Hello Class of 1983!
It has been quite the winter here on the East coast with snow falling everywhere, but as I write this column, spring is but a few weeks away. Thank you to those who shared their news with me. Please feel free to send your news to me or to Hood directly for publication in our column. Let me get right to the news. Shelley Wagar Sabo writes, “My work continues to keep me very busy and I love my job. Was able to spend a week in Puerto Rico in January for work and enjoyed the break from winter. My daughter Courtney graduates from the community college in Northern Virginia this May and will move to South Carolina this summer as she begins her last two years at Coastal Carolina University this fall. That is it for now. Looking forward to summer and the Cape and some camping in the Adirondacks.” I also heard from Ann Kitson. Her daughter, Kate, continues her studies at Hood College and her son Tucker continues to serve in the Navy (thank you Tucker). Ann and her husband Steve relocated to western Massachusetts where Ann is now working for Baystate Children’s Specialty Center. Pam Stamey Inskeep writes, “It has been ages since I wrote a note for class news, so here goes. On 8/8/08 at 8:00 p.m., I married John Allen (“Johnny”) Inskeep and became stepmom to Jessica Sarah Inskeep. My husband used to work as a cable installer in Manhattan in New York, and in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania. Twenty-one years ago, he suffered a back injury on the job and was declared disabled. He can walk and do light lifting, but he cannot sit or stand or drive for long periods of time, and he is always in pain. But, my husband deals with it all very well; he has good days and bad days. He has a wonderful sense of humor, and we laugh a lot and just enjoy life one day at a time. Our daughter, Jess, graduated from the University of Delaware in May 2008 with a B.A. in History, a minor in East Asian Studies, and a minor in Disability Studies. After graduation, she joined AmeriCorps’ Teach for America (TFA) program and was invited to teach at Seaford Sr. High School in Seaford, Delaware. She is doing such a fantastic job there that the school’s administrator asked her to be the lead teacher in the special education department, and she is a homeroom leader for TFA. She is also still participating in her sorority, Delta Gamma, by being an advisor to the DG chapter at Salisbury College in Salisbury, Maryland. In addition, she earned her teaching certificate while teaching at Seaford Sr. High School and is currently working towards getting her master’s degree at the Georgetown, Delaware, UD campus. She enjoys teaching, but her ultimate goal is to work in special education policy administration. Jess has worked very hard to get this far on her career path, and we are very proud of her accomplishments. Her heart and mind are in the right place; she is determined to make a difference in her students’ lives by obtaining the educational resources they need to succeed in school and in their community. As for me, I have been working part-time for New Castle County, Delaware, as a Community Service Worker II – Library Aide – at the Bear Library since June 2013. I provide customer service to patrons at the Circulation Desk and work on back-office library tasks. I love working at the library, helping patrons and promoting community events, including literacy programs for adults and children. I also participate in two book clubs: Bear Library Book Group and a ladies’ social book club. It’s great connecting with other book lovers. In addition, I am self-employed, part-time, as a private tutor primarily for elementary (K-6) subjects, especially English language arts, reading, writing, and math. I enjoy helping students increase their understanding of the subjects they are learning in school. In my spare time, have also been trying to start a crafts business. Perhaps, I will have more time to devote to that enterprise in 2015.That’s my life in a nutshell – helping kids, helping adults, and helping family. Once in a while, I take time out for myself, reading, watching TV, and dreaming of things I want to do and places I want to go. My husband and I like to go out to dinner and go to the movies. We are such a good match for each other. It seems as if we just got married, when, in reality, we will be celebrating our seventh anniversary of marriage in August 2015. Boy, how time flies!” Ruth Ravitz Smith shared the following news, “This is old news but in Feb 2014, the Memorial girls – Gretchen, Sarah, Cindy, Suzanne and I got together in Frederick for a mini reunion. It was the first time we had all been together since graduation. We had so much fun; we are doing it again in March. Professionally, I just launched my own business – RRSmith Global Solutions, providing government affairs and strategic engagement services to clients.” Valerie Kaufmann writes, “I have never sent in anything to be included in a newsletter before but here goes: I am living in Hagerstown, MD with my husband of almost 40 years. After a career of teaching in Washington County, MD I worked for nine years at the MD State Department of Education as the Branch Chief of Early Learning, Division of Early Childhood Development. For the last three years I have worked as Principal at Funkstown School for Early Childhood Education in Hagerstown. It’s a great little school serving prekindergarten and kindergarten students and the perfect location to finish out my career in early childhood education.” Trish Wilson shared that she “…lives on the Massachusetts coast with her husband, son, and three cats. She has written numerous short stories for dark fiction, horror, and erotica anthologies under the pen names Elizabeth Black and E. A. Black. Her first family saga/thriller novel “Secrets and Lies” will be released by Eldritch Press in 2015. She will publish it as Elizabeth Black.” As for me, your class reporter, my life in Richmond is much calmer these days. Over the last year, my wife, Carol daughter, Emily and I were involved in a nationally covered lawsuit to bring marriage equality to the Commonwealth of Virginia. Having the support of nationally renowned lawyers, David Boies and Ted Olson was beyond words amazing. After a year of winning two important court cases, many press interviews and overall craziness, a decision came down. On October 6, 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States declined to review our case (along with six other cases). At that moment marriage equality became the law of the land in Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina. It was an exciting day for our family. That day, Carol and I renewed our vows on the steps of the John Marshall Court House in Richmond with Virginia’s Attorney General, Mark Herring. In mid- February, we celebrated our thirtieth anniversary with nearly seventy close family and friends. We are so happy and honored to have been a part of changing the law of the land. Suzanne Johnson writes, “Gretchen Smith Coviello, Cyndy Stearns Price, Sarah Hoover Dietrich, and Ruth Ravitz Smith, our Class of 1983 Memorial Hall group, and I all met last February 2014 in Frederick for the first time as a group since 1983. It was such a joyful and amazing weekend, we decided we’re going to do whatever we can to make it an annual event. Our next get together is a slumber party weekend here at my home in Moorestown, NJ and we can’t wait! We’re excited that Angie Sievers Beachley ’84 is going to be join us too!”
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