1969 – Fall ’19 Class Letter

Scott A. Nyquist

239-732-0523 / 630-632-1619 / [email protected]


Hello Class of ’69! It’s July 3, just four days after our 50-Year Class Reunion, and I am still feeling that wonderful feeling I felt at the party. We had about 50 classmates and about 25 spouses at the event on Saturday, June 29. It was held in Great Hall and the College had it set up and decorated beautifully. It looked like a wedding reception in the ballroom of a Ritz Carlton Hotel.

The party started at 6 p.m. with a cocktail hour, then the class photo was taken on the steps of Harwood Memorial Union at 6:30 p.m. All classmates in attendance were awarded a certificate of induction into the Golden R Club (for 50 years as an alum) as well as a Golden R pin. The certificates and pins were presented by KIMBERLY LARSON ’08, president of the Alumni Association, and Ed Wingenbach, acting president of Ripon College. The Rev. JOHN BILLINSKY ’69 gave the invocation before dinner. Professor of English Emeritus Doug Northrop and Professor of Philosophy Emeritus Robert “Spud” Hannaford were our honored guests at the party. The food was delicious and the renewal of friendships even better.

After dinner, JANE WIESER BAKER ’69 had us howling with laughter as she read passages from (and made comments on) the Ripon College Student Handbook sent to us before we started in August 1965. Following that, several classmates shared Ripon stories, some funny, some poignant. The evening concluded with a 22-minute video presentation I put together about life in the ’60s, all set to the music of that era. It included a section called Classmates: Then and Now, where I paired recent photos of classmates who could not attend the reunion with their yearbook or Green List picture. (Everyone looked EXACTLY the same☺) The presentation concluded with a tribute to those class members who’ve passed away. It was an awesome party.

The next morning, our class hosted the Service of Remembrance, held every year to recognize those alumni who are no longer with us. BOBBI SUESS ANDERS ’69, FRANK ANDERS ’69, ALICE HALL HAYES ’69, PHIL MCCULLOUGH ’69, SCOTT NYQUIST ’69 and JOHN BILLINSKY ’69 were presenters at the service. Professor of Religion Brian Smith gave the invocation and Doug Northrop was a speaker. The entire service was orchestrated by VINCE AYE ’69. (Thank you, Vince.)

There were lots of activities over Alumni Weekend, including reunions of Beta Sigma Pi and Delta Upsilon, which those two groups organized. The Beta Sigs met for a brat fry on Thursday night then held an official reunion on Friday night at a local bar and grill so they could enjoy a traditional Wisconsin Friday night fish fry. The DU’s organized a boat ride on Green Lake as well as a dinner at a local restaurant. Several Kappa Delta’s held an informal “mini reunion” on Friday night.

Finally, I am proud to announce our class won the trophies for Largest Percentage of the Class at Alumni Weekend (30%), the Largest Percentage of the Class Contributing to the Ripon Fund (52%) and Largest Amount of Money Contributed to the Ripon Fund (more than $255,000). I want to thank all of you who gave to the College this past year.

I also want to thank the reunion committee for all their hard work to make the reunion a success: FRANK ANDERS ’69, BOBBI SUESS ANDERS ’69, VINCE AYE ’69, NANCY GONIA BAJOREK ’69, ALICE HALL HAYES ’69, SAM JOHNSON ’69, BILL JORDAN ’69, DEBBIE HAMELE KUKLA ’69, TOM MACE ’69, PHIL MCCULLOUGH ’69, DON PARK ’69, CHIP RETSON ’69, STEVEN RUOFF ’69, BOB “OTTO” WACHHOLTZ ’69 and JOHN WOLFE ’69.

MARK BAUER ’69 of Pewaukee, Wisconsin: “I truly enjoyed the reunion evening of June 29. That evening itself was highlighted not only by the wonderfully organized reminiscent and nostalgic video to popular late ’60s and early ’70s music, but the opportunity throughout the evening to reconnect with classmates, many of whom I had had little contact during the years at Ripon College. Yet it was amazing how many of those knew me or things about me. I have missed many reunions and now deeply wish I had attended many more. The event evoked some sadness as we are reminded how long it has been since those college years. On the other hand, we are so fortunate to be present at such an occasion in the company of people who can celebrate common experience ‘aus jenem, kurzen Schnitte des unseren Lebens’ (from that short slice of our lives).”

TERRY BROWN ’69 of Richmond, Virginia: “This is the sixth reunion that I have attended, having started with the 25th (where I was told that I should have been at the 20th, because that was the one with everyone). I like talking with people about how things have changed from what they had planned. The first three times I had a very enjoyable conversations with JOHN BRENNAN ’69 of Temecula, California, but have not seen him since. I hope that he is well and is doing OK. Checked out the dorms while on campus.”

JOHN ERICH ’69 of Scottsdale, Arizona: “The reunion was a special experience to have dinner with Dr. Hannaford on Saturday and engage with him again in some lively and stimulating conversation! We are fortunate to have had many excellent professors during our time at Ripon.”

ALICE HALL HAYES ’69 of Washington, D.C.: “The Service of Remembrance was a moving way to create a lasting memory of our dear classmates — gone too soon. Thank you, VINCE AYE ’69, for designing the ingredients of the program for us. It was my heartfelt pleasure to be a part of it and spend time with you.”

Congratulations to our classmate WILLIAM C. JORDAN ’69 who received an honorary degree from Harvard University this year. Jordan is the Dayton-Stockton Professor of History at Princeton University, a medieval historian and the director of the Program in Medieval Studies, director of the Shelby Cullom Davis Center for Historical Studies and chair of the history department from 2008–2017 at Princeton.

SCOTT NYQUIST ’69 and CYNTHIA SANBORN NYQUIST ’69 of Naples, Florida: “Alumni Weekend was so much fun. We enjoyed the Beta Sig reunion, The Other Half concert, the class reunion on Saturday night, the Sunday morning Service of Remembrance and many other events. It was wonderful to see all of our 1969 classmates and also many other friends from classes before and after ours. By the time you read this, we will have traveled to Germany in August to see our daughter, son-in-law and granddaughter. Life in Naples, Florida, is wonderful.”

I am planning to obtain photos from all who attended the reunion and will compile them into a 50th Reunion album. I hope by the time you read this, that task is completed and you’ve already seen them. Anyone who wants a copy of the presentation shown at the reunion should email me a request for it and I will share it with you. It is a huge file so it will take time to download.

Remember to send Ripon College your new address if you move and to notify them of a new email address if you create one. Keep in touch. I love hearing from you guys.

Always for Ripon,