1963 – Fall ’20 Class Letter


313-550-5094 / [email protected]

Hi Classmates!

I hope you all are surviving and even thriving in these troubled times. I also hope that hearing from Ripon classmates brings back memories of much happier times. We were surely blessed compared to today’s students. 

No doubt there are graduates of Ripon’s chemistry program that are involved in developing a vaccine. We wish them God Speed!

Class Notes:

EDWARD L. “NED” CLAPP ’63 of Cockeysville, Maryland, died Aug. 24, 2019. At Ripon, he majored in history and was a member and officer of Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity. He taught in the northern Chicago suburbs for six years, then at his alma mater, Gilman School in Maryland, for almost 40 years, retiring in 2007. He taught ancient history, American history and world geography, and served as director of the summer school, assistant middle school head and dean of students. He enjoyed puns, gardening, reading, history, crossword puzzles, travel and listening to classical music.

VERNON CRONEN ’63 of Wilmington, North Carolina ([email protected]) writes, “Like most people, Myrna and I have been trying to lead virtual lives: Virtual dinners with our daughter’s family, virtual meetings with friends over virtual drinks, etc. Our cooking abilities have improved by necessity. I am trying to learn how to use new technologies for my hybrid classes next semester. My chairman and younger colleagues have been very helpful and tolerant. (Oh, right, all of my colleagues are younger colleagues — by much more than a decade.) I hope all you stay well.”

ARTHUR SCHARFF ’63 of St. Louis, Missouri ([email protected]) writes, 

“With all the experiences we have had in our lives (4,500+ Years – WOW), I encourage each of you to share some of your wisdom; Life lessons learned. You have it. Please share.  

We can set a new class letter standard for the 57 other graduating classes by sharing our truths, and our wisdom with a bit of humor thrown in. That adds learning and sharing to the usual name, rank, and serial number. 

If not now, when? If not you, whom?

Food for thought, gathered from members of my Presidents Councils: www.presidentscouncilstl.com

  1. Wise financial counsel for grandchildren entering the adult world: Live on 80% of your income, save 10% for a rainy day and invest 10% in retirement and never touch it until retirement.
    1. Required reading for children and grandchildren: Common Sense by John Bogle; As a Man Thinketh by James Allen; A Message to Garcia by Elbert Hubbard; The Richest Man in Babylon by George Clason.
  2. Talk less, smile more (find the mask on Amazon).
  3. Listen, observe and do not judge. If all else fails, give away Dunkin donuts. 
  4. COVID dilemma: Even when I didn’t know what I was doing, at least I had a plan. Now I don’t even have a plan.
  5. Everyone’s crystal ball is foggy.
  6. “Facilitating other people’s process is like being a midwife. When the baby is born, the mother will rightly say “we did it ourselves”’~ From The Tao of Leadership by John Heider.”

(Note:  The Winter 2019 issue of the Ripon Magazine included the article “What is the greatest life lesson you took away from your professors at Ripon College?” The article included answers from twenty alumni from various classes. In my request for input for the Spring 2021 letter, I will ask classmates their Life Lessons Learned Since Ripon. I look forward to your wisdom.)”

DAN SCHULTZ ’63 of Silver Spring, Maryland ([email protected]) writes,

“Peg and I just celebrated our 21st wedding anniversary on August 8 by having a happy hour pontoon ride on Lake Ripley, Wisconsin, where we are during the summer months, followed by champaign and steak tartar. We will remain here at our lovely lake until mid-September, then back to our Maryland home for the fall and then onto Florida for January-May. We are very lucky to have each other and have the places we do to hunker down during these crazy times and we and our family and core friends have all remained safe from the COVID virus.  

Golf is part of our life in each place and we enjoy our couple outings as much as we do playing with the gals and guys. I swim and bike, Peg walks and works out, we binge on t.v. programs, and have a picture puzzle going most of the time. We have virtually no social life other than Zoom gatherings. Our kids and grandchildren visits were all canceled here at the lake as well as in the spring in Florida so we have had each other and that’s about it. We are hoping for a regime change in November and a vaccine by the end of the year!

Three more years till our 60th reunion and the mortality tables say we all have a good chance of making it so see you then if not before!” 

LYNN SIEBEL SUNDELIUS ’63 of Kalispell, Montana ([email protected]) writes, “My traveling companion and I returned from a trip to New Zealand and Australia just as the pandemic was leaving S.E. Asia. I had to put down my old dog the month before we left and after two weeks home looking at the walls, I acquired my “COVID pup.” I question the wisdom of someone in our age bracket taking on a labrador puppy, but our forced proximity has made him one of the best-trained dogs on the lake. My weekly volunteer job with CASA has gone on without interruption, as the office is large and the staff is rotating days to accomplish effortless social distancing.” 

ROGER WHEELER ’63 of Southbury, Connecticut ([email protected]) writes, “I have been exercising by swimming at a lovely small lake in Bethlehem, Connecticut. I swim all over the lake. During the pandemic, I have gotten to know Zoom because I go to meetings that use it. It’s all right, but I miss seeing the actual people. Also, the Episcopal church I attend uses Facebook and films in the palace of Sunday services for people at home, and they plan to keep doing this for the entire year. I am so happy that Ripon College is starting its new year with regular in-school classes. So many colleges and universities are starting their school year online. I want to wish you all the very best and stay healthy.”   

WAYNE WOLFGRAM ’63 of Grosse Pointe, Michigan ([email protected]) writes, “Nancy and I Facetime daily with our two granddaughters (10 & 7) who live in Grand Rapids, MI. I’m biking every day (nothing strenuous) and trying to clear out boxes of “stuff” we’ve collected over the years. I’ve even found and discarded the pay stubs from my 1963-1965 army days!”

Stay safe and pray for a vaccine!