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November/December 2015

A Happy Holiday Season to All!

Suzanne Lenz Janney, Susan Graham Simpson, Jill Wannemacher, and Paula Braga Leidich gathered on Nov. 11 at the Morse Museum in Winter Park, Florida, for an MHC 1968 mini-reunion. The Morse is a beautiful bijou. It is a small museum known for its extensive collection of stained glass, lamps, and jewelry designed by Louis Comfort Tiffany. Not least stunning are the complete chapel and dining room from his Long Island mansion Laurelton Hall. These were lovingly retrieved by the benefactors of the Morse from the remains of a fire at the stately home. The Morse Museum has lent pieces to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.

After a leisurely but intense viewing of the art works, the Florida classmates lunched at a nearby French restaurant. They talked about the upcoming 50th Reunion, and they are enthusiastic about seeing everyone there!

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l to r: Paula Braga Leidich, Suzanne Lenz Janney, Jill Wannemacher, Susan Graham Simpson

October 2015

  • Eight '68ers (plus a member of '69) who became fast friends as residents of 1837 have started a biennial tradition: reuning at the Griswold Inn in Essex, Connecticut. Carol Foy Graham described this year's event as a "2-blender gathering...and we're not talking smoothies! What happens at 'The Gris' stays at The Gris! This year's big event was "Guys and Dolls," preceded by a delicious dinner at the Goodspeed Opera House in East Haddam, CT. We are grateful to MHC for bringing us together to start friendships that have endured and grown richer over the years! We plan to gather again in two years."

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    Don't they look happy here?

    Back row: Jean Kaye McCoy, Diane Goldberg Cross, Lynn Moloshok Green, Patricia DiIorio Cole, JoAnn Zotter Runk and Beth Richardson Rogers.

    Front row: Carol Foy Graham, Sally Bliss Davis '69 and Susan Boyd Blanchard. (Photo supplied by Diane.)

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    Susan Boyd Blanchard, Diane Goldberg Cross, Sally Bliss Davis.

  • Mary Ann Mears, whose sculptures are an indelible part of the Baltimore, MD, landscape, has contributed yet another masterwork. The Baltimore Sun's feature article, replete with photos, opened with "Inside a tiny art studio at Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, Mass..." The first photo caption tells the story: "Large-scale public art was unveiled over at the new Metropolitan apartments in Columbia, which is an interactive, functional and discoverable piece by Baltimore-based artist Mary Ann Mears." A link to the full article, with photos, is HERE.

  • Linda Gross has relocated from Los Angeles to Fort Defiance, AZ and is now an attorney for the NM Dept. of Children, Youth and Families, based in Gallup (and covering two counties), protecting children from abuse and neglect. Her hope for reunion is 100% attendance - possible if each attender encourages one other '68er to join us.

  • Karen Kunkle West and husband Chuck spent the summer commuting - northern N.Y. (home) to eastern PA to N.Y. City to see their sons, daughters-in-law and grandchildren (ages 5, 3 and 2 months). I suspect Karen and your scribe are the only ones familiar with the PA venue (Macungie). I was ROFL!

  • In a group of Dallas MHC alums gathered to discuss the 2015 Common Read Americanah, Linda Renasco Cadigan and Karen Wilbur met Alice Dunaway '15 (new to Dallas), whose sister Kate is a member of our Connections Class. Linda also forwarded an e-mail from Tatiana Androsov, who is very involved with the U.N. in N.Y. City, announcing a U.N. Day Celebration in Dallas in Nov. to mark the 70th anniversary of the U.N. See the website for full details.

  • News about Wendy Adler Jordan, courtesy of Susan Clark Iverson: Wendy spoke and exhibited at the D.C. Author Festival, held in the Martin Luther King Library in October 2015. CLICK FOR MORE.

  • News about Jane Poropatich Gwiazda, Ph.D., from Mary Lou Thorn Howson: Jane is one of three new appointees to the Nat'l Advisory Eye Council (NAEC), which provides guidance on research, training and other Nat'l. Eye Institute (NIH) programs. Jane is Prof. of Vision Science and Dir. of Research at The New England Coll. of Optometry in Boston. CLICK FOR MORE.

  • Choral Alumnae Trip to Ireland: July 25 - August 1, 2015

    Last September, a note went out to all choral alums about a possible trip this summer, either to Canada or Ireland. Enough folks picked Ireland and it was a GO! so here's some information about our recent trip. When the list first came, I was delighted to see that in addition to three physics/astro alums who I'd worked with, there were also two other '68ers - Leslie Luxemburg and Margaret Meyer Boyd (and Arthur). Turns out that while Meg and I had gone on the first Wales trip, both she (and Arthur) and Leslie had gone to China with the group in 2007. But I digress --

    We had to learn all the music ahead of time - some 15 pieces in all. Some were in English, one is Xhosa (South African), one Georgian, one Latin. Some were easier to learn from a tape than others - one group of 3 was particularly hard, at least for me. Our first rehearsal together was the Sunday evening after we had arrived in Killarney, on not much, if any, sleep. (Most of us had left Boston at 7:15 the previous evening. Leslie actually joined us in Ireland.) The group numbered 52 which included 41 singers and "groupies" and ranged from the Class of '56 to 2017! Our first concert came on Tuesday afternoon (at a hospice), then another on Wednesday (at a monastery), and finally Thurs and Friday. The final two were sung in two of Dublin's cathedrals - Saint Patrick's and Christ Church). The final concert was the first when we sang almost all of the songs. Our leader, current choral director Lindsay Pope '07, had decided to NOT use one set of 3 particularly hard ones, plus one which was specific to MHC. We three, and others as well, found Lindsay as someone whose musical judgement and skill brought out the best in all who participated! The choral program at MHC is clearly in excellent hands. I should also mention Becky Markarian, also '07, who dealt with all of the non-musical details of the trip and did a super job.

    It was a fun, if busy, trip. I had been there in 1978 as a staff member on an Alumnae Association trip which covered much more of the country - this time we stayed pretty much in the southern section going from Shannon down to Killarney to Limerick and then over to Dublin. But we managed to cram a lot into the week. We saw lots of cattle and sheep, lots of green grass, and even stopped at the Barack Obama Plaza along the main highway to Dublin! A great time was had by all of us. We had several group meals together, including all continental breakfasts, but also had the chance to sample restaurants on our own for several lunches and dinners. Our first hotel was right on a lovely green golf course. Are we the only country which puts screens on our windows? We had an amazing Irish guide and a bus driver who wielded that "coach" along the sometimes very narrow roads. We learned that the Irish coach drivers all go counterclockwise around the Ring of Kerry for that reason (it was tough enough with one coach, never mind two passing each other!). The special Irish musician who met us at the monastery had actually done her homework and spoke about the connection with the city of Holyoke and all the Irish who came to the US and settled next door to us. I, for one, was very impressed. My great-grandparents had come to the States from Ireland and settled in Portland, ME and some of the family moved to Holyoke, so I am also very familiar with the Irish heritage that Holyoke possesses.

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    Leslie Luxemburg, Margaret (Meg) Meyer and Cynthia (Cindy) Morrell in their concert attire.

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    The entire alumnae choir at the Glendalough Ecclesiastical Settlement.

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    The full alumnae choir in Christ Church Cathedral.

September 2015

We have updated the list of classmates with whom we have lost contact. Click HERE to see their names. If you have information about someone, please email paula@leidich.com

You have found several classmates. Thank you!

August 2015

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Susan Inui-Kelley (left) and sister-in-law Nancy Stowe Inui recently sent greetings from Deering, NH, where Nancy and husband Tom have a little house, in which they have spent some time each summer for 23 years (home is Indianapolis). Susan and her husband Don come over most years from their home in Woodstock, VT for a few days of family togetherness. "Precious times!" Nancy notes.


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Please take note of the Back Cover (!) of the Summer 2015 issue of the Quarterly -- prominently featuring our classmates: Sherry Christie and Olivia (Livvie) Mellan Shapiro.

READ MORE

In Memoriam: Georgina Marie Nemecek

It is with a heavy heart that we inform you of the death of our classmate Georgina Marie Nemecek: July 20, 2015
For more information, please click to our IN MEMORIAM page.

In Memoriam: Sandra Lee Copeland

It is with a heavy heart that we inform you of the death of our classmate Sandra Lee Copeland: February 22, 2015.
For more information, please click to our IN MEMORIAM page.

July 2015

The list of LOST classmates is important to us, especially as we approach our 50th Reunion. The updated list of 14 classmates is on this website (see the left sidebar.) If you are one of these women, or if you know how to contact one, please contact Paula Leidich paula@leidich.com We will be happy to get in touch with her.

Martha Cowen Cutts and husband Steve, still residing happily in Washington DC, always package their year's news in an ever-more clever 4th of July Christmas card, now transmitted electronically. The latest, entitled "The We-Had-a-Good-Last-Twelve-Months," reads as follows (and is posted here with Martha's permission):

July 4, 2015
The We-Had-A-Good-Last-Twelve-Months Checklist!
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  • still married (see notes) 1
  • still reasonably healthy and exercising but constantly battling the waist----line
  • still employed 2
  • still loving our house 3
  • still loving our neighborhood and the DC area
  • still reading 4
  • still pruning,5 watering, and weeding.
  • still either passionately cheering for 6 or striving to keep emotional distance from 7 our (injury-plagued) Washington Nationals baseball team
  • still traveling 8
  • still producing the occasional song 9
  • still debating whether or not to get another cat . . . or a dog !
  • (like Guy Noir) still trying to find the answers to life's persistent questions
  • still prone to whining - in spite of all of our good fortune - and certainly still prone to being cynical about the news! 10
  • still taking photos in red, white, and blue themes 11
  • still staying in touch with you!

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Notes:

1 thirty-five (thirty-five!!!!) years as of March 22nd

2 Martha has announced that the coming school year will be her last at Washington Latin Public Charter School although she is refusing to use the verb retire. Steve is going to teach three-quarter time this coming year in the hope that he can finish all of his preparation at school and have most evenings to himself.

  • This editorial from The Northwest Current, the newspaper serving the portion of Washington DC where Martha Cowen Cutts and husband Steve live, was a response to Martha's announcement that this would be her last year at Washington Latin School.

3 We bit the bullet and had all the windows replaced. While at it, we had the dining room window enlarged so that we now have a picture window-sized view of the back garden. The heating efficiency was evident on the first night!

4 Martha's on-going list indicates that she read 55 books in the last year!

5 Yes, the ten azaleas and the two privet hedges have had their annual haircuts.

6 That would be Martha.

7 That would be Steve.

8 to Peter & Nancy Cowen's in Wilmington, NC for Thanksgiving; NOT to New England at New Years' for Casey Darasz's wedding as planned because Steve caught a bad cold from the urchins at school; to a beach-side resort in Jacksonville, FL for spring break and to celebrate the wedding anniversary. We actually plan to make it to New England in July for Zach Darasz's wedding and then go on to the Hudson Valley and Cooperstown, New York.

9 We always urge you to visit ThePrimeCutts.com. Along with 39 others, there's a bluegrass song from the summer of 2014 that perhaps you did not hear, AND there's a new recording in celebration of last June's wedding of Martha's goddaughter Molly.

10 Don't blame us for Congress! As we like to remind you, we don't vote those jokers into office; YOU DO! (still trying to educate the rest of the nation that we residents of YOUR capital city aren't represented in Congress)

11 OK, the irises aren't blue, but it was the best we could think of this year. Thanks to our next-door friend Valerie for serving (again) as our Richard Avedon.

June 2015

Your secretary/scribe offers this write-up of a very special event...

It is my great good fortune to live about 110 miles from Mount Holyoke, so there was little doubt that I would attend the first gathering of the Class of 1968/Class of 2018 50th Reunion project-a brunch at Willits Hallowell for members of both classes, held on 28 April 2015.

I was delighted to accept a request from our class president, Paula Braga Leidich, to serve as our scribe for the event. I herewith offer my notes and our webmaster, Kate Pacowta Gombos '92, has posted photos taken by Elise Newcomer '18.

Eleven members of the Class of 1968 were able to attend: Christine ANDERSON Salmon; Mary (Mobby) BROWN Larson; Gayle GUNDERSON Richardson; Karen KELLY Taggart; Elizabeth MUELLER Stead; Margaret (Meg) MEYER; Elizabeth (Betsy) NEWCOMB Beth; Gwyn (Dinny) OGILVIE Sewall; Eloise PRESCOTT Killeffer; Cynthia (Cindy) WHITE Morrell; and Susan YESHILIAN Manaras.

The room at Willits was set beautifully with enough round tables that each would have no more than two '68ers-the idea being that all the '18ers would be able to converse easily with one or two of us. It was a brilliant strategy!

We each had a well-thought-out and nicely printed program at our place: "50 Years of Sisterhood; A Dialogue between MHC Class of 1968 and The Class of 2018."

The outgoing president of the Class of '18, Olivia Lucas, got everything underway with greetings, a warm welcome and an elaboration on the theme of 50 years of sisterhood. She then introduced the other outgoing class officers: Sajia Darwish, secretary; Nanjiba Nawaz, treasurer, Yada Pruksachatkun, vice president and Isoke Samuel and Michelle Son, social co-chairs.

Olivia then asked each '68er to introduce herself and to offer a brief life story. It was a revelation to learn that our majors often had little to do with subsequent careers! And that might have been a great message for our '18 little sisters...

We then had time to undertake table-based discussions focused on questions put to us by the organizers. For the '68ers: Why did we choose MHC? How did we use our MHC time to pursue our dreams? What has changed since 1968? What lifelong lessons did we learn at MHC? If we were to enter MHC now, what would we do differently? For the '18ers, there was some overlap in questions, especially around pursuing dreams and what lessons have been learned thus far. They were also asked to suggest things they would change now if they could.

Topics that came up included networking, making connections, having good relationships with faculty, appreciating family and home, taking opportunities and learning to prioritize.

I was at a table with Karen Kelly Taggart and we regaled our young tablemates with stories of our adventures (and even some misadventures) during our years at MHC. We also reminisced about how things used to be-some of which left our little sisters laughing in disbelief, particularly at how strict some of our social rules were. In loco parentis? Are you kidding??? It was just a hoot!!

It was hard to bring everyone back to the rest of the program. Olivia asked '68ers to offer reflections on what our time at MHC meant to us, and how it helped to shape us as women and as responsible members of society. Giving back was a pervasive theme...

When it was time to end this wonderful event (after all, the Class of '18 still had final papers and exams waiting!), we '68ers rose spontaneously and (with the help of our resident musician, Karen Kelly Taggart) serenaded our Class of '18 sisters (and you may feel free to sing along!):

Oh, little sisters dear, we are glad that you are here.
We love to see the crimson and the blue.
We are loyal every one, and when all is said and done,
Little sisters, we are very proud of you!

Ach lieber lieber, ach lieber lieber,
Twenty-eighteen, boom, boom!
Ach lieber lieber. ach lieber lieber,
Twenty-eighteen!!!

The morning ended with mixing and mingling-and it was plain to see that this event was a great kickoff for a five-year '68/'18 50th reunion project, to culminate in 2018, as we gather for our 50th reunion and the Class of 2018 is graduated.

With great joy that Mary Lyon's legacy continues...

Eloise Prescott Killeffer
1968 Scribe/Secretary

VIEW PHOTOS!

A wonderful long catch-up e-mail from Virginia (Ginny) McNally contained an abundance of news. She lost her husband, Dr. Chung-Wai Tang, in 2009, and after five years of widowhood, remarried. Her own words cannot be improved upon:

"Widowed in 2009, I've recently married a wonderful Irish gentleman with a Boston accent named Dan Fahey. We honeymooned for a couple of weeks in Ireland in September 2014, then escaped the New England winter by spending a couple of months touring Australia and New Zealand with extended stops in Hawaii and San Francisco. In the last year, not only have we started a new life together, but my daughter has made us grandparents and my son has just married a lovely young woman in California. Life is good!"

When your scribe wrote back to empathize about widowhood, having been widowed herself in 2000 with no expectation of remarriage, Ginny offered this reply: "Dan felt just the opposite when his wife died: theirs was a wonderful relationship and he knew he was good at relationships. He wanted not to replace her, but to do what came naturally to him: love. How fortunate I am!"

Ginny also noted that she and Dan returned to Boston from their extended trip in the thick of last winter, only to find ten feet of snow and ice dam damage. "Spring can't come soon enough! We're trying to consolidate homes, do some renovations and pull together the sequence of events those entail. A few things on the plate right now, all good, thank goodness."


Leslie Tilton Sweeney has contributed this summary of her life since graduation:

I believe I was the only geology major our year, and I did work in geology for about 10 years in the '70s , mostly for the USGS (U.S. Geological Survey), in Denver and in the field in Arizona and California from the Denver office.

Most of my professional life, however, has been as an editor of one sort or another--mostly in Santa Cruz, California, for the University of California, Santa Cruz (UCSC) Publications Office, or one or another of UCSC's projects. I moved to Bellingham, WA, in 2005, and since 2007 have worked for Premier Agendas as a quality control person and copy editor/proofreader. They make very popular agenda books, usually for schools and colleges. Though my job pays terribly, I really like it and am glad to be working!

In a United Way corporate competition, my team of 2 and I from Premier Agendas were runners-up (out of 5 nominees, from 160 organizations) in the United Way of Whatcom County's annual Campaign Coordinator of the Year award recently. We tripled the company's participation from recent years' totals. Although it was still a small donation, we worked hard for it!.

I am giving anything that remains financially when I'm gone to MHC and UCSC. (Good luck, but it's the thought that counts.)

I didn't like MHC's new motto "never fear/change" at first, but now I do-and say it to myself amazingly often.

Leslie (Tilton) Sweeney, Bellingham, WA

This photo is of me, left, and Natalie Boatman, the United Way Loaned Executive from the Whatcom Educational Credit Union, who worked with Premier Agendas during the campaign.

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April 2015

In Memoriam: Ann Kiley Burke

It is with a heavy heart that we inform you of the death of our classmate Ann Kiley Burke on March 4, 2015.
For more information, please click to our IN MEMORIAM page.

This delightful story of ongoing mini-reunions was sent in by Nancy Huttemeyer Davis on behalf of this group of six classmates.

Inspired by reuniting at our 35th MHC Reunion, six of us began our biennial tradition of getting together with our spouses at one of our homes. We live in Chicago, NYC, Northern Virginia, New Jersey and Connecticut, where we are all so busy and active, it takes numerous emails - even a chart sometimes - to find a date that works for all of us. Our first mini-reunion took place in October, 2003 on Cape Cod, and our most recent was in September, 2014 on the Northern Neck of Virginia with get-togethers in between in Manhattan and Gales Ferry, Connecticut. Conversation picks up right where we left off last time, and we share family, travel and volunteer experiences along with photos. Now that our husbands have become such good friends, last time we ladies had to move into a different room so we could hear ourselves amidst their exuberant discussions.

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Shown in the photo are Nancy Huttemeyer Davis, Mary (Mobby) Brown Larson, Constance (Connie) Cushman, Linda Graham McElroy, Judith (Judy) O'Connor Hayes and Laurie Trees Rodgers whose husband Dwight took the photo. We chuckled over snippets from the book featured in the photo, She's Off to College; A Girl's Guide to College Life published in 1940, that included several references to Mount Holyoke.

 

Gail Carlson Bull shares an update with us, adapted from her 50th High School reunion book

  • Catching up (adapted from submission to high school reunion book)
  • What matters most to me is enjoying life and spending time with my man, friends and family - especially my granddaughter Isabel who was four in October. And my garden gets a certain amount of attention too - I'm not a gardener so time spent there is always a time of wonder and learning with a bit of sweat. Flowers, trees and shrubs plus vegetables and fruit. Not a lot this year but enough ;-)
  • What I enjoy doing now - in addition to what's listed above is working part time for myself doing editing and copywriting for a challenging range of businesses, individuals and organisations. Just lately I'm beginning to enjoy the freedom of growing older and rejoicing in my ability to do things now I didn't or couldn't do before. Thanks to a chiropractor I now have excellent and enviable posture. A first. I have childhood memories of my mother telling me to stand up straight. Well I'm doing it now when I bounce out of bed!
  • My triumphs - new ones every day. Delighting in the detail of the day whether it's butterflies, the smell of coffee or tiny cat paw prints deep in the concrete. Supporting friends and family going through tough times - sometimes there's a grateful 'thank you', sometimes there are more smiles, fewer moans and changes in outlook and behaviour.
  • Challenges - I continue to be a 'displaced' person, the new girl, the foreigner (I spent seven years in Turkey as an American within an English community), the woman, divorcee. Why would I want to fit in?
  • Most life changing experience - that has to be deciding a few years ago that there was no point in holding on to nearly 30 years of marriage that was killing us both. So freedom and being me - nearly there I think!
  • I have lived (since graduating in 1968) - in Cambridge, Mass while working at Harvard's Fogg Art Museum and then doing a graduate course at Brandeis University; then seven fabulous years in Turkey discovery archaeology (animal bones) - with stints in Greece and Northern Syria (the current hell there breaks my heart); then it was off to England to do research for a PhD - got married and had two great kids instead. I've been here ever since!
  • Family stuff - married 1980 to 2010, sons William (1982) and Toby (1984) plus granddaughter Isabel (2010). And somewhere along the way I've acquired guardianship of Toby's cat, Donna.
  • Careers - I'm on my fourth. First was archaeologist. A zoo archaeologist to be more precise - someone who studies animal bones. I co-wrote a couple of scientific papers about sheep and goat teeth and another one on pig teeth. At least one of which has been translated into Chinese. My second career was bringing up two great boys. My third career began when I drifted back into work via some part time jobs and ended up in July 1995 working for a local company here in Cambridge UK called Unipalm PIPEX. The first internet company in the UK. There were 197 employees when I joined. What followed was 14ish years that changed the world. In 1995 we were talking to reporters and government people who said that the internet was a seven day wonder that would go away. We said it would change things forever - in ways that no one could imagine. I dreamt of my smartphone in 1995 and now it's under my pillow every night. The fourth (and probably not final) career began in 2009 when I left work (by the way the company's name changed from Unipalm PIPEX to UUNET, to MFS, to WorldCom, to MCI and then Verizon Business - I had 17 managers in that time, one year I had four, the first lasted three years! And when I left Verizon there were maybe 200,000 employees globally? A journey.) Back to the fourth career - I set up mymotherscoat.com in August 2010 and provide editing and copywriting for a challenging range of businesses, individuals and organisations. Part time, from home mainly. The garden and the cat are essential parts of the business in terms of inspiration. Not to mention village life. It all happens outside my window. And behind closed doors. And I guess the 'new' man in my life deserves a mention - we met about a year and a half ago and it's been life changing for both of us. Life is good. It is very good.
  • Oh good heavens - I forgot a really important bit about 'now' - for some years have been involved in an experimental theatre group called in situ: - go have a look at http://www.insitutheatre.co.uk/. This past week we performed the Oresteia trilogy - the end of a four year project!

 

From Eloise Graham Brooks - A Surprising Alumnae Connection

[Husband] Jim and I moved to a retirement community in Charleston, SC, in August 2011. Other residents told me that there was one other MHC alumna living here, Elizabeth S. (Libby) Williams '38, so I called her. Libby is celebrating her 98th birthday today, as I write this (15 December 2014). In February, Libby told me that she had a pair of portraits of her immigrant ancestor (Andrew Moffett), who arrived in Charleston in 1811 from Scotland, and his Charleston wife, Anna Reid. Libby wanted to give the portraits to a living male Moffett descendant. She had lost contact with her cousins, his parents, in 1994. As an amateur genealogist, I searched the internet and found a possible match, a retired colonel in the USMC, living in Alexandria. I was optimistic, but cautious...and thus procrastinated. In May, I went to the 50th Reunion of my high school class (National Cathedral School, Washington, DC, from which also graduated Cornelia "Nonie" Davis in our class) in Washington, DC. On the last day of events, a classmate happened to mention something relating to her sister, Lynn MOFFETT, who lived in ALEXANDRIA. So I asked if her husband was William Adger Moffett, III, and it was! Bill and Lynn drove to Charleston about three weeks later and were thrilled to accept the portraits. One of the people to whom I have told this amazing story called it a "God wink."

Also, recently, Libby gave an interview to our retirement community newsletter for a feature on WWII veterans. Her twin sister Margaret was her MHC roommate for four years. Margaret passed away in 2010, before I arrived here. [Note: The interview is available from Eloise Prescott Killeffer, '68 Scribe, on request.]

 

Tatiana Androsov updated us in December 2014 about fascinating people in her life:

I am still working for Thanks-Giving [a project at the UN presented earlier on our website] but only indirectly, by working on thanksgiving with the founder, Peter Stewart, who is now 94.

I just came back from a five mile run. Incredible to think that I started running (actually jogging would be a better description) forty eight years ago thanks to Leonora (Lee) Petty '70. Equally incredible to think that I have done so in the most incredible places, from next to icebergs in Greenland, to Table Mountain in South Africa, to the beaches near Melbourne, Australia and dirt roads in Cambodia (with a gigantic mama pig trying to keep up with me). Right now, I begin jogging next to my house, then reach a path next to beautiful trees. It is where I think and actually where I pray or perhaps, one would say, meditate. Running and yoga (which I started on my own when I was fourteen) have been mainstays in my life, evening out the highs and lows which we all face with the flow of time.

Yesterday, I went down to the south of Dallas to a Christmas lunch at an African American church where a friend of mine is the minister. It was wonderful to see the children and their parents, heartwarming to be hugged over and over again. I only brought a small gift and in turn received a mountain of caring. I met a most incredible lady, older than us, over eighty, a retired minister, who eight hours a day takes care of another lady, one suffering from dementia. She looks at her cane and smiles as she was paralyzed for eight months and no one thought she would come out of it. She did and gives the others the miracle that came to her.

It made me think of my newest friend, the Reverend Ambassador Marie Barnett, Ambassador of Sierra Leone to Liberia, a grandmother of two wonderful girls, her daughter's children with an American husband who ran out on her. They had been living with Marie in Sierra Leone and Liberia and to protect them from the horrors of Ebola. Marie gave up a more important ambassadorial post to bring those girls to safety here. Thanks to generosity of another wonderful friend, the director of the Museum of Biblical Art, Marie will be speaking there on Sunday, February 1. For me that is very special, as Liberia and Sierra Leone, incredibly, are the only countries in Africa with official Thanksgiving Days, Sierra Leone because of a visit to Thanks-Giving Square by Marie's husband, Bishop Barnett and a subsequent talk with then President Kabbah, who passed away this spring before Ebola struck his country in full force. In another unbelievable coincidence, President Kabbah was a former colleague of mine at the United Nations Development Program.

Life is full of challenges and wonders. I ponder upon it as I run and hope that Mt. Holyoke will consider having Marie come up there to speak about people, structures and thousand year old customs that are being struck down by a disease that comes barely a decade after the end of a bloody civil war.

By the way: Should I self-publish for our upcoming 50th reunion the novel I wrote about Mt. Holyoke - Before they cut the Ivy ?

 

Greetings from Nancy Stowe Inui and photos of her trip to Japan

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Nancy, husband Tom and a friend named Misako are peeking out of Red Pumpkin, an art installation on Naoshima Island..

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Nancy and Tom stand before the Royal Palace in Bangkok, where they attended a centennial celebration of the China Medical Board, of which Tom has been a trustee since 2000.

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Son Tazo and his wife Edny.

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The Yellow Pumpkin is another art installation on Naoshima Island, the work of an 85-year-old purple-haired Japanese woman named Yayoi Kusama.

February/March 2015

News from Susan Kreiner Hochenberg

After a long career as a Language Arts middle school teacher in Central Harlem and a stint at the District Office coordinating testing of kindergarteners, Susie Kreiner Hochenberg retired to start within a month as an Information Desk Volunteer at the American Museum of Natural History. Her first year she was awarded Info Desk Volunteer of the Year. She enjoys meeting and greeting visitors from across the nation as well as the world. A typical day at this world class museum some 18,000 people including many children come to see the dinosaurs, planetarium show and the numerous other special as well as permanent exhibits.

In August 2013 her husband William needed a new kidney to combat End Stage Renal Disease. She was immediately tested at Mount Sinai Hospital in NYC and was told she was a match. The rest is herstory.

William is back at work as a Family Law attorney and is doing very well thanks to the Recanati Miller Transplanation Institute where she also volunteers completing art projects (watercolor and floral greeting cards) as well as playing the piano in the hospital atrium. April is Donate & Save a Life month. She is helping to reach out to NYC busiest food shops as part of the RMTI 's community outreach to encourage more people to consider being an organ donor.

At MHC Susie majored in American History and was a Fellow at Teachers College, Columbia University. Her true passion at MHC was art history. She can still remember memorizing the black & white photos on American furniture, architecture and fine arts! If you happen to visit the AMNH on a Monday morning , please stop by the Info Desk to say hi!

January 2015
Did you know? -- Our class elfed the Class of 2018 at exam time!

Class of 1968 volunteers Susan Graham Simpson, Joy Camp, and Linda Stauffer, who all grew up in South Hadley, elfed the Class of 2018 on Sunday, December 7, as part of our class Sisters Project '18 - '68.

Class of 2018 officers present to help with elfing were Olivia Lucas, President; Sajia Darwish, Secretary; and Isoke Samuel, Social Chair.

534 bags of candy treats (!!!) were delivered to the students in their dorms; day students received their treats in their Blanchard mailbox. A student, Alanna Reader, wrote to Sue, thanking our class for the goodies which were "a wonderful surprise" and "perfect for finals week."

Now we need you to participate in the Sisters Project '18 - '68. The next event is a Sunday Spring Social, most likely on a Sunday afternoon in April at Willits. More details will follow. WE NEED A GOOD TURNOUT FROM OUR CLASS. IF YOU LIVE WITHIN A 2 HOUR DRIVE OF MOUNT HOLYOKE, PLEASE TRY TO ATTEND AND MEET SOME WONDERFUL YOUNG WOMEN.

We also need your memories of freshman year at Mount Holyoke to incorporate into a skit for the Class of 2018. What do you recall about dorm life, meals, gracious living, bells, classes, gym, exams, dorm/library closing times? Please send your recollections to Sue Simpson at nanasue_6@yahoo.com by February 15th. (Be sure to use the underscore in Sue's email address, not a dash, or she will not receive your message. She really wants to hear from you!)

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