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If you missed our 50th reunion, you missed a wonderful weekend. Over the three days of reunion we had more than 50 classmates present. I (Linkey) have to say, we all look wonderful for 70-year-olds. I have put up a class share site on Shutterfly, where we can post pictures from the reunion or future get-togethers of classmates. If you were not there and would like to be included, please send me your email address. We also have a Mary Washington Class of 1963 Facebook site. On behalf of our class, I want to thank Suellen Grant Knowles and Susan Ramey Robertson for co-chairing our class reunion committee. Both worked countless hours along with the Alumni Office personnel to make our 50th a memorable event.
Barbara Duke Jones wonders what classmates have done in their lives with their UMW degrees. She was an art major and still has a studio and is involved in the art world. So, if you think you don’t have any news for Betsy or me, tell us a bit about what you have done with your degree.
We have quite a long list of “lost” classmates. If you know the whereabouts of any of these people, please let the Alumni Office or me know. A few selected randomly from the list are: Suzanne Blaisdell, Diana Flomp Bryant, Dolores Comandatore, Judy Duval Davis, and Carolyn Grantham.
I (Betsy) loved our reunion and was so impressed with the fabulous organization, classes, and activities planned by our class reunion committee and UMW staff. I especially enjoyed the class dinner on Thursday at Gari Melchers’ beautiful historic Belmont home and art studio. What an elegant and fun cocktail party and dinner. Thanks to Diane Lovewell Melton, whose professional expertise as an event planner shone through.
President Hurley was just as nice in person as he seems in the articles written about him. The cocktail party at Brompton demonstrated his and Mrs. Hurley’s hospitality and friendliness, and their beautiful home. Dr. William B. Crawley Jr. had us all in stitches as he spoke of our time at Mary Washington at our class dinner Friday night.
The reunion committee honored our 52 classmates who have died with a memorial at our class meeting, beginning and ending with a prayer, and reading each woman’s name aloud. A chime was rung after each name was read. I discovered last year that my MWC roommate of three years, Mary “Jo” Dreher, had died two years before. Jo and her husband, Ralph Gibson, and family lived in Northern Virginia.
Also at the class meeting, it was decided a committee would research giving a class gift to UMW. This needs to be with separate monies from our regular contributions to UMW. If you have ideas of how this could be done or a specific gift you would like to see given, please contact Karen Vandevanter Morrison at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I loved hearing stories from Suellen Grant Knowles about her adventures at Mary Washington with roommate Jackie Dahloff Bumgardner of going to Austria and driving to Mexico during spring break. How many others remember those wild spring break trips to Florida or Mexico? Jackie is in Bridgeport, Calif., where she raises and rides horses in endurance races.
I wish I could write about everyone who came to the reunion. If I missed you, please write your news for the next issue. Suitemates Eileen Hildebrand Andrews of Florida, Ginger Logie Carr of Maine, and Carol Van Ness Clapp of Florida, and their husbands had a great time catching up. It was fun to see three other Betsys: Betsy Loving Robbins, Betsy Chamberlain Hartz, and Betsy Evans Manchester! Many of us agreed that we were glad we attended Mary Washington in the era we did; we reminisced about the honor code, dates in the parlor, wearing our PJs under trench coats to early morning classes, waitressing at Seacobeck, and being grateful for small classes taught by interesting professors.
Lois Smith McDaniel, a wonderful photographer, took many photos now on the Shutterfly site. Kitty Shannon had us laughing at her self-deprecating, witty remarks about her “boring” life in Richmond. Susan Rutan Joehnk came from La Jolla, Calif., and Bev Sangston has retired and lives in Florida. Gloria Moskowitz Fischel was as enthusiastic and energetic as I remembered her. Barbara Bold Ducker and her husband enjoyed the weekend festivities, as did Barbara Moore Wheeler and Karen Gustafson.
Congratulations to Sally Abbott Pomputius ’62, who received the Mary Washington Distinguished Alumna Award! Janice Coleman honored her friend, Wendy Shadwell, by describing the significant gift Wendy designated in her will to Mary Washington.
Tom and Becky Ryan Dunkenberger celebrated their 50th anniversary around the time of our reunion in North Carolina at their son’s home, and Judy Ross and her husband joined them.
This summer Pete and I moved to Bainbridge Island, near Seattle, and we love island life. Our friends Len and Beth Davitt Eisenhood ’67 plan to move to Bainbridge soon. Karen Vandevanter Morrison lives on neighboring Whidbey Island, Wash., and we planned to have lunch soon.
Please take the time to share what you’ve done with your degree from Mary Washington for our next Class Notes column. I majored in English and have always been grateful for the numerous books I read and for learning how to think critically. I also got my teaching certificate “to fall back on in case I didn’t get married right away” – which I didn’t! Teaching has been my lifelong passion, as a young secondary school teacher in San Diego, Germany, and New York, and as a teacher and facilitator now working with adults and educators in a character education program.
Linkey and Betsy have agreed to share the class agent duties, so feel free to contact one of us at any time with your news. Let’s make sure the Class of 1963 has lots of news in our next newsletter. Please try to get your news to us a couple of weeks before the deadline. Many thanks to Anne Radway for her years of service as class agent.