirty year member of the Eastport Yacht Club and recently
served on the condo board of his home condo: The Tecumseh
was a loving brother and devoted uncle. He valued his friendships
and maintained life long friendships with numerous people. He will
memorial service is scheduled for Saturday, February 15th
at 11am at Saint Anne’s Episcopal Church, Church Circle Annapolis.
A reception will follow at the Parish Hall. The family requests that
donations be made to your favorite charity in his name.
Carolyn Patricia Condon,
of New London, beloved wife of David Duranti, died Friday, Jan. 17,
surrounded by family and friends, after a long illness. Born in New
London in 1947, she was the daughter of the late Thomas P. and Mary
Carolyn Macdonald Condon. She attended
St. Mary School and St. Bernard High School, later earning two associate
degrees from Mitchell College and a bachelor’s degree from Post
University. She worked for many years for the City of New London, rising
to the position of Cost Accounting Supervisor in the Finance Department
before retiring in 2005. Pat was an avid golfer and bowler. She was a
skilled amateur artist, rabid Red Sox fan and proud Irish-American. She
was devoted to her family and was a companion and caregiver to her
mother. In addition to her husband, she is survived by four siblings and
nine in-laws: Thomas J. and Anne Condon of West Hartford, Deirdre Wyeth of New York, Garret and Daria Condon of West Hartford, Brian Condon of New London, Sherri Condon of New London, Virginia McGehee Condon
of Colchester, Vermont, Richard and Patricia Duranti of Quaker Hill and
Pat Duranti and Craig Walker of Ocala, Fla. She also is survived by her
stepson, Dayne Duranti, his partner Melanie Duranti, and their children
Jackson and Logan, of Westerly, R.I. She also leaves five nieces and
nephews and their spouses: Carolyn and Matt Jacobs of Fairfield, Clare Condon-Grade and Aaron Grade of Chicopee, Mass., John Condon of Chicago, May Wyeth of New York and Thomas L. Condon
of Los Angeles. She also leaves a grand nephew, William Jacobs, of
Fairfield. She was predeceased by her brothers David and Jim Condon
and her brother-in-law, John Wyeth. The family would like to thank the
many skilled and compassionate professionals at Lawrence + Memorial
Hospital for the care and kindness they provided. Calling hours will be
from 10 to noon on Saturday, Jan. 25, at Thomas L. Neilan & Sons
Funeral Home, 12 Ocean Ave., New London. A short service will be
conducted at the funeral home. Private interment will be at the
discretion of the family. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to
The New London Homeless Hospitality Center (www.nlhhc.org) or the ALS Association of Connecticut (webct.alsa.org).
(In addition to the main note, please read the following posts: deaths of Geoff Gillette and Tom Knowles, correspondence from Mike Crutcher and Joe Ferry, contents suggestions Richard Pivnicka sent to Notre Dame Magazine, and for a brief time, Tom Fitzharris’ new work at the NYC Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the link to Jay Schwartz’s blog One More Thing. . .)
When Honest John Weyer, father of Class President Tom Weyer, pushed at an unlocked Engineering Building classroom door fifty years ago, he only meant to find shelter for a pre-game celebration. At the time, some of us had hair, a military future, and hopes of girlfriends who didn’t come from the center of magazines. What Honest John opened turned into a tradition. Now that tailgate has abutting-the-stadium space arranged by Matt Walsh and tended by a squad of South Bend and Michiana classmates. While no one seems in need of help such as the pampers of early parenthood, we are enjoying the time before we need adult diapers along with our fellowship.
In the meantime, the tailgate is gloriously appointed with classmates.
John Walsh and his grandson Vasant Banks were with Roger Guerin, Dennis Toolan and Mary Lou, Tom Gibbs, Matt Walsh and Joyce, Fred Ferlic (the Tayco Boot entrepreneur), Bryan Dunigan, Mike Ryan and Ned Buchbinder at the New Mexico game. The Virginia game drew those friends plus Bob Ptak, Steve Anderson, Tom Durkin and visitors from beyond the Midwest horizons: Ed Lewis, Lloyd Adams, Pete Adams, and Bill Gormley from New Jersey, Rich Rogers and Pat from New York, Tom Condon from Connecticut, Bill Kenealy from Maryland, about three dozen classmates, none in need of anything but friendship and laughs.
Ed Lewis remembered the work required each of the game Saturdays: “Most don’t know that Gene Cavanaugh and Fred Ferlic arrive at the stadium parking lot at 6:30 AM to hold spaces near to Matt’s parking slots. Then the Chicago contingent (Tom Weyer, Tom Gibbs, Bryan, et al ) arrives. They all bring food and drinks for anyone who shows up to enjoy. And, this generosity has inconceivably gone on for 50 years! Wow.”
Ken DiLaura and Veronica made a May Spain and Portugal river cruise the time for their own reunion with Mike Coleman and Gloria. In San Francisco, the Hon. Czech Consul General Richard Pivnicka hosted graduates from the McCloskey New Venture competition winner Resonado at the time of the Louisville game. Rick frequently sees John O’Connor as well as Dennis Withers, who comes from Atlanta for visits with his Napa Valley daughter Boo Withers Berkstoffer.
Mike Crutcher wrote from China, his home since 2006: “Came here to do ‘humanitarian’ work. Met my wife in 2007, married in 2008. Education is our mainstay, mostly teaching English. A little background on me : after ND … USAF/ANG pilot, then lived in DC for a while , back home to Big D, real estate business there , age 31 my ‘born again’ experience which radically changed my lifestyle and priorities. Was led to go to graduate school to study theology/psychology.” In his note, Mike shouted out to best ND buddies Dave Martin and Jan, Dennis Withers, Chris Murphy, Rocky Bleier, Dan Harshman, Steve Anderson, Jay Jordan.
Recognition of Philadelphian Joe Ferry’s first return to campus two years ago awakened a hunger in him for repeat attention and a second return for the 50th reunion. The note Joe wrote (found in full in a following post) has pushed him to the fore with the labeling of John O’Connor as “effulgent” and with this sample: “In 1998, my wife and I went to Annapolis to celebrate our wedding anniversary and my birthday. The Naval Academy Class of ’68 was celebrating its 30th Anniversary and it was headquartered at our hotel. My wife alerted me to this and, pointing to a man who was about my age, said ‘That guy looks like he was in that class.’ I approached the man and asked ‘Are you a member of the Class of 1968?’ He said that he was. I told that I was, also but ‘not here, Notre Dame.’ The entire weekend the Navy Class of ’68 welcomed me like I was one of them because of the ND-Navy relationship.”
Joe Hale called attention to the recognition of Tom Culcasi’s son Phil, an alum who was one of four Illinois educators named in a White House list of the nation’s superior math and science teachers.
September, 2019 news included the sadness of two deaths: Geoff Gillette, well-known for his work with the band Captain Electric and then his career in music production, and Tom Knowles, one of the Fenwick High School classmates who expanded the Oak Park, IL friendships with myriad Notre Dame ones. Please remember them and their families, and please read the memories in posts that follow this one.
Please send news and photos to: Tom Figel, 1054 West North Shore, Apt. 3E, Chicago, IL 60626, email@example.com, tel. 773-764-4898.
On September 7, 2019, Geoffrey Robert Gillette passed away at age 71 in Beach Haven, NJ. He cherished being at the shore where he vacationed since he was a child, so it was fitting that he would be there in his last days.
Geoff had a zeal for traveling and although he saw much of the world, he was mespecially fond of the Jersey Shore. He had great enthusiasm for surfing, sailing and just being in the salt air. Music was Geoff’s passion: singing, playing and making it. He was a world-class Studio recording/live sound and Mastering engineer. He was blessed to be able to work at a craft he loved wholeheartedly. Geoff had an infectious smile, an easy laugh and a knack for telling a good story.
Geoff is preceded in death by his parents, Phyllis and Bob. He is survived by his wife, Jennifer, his sister Deborah Hennessy and her husband Richard, his niece, two nephews, their spouses and five great-nieces and nephews.
A memorial service was held at 10:00 AM, October 5, 2019 at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church on Main Street in Chatham. In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that donations be made to Center of Hope Hospice, Scotch Plains, NJ.
Like all of you, I’m still piecing together all the fond memories of time spent with Geoff. After college, our communication drifted as I moved to the East coast and he was trailblazing in the West. But then, in the mid-80s I made a trip with my daughter to CA to tour colleges she had here eye on (went on to get a scholarship from UCLA) and Rain and I were graciously invited to stay with the Duffy’s during that trip. Toward the end of the trip, it turned out the contractor working on the Duffy’s house wanted everyone to vacate for several days so he could refinish the floors, and offered his house in Cabo for all of us to stay. Well, I extended our stay and Geoff came along with the whole Duffy family, Rain and I, and we had an awesome vacation together. All the Mexico delights plus catching up on a decade. And that cemented a strong friendship that continued through the many years I lived in Santa Barbara afterward. I always new that Geoff would be surprising me again and again with invitations to hang out with him at the Santa Barbara studio to sit on recording sessions or the Santa Barbara jazz festival when he worked it. He got me hooked on some music I might never have found otherwise. His blood and sinew seemed to be music. And when I’d be in LA visiting my daughter, I’d give him a call and it was life as usual for him and we’d end up at a party to hang out with members of The Eagles and the like. I’d be star struck and this was everyday life for him. I recall in the 90s noticing a grammy on his wall and matter-of-factly he said it was for having worked on an Eva Cassidy album and flipped her music on the stereo. This kind man, a superb craftsman, traveled the world of masterful music a gazillion miles with his whole heart. RIP Geoff
Subject:Re: Geoff Gillette Interview : Sean Kneese : Free Download, Borrow, and Streaming : Internet Archive
Geoff was such apart of my life it is totally surreal to think that he is gone. He offered me a space in his house to crash for about 10 years whenever I was working on a movie in LA after Donna and I moved to Santa Cruz. We shared many an adventure as well as a wealth of musical experiences. He will be sorely missed.My love goes out to you all my brothers and sisters on this life journey, Joe
Sent: Sunday, September 15, 2019 11:06:47 AM Subject: Re: Fwd: Geoff Gillette Interview : Sean Kneese : Free Download, Borrow, and Streaming : Internet Archive
In 1968, my roommate Geoff, continually tried to teach me to sing…to no avail! He was quite the musician even then…obsessed (in a good way) with music and eager to share.
We had a lot of laughs over the years and I’m glad he was able to visit occasionally and to keep up our friendship.
Very sad to see him die so young. Leaves a bit of a hollow in our hearts.
Helena On 9/12/2019 12:31 PM, mingus (Shawn Reynolds)wrote: Hey,Don et al,Thanks for sharing that interview with Geoff. Last time I was in LA for the Siggraph (computer animation) convention he and I and Joan went out to dinner and a club and he talked about a lot of those things, especially his prejudice toward analog over digital recording. At least 10 music people came up to thank or praise him and chat. I felt like I was with a celebrity but his natural humility dismissed any of that. He will be sorely missed…
Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone Subject: Fwd: Geoff Gillette Interview : Sean Kneese : Free Download, Borrow, and Streaming : Internet Archive Gus and I spoke after Geoff’s passing and he forwarded this interview of Geoff on his career in sound engineering and the music biz. I didn’t know the fine texture and breadth of Geoff’s career. The interview covers a long span of years and Geoff’s technical insights on the way recorded sound has changed. I found it brilliant and very worthwhile, especially to hear Geoff’s own voice. With love, Don
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From: Gus Duffy <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: September 8, 2019 at 6:38:26 PM PDT To:email@example.com Subject:Geoff Gillette Interview : Sean Kneese : Free Download, Borrow, and Streaming : Internet Archive
Thomas K Knowles, 73, of Westchester, beloved husband of Diane Knowles nee Hart, passed away on September 11, 2019. He was the loving father of Molly (Ryan Day) and Ryan (Claudia Moreno), adoring grandfather of Aden, Eric, Margaret and Eleanor and uncle to many. He was preceded in death by his sister, Nancy, and is survived by his two brothers, Bruce (Mary) and Richard (Regina).
Tom attended Fenwick High School before heading to Notre Dame for undergrad and DePaul for Law School. He and Diane married in 1969 and moved to Oak Park shortly after. Tom practiced law on Chicago Avenue with Diane by his side for almost 40 years. They moved to Westchester in 2011 and were to celebrate their 50th anniversary in November.
He will be remembered by many as a loyal friend with a witty sense of humor.