1961 Spring ’23 Class Letter

Greetings, Classmates:

Trust, you had an enjoyable summer with family or friends and a special holiday season.


BILL PYE ’61: “I’m retired from more than 30 years of Management Consulting and banking. I live on one of Minnesota’s 10,000 lakes just west of the Twin Cities.

I get to campus a half dozen times a year working with our Sigma Chi Chapter which includes working with some of the Administration folks and Joe Hatcher, Chair of the Psychology Department.

I regularly hear from DAN BEHRING ’62, GORDY ENK ’62 and HOWIE MYERS ’61 who also are involved in supporting the chapter.

Been blessed with seven grandchildren all around the Minneapolis area. The two oldest graduated from high school and we just took them, and our 15 year old granddaughter, on a trip across Norway and then on to Cinque Terre in Italy.

We spend five weeks each winter on an island off Belize which tempers our Minnesota winters a bit. My health is good which allows us to travel and spend a lot of time in activities with our grandkids.”

TIM BURR ’61: “I recently learned that AKI TOMITA ’61 passed away–last month, I think. AKI was only at Ripon for his freshman year. He attended several schools before finally getting his B.S, and had a very successful life and career, and visited the U.S. several times–the last being a few years ago when he asked me to escort him and his wife to the Amish enclave west of Ripon (Amish? Who knew?). It was a memorable afternoon, and he was a memorable person. He always thanked me by sending boxes of Japanese wafers/crackers (which I didn’t really care, for but didn’t have the heart to tell him). He’s survived by his wife and kids. R.I.P.”

AKIRA “AKI” TOMITA ’61 of Kawasaki Shi city, Japan, died Oct. 22, 2022. He received a degree in business administration from Greenville College. He worked for 10 years in the Tokyo office of Chemical Construction Corp, New York, as the general office manager. He then returned to his hometown near Kanazawa Shi city. He worked for one of the major local home builders until his retirement. He then worked part time building a resort facility on Guam, U.S.A. Survivors include his wife, Tomoko Tanaka Tomita; and two children.

EVANN MALTBY BALMES ’61: “As we age, we face so many losses, the use of our perfect joints, driving at night, wearing the cute shoes no longer, and sadly, losing our peers. So, we try very hard to keep those Ripon relationships, now over 60 years old. MARA LATSONS WARREN ’61, MARY BACHUS MILLER ’61, KAREN SCHNEIDER CENTER ’61, and EVANN MALTBY BALMES ’61, have such fun recalling those Ripon College days.  We are not ready to lose those memories so we gather when we can, hoping to meet in Colorado this summer to share again and laugh a lot!  Had a wonderful phone visit with JANE STALLARD LORTON ’60. She sounds and laughs the same and what fun it is talking with a Duffie girl a bit older than I am!”

As for me (BARBARA KRIEPS LASKIN ’61): “Every Thanksgiving, my daughter, Amy, and I do something special for that week. We try to celebrate being together and having an adventure. This past Thanksgiving, we went to Iceland. It was a remarkable experience. Iceland is unique and is truly the land of fire and ice. We did the Golden Circle tour of the island to see the glaciers, lagoons, hot springs, geysers, and lakes. And those adorable wild horses that were imported from Mongolia years ago. At first, I wondered why they were clustered next to the fence interacting with the tourists. Well, the visitors were feeding them ‘horse candy’! But perhaps the highlight of the trip was staying in the Bubble Hotel, which is literally a transparent plastic tent in the middle of the forest so that you can see the northern lights. The spectacular sight more than made up for the spartan accommodations.”

Alumni Weekend is coming up quickly! This year, it is June 22-25, 2023. Below you can find information if you are planning to attend!

The College is three hours north of Chicago, and served by airports in Milwaukee (a two-hour drive from Ripon), Madison (a 1.5 hour drive), and Appleton (a 45 minute drive). Milwaukee offers the most frequent service. From the Milwaukee, Madison, Chicago and Appleton airports guests may choose to rent a car. Ripon is served by taxi to and from the Appleton airport.

Room Blocks:
Heidel House (Green Lake) – Book online at choicehotels.com/reservations/groups/HQ83E1
Cobblestone Suites (Ripon) – Book by calling 920.748.5500

Hope to hear from more of you next time.  And, again, my apologies to BILL PYE ’61 for overlooking his note last time. Stay well and stay in touch.


Barbara ’61

P.S. There will be a special giving event in conjunction with inauguration weekend, April 20-23, to celebrate Ripon’s 14th President, Victoria N. Folse, and the exciting momentum happening within our campus community. This event will be an extension of the #OneDayRally brand and experience. Stay tuned for more information. We look forward to your participation!