Ritual and Celebration –
The timing of Pope Benedict XVI’s April visit to the United States can seem arbitrary to some, but not to members of the class that graduated in 1968. For one, consider the convenience for the fertile family of Mike Baroody and Muff, scheduled to meet with the Pontiff in a private group reconciliation session at the Washington, D.C. Nationals’ ballpark. There are the spiritual needs, as well as some sinful habits, of D.C. and New York area residents such as Pat Collins, Bill Kelly, Eddie Broderick, Paul Ramsey, Pat Furey, Tom Fitzharris, and Pat DeMare. The Rogers twins Neil and Rich are hard to pin down; they always blame each other and, even in retirement, Rich enjoys the privilege of professional courtesy from FBI agents. In Jim Davis’ case, he has slipped town and now practices law in Charleston, SC. All of this may have affected the timing of Pope Benedict’s travel but the most important influence may be the one noted by observers with an historical view: the visit occurred on the doorstep of the Silver Jubilee of Tom Weyer’s election as our class president. Meeting with the Pope in private conference on the East Coast, President Weyer first exchanged gifts of a 20-pack of sliders in an authentic grease-stained sack and a relic of St. Genesius of Rome, patron saint of comics. For the occasion, President Weyer dressed in the full, regal, ceremonial garb of his high class office, right down to his Gilbert’s regimental tie and his polished Bass Weejuns. In addition to arranging for what’s being called the second meeting, a Papal visit with known abusers of priests, Tom received dispensations for some planned 40th reunion behavior: Brien Murphy will attend with Maggie, for example. Now retired from his surgeon career, he is rested up.
Our class, with its unusual opportunity for a second enjoyment of the Sixties, will make its presence felt. Bryan Dunigan and Tom Gibbs will warm up a sizable group with golf, dining, and visiting for a day or so in the Michiana Shores area. Accustomed to their soft lives of privilege, friends from SMC led by Elise Stephens Reeder will pass up dorm residence and make the comfortable South Bend home of Elise’s sister Jackie Krause their reunion base. Tom McKenna, Mike Browning, Tom Condon, Ken Beirnes and Susan will get things started with two or three dozen of us Thursday night at Sunny Italy’s restaurant. Jay Schwartz and Laura will drive in from San Francisco after a visit with a new Schwartz granddaughter, Anabelle. Dinner guests will include former professors and their spouses: Don Sniegowski and Barbara, Ed Goerner and Iris, Don Costello and Christine, Doug Kinsey and Mrs. Kinsey. Steve Sullivan and Brian Miskus have been making plans for a Thursday dinner and maybe golf with friends from the Aero program. When we meet for the class dinner, quiet, pensive Ned Buchbinder will make some remarks about deceased friends John Noel and Bob Kohorst.
During the reunion and after, the class blog, http://www.ndclass1968.com, will include photographs and quick notes. Remember Professor Don Costello’s toast to our year, 1968? You can find it again in the blog’s Reunion and Rendezvous folder. You can also find some reunion humor sent by Jim Hutchinson. And you can find the names of our classmates who have died but remain with us whenever we are together.
Unfortunately, there won’t be any reunion photos of John Fowler, who wrote and explained. “I'm a judge for the United and American Kennel clubs. I lecture against breed specific legislation and represent various Kennel clubs in the United States District Courts where governmental agencies are attempting to pass such laws. I guess I'm a certified wacko animal rights lawyer!! I'm under contract to appear in Minnesota the weekend of our reunion, but I'll certainly be thinking of Y'all!!” Life has been good, John says, He and his wife Linda will celebrate their 30 year wedding anniversary in July. They have a daughter, Robin, who now teaches school in Boca Raton, FL and has heard from John “that legacy still applies to my grandchildren.”
The South Bend wedding of Molly Beeler, the granddaughter of the late Business Professor John Malone, occurred as spring arrived in early April. The nice weather added to the pleasure of seeing Molly’s mother Kathy Malone Beeler and Kathy’s husband Brian Regan as well as Chris Murphy and Carmie, Brian Lake and Ginger, and Joe Kernan and Maggie. Chris and Carmie celebrated the birth of their seventh grandchild, Merlin Christopher Bellinger, during March. Another big class contingent will gather in New Orleans in early May for the wedding of John Walsh and Dia’s son Kieran and Marianne Heidel. The whole Tom Moore and Kathy family will be there, ready to party with Kevin Daly and Helena, Geoff Thornton and Christine, and the New Orleans committee Eddie Kurtz, Tom Henehan and Peggy, and John Flemming.
In mid-March, Mike Heaton's wife Barb spent a scary night at the hospital with a heart problem. The temporary problem could have been brought on by a glimpse of the family checkbook and a list of Mike's recent donations. He and his family give money and a great deal of time to everything.
Gwynne Morgan, SMC 68, wrote in memory of her friend and our deceased classmate Jon Sherry. Jon’s daughter Tara Sherry Torres will run in the New Jersey Marathon May in honor of Jon. Contributions at http://www.active.com/donate/tntnyc/TaraMarie will benefit leukemia research. Gwynne says Jon ran the New York Marathon several times.
Please keep in your prayers Richard Gutowski’s mother Irene Gutowski-Kvatsak, who passed away on February 7, 2008, and Dan Donnelley, who died March 4, 2008. A grandfather of three, Dan practiced law in Michigan and Indiana.
See you at the reunion. Please post news on the blog or send it to Tom Figel, 1054 West North Shore, Apt. 3-E, Chicago, IL 60626, tel. 312-881-7391, firstname.lastname@example.org.