1971: Summer 2015

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Mary McMunigal Burland

Mindy Laighton Wilcox

After a long, cold winter here in Pennsylvania, it is encouraging to write this column for the summer edition of the Hood Magazine. Thanks to those classmates who chose to send unsolicited news. It was wonderful to hear from you!  Judy Ashway is living in the Boston area and is working part-time as a therapist with children, adolescents and their parents. Judy sees Maylun Buck-Lew several times a year and hears from her former roomie Janet Schultheis Plitt at Christmas. Judy is in the process of adjusting to life as a single woman as she is going through the process of a “collaborative divorce.” Debbi Hamlin Hitchings shared news of a March mini-reunion in Tucson, Ariz., hosted by Jean East who is on sabbatical from the Dept. of Sociology at the Univ. of Denver and is writing a book on leadership. Debbi is director of congregational care at the Congregational Church in Camden, Maine. Classmates Edie Fletcher Flynn, who is retired, from Rhode Island, Laura Tonkel Romesburg, retired Air Force historian, from Ohio, Helen Pierce Whitley, ESL teacher, from Florida, and soon to be retired Susan Fuller from Denver were present to celebrate 48-years of friendship with great food, fine wine, tasty margaritas, explorations of the Sonoran Desert and lots of conversation and laughter. Laura, ever the seamstress, presented everyone with beautiful, quilted wall hangings to commemorate their reunion. Wendy Scott McDonald and Marsha Bissell ’72 were unable to make the journey and were greatly missed. Last summer, Darcy Bevelacqua and her husband Charlie Becraft enjoyed a two-week Alaskan vacation. The first week was spent in Anchorage and Denali where they luckily were able to see all the animals and the Denali Mountain, while they spent the second week on a cruise down the inland waterway.  The rest of their summer was spent at their lake house in upstate New York where they were visited by Nia Lourekas and her husband Mark Kaplan. Darcy is still running her own business focused on customer experience consulting for large firms such as AARP and Ritz-Carlton, and is still running five-miles-a-day! She spent the winter in Bradenton, Fla., where she welcomed her Hood roommate Pamela Russell Bell who is living and working in Austin, Texas. After working 44 years in retail, Diane Miller Jackson retired this past February. Except for vacations, she only took off nine months after her daughter was born. Impressive! Diane and husband Drew plan to sell their home in the Philadelphia area and are building their retirement home in Surry, Maine. Their daughter Jennie was being married May 2015. After celebrating my “Medicare Birthday” in December, I guess that I am now officially old! I’m not exactly sure how this has happened so quickly, as I still feel quite young, but the numbers do not lie! I celebrated my 65th in Kiawah Island, S.C., and had a lovely week there with Bill, my younger son Brendan and his fiancee Kristina who both ran in the Kiawah Half Marathon. We are looking forward to their wedding sometime next year, but first are anxiously awaiting the birth of our older son Patrick and wife Kate’s second daughter this summer. Finally, next summer, our class will have our 45th reunion. Those of us who have attended reunion have always had wonderful times. The only things missing were so many of our classmates who we would love to see. So, if you have never attended a reunion or have not been to one recently, please make plans to join us in Frederick in June 2016. I always come home feeling so very impressed by the wonderful women of the Class of 1971!!! Mary Barton Freeman died May 11, 2015 while traveling on the Isle of Wight. The cause of death was complications from cancer which she had battled since 2012. She is survived by her husband of 43 years, Varel; children and their spouses: Thomas (Katie), William (Beth), Joanna and by her sister Elizabeth Barton.

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