1977 – Fall ’20 Class Letter


153 Northbreeze Dr, Appleton, WI 54911-1224

920-730-9515 / [email protected]

Dear Classmates,

The coronavirus pandemic has made this year to be unlike any other any of us has experienced, and it is still without an end in sight. At the very least it has been scary, expensive, and disruptive.

You all know that in-person classes were stopped mid-semester at Ripon College and in most other schools around the world. You may also be aware that Ripon College is planning to open for traditional on-campus in-person learning this fall, with classes beginning August 17. But the college website says, “All college-sponsored events have been postponed until further notice or until virtual arrangements can be made.”  We all hope this is safe and productive, but we also know it is a vastly reduced experience than what we all had while we were students.

While watching our own personal trips and vacations go down the drain, I also watched as the annual Alumni Weekend was canceled in June. Since I live an hour away in Appleton, I’ve often been able to attend, and I long for that opportunity someday in the future. In lieu of an actual Alumni Weekend experience, the College put together a video, using snapshots and videos from previous weekends. I am again sharing a picture of those of us who attended the 2019 Alumni Weekend. 


Thank you to all of you who helped with Ripon’s #OneDayRally fundraiser on April 29.  Some of you were prepared for it, and some of you saw the frenzy of online activity.  MARYJO MACSWAIN ’77 again offered a matching pledge encouraging classmates to participate. #OneDayRally came to a close after 18 hours and 51 minutes with a record $1,918,598 was raised for the Ripon Fund and the new Emergency Assistance Fund, which is supporting the unanticipated needs of our students because of COVID-19. There were a record 2,015 donors, 108% of the goal. This was an additional 569 donors over #OneDayRally 2019.

With help from MARYJO MACSWAIN ’77 we have a Facebook page for our class. 


Please visit it, then Like or Follow so that your news feed will include items about your classmates.  Please also leave a posting about yourself.

I have news from one classmate:

BIRGIT ABROMAITIS RETSON ’77 of Williamsburg, Virginia, writes, “Took my three young adult children on a cruise to Italian and Greek Islands last fall! It was a wonderful way to enjoy our family and surroundings to the fullest!”

I’ll add to BIRGIT’S note that she had some good timing, traveling before the world changed. I’m so glad that I did some traveling in 2017 to France and England, when times were still normal (and before Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris burned).

My Ripon family grew slightly in June when my daughter, JENNIFER RESCHKE ’14 married fellow Ripon classmate MARK YOCIUS ’14. Thanks to the pandemic it was a small and simple wedding, but one attended by several other young Ripon alums.

Please send news about yourself either to the College or to me to be shared in our next class letter. We’d love to hear from you.

Remember that your financial help is very important to help keep Ripon a competitive and quality institution. Your donations are important every year. Your participation is very important.

Always for Ripon,