1970–Fall ’18 Class Letter


Susan Hecht Gebhardt

815-464-5761 / 815-260-1656 / [email protected]

Hello again to the Class of 1970,

I hope you are enjoying a great summer with your families and friends. BILL GEBHARDT ’69, and I had a wonderful time in Hawaii. We enjoyed beautiful weather, sightseeing, a little golf, and just missed the flooding in Kauai and eruption of Kilauea on the big island. We stopped in Napa, California on the return trip for more sightseeing and wine tasting. We were home long enough to receive the wine we had purchased and repack before traveling to Florida to begin the remodeling of the condo we bought in Fort Pierce. Next winter it should be ready for guests in case any of you are in the area. This summer has been busy with our little granddaughters, golfing, and working on the family cottage in Wisconsin.

Class Notes:

In March, JOAN REINKE ZIEGLER ’70 emailed some of the AXO’s of the class of ’70 with a great suggestion. She wrote, “This is the year we all turn 70, a good time to plan a 1 or 2 day outing at a resort to celebrate our friendships.” She suggested June and offered several good places. After much emailing over several months, ten of us met at The Abbey on Geneva Lake, Wisconsin. Those attending were: CHRIS LYDON JONES ’70 (AZ), COLLEEN BURR KAMIN ’70 (IL), CONNIE JAYE HARRIS ’70 (IL), MARY GEIGER VAN DYKE ’70 (MN), CASSY BROOKS CURTRIGHT ’70 (AZ), LINDA WOHLSCHLAGER LARSON ’70 (SC), BEV RICE TRIER ’71 (AZ), SARAH RANDAHL HARMON ’71 (WI), plus Joan (WI) and myself (IL).  Cassy commented, “We had a fabulous time eating, drinking, catching up on children, grandchildren, spouses, retirement, etc.” Connie added, “It was the perfect 3 day un-weekend…great lodging, delicious food and wine and wine and wine as well as an indoor track to our rooms! We have so many good Ripon memories but finding out what everyone is up to now was just as much fun.” Mary Lynn remarked, “Isn’t it amazing how those few years (I left mid junior year!) could form such long lasting friendships.” All of us send many thanks to Joan for this wonderful idea and for organizing everything.

COLLEEN BURR KAMEN ’70 of Chicago, Illinois, writes, “What an unbelievable stroke of luck that I showed up at the First Immanuel Lutheran Church in Chicago in August 2017. As I was reading down the church bulletin, a name stood out. GEORGE MANNING ’70 is the Music Director of the church. Yep, George Manning…class of 1970. I introduced myself and George broke out into an AXO song (that I couldn’t possibly have remembered). George has become a treasured friend. Ripon comes back to us in the most miraculous and joyful ways.”

DAVID BUHNER ’70 of Valparaiso, Indiana, writes,  “Like many of our classmates, I finally decided to retire and start travelling. Retiring at the end of February, we spent two weeks on the beaches of Punta Cana in April and will do 12 days on a Viking River Cruise in June. I also finished the wine cellar in our new house, so if you or our classmates ever plan to come to Valparaiso, Indiana, give a holler and we’ll share a bottle (or two) of wine.”

SHERYL SWENNES SCARLETT ’70, of Glenshaw, Pennsylvania writes: “I didn’t weigh in before on the choice of a reunion venue, so I thought I would now. I actually think the college does a good job on the dinner, and it’s nice to be on campus to get together with people from other classes afterward.”

LINDA TRACY FONDA ’70, of Freeport, Illinois shares some sad news with us: “DAVID FONDA ’70 died February 21, 2018. He is survived by his wife, LINDA TRACY FONDA ’70, two children and two grandchildren.” She adds this quote from Russell Kirsch: “Nothing is withheld from us what we have conceived to do.”

Thank you all for sharing a bit of your news with us. As we approach our 50th reunion we have a lot for which to be thankful, and we are also aware how important it is to make every minute count. Please continue to keep in touch with your Ripon friends and to send me your news and reunion suggestions. Also, please send Ripon any changes in addresses and emails.