Class Notes

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Joanne Campbell Close

Karen Larsen Nelson

Can you believe it? As you read this, our 55th reunion is only about six months away! We’re looking forward to everyone joining us on the Mary Washington campus May 29-31, 2015. Put it on the calendar now! If you’re traveling to visit children and grandchildren, cruising the seas, or flying to exotic foreign ports, surely you can manage a laughter-filled trip back to Fredericksburg. Please promise to join us.

Joyce Neil Krost
flew to Madrid in April to visit her sister. They went to the Cezanne exhibit and visited family and friends in Pamplona, where Joyce often sets up a studio for her painting, and luxuriated in the Mediterranean atmosphere.

Liz Hill Heaney and Bob went back to Snowshoe, West Virginia, last winter for a ski vacation with their daughter and grandson, who’s on the Lafayette College ski team. They enjoyed new snow and skiing, while Liz enjoyed the spa.

Margie Saunders Howell had a hip replacement in July 2013 that went from bad to horrible. After three surgeries and two months of meds and convalescence following an infection, it was discovered that further surgery would be more complicated. Margie decided to forgo a fourth surgery and live with the temporary system for now. She’s learned to walk again and can drive. She didn’t let all this interfere with the annual gathering of nursing majors. In April, Margie, Barbara Broome BellElinor “Lulu” Omasta Clark, Marilyn “Mel” Petit Freidag, Margaret “Meg” Reed McPherson,Faye Pierce Sims, Beverly Lindauer Sullivan, and Carol Dixon Yonan had their annual reunion week at the Outer Banks. Margie is in touch with Joyce Moore Becker of Fairfax, Virginia, and Mary Anne Beeler Niksch of McLean, who, along with Kinsey Green, were her suitemates junior year.

Nancy Rorabaugh transferred to Richmond Professional Institute, now VCU, to study graphic design. She married a fellow art student, moved to North Carolina, had two girls, and got a master’s of fine arts degree at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She divorced and ended up in Atlanta, where she’s been since ’76. She retired in December 2013 after a 30-year career in advertising and a 19-year stint as a graphic design instructor at a private Atlanta college. Now she spends time on meditation, exercise, and fine art work. Nancy was a figure painter in grad school, and she and her youngest granddaughter, a 16-year-old artist, take figure-drawing sessions together.

While prowling through her box of Mary Washington mementos, Karen found an envelope addressed “to my Peanut from your Shell, Nancy Rorabaugh.” It was a freshman get-acquainted gimmick, where we picked the name of a classmate to send notes and gifts to, and later got to meet them. Karen and Nancy didn’t remember anything else about it. Do any of you?

We sent wishes for a speedy recovery to Bonnie Davis Hall after knee surgery. She was determined to press through rehab and make an extensive trip overseas last summer.

In our monthly news flash, we shared a photo Bayla Goldberg Manis sent of her family, including two granddaughters.

Terry Eagles Dow’shusband, Albert, passed away in late April from complications of a fall and hip surgery. His seven sons came from both coasts for the memorial service. Terry was doing well with the support of a sisterhood of widows. We also sent condolences to Iris Newton, whose daughter, Vena, lost her husband, Russell, after a long illness.

Nancy Engle Burkhardt and Brad visited their daughter and granddaughter in Texas. The kids have a shared airstrip behind their backyard, and they were excited to see their son-in-law take off with his son from there. To celebrate their grandson’s graduation, the family gathered at their Crystal Lake cottage, where they tubed, biked, boated, and kayaked.

Gaye Roberts Olson gets out in her motorized chair in the neighborhood, to go out to eat and run errands.

Cyd Day Getchell sent pictures of working her dog for competition and skill in agility and odor recognition training. Cyd fell last winter, slipping on the ice and landing in the gutter. She threw her arms up to protect her head and injured her shoulder. Cyd’s son moved to New Hampshire near his sister, and they both now live an hour from Cyd.

Barbara Wageneck Gardner welcomed a great-granddaughter last year. She arrived on the birthday of her grandmother, Barbara’s daughter. Her youngest grandchild graduated from high school in the honors program and is studying chemical engineering on a full scholarship at the University of Texas. All of Barbara’s granddaughters have gone to college, which is nice because Barbara completed only two years at Mary Washington.

Sandy Poole underwent a successful seven-hour surgery in March to remove what proved to be benign growths in and around her skull. The surgeons were amazed at how quickly she recovered.

Jan Latven Allnutt sent a picture from a June visit to Maine. A year ago, Susan Cramer Drouin rented a house there, giving her Mary Washington friends plenty of time to make plans to attend. Betty Bruce Shepard and Joey Van Tol Goetz flew into Boston and headed for Kennebunkport, Maine, with Susan, where they spent three days laughing, reminiscing, and sharing photos. Unbeknownst to them, former President George Bush was celebrating his 90th birthday with a skydive in the same town. While walking beside the beach, they saw the helicopter rising from the Bush property, watched him sail downward in his red, white, and blue parachute, and were interviewed by the local TV station. They hope to get back for his 95th.

In March, Karen Larsen Nelson’s son visited from Florida, en route to visit his son, a Marine stationed at Twentynine Palms, California. They’d been to Florida many times, but it had been 20 years since his last trip to Arizona. Karen and her husband traveled with their new 10-year-old rescue cat to the Arizona mountains in May and through the Northwest and British Columbia in their RV in July, stopping at Jane Denslow McCrohan’s home outside Seattle.

I (Jody Close) am trying to de-clutter. It’s the first time I’ve lived in one house long enough to worry about it. I’ve had a busy year with the usual assortment of illnesses and hospital visits, family visits, and crashed computers. I use a backup service, so my files could be restored. We had two high school graduations in June, and my children and their families came here for a short August reunion. It was the first time since 2008 that all 14 were together in the same place.

If you were going to say your news is too ordinary to send, you’ve got nothing on me! These events keep bringing home the passage of time and the evolution of our lives. We’ve learned to live in a world much altered from the mid-50s, getting used to new technology, deciphering a new language, “friending” and “unfriending,” and seeing young adults who seemed like infants yesterday. I can’t take credit for those darling grandchildren who live with strangely familiar 50-year-old parents. I’m impressed at the excellent parents my children turned out to be. As I’ve read your comments over the years, I’m just as proud of the achievements of all of you. Who knew those circle pins and madras Bermuda shorts and raincoats (not to mention classwork) would produce such admirable, diverse, adventurous, amazing women. Please keep writing and plan to come to Fredericksburg in 2015. We rarely hear from those without email, and we miss you. Please take a moment and send news.


Connie Booth Logothetis (A–G)

Renee Levinson Laurents (H–Q)

Lynne Williams Neave (R–Z)

Please send news to the designated class agent according to the first letter of your maiden name.

From Connie: In May, Kelly Cherry published a new book of linked stories, A Kind of Dream, which covers five generations of an artistic family. She and husband Burke were traveling to Budapest and Vienna, where Kelly was to attend a short-story conference. They planned to visit friends in Madison in November.

Jerri Barden Perkins traveled in June to speak on clinical trials in Boston, where she lunched with trauma surgeon Susan Briggs ’59, director of the Massachusetts General Hospital International Trauma and Disaster Institute and founder of the International Medical Surgical Response Team, which assisted in NYC on 9/11 and helps in Haiti. Jerri has two yoga classes, a mat class and a chair class for those who are less mobile. Her students range from her 3-year-old granddaughter to age 90.

Joan Gibson Lippold and Jim took their ninth European river cruise in May. They spent Fourth of July week at the Greenbrier watching the PGA golf tournament, and attending Maroon 5 and Jimmy Buffett concerts. Daughter Jan and family built a house on a cliff overlooking the Chesapeake Bay. Carolyn Crum Pannu planned to visit Renee Levinson Laurents in L.A. in July.

Dee Doran Cairns said Sylvia Garland Wickwire’s husband, Robert, died in June. They had lived in Savannah, Georgia, for a long time, and Sylvia had been a caregiver. Our thoughts and prayers go to Sylvia and her family.

Dee’s son Rob and family still live in Italy, and in May she traveled to Germany to see her grandchildren play soccer. Nathan finished 11th grade and is a great goalie. Katye finished ninth grade. For Dee, it brought back memories of going to high school in Heidelberg. The summer before ninth grade, Connie Booth, Patty Cairns, and Dee spent two weeks in Girl Scout camp together on the border of Germany and Austria, not knowing they’d be together again at MWC!

Clara Sue Durden Ashley and Clarence celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in July with about 130 friends and family from Boston, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Texas. Three grandchildren and son Dennis played the piano. Clara Sue was facing August back surgery.

In June, Andy and I took our first vacation since my lung transplant in December 2012. We went to our hometown, Wilmington, Delaware, where our grandson attended a farm camp and we caught up with friends and family, including Barbie Upson Welch andChuck. There was a big party to celebrate Andy’s 80th birthday! Earlier in June, Janie Riles flew up from Fort Lauderdale. She and Jim are back in San Diego but planned to return to Florida in fall. Janie still teaches art and enjoys her two local grandsons.

Thank you all for your contributions to this column!

From Renee: Thanks for writing on short notice. It would have been a shame to leave ’61 blank! Marcia Minton Keech and Bill visited Northern Virginia in June with all their children and grandchildren. They watched the high school graduation of their oldest granddaughter, Corinne, who won a full art scholarship to VCU. On their way back to Savannah, they spent the night with Sylvia McJilton Woodcock and Stuart in Williamsburg.

Debbie Phinney Wylie was in Missouri for her grandson’s high school graduation in May. He’s an award-winning artist, has an art scholarship to Missouri State, and plans to major in graphic arts. Debbie planned an August trip to Maine to visit her sister at the family cottage on Great East Lake.

Sandy Phillips Conklin and hubby Dan have lived and worked since 1968 in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, where they raised two children. They are in good health except for arthritis and stay busy gardening, woodworking, and grandparenting. They’ve enjoyed the Outer Banks and the New Jersey and Delaware beaches and travel to visit family and deliver Dan to whatever part of the Appalachian Trail he’s hiking. They have Bernese mountain dogs and a Tibetan mastiff. Sandy has been sad to lose fellow chemistry majors recently and remembers them and professors Earl Insley and Herbert Cover. She worked briefly as a chemist testing the water around Three Mile Island before they started the plant. Sandy earned her RN and worked in public health and as a high school nurse. She’s in touch with Liz Reddington Neff, Mimi Mayer Lewis, and Nancy Woolfolk Agee.

Donna Henninger Henderson said the dairy farm needed rain. Granddaughter Courtenay was accepted to Virginia Tech. Donna was named Virginia Farm Bureau Farm Woman of the Year for the extensive volunteer work she’s done since retiring from education 19 years ago. Donna and Jerry celebrated their 53rd wedding anniversary in June.

Sylvia McJilton Woodcock and Stuarttraveled to Italy in May with two other couples, enjoying wine and gelato. She mentioned the visit by Marcia Keech and Bill, who was doing well after another surgery. Sylvia and Stuart’s son, Ed, was married in June in the garden at Keswick Hall outside Charlottesville. Sylvia made the four-tier wedding cake with three flavors and brought it from Williamsburg. Sylvia emails with Cherry Sarff Everett.

Mary Hatcher, free of monthly meetings for the first time in 15 years, has traveled to Jackson, Wyoming; NYC; Williamsburg; and Nova Scotia. She planned trips to New York for restaurant week and to Rockland, Maine; Alexandria, Virginia; and Newport, Rhode Island. They’re thankful Hurricane Arthur did little damage in Wilmington, North Carolina.

Eleanor Knight Jensen and Cliff took a four-month world cruise. They traveled for the first time to Suez and to Israel and planned a November trip to Barcelona and another extended cruise.

I took my first trip since I got sick, visiting Santa Fe, New Mexico. I’m still in the clinical trial for a new breast cancer vaccine designed to prevent recurrence. I don’t know if I’m getting the vaccine or a placebo, but I’m getting all kinds of scans and EKGs. The most recent round found that I’m still cancer-free.

Before her May river cruise in Germany, Betty Alrich Latta was in the Fredericksburg area with her son for a re-enactment of Civil War battles. Her grandson, who’s in college near Washington, D.C., was with them. One battle took place in what used to be Betty’s father’s cow pasture! The Spotsylvania property was purchased after the war by her ancestor, and that’s where Betty grew up. In July, her son, who’d been divorced for a while, got married, and now Betty has four new grandchildren!

Please ask classmates to write me! Any news will be appreciated!

From Lynne: Thanks for all your wonderful responses, especially on short notice. We’re in good health and enjoying NYC and Connecticut. We plan a trip next year up the Amazon River. I still play bridge regularly.

Sandy Walters Julifs graduated on her birthday in July from an intensive two year Lutheran spiritual formation/theological education course called diakonia. “Thanks to my days at MWC as an English major,” Sandy wrote, “I made it through without … the difficulty some of my classmates had!”

Carolyn Spell Robertson’s husband,Jim, had heart problems and trouble walking in February. Physical therapy has been successful and they hope he’ll be able to do without a walker. They spent two weeks in June at their North Carolina beach home with family.

Kay Slaughter quit her U.Va. adjunct teaching job and other responsibilities, hoping to feel retired. She planned to visit Italy in fall with friends, stay at a friend’s villa in Tuscany, and travel to Elba, Firenze, and Rome. Kay said Suzanne Stafford, who attended MWC for two years and transferred to UNC-Chapel Hill with her, died in May of ovarian cancer in Bethesda, Maryland, where she’d lived for two years. Her brother, Ted, niece Kristen, and a chaplain were with her as she passed. Her sister-in-law, Suzanne, and nephew Erik were very attentive to her throughout her illness. After graduating from UNC in 1961, Suzanne lived 51 years in San Francisco. She worked 25 years for Crown Zellerbach and then for other organizations. Suzanne and Kay became close at Carolina, where they joined the same sorority and roomed together senior year. Many of their sorority sisters have stayed in touch and gathered throughout the U.S. One of their friends said Suzanne was the sunshine of their group. She had an optimistic, adventurous spirit and a zany sense of humor. Kay visited her regularly in Bethesda. Renee Levinson Laurents, a former high school classmate, said on Suzanne’s online memorial page that she remembered singing in a quartet with her and that she was an original.

Lynne Wilson Rupert is adjusting to life without Jim. She travels with her grandchildren and this year took her grandsons to Orlando and Cape Kennedy, granddaughter Madeline to NYC, and granddaughter Claire on a driving tour of small towns in New England.

Regina Young Hall has been married 53 years to a man she met at U.Va. They have two sons and four grandchildren. She worked for 17 years as an office administrator for her husband, a breast cancer detection specialist. She researched equipment, hired personnel, and created procedure manuals. A successful practice for 25 years, it was taken over by a local hospital. Regina retired in 2000 to spend time with grandchildren, sail, and enjoy their Orcas Island home. They cruised and sailed for 25 years in the San Juan Islands and Desolation Sound. Now they golf, hike, and play bridge. Regina has been involved in prayer ministry. She and Mac have sent two of their grandchildren to Christian school. Their oldest grandson, a Seattle Pacific University student, was worship leader this summer at a camp in Yelm, Washington. Granddaughter Shelby, a senior at a Christian high school, makes straight A’s and is on the golf and basketball teams. Granddaughter Lauren would be a junior in high school but is attending a community college her last two years. Grandson Blake plays baseball and is an excellent offensive player and pitcher.

Pat Scott Peck flew from her summer cottage in Maine to San Antonio, where she’s buying a townhome. She planned to fly back to Maine, then drive to D.C. to oversee her rental property and meet son Brian. He was to drive with her back to Miami to put her home of 46 years up for sale. Daughter Stacey and her husband moved from Miami to the Portsmouth, Virginia, area, and Brian planned to move to Arizona in September. Pat looks forward to reconnecting with Aggie Welsh Eyster. They haddinner and attended a concert together while Pat was in San Antonio. Aggie’s MWC roomie, Vicky Biggers Hinshaw, also visited her while in San Antonio for a writers’ conference.

I frequently see my goddaughter, Bonnie Cummings, Jill Cusack Clay’s daughter. Through Bonnie, I keep up with Jill, who lives in San Antonio and also is in touch with Aggie.

Polly Updegraff Champ’s youngest grandchild planned to attend Pace University in NYC in September. Sadly, she lost her friend and tennis partner, Joan, unexpectedly. Though her seven-year presidency ended in April, Polly plans to remain active with the Women’s Fellowship. She dressed an ensemble for Disney’s Beauty and the Beast in May and for Ghost, the Musical,in June. The fall schedule for the Broadway Series at the Bushnell in Hartford, Connecticut, includes Evita and Camelot, and Polly will return to Florida in November.

I think Sue Wilson Sproul should publish a travel book! She and Dave have become snowbirds, heading from Colorado to Tucson in winter. They rent a small casita there and take their border collie. They were in Virginia in June for a reunion. Sue planned a September trip to Santa Fe while Dave was to attend a Native American flute conference.

Lloyd Tilton Backstrom and Art enjoy visits from Pat Scott Peck on her travels between Miami and Calais, Maine. The Backstroms traveled to Dubrovnik in fall 2013. Dick Burroughs, Annie Hopkins’ widower, joined them again for the neighborhood Independence Day celebration.


Joan Akers Rothgeb

Kathleen Sprenkle Lisagor

Jane Walshe McCracken

From Joan: Lucy Ritter Todd attended a reception with President Hurley in Texas. Carlisle Allen Pearson then organized an Austin alum group attended by Lucy, Carlisle, Beth Williams ’63,and Jan Goebel. They compared the old and new Mary Washington with old geezers and some smart, attractive ’90s graduates. Cassandra Scholte ’92, who lived across the hall from Joan Akers Rothgeb’s daughter, Shannon Rothgeb Powell ’92, was also there. Cassandra serves on the Texas Commission on the Arts. Lucy and husband Frank planned to spend six weeks this summer in Colorado and Wyoming. She still does sketching and figure drawing and volunteers in her town, Bastrop, Texas. The Todds visited San José del Cabo in February.

Julia Shumaker Bailess attended the inauguration of the president of the University of Virginia’s College at Wise. When Julia visits her property in Emerald Isle, North Carolina, she sees Ann Tench Huml, wholives there. Ann fell down a flight of steps, resulting in bruising and a broken bone, and was recovering from the surgery that followed.

Emily Lewis and husband Tony Andres traveled to Venice to mark Tony’s 50th year of ordination as an Episcopal priest.

When Diana Copple Smith visited her Richmond family, including her father who’s almost 100, she saw Mary Chambers Hodnett Minozzi. Mary lost her husband in November 2013. Diana also saw Julia Shumaker Bailess when she passed through Winston-Salem en route to Emerald Isle. Diana hears Barbara Kline broadcasting on public radio out of D.C. Diana still teaches English as a second language at Forsyth Technical Community College and works occasionally at Guilford Tech. Her daughter and her husband, along with Diana’s 5-year-old grandson, live in Wilmington, North Carolina.

Sue Grandy Farrar, director of the Montgomery Museum, was a major part of this winter’s Crooked Road Festival in Blacksburg, Virginia.

Reba Calvert Bayliss, Betsy Williams Brothers, Marsha Arlott Wooster, Lynda Puckett Howell, and Liz Kennedy Thomas Slate spent 10 days in April and May together, visiting Mount Vernon, Arlington National Cemetery, Washington National Cathedral, and other sites. Marsha left for New York ahead of the others, and they joined her for a surprise 50th wedding anniversary celebration for her and Jimmy, hosted by their three sons. In New York, the group saw Cinderella on Broadway, the 9/11 Memorial, and more.

Barbara Schwab Jesser and husband Bill visited Brazil and planned a summer trip to the Utah/Colorado area with their son and his family, who live in Atlanta.

From Kathleen: Thanks to those who are trying to keep in touch. On April’s Northern Neck Historic Garden Week Tour, Kathleen Sprenkle Lisagor stopped into Food Lion in Montross/Warsaw for directions and bumped into Myrtle Lee Dean France, who was wearing her MWC ring! Kathleen spent the Fourth of July in the Outer Banks with son Matt and family and investigated the history of boat building where her nephew works in Wanchese, North Carolina. Kathleen also discovered that Carolyn Curtis Briggs and her husband live in the Roanoke Island area and retired on the family farm. Carolyn is busy with her 90-year-old mother, has two children and grandchildren, and earned a master of library science degree at UNC Chapel Hill. Carolyn said her roommate Marian Adams Spain died of breast cancer. Our deepest sympathy goes to her husband, Carl Spain, and their family.

Get-well wishes go to the ever helpful and cheerful Nancy Powell Sykes, who’s again recovering from arthritis-related knee and hip surgery. Nancy lives alone. One daughter lives in San Diego, and her married daughter lives in Pennsylvania.

It seems our 50th reunion has reconnected us. Please send news, addresses, and phone numbers! Blessings to all!


Linkey Booth Green

Betsy Lydle Smith

From Linkey: Arlene Drescher Wilson and Julie Burch Southall reconnected after 50 years! They were freshmen together in Virginia, then roomies in U.Va.’s Mary Munford Hall. Julie’s son lives in Nashville, too, so they’ll see more of each other. After 25 years in textiles, Arlene is painting and, as an urban land scout, helps maintain green spaces in Nashville. She recently held an art sale to benefit Walden’s Puddle wildlife refuge in Tennessee. Arlene is in centering prayer groups and welcomed granddaughter Eva, compliments of son Henry, a plastic surgeon in Lynchburg, Virginia, and wife Caroline, a Ph.D. in education administration who’s now a stay-at-home mom.

In response to Betsy’s question about a favorite professor, Arlene chose James Croushore, with whom she had English freshman and sophomore years. She said he gave her a lasting love of literature.

Nancy Maynard was disappointed to miss the reunion. After graduation, she earned a master’s degree in zoology and Ph.D. in marine biology at the University of Miami’s Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science (RSMAS). Her career alternated between scientific research and science policy/administration, including work involving the Atlantic Ocean, the Everglades watershed, and oil spill response. She’s been a science policy analyst for the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and done NASA satellite remote sensing of the ice edge and Arctic tundra, among other things. In 2012, Nancy changed her NASA status to emeritus, officially retired, and returned to Miami to a visiting scientist position at RSMAS, near her daughter and new grandson. The last few years she’s worked on climate change assessments in the U.S. and internationally.

Janice Coleman taught for 44 years in Manhattan, but the increasingly overcrowded sidewalks and cost of big-city living prompted a move. She rented a Fredericksburg apartment and was looking forward to being a Virginia resident and seeing Mary Washington friends at campus events.

I saw a Facebook post by Patsy Ballou Hindman about a visit from her daughters and grandchildren. Betsy Chamberlain Hartz visited with Patsy and freshman roommate Jean Duncan in Charleston in May 2013.

In response to Betsy’s question about her favorite professor, Linda Gulnac Steelman said she couldn’t remember names but loved a senior year art course with an energetic new teacher who inspired her to understand Impressionist art and seek out paintings on trips to Europe. Linda spent much time senior year learning how to throw clay and working at the potter’s wheel. She also remembers an energetic blond professor who introduced her to children’s literature sophomore year. Linda used the textbook for years when teaching elementary school. Older son Rob, in New York banking, wrote a children’s book called The Duck and the Bear: Learn Good Manners, illustrated by a fellow Swarthmore graduate.

Anne Rasmussen Lyles retired from a 32-year teaching career but still subs. She’s involved with historic preservation of old homes in Salisbury, North Carolina, serves on the board of the Historic Salisbury Foundation (HSF), and has restored nine houses in recent years with her two sons. This past fall, Anne’s house was on HSF’s October tour of homes, with 900 people trudging through her house in two days! While attending her 55th high school reunion in Richmond this spring, Anne visited Sally Tarrant Bernert and Nancy Lee Leidy. Betsy Hartz had to work and couldn’t join them. While in Wilmington, Delaware, Anne visited Nemours, home of Alfred I. duPont, who married Jessie Ball duPont, for whom MWC’s duPont Hall is named. She enjoys AAUW (Dean Hargrove would be proud) and is on the board of the local library friends organization. She and David bought a camping trailer and planned to visit Yellowstone and Mount Rushmore. There are only 12 states Anne hasn’t visited. She said her favorite professor will always be William Castle, who was our class sponsor. They kept in touch until he died.

We’re now members of the 1908 Society, which means we can go to a reunion any year. Let us know if you want to go, and we’ll spread the word. I made a photo book of the reunion for Kathy Friedman Levinson, who had surgery and couldn’t come to our 50th. You can add pictures to our Shutterfly group site. Anytime you get the urge, send news to Betsy or me.

From Betsy: Nancy Slonim Aronie sent a link to a keynote talk she gave at the Women on Fire Conference. She was funny, insightful, encouraging, and fabulous!

Nancy Pida Remmers majored in math but enjoyed education classes and earned a Virginia teaching certificate. She stayed home with her three children for 15 years, then went to work to put money in the college coffers. With the help of the Women’s Center in Vienna, Virginia, she translated her activities into a meaningful résumé and became a courseware designer/developer. During her interview, she drew from her classes, particularly geometry. She spent the next 30 years in the field of training, working on contracts involving military and government clients.

Martha Van Zandt Fickett, UMW professor of music, traveled to Vienna. She lives near College Avenue and can walk to work. They’ve spent the past 14 summers in Maine. Her husband is a retired UMW political science professor, and their son is a lawyer in Richmond.

Carol Van Ness Clapp and Karen Vandevanter Morrison met near the Sagamore Bridge in June and spent time together! Carol was in Cape Cod for summer and hoped to visit Ginger Logie Carr before returning to Florida in fall.

Pete and I still enjoy life on Bainbridge Island, near Seattle. I take a class called Creative Crones, which explores creativity, and began painting this year. I also offer summer workshops on Bainbridge in character education and personal growth and have facilitated for The Virtues Project for years, recently offering webinars with a colleague in Manitoba. I loved most of my English professors at Mary Washington. Dr. Early for poetry and Shakespeare was entertaining, standing on his tiptoes and speaking with enthusiasm! Mr. Mitchell’s seminars were thought-provoking, and Dr. Croushore challenged us in American literature.

Thanks to everyone who has written such wonderful news.


Victoria Taylor Allen

Everyone seemed to have a great time at our 50th reunion! The weather was beautiful, and the house and grounds at Brompton for the cocktail party were gorgeous. I’d forgotten the huge trees that must be at least 200 years old. It would be impossible to say here who was there and who wasn’t. Please understand that, although UMW will now send requests for news, you should send your news to the class agent (moi)!

I flew to Richmond from New York on a small plane filled with businessmen and only two women. The other woman turned out to be going to her 55th UMW reunion. It was Irene Piscopo Rodgers ’59, sister of Rita Piscopo. The cabin staff was apparently charmed by this coincidence and gave us lots of goodies and free wine. I stayed in Richmond with Sally Crenshaw Witt and husband Sam, who were great hosts and took me all over Richmond.

It was a delight to catch up with people like Sharon Haythorne Stack, whose sense of humor is as lively as ever, and Ilona Dulaski Williams, who still sings and does theater work. Susan Orebaugh Nicholson, Karen Murrell Foreman, and Bronwyn Jones Polk came together. Bronnie hadn’t been back to UMW since graduation and loved the tours, especially of the new Information and Technology Convergence Center. She was proud to see Rick Hurley and to feel that the campus was moving well into the 21st century. Bronnie and husband of 46 years Bob have two grown children and four grandchildren.

Martha Hanks Cooper said William Crawley, professor emeritus of history, was the main speaker at the class dinner and asked who our graduation speaker was. Turns out we didn’t have one! We apparently voted not to. “No time wasted on speakers” was our thought, I guess. The most popular song of the era was the Beatles’ I Want to Hold Your Hand. The most popular dance was the Twist, and a lot of classmates got up and did it. There will be no more individual class reunions. We’re now part of the 1908 Society and can attend any reunion we wish.

Martha said Connie Marsh Pollard couldn’t make the reunion as she and her husband were visiting Budapest, cruising in the Danube, and headed for a tour of Prague. Kristina Totman Ells and husband Theodore have three children and six grandchildren.

Janet Bagg Glancy couldn’t attend as she spent the summer in the village of San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, where she studied art, silversmithing, and Spanish. She and husband Don brought their youngest son there to study Spanish 14 years ago. Janet still is coordinator of advanced programs for the Cambridge International Examinations program but might retire next year to focus on family, grandchildren, and travel.

Betsy Churchman Geary couldn’t attend as she and husband Ray were traveling in Europe, fulfilling their goal “to cover the earth before it covers us.” They celebrated their 50th anniversary in December with family on a Caribbean cruise.

Lou Davis Smith, Sharon Belknap Brown, and Jeanne Fornes Wendt enjoyed the reunion. Lou and her husband celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in June, cruising to Bermuda with family. Their 6-year-old granddaughter won a medal for rock-wall climbing.

Be Davison Herrera still sculpts in copper, fibers, wools, and labyrinth design. In February, her poetry press, Lily of the Field, released a poetry biography of Pat Clark. Be also worked to coordinate the 11th Phenomenal Woman series in California and Oregon to celebrate Women’s History Month. She leads poetry workshops for the local ARC program for challenged adults and serves on a labyrinth team with workshops for 12- to 24-year-old female prisoners. Her studio and commissioned works were scheduled to be exhibited this year, and she plans to keep writing biographies and poetry. Be lost her husband of 42 years in 2010.

Ruth Hill Simmons’husband, Baxter, died in December 2013. Our deepest sympathy goes to her and her family. Ruth retired but stays busy on various boards and with local activities, including the Virginia Store, which she and several friends started in 1992.

Our sympathy goes to Jackie Williams Towler, whose husband, Horace, died this year. A retired Army colonel who served in Korea and Vietnam, he was buried with full honors at Arlington National Cemetery.

It’s great to hear from so many of you. Keep in touch! Have a wonderful holiday season!


Phyllis Cavedo Weisser

Please send me your email addresses if you aren’t regularly receiving information from me. Our 50th reunion is next year, so we really need to communicate effectively!

I visited my daughter and her family in California in June. She returned to Atlanta with her two sons, ages 3 and 1, and me. Her husband joined us later to work with a local builder on their dream home. I hope they’ll relocate to Atlanta within the next year. Also in June, I visited my son and his family in Germany.

Bobby Barrett Crisp and husband Harry visited Bremen, Germany, with friends and went to Naples, Italy, to visit daughter Teresa Spatt, a high school teacher, and family. They traveled for all of May, seeing lots of countries.

Nancy Coates Wilson and husband Don visited Spain, Portugal, and Madeira in spring and met with their dinner group, including Nancy Buchanan Perry ’70 and Martha Jones Burke ’64. The Wilsons, married 50 years in August, were planning their annual New Year’s Eve get-together.

Margaret “Meg” Cobourn John, Lisa Corder Wharton, and Barbara Hagemann Hester planned a mini-reunion, visiting Donna Lingo Rauch and hubby Eric in Girdletree, Maryland. Eric is battling pancreatic cancer, so they brought in lunch and reminisced about Mary Washington and one of Donna and Eric’s first dates on campus.

Alice Funkhouser Flowers still works at Richmond’s St. Christopher’s School and spent spring taking pictures for graduation and preparing her next publication. Jan Yates Berls lives near her grandchildren and volunteers at their school. She and Dick spent several months at a Florida golfing community last winter and planned to go again this year. While Jan and Dick were hiking in the rainforest in Puerto Rico last year, they saw a group of young women wearing UMW lacrosse jerseys coming from the opposite direction!

Penelope Partridge Booth cruised from Prague to Paris, sailing on the Moselle, Main, and Rhine rivers. They had guided tours of Heidelberg, Luxembourg, and Wurzburg, where Penelope’s daughter lived for three years while working for Procter & Gamble.

Agnes “Missy” Bush Shives traveled to Germany in May. She and Ophelia “Ophie” Baker Crowley planned to visit Sonja “Toni” Algren Schuyler in Jericho, Vermont, in July and spend a day together in Montreal.


Katharine Rogers Lavery

Barbara Bishop Mann organized a June gathering of the MWC Lunch Bunch at Fredericksburg’s La Petite Auberge. Bobbi was joined by Sheila Denny Young, Pam Hughes Ward, Mary Kathryn Rowell Horner, Carolyn Eldred, Christine Brooks Young, Joan Cuccias Patton, Charnell Williams Blair, Anne Meade Clagett, Pat Lewars Pace, Dianne Twiggs Woodworth,and Pam Kearney Patrick.Chris and Charnell drove from Suffolk, Virginia, to surprise Bobbi. Jana Privette Usry planned to attend but was detained in a mediation case that morning. Sheilaspoke of her involvement with UMW’s alumni chapter in Fredericksburg and visits with her daughter in Colorado. Carolyn Eldred was considering escaping Northern Virginia and D.C. and moving to a Fredericksburg-area retirement community. Bobbi and Robert had just taken a trip to Iceland to celebrate Bobbi’s birthday. Pat and Linda Glynn Hutchinson planned to travel with friends to Romania, Croatia, Slovenia, Italy, and Bosnia in fall. Linda wants to organize local retreats with classmates at places like Massanutten, Virginia, where she, Pat, and Joanhave enjoyed tours, classes, and outdoor activities.

Cathe Cantwell Luria’s planeto D.C. for a conference was delayed and she missed the lunch. Cathe recently started the first Washington state domestic chapter of, an international organization that fights poverty. Her husband has been involved for years. Cathe visited the National Museum of the American Indian in D.C.

Bobbi said Mary Lynn Murray Applegate contacted her in hopes of connecting with Joan Cuccias Patton but missed the meeting. They hope to connect after summer travels. Tyla Matteson,political chair of the Sierra Club Virginia chapter, couldn’t attend. She recently received the first individual Political Service Award from the Sierra Club national political team for her dedicated and exceptional service.

Pam Kearney Patrick and husband TaB, now fully retired, resumed ballroom dancing and planned a European river cruise from Amsterdam to Vienna next year. Pam joined the Potomac Valley Watercolorists and received an honorable mention in their Green Spring Gardens Show. She sent a poster from Carol Bingley Wiley – with a copy of her watercolor painting of a woman in orange against a red and yellow background – announcing the June opening of the Carol Wiley Studio in Jefferson, Maine. In July, Carol was one of 40 artists juried to participate in the 2014 Castine Plein Air Festival.

Sally Souder spent time in Orlando, Florida, with Gerry Sargent Habas. Theyate in Winter Park and took a boat tour through the chain of lakes.Sally sang at Gerry and Len’s wedding but hadn’t seen Len for a while. Their new home is in Baldwin Park, a planned community built on the site of the old Orlando Naval training base.

Mary Kathryn Rowell Hornerand husband Charlie have resolved never to spend another March in Northern Virginia and extend their winter stay in Naples, Fla. She’ll miss waitressing at the annual March needlework exhibition sponsored by Nellie’s Needlers at Woodlawn Plantation but feels golfing might be more enjoyable. After reminiscing about living in Willard, Mary Kathryn sent an item from UMW’s website stating that all Willard Hall rooms are now singles. When Charlie and Mary Kathryn attended a nephew’s June high school graduation in Fairfax, Virginia, she thought of our big day at MWC. She had a job lined up but wasn’t sure what would happen next. She did know, though, that she’d made friends at MWC that she’d cherish for a lifetime.

Katharine Rogers Lavery noticed a photo in UMW Magazine of the MWC band playing in the amphitheater at the 1956 May Day festival. A four-year band member, she remembered that Tyla Matteson,Cathe Cantwell Luria, Jana Privette Usry,and Genie McClellan Hobson were also there, under the direction of Dr. Lloyd Farrar. The article was promoting the restoration to return the amphitheater to its 1952-1953 appearance. Robert S. and Alice Andrews Jepson ’64 donated generously to the project and urge us to also consider promoting it.

Lee Enos Kelley attended Heritage Hunt Little Theater’s May production of Senior Follies in Gainesville, Virginia. One of the leading performers was Joan Cuccias Patton, who’s discovered a natural talent as a comedic actress. Lee praised her performance. Joan spent all of July in California, attending her high school reunion, visiting Lee in Del Mar, seeing her brother in Laguna Woods, and attending a family reunion in Newport Beach. Joan planned a fall trip to Australia and New Zealand.

Sandra Hutchison Schanne visited son Brandon and the three grandchildren she sees least often in Houston. She took a children’s cookbook to make a recipe with each child. The whole family went to the Houston Museum of Natural Science to view the original 1217 Magna Carta document, on loan from England. Three of Sandy’s grandchildren live near home, and Sandy frequently travels to Denver to visit her daughter’s family.

Ginny Bateman Brinkley emailed a picture taken during her biennial Maui adventure in March with Ryan Stewart Davis and their spouses, kids, and grandkids. They finally introduced their “baby boys,” Ryan’s son, Colin, 40, and Ginny’s son, Brett, 42, who both are comedians.

Elaine Gerlach McKelly and Tim shared a house with 32 family members during their annual family beach vacation in Ocean City, New Jersey. Most of the grandkids are teenagers now. Tim and Elaine spent a week in Switzerland last September, followed by a weeklong river cruise from Basel to Amsterdam. After their annual February warm-up spell in Key West, they went to Cuba in March with the People to People exchange program. Two of Elaine’s grandchildren are driving, and they’re all active in soccer, lacrosse, martial arts, dance, and cheerleading.

Kathy Goddard Moss and husband Tom took their annual summer trip to Spain to visit their daughter and her family. They celebrated their 9-year-old grandson’s first communion and visited the mountains and beaches of Asturias on the northwestern coast. Kathy and Tom also drove 10 hours to Ohio for a reunion with another grandson and dozens of cousins.

Robbie James East is settled in her new home in Southport, North Carolina. She traveled in May to Charleston and Savannah on the way to Florida to visit her younger daughter, a speech pathologist for Orange County Public Schools. Robbie marked off another item on her “bucket list” by visiting Asheville and Nashville, touring Biltmore Estate and the Grand Ole Opry, and taking a river cruise to absorb more American history. Robbie’s mother passed away in February, one month shy of her 101st birthday. She’d always been active, attending church and entertaining friends and family, until she suffered a fall followed by a stroke.

Kathleen Crawford Hoffman’s mother, Elinor Ross Crawford, died in June at 96. Sincere condolences to Kathleen and Robbie from us all.

Sandra Hutchison Schanneand I drove to Hood College in Frederick, Maryland, in July for an upbeat memorial service for Linda Spangler Berkheimer, who had suffered an aortic aneurism. We were joined by Eileen Goddard Albrigo, Ann Kales Lindblom,Sheila Denny Young,Charlie andMary Kathryn Rowell Horner, and Ron and Mary Parsons Black. The service, held in Coffman Chapel, was packed. A eulogy speaker, Mary Parsons recalled savory MWC moments, shared experiences, and examples of Spang’s uniqueness. Mary Kathryn compiled a booklet of our classmates’ spontaneous email comments and presented it to Betsy, Spang’s daughter. Spang’s sudden passing was a shock to everyone; she will be missed by thousands.


Nancy McDonald Legat

Nancy McDonald Legat and husband Dan expect their second great-grandchild, a girl, around Christmas. Their family already consists of three daughters and three sons-in-law, seven grandchildren, and great-grandchild Carter. Nancy and Dan enjoy travel, walking, old movies, and family time.


Meg Livingston Asensio

I was excited to receive news from two classmates who had never been featured in Class Notes until now. I hope this inspires others to send updates. Suzanne Perri Elliott (whose sister, Roselynne Perri Cody, also graduated with us) worked as a special education teacher and middle school counselor. She retired in 2008 after recovering from breast cancer. Husband Michael was retiring after 34 years in an anesthesiology practice at St. Mary’s Medical Center in Knoxville, Tennessee. Their children, Daniel and Lisa, both married, recently moved closer to them, along with Suzanne’s first grandchild, Skylar Nathalia Blake. Suzanne was prompted to write after a visit from Michael’s niece, Sabrina Elliott ’17, a UMW sophomore.

Ellen Adkinson Reddingius lives on the central California coast. Her husband passed away two years ago. She recently visited friends on the East Coast. Ellen plays canasta and speaks French with a group of local Francophiles. She said her senior year roommate, Lynn Middaugh Cowen, sold her Ohio home and planned to move to Charlottesville.

Sally Monroe Kelly finally introduced husband Pete to Mary Washington. After years of involvement in his alma mater, they decided it was time to give back to Mary Washington. Pete was so impressed with the campus and people that they’ve volunteered to be part of the committee for the Mary Washington First Campaign. Sally said it feels good to make UMW a part of their estate planning and urges all the queens of ’68 to consider donating to “this beautiful place that helped make us who we are today.”

Pam Tompkins Huggins regrets missing the 45th reunion. After 30 years practicing medicine, her otherwise healthy hubby, Jim, decided to do an undercover analysis of their hospital’s patient care – as a patient. He fully retired last September and they’re enjoying their growing family. All three girls are married to young men they adore. The oldest, Sally, lives in Reston, Virginia, and has two girls, ages 13 and 16. KT lives in San Francisco, has a 2-year-old son, and expected her second child in September. The youngest, Jamie, lives in Cary, North Carolina, and expects her first baby in January. Pam is trying to cut back on long-term volunteer obligations to enjoy Jim’s retirement. She looks forward to our 50th reunion and said, “I understand that Sally Monroe Kelly tried to exploit my absence and reclaim her crown, but we all know who the real queen is!”

Jill Robinson Burkert, still in Alaska flying to native villages to help new teachers, was beginning a book of case studies and stories about remote teaching.

Susan Blosser Wight and her husband travel a lot. She still skis, golfs, and plays bridge. She’s on the board of the Garden Club of Virginia. The Wights took a recent trip down the Middle Fork of Idaho’s Salmon River, fly fishing and whitewater rafting.

Donna Sheehan Gladis and husband Steve live in Fairfax. Donna spent much of the year clearing out and selling her mom’s home, which was emotional as her family roots in Arlington, Virginia, date to 1910. Her mother, Barbara Skidmore Sheehan ’35, who turns 99 this year, lives in a retirement home. Donna spends time with her two grandsons and expected a third granddaughter in November. A current member of the Alumni Association Board of Directors, Donna encourages us to stay involved with Mary Washington and spend time on the beautiful campus. There are many new buildings, and it’s exciting to see all the changes, especially the new campus center taking shape on Ball Circle.

Mary Monroe was sorry to miss our 45th reunion, but she and Richard had already planned her first trip to Europe. She connected with a third cousin through the Internet before they left the U.S., so they were treated to a personalized tour of her ancestors’ old stomping grounds. They traveled to Scotland in June to continue research on Richard’s side of the family and arrange a meeting with the international chief of Clan Munro at the family castle. The Monroes retired to Blacksburg, Virginia, in 2006.

In May, Ash and I attended the wedding of my goddaughter, Erika Lotterhos, daughter of Janice Bryant Lotterhos (my freshman/sophomore roommate) in Orlando. It was fun reconnecting with Marilyn Wheeler Hiatt, Betty Haskins McClaskey, and Lynn “Lacey” Pierce Brown ’69. I took a girls’ trip to Paris with my 16-year-old granddaughter, Madison, my daughter, Anne, and Madison’s other grandmother, fulfilling a promise I made to Maddy when she was little. My beautiful mom passed away in June. We attended her memorial service in Texas and spent two weeks with my sisters and our families.


Linda Marett Disosway

We had a fabulous time at our 45th reunion in May, with 82 classmates, the largest number of returning alumni from any class. We missed those who couldn’t make it.

We enjoyed a Friday evening reception at Brompton hosted by President Hurley and his lovely wife, Rose. This was followed by a dinner for our class hosted by William and Theresa “Terrie” Young Crawley ’77 at their home. Terrie made all the food herself, and the Crawleys donated the proceeds from the dinner back to UMW. Many attended Saturday classes, and our class won the prize for the best decorated tent at the picnic. The reunion tent committee, headed by Iris Harrell, did a great job! Our theme was “The Way We Were.” We had memorabilia from our time at Mary Washington, including the ever-popular beanies we wore when we first arrived in 1965. All the decorations were a blast from the past. We enjoyed a buffet and a band at the all-class party at the Jepson Alumni Executive Center. Many of us danced the night away, including President Hurley and Rose! Our class won the award for the largest percentage of alumni giving, at 44 percent. We contributed more than $900,000 to UMW, placing third overall. Once again our class won the two highest alumni awards. Patti Boise Kemp most deservedly was presented the Frances Liebenow Armstrong ’36 Service Award for her lifetime of service to UMW. The Distinguished Alumnus Award for an alum who’s made significant achievements and contributions to her profession and community went to Iris Harrell, who personifies this with her successful company, Harrell Remodeling. She recently retired as chair, and the company is now entirely employee-owned. The Class of ’69 is so proud of Patti and Iris. The reunion ended with the Sunday farewell brunch. There were many sad goodbyes, but we all agreed it was the best reunion yet. I encourage you to go to our Class of 1969 Facebook page to see the pictures. Our 50th reunion in 2019 will be here before we know it!

In addition to the Mary Washington reunion, Betty Wade Miles Perry attended family reunions in Norfolk, Virginia, and Hilton Head, South Carolina. She traveled to the LPGA U.S. Open golf tournament in Pinehurst, North Carolina, and planned her annual family trip to the Outer Banks in July.

Cheryl Ulmer retired as a study director at the Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, in December 2013. In January, she joined senior year roommate Judith Farrell Bechtold of California on a trip to the Galapagos Islands, hiking, kayaking, and snorkeling. At our 45th reunion, they were joined by former roommates and hall mates Jan Desmond Melluzzo, Carol Greenwood Trejo, Tanya Belt Nickson, Loretta Horgan Nagle, Beverley Clare Coates ’68,
Doralece Lipoli Dullaghan ’70, Anne Howell Wood ’70,and Kirsten Mackey ’70.Cheryl’s son and daughter-in-law of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, welcomed a baby in April.

Anne Witham Kilpatrick was sorry to miss her first reunion in 25 years. Her granddaughter graduated from high school, so Anne and her husband took her to Aruba. Anne’s roommate, Jeanine Zavrel Fearns, also missed our reunion as she was on an Alaskan cruise with her daughter. Anne and Jeanine hope to have a mini-reunion this summer with suitemates Suzy Bender Winterble and Toni Turner Bruseth. Toni lives with husband Jim in Texas, where the group’s formal reunion will be next year. Their exhibit on the explorer LaSalle’s ship La Belle will open to the public in the Bullock Texas State History Museum. The project and book received many awards and was the subject of a TV show. Anne looks forward to her 50th high school reunion next fall. She’s taken up yoga again and is vice regent of her DAR chapter. She’ll be regent next summer. Anne’s husband, Roger, is active in the bagpipe band Greenville Pipes and Drums. Anne and Roger planned to attend a competition in Charleston, South Carolina, in September.

Lesley Fanning Atkinson attended the reunion, joined by Nancy Raisor Schlossberg, Polly Francis Rosenstein, Donna Jones Searle ’70,and Gabrielle Pagin ’70. They all lived in Russell together. They had such a good time they decided to return for the Class of ’70’s reunion next year.

Phyllis Newby Thompson attended the reunion, her first ever. Husband John and their dog, Kona, who became our unofficial class mascot, accompanied her. Phyllis gathered with Carol Greenwood Trejo, Betsy Crews Nielson,and Gloria Shelton Gibson, who were all in her high school class. Phyllis and Betsy were together from first grade through Mary Washington graduation. Phyllis’ son planned an August wedding in Napa Valley. The newlyweds will live in Minneapolis, and Phyllis and John planned summer visits with them and with their daughter in New York. They also planned a trip to their second home on Hawaii’s Kona coast. Last time they were there, Phyllis fell on slippery lava while hiking and had to be airlifted off the island for surgery to repair cuts on her face.

This is my last column as class agent. Iris Harrell is taking over. I’ve had fun hearing all your news over the past few years. Please send your news to Iris at