SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2005
As the 2005-2006 Yale academic year commences, Jim Long (Los Angeles) chimed in happily about his two children, Allegra and Ted, being in New Haven. "I feel very, very fortunate that they both got in, especially in these competitive times with over 19,000 applying for 1300 spots last year. They have embraced Yale in a way I wish I had. At parents' weekend Allegra had a leading role in Sondheim's "Company" and the only dance role. I was so proud and delighted to see her plunging into so much of Yale. Teddy, as a junior, started a new undergraduate journal "The Yale Journal of Medicine and the Law." The first two issues covered the managed care debate and malpractice reform with multiple views expressed. My roommates (Trumbull), Joe Hanson (Wyncote,PA) and Dick Milsten (Vero Beach, FL,) would never believe my kids would be so passionate and expansive, knowing the book worm that I was."
On the overseas front, Ellis Wisner (Washington, D.C.) checked in from an Internet Café in London just completing a trip to Austria, Turkey, and the UK. "Fred Starr and I worked at the excavation in Gordion, Turkey in the summer of 1959, primarily on the Phrygian level. There are Bronze Age, Hittite, Persian, Hellenistic Greek, Roman and Galatian, and Seljuk Turk levels too, not to mention trenches from the Greek-Turkish War of 1921-22. What has changed from the time I knew it some 46 years ago is the dating and understanding of events in Phrygian history, esp. the period form 800-600 BC/BCE. Ellis offered "to expand further if any of our classmates are interested."
Bill Hennessey e-mailed that he accepted an assignment earlier this year in Tbilisi, "to head up a small Booz Allen Hamilton team that is performing a USAID-funded project to restructure Georgia's national railway. My wife, Sue, joined me and we moved into an apartment next to the Parliament Building where the famous Rose Revolution took place in November 2003. We expect to be here at least three months, probably six months, and maybe 15 months. All in all, we are having a very good time, although the work is hard, but useful. Regrettably, I have not managed to keep up my music. But I have certainly not lost my interest in music and the Yale Band. We recently saw an excellent performance of Swan Lake by Georgia's ballet company. Wonderful dancing and wonderful music. If the Yale Band decides to include Georgia on one of its summer concert tours, I'll be glad to act as local agent to help make things happen." Bill added that in his previous apartment residence in a converted textile mill in Exeter, NH, one of his neighbors was Dan Brown of "DaVinci Code" fame.
Still in New England and on the literary front, Neil Goodwin (Cambridge, MA), reports, "For the last year or so I've been working on new book, which has to do with a very small sliver of the American Revolution in northern Vermont, where my family and I have been spending time for many years. So, I'm deep in the 18th century poring over old archives and trying to piece this story together. The research takes me to Canada, maybe eventually to England. It's amazing how over-simplified and sanitized the American Revolution has been made by most schools and for the consumption of the general public." Neil said that his earlier book on the Apache Indians is being published in Spanish in Mexico "where there has been a recent surge in interest in the Apaches, until only a few years ago the object of fear and loathing - now fascination."
A beneficiary of the continuing strong housing market is Bob Murray (Westhampton, NY) who wrote, "Who said anything about 'retirement!' My wife, Meredith, and I decided to go back to work and have joined the Corcoran Group working together as partners selling high-end real estate in the Hamptons, where we both grew up. I'm so busy in my next phase of life that I hardly have time to think. I started out volunteering for things that I thought would make a difference (as the cliché goes.) I'm Chairman of the Southampton Housing Authority, a start up agency trying to find or build affordable housing on the East End of Long Island. I've also volunteered to head a membership drive for the Westhampton Historical Society, and have been asked to be on the Board of the Eastern Long Island Audubon Society. I also walk the beaches of Long Island twice a month for SEANET (Seabird Ecological Assessment Network), looking for dead birds (don't laugh.) The purpose is to assess the mortality rate and gauge the impact of natural or human-wrought disasters."
At the opposite end on retirement is John Wickenden (Camden, ME) who said, "In retirement, my days are overwhelmingly full. My most recent project was to complete two additional dry stone walls at our seasonal home. I worked at the margins of my physical capacities, and my arms are still sore. It's very satisfying to believe that "my" stone walls will last much longer than I will. In April of this year I retired from an array of activities, including a committee chairmanship with the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. I have even let my MD license expire. Although I thought that I loved everything related to spine and shoulder surgery, I'm tremendously happy to have moved on from clinical practice. My partner, Michael, and I are disappointed, but not surprised, by the results of the 2004 gay marriage referenda. On the other hand, we are delighted to be registered as "domestic partners" in Maine. Recognition of gay love and relationships has come a LONG way since we were undergraduates. Michael and I take pleasure from the reality that most of our family members, and straight friends, deem our relationship to be an optimal example of "marriage" in our community. We're totally "mainstream." We have two children. One of them is a Yale graduate. We have two grandchildren. We're deeply involved in the activities of our community.
Again in contrast is Dr. Bill McMaster (Costa Mesa,CA), who says he continues to practice orthopedic surgery and teach at the University of California, Irvine and the Long Beach VA Hospital. Bill says, "I find teaching the next generation of surgeons a most rewarding experience."
Another doctor still in the field is Scott Nelson (Santa Fe, NM) who is "back in Santa Fe after serving as receiver for the Washington D.C. mental health system. I am now the psychiatric consultant for the New Mexico Medicaid program, but on the side I leave time to buy and sell art and antiques."
As you are reading this, the Hong Kong Mini Reunion should be about to happen. There will be a report with photos posted on our web site in November. If you are not receiving monthly e-mail alerts about http://www.yale62.org, it means that you have NOT YET provided your e-mail address; that you have had an e-mail address change, or possibly that your filter is blocking our messages. David Scharff closed the books on the wonderful April D.C. Mini. The remaining contingency surplus was donated to the Class Fund for use on future Reunions. Early planning is underway for a summer 2006 Mini in Aspen, Colorado. Details to come.