1961 – Spring ’22 Class Letter

Dear fellow Classmates,

Greetings from Southern Oregon! The response to my request to hear back from you about what has happened in the past year was disappointing, however, it is my hope that it was due to busy schedules. In any event, here is what is happening in our world.

AKIRA TOMITA of Japan, writes, “Greetings from Japan!!! Last night, I happened to skim through “Freshman Handbook” which brought me back to good old memories of my Freshman Year in 1957 of wearing “beanies,” having a “fresh-sophomore greased-pole fight,” polishing shoes for upper-class students, carrying books for them, etc. I also enjoyed “shaving cream fight” in the hallway of Scott Hall for which some blamed us being childish. The floor supervisor, Nick Whiteman, was busy getting out of his room and yelling, “All right, guys, get quiet and back to your rooms right now!!!”

“I continue to foster my friendship with TIM BURRBILL PYE, and PETER JOCHIMSEN. A few years ago, my wife and I enjoyed staying at TIM‘s at Oostburg, Wisconsin, over three nights and seeing BILL at Ripon- it was my first time to see him after our Ripon days. We also had an honor to be welcomed by PETER at his home in Iowa City. ALLEN ANGSTEN invited us to his home several times. I cherish my friendship with them. Both my son and daughter had a privilege to visit Ripon College some years ago. I’m glad I attended Ripon College!!!”

MARYANN CLAUDER JESSE of Downers Grove, Illinois, writes, “Life goes on, hooray. COVID certainly put a hold on social life here. The holidays were better than last year-family could be together and everyone was vaccinated and tested. Hopefully, things will lighten up by spring. I wish I had more exciting things to tell, but maybe by the next time this Letter goes out, I will.”

And here is an additional note from MAC CLAUDER JESSE when I called her to remind her to respond for an update for our Class Letter: As an addendum to the first message… Ms. KRIEPS should let you all know everything she is involved in and does. I talk to her and have to catch my breath thinking about it. Another reminder…never give her your phone number…she’ll nag you to death. BARB, you had better put this in the newsletter. Love you! (Love you, too.)

SUGAR MALTBY BALMES of Mount Prospect, Illinois, writes, “I wish I had some exiting things to put in the class letter but I do not. Surely one of the best times this past year was our small, rain-drenched 60th reunion. It was great to see MARA LATSONS WARRENKAREN SCHNEIDER CENTER, and MARY BACCHUS MILLER, all of whom look fabulous and share many joyful memories of our Ripon years. We were thrilled to spend some time with CLAUDETTE BEAL ROSELAND ’60, who was determined to come to Ripon in spite of battling serious health issues. Sadly, CLAUDETTE passed away just three months later.

“Because COVID-19 took over pretty much of our lives for the past two years, travels were very limited to my happy place, Key West, Florida, where I have family and memories of decades of visits there. COVID-19 also took away the two volunteer jobs I enjoyed since retiring from teaching. Because of a chronic medical issue, I must walk every day, a challenge I enjoy in summer but am forced to do on a treadmill all winter. The highlight of my days is a trip to the gym almost every day…gets me out to enjoy the sight of other masked aging exercisers. I do read many books while on that treadmill. Looking forward to resuming in-person activities (I hate ZOOM) and some more traveling!”

I am sad to report the passing of BOB TYKAL. The good part about this news is that he is reunited with his wife MARILYNN DEPLEWSKI TYKAL ’60.

ROBERT “BOB” TYKAL of Davis, Illinois, died May 4, 2021. At Ripon, he majored in physics and mathematics, participated in student government and athletics, and was commissioned through ROTC. He received a master’s of business administration degree from the University of Chicago. He served in the U.S. Army’s 82nd Airborne Division. He was an information systems executive at Motorola Inc. in Schaumburg, Illinois, for more than 30 years, retiring in 1996. He enjoyed time at Lake Summerset and his second home in Naples, Florida, fishing, golf, and singing in church choirs in Illinois and Florida and in the barbershop quartet Three Shots and a Chaser. Survivors include three sons and one daughter. His wife, MARILYNN DEPLEWSKI TYKAL ’60, died in 2014.

This is from JACKSON PARKER in response to my question about why more of “you guys” did not attend the Reunion last year.

“A reasonable question about “us guys.” I had fully planned to attend, and was really looking forward to it. We had a gigantic family reunion over the 4th of July (including cousins I hadn’t seen since we were seven years old; I’m somewhat older than that now) and saw 50 people during the week of the 4th through golf tournaments, banquets, and fireworks. I still planned to attend the reunion. However, Jackson Parker V, decided to be born on July 24th in Minneapolis. We were there, in our best grandparent mode. Then they moved to Milwaukee which is their permanent home. The mom, Sara, is the Head Dietician for both the Milwaukee and Minneapolis VA Hospitals and knew the Minneapolis hospitals and liked the birthing approach better than Milwaukee. Mom, Sara, Dad (Jackson Parker IV), and JP5 moved back to Milwaukee the first week in August, we came with them providing support and getting their house ready (our main home is south of Milwaukee; close enough that we are the number one babysitters). Thus, no Reunion. I can’t speak for the other guys who weren’t there except to say we don’t live as long as you females do and enter senility earlier; some would say shortly after we turn 16. There I am letting myself off the hook again. But in seriousness, the birth was both a tense and cherished event for us. We were concerned how our son might handle it – but we didn’t need to be. He’s a great Dad and full partner with the Mom. This after he had some VERY difficult teenage and early 20’s years. This is more than you wanted to know I’m sure, but I felt bad about missing the Reunion. My bittersweet sentimentality always looks forward to it…and time runs through the hourglass, doesn’t it. Felt I needed to explain because I truly missed not seeing you. And, I mean that.”

BARBARA KRIEPS LASKIN of Medford, Oregon, writes, “As for me, life has slowed down a bit here in beautiful Southern Oregon. This past quarter I took three classes at Southern Oregon University but have decided that two is enough this quarter. In addition to that, I volunteer at one of the theatres here in Medford and subscribe to three other theatres. As you can tell, the visual arts play a major role in my life. Oh, and I am in two book clubs. The downside of belonging to a book club is that you have all those books to read! It’s like homework! The upside is that you read books you might not have chosen to read.

“I’ve also committed the egregious error of over volunteering at the community level. While my term on the City of Medford Budget Committee has expired, I still serve on two city commissions, the Medford Urban Renewal Agency and the Community Services Development Commission. That and Rotary serving on four committees, one of which I chair. I continue to be active in the American Association of University Women and am working on planning the annual Women’s Leadership Conference this May in Ashland.

“Every year my daughter and I make it a point to spend Thanksgiving week together. Last year I visited her in New York, and as always, it was memorable. There is no place like New York at Thanksgiving. We had tickets to the Tonight Show with Stephen Colbert but the fun part was being able to see the floats up close on Wednesday night prior to the parade. But the best part was that my granddaughter flew out from Chicago to spend the week with us. My grandson opted to remain in Chicago to spend Thanksgiving with his aunt and girlfriend. This year my daughter and I hope to travel to Iceland. A friend and I were planning to travel to the Diocletian Coast to visit Croatia and perhaps Serbia this spring but now what with what is happening in Ukraine, we will postpone until next year. It would be interesting to see where Game of Thrones was filmed. Hey, who knows how much longer I’ll be able to travel? In between, I walk my two standard poodles and take classes at the athletic club. And that’s about it for me.”

I hope you can all make it to our Golden R Reunion celebration at Alumni Weekend this summer, which will be June 23-26, 2022. It is so good to see each other. Hopefully, we’ll celebrate with masks off!

Stay well, and please stay in touch.

H: (541) 778-6188 / C: (408) 309-1225
Your 1961 Class Agent