Steve Anderson letter regarding his health, his classmates August 27, 2020

Unfortunately, bad news travels fast and I wanted to share something with the members of my personal Great ’68 before it gets broadcast to a larger audience.

Last week I was diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic malignant melanoma.  I had found a couple of small areas but was otherwise asymptomatic.  I was in northern Michigan at the time but contacted Fred Ferlic who did his usual turnaround of getting me in to see an oncologist and get CT scans in less than 24 hours.  Since I had a past history of removal of a stage 2 melanoma 5+ years ago at Ann Arbor, the oncologist was suspicious of recurrent melanoma and a biopsy performed the following day proved him right. 

There have been a lot of new breakthroughs in the immunotherapy of melanoma in the past 6 years, and this continues to be a fertile field for research and new drug trials.  I started immunotherapy yesterday with Opdivo and Yervoy, and will eventually transition to Opdivo alone for two years.  My disease is not curable and the goal will be to keep things under control for as long as possible, with hopes for new breakthroughs in the interim.

All of us have hit high points and low points in our lives, and all of you have been significant participants in helping me navigate my life’s journey.  Like many of you, I had a particularly difficult time in 1968 and 1969, and your collective support made the difference in what has been a thoroughly satisfying life since then.  I can never thank you enough for what your friendships have meant to me and what each of you individually has taught me.

Covid, sadly, has potentially disrupted opportunities for us to get together in our usual fall and reunion activities and we continue to have an uncertain future because of that.  We are on target to try for a class reunion during ND alumni weekend in 2021, and I have every intent of being there.

Nancy has been great in her support and love, but it has been tough on our boys.  If you see them, some words of support go a long way.  Personally, I feel like I am in a good place.  Notre Dame has its own ambience of peace and transcendence and I have been tapping into that.

God bless you all,

Steve (“Wonder”)

Dennis Doherty death August 8, 2020

Dennis Doherty

Phil Fitzpatrick sent the news along with photos from a long friendship with his former roommate.

Here are three photos of Dennis.  One is from our 45th Reunion (Dennis on the right with Ted Nebel - left, Clark Stanton - 2nd from left, and me - to Dennis' left).  The second is Dennis (left) and me on graduation day.  The third is undated but from many years ago.

It’s with deep sadness that I report the death of Dennis Doherty, our classmate, following a long and difficult battle with Alzheimer’s.  Dennis was my roommate for three years, best man at my wedding and a great friend.  He could not have had a better caregiver than his wife, Joan.  Here is his obituary.

Best regards,

Phil Fitzpatrick ‘68

Greenville, SC – Dennis John Doherty Jr. died peacefully at home on August 8, 2020.

Dennis was born in Birmingham, Alabama Sept 23, 1946.

He was a man in love with life, a life he loved to fill with playing in the mountains their rivers and lakes, dancing in the evenings, eating ice cream whenever the mood hit and spending moments with the ones he loved. He was an adventurer in soul and a family man at heart.

Dennis graduated from Greenville Highschool in 1964 before moving on to Notre Dame where he was a member of the Lacrosse team and member of the ski club while earning a degree in Engineering. He finished his formal studies at Penn State with a Masters degree in Acoustical Engineering in 1971.

Following a decade in Atlanta GA, where he married and started his family, he returned to Greenville in 1982 to be close to his mother and siblings while raising his three children. He successfully ran his small business Doherty Computer Services (DCS) for close to two decades before retiring to other pursuits.

Dennis was never an idle man and donated much of his time to organizations he believed in, receiving a 10 year service award from Greenville Guardian ad Litem and a 30 year Honor Award from Kiwanis Club of Greenville where he was secretary for 7 years. He was also a member and trip leader for the Greenville Natural History Association (GNHA) as well as a referee for the South Carolina Youth Soccer Association (SCYSA) for over 20 years. Dennis was also an active long-time member of St Giles Presbyterian Church and more recently Brookwood Church.

He is survived by his wife, Joan Woodlief Doherty; children, Dennis John Doherty III (Stacey), of Greenville, SC, Meghan Doherty Wolfrom (Jed), of Bozeman, MT and Reid Doherty (Mary Beth), of Mauldin, SC; Step daughter, Christina Janvier of Mauldin; grandsons, Dennis John Doherty IV and Merritt Doherty of Greenville, Jasper and Maclaren Wolfrom of Bozeman, MT; granddaughters, Lane and Anna Pearse Doherty of Greenville; sisters, Lorraine E. Sterling, of Greenville and Ann T. Doherty, of Canton, MI; and brother, Robert P. Doherty, of Greenville. He was preceded in death by his father, Dennis Doherty Sr.; mother, Lillian F. Doherty; and sister, Kathleen Moseley.

The Doherty family wishes to express their gratitude for the many acts of kindness that have been extended to them. Special acknowledgement is extended to the loving care of the staff of Open Arms Hospice and to Dennis’ personal caregivers Ms. Loretta Dawkins and Ms. Linda Jenkins.

A private memorial service will be held Wednesday, August 12 at 3 pm.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory to the Alzheimer’s Association or Open Arms Hospice or Brookwood Church.