YAM Class Notes: September/October 2016

YAM Class Notes: September/October 2016

After a pleasantly slow start, summer is here with typical mid-Atlantic heat and humidity, and as activity slows down, so does news about classmates. My major complaint is that as the grandchildren get older, their activities cut short the traditional summer visits.

Chris Cooke sent news from the formerly cool state of Alaska: “I was the 2016 recipient of the Judge Nora Guinn award given by the Alaska Bar Association. The citation reads: Board of Governors Judge Nora Guinn Award presented to Christopher R. Cooke ‘In honor of his extraordinary and sustained efforts to assist Alaska’s rural residents, especially its Native population, overcome language and cultural barriers to obtaining justice through the legal system.’”

In other news about honored classmates, Steve Ullman provided the following: “Hodges University (Naples and Ft. Myers, Florida) is proud to announce that Alan Horton, former Naples Daily News editor and Hodges’ 2015 Humanitarian of the Year, will deliver its 2016 commencement address on Sunday, June 12. An award-winning reporter, editor, and publisher, Horton served as the senior vice president of newspapers for the E. W. Scripps Co. and was editor of the Naples Daily News from 1987 to 1991. In 2013, he earned the title of the Naples Daily News Outstanding Citizen of the Year.”

Another classmate in the news is David Hawkins, whose op-ed on carbon capture was published in the July 7 edition of the New York Times.

In case you didn’t see Jeff Miller’s e-mail update on class lunches, we had successful lunches in New Haven, Cleveland, Portland, Washington, DC, and Summit, New Jersey. Following Jeff’s update, Burt Haimes hosted the New York City lunch on June 23 with 11 classmates in attendance. Burt reported: “All current issues were discussed—the college naming decisions, the upcoming presidential campaign, including VP picks for each candidate, our health challenges, Yale’s football prowess, and FIFA’s ethical challenges. Everybody seemed to be in some degree of retirement except me! But everybody was keeping busy finding new challenges.”

I attended the Washington lunch, hosted by Bill Nelson and Bob Woodward, and organized by Bill Crosby. With 14 classmates gathered in a Senate hearing room, the conversation naturally focused on current events, no doubt you can figure out the main topic of discussion. The St. Louis lunch is scheduled for July 20, with Allen Gilliard hosting, and the Los Angeles lunch is scheduled for September 8, with Bob Leich and Gerry Libby hosting. Thanks to Jeff and all the hosts of class lunches past and future.

Lee Lundy sent some truly delightful news: “Nancy Godfrey and I were married June 25 in Peru, Vermont. Bill and Martha Jones attended, as did Peter Stillman ’66, Bill Petty ’63, and Frank Baker ’63, and a cadre of Smithies. My son, Travis, came in from Hong Kong to be best man. We had a wonderful few days in Vermont and a reception at Nancy’s sister’s house that went on for hours with a water slide for children of all ages (plastic sheeting, hoses, and dishwashing liquid, down the hill toward the creek).” There is a “backstory” from the New York Times about how Lee and Nancy happened to meet, which I highly recommend you read. 

As I have in the past, I encourage you to visit the class listserv and add some leavening to the discourse. Not every posting has been a rancorous exchange on the current political situation and the candidates. We’ve had interesting topics like remembrances of Muhammad Ali, and discussions about genetic profiles and what percentage of Neanderthal genes classmates carry in their DNA (apparently no more than average). In an effort to learn from other classes’ experience with communications, I’ve been in touch with Tony Lavely, my counterpart in ’64, and brother of our Jay Lavely. Tony recently visited Jay in Los Angeles and reported: “He continues to struggle with physical infirmities but is otherwise in good spirits.”

Bob Hammond posted this poignant remembrance on Memorial Day: “Every Memorial Day I somberly think of Woody Knapp and others I knew who gave their lives in Vietnam. On several occasions Barb and I have enjoyed Memorial Day visiting family in Alexandria where we viewed the impressive Rolling Thunder motorcycle tribute starting at the Pentagon and winding its way to the National Mall. Afterwards we made our way to The Wall to find Woody’s name and remember. I found a website today that lists the names on the wall. Woody is engraved on Panel/Row 29E.”

I’ve been to the website and encourage you to do the same—the pictures of Woody bring back fond memories of him.

Reminder: class dinner on October 28, at the Yale Club of New York City with Bob Woodward as our speaker. It’s ten days before Election Day and David Roscoe will survey the attendees on the expected outcome of the election; a survey which has proved highly predictive in prior years. 

By John Pinney, ’65