1. 1967; Summer 2017

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    Patricia “Pat” Rosner Kearns
    kearns.patricia@gmail.com

    Enjoyed seeing so many people this past reunion weekend! Congrats to co-chairs Sue Bracken and Ginny Price Bracken for an amazing job, and those who put the memory book and art show together! Will leave details to the Hood mag report of the reunion. Susan Wadia-Ells says her book, Busting Breast Cancer: Our Personal and Political Revolution…with four simple steps to stop breast cancer before it starts (Sept. 2017) is the first book on breast cancer prevention, based on the metabolic theory of cancer. Tom Seyfried, Boston College, has written the foreword. Susan blames editorial demands for missing the reunion but held one in New England this spring. Ginny Munson Hammell was at the reunion but the exciting news is: “FINALLY will reach grandmother status (spoiler alert – it’s a boy ) in July!!!, courtesy of daughter Hillary who does employment law (representing plaintiffs) of course in CA.” Ginny invites “y’all” to come visit her during the winter in Boca Raton. During her months in Alexandria, Ginny serves on the Board of Community Lodgings, a transitional housing program. Ginny hosted alums at the   amazing Trading Room she’s donated to Hood this weekend. French House roommates Judy Lehman Ballinger, and Cheryl Wray Kirk will perform at the reunion chapel service and participate in the art show with Kris Campbell Joyce.  Otherwise, “BJ and I journeyed in February to Cuba for my art/teaching. We were based in Havana at the Melia Cohiba next to the famous seawall, the Malacon”, known as the living room of that city. We journeyed with some basic medicines (such as aspirin) and art supplies for the people via Caritas Cubana, a Catholic relief organization in Boston for Cuba. After 31 years at Chilton Hospital in Pompton Plains, NJ as Director of Dietetics, Leilani (Lani) Chen Viney retired in 2011.  After retirement, she says “I was able to focus on my passion for ballroom dancing” and does so competitively, competing in a Blackpol, England open pro/am championships in May, finishing 3rd in her division. Lani writes: Son, Jonathan, and family live in Ithaca, NY where he has a medical practice, and daughter-in-law Marnie teaches at Cornell and doesn’t see enough of grandchildren, Liala, and Owen.  Lani serves on the Board of The Ruth Gottscho Kidney Foundation, sending children with kidney disease to summer camp where they are mainstreamed with all of the other children. The camp has a dialysis unit and full medical staff there to take care of the kids.  She writes, “I helped set up the meal program for the kidney kids for the Foundation while at Einstein in the Bronx in 1975. Who knew I would end up on their Board 37 years later.” Edie Ryll Mathews says she’s “been lucky:  my husband’s job with Delta brought us to Atlanta, Robert Shaw’s city.  Always loving choral music, I auditioned for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus and was accepted, singing for three years in the ’70’s, when my children were very small.  Then I worried about Mr. Shaw dying, so I auditioned in 1988 and got back into the chorus, where I’ve been ever since.  This chorus, although volunteer (unpaid), is very strict; we audition again every year.  The Atlanta Symphony has won numerous Grammy’s, including several for best choral performance.  I’ve really used my music major, teaching piano all this time, and doing 17 years of choral conducting, as well.  I’ve benefitted from Dr. Allen Bonde’s excellent teaching and even taught two sight singing classes à la Mr. William Sprigg!  We have three children, who all live in Atlanta.  One has just married this past October, so we are hoping for a grandchild down the road. Judy Lehman Ballinger, who – as noted above – performed with former classmates at the reunion,  mostly “spends time painting in my spacious home studio, selling scarves and other art at our art coop gallery, visiting our 9 grandkids, selectively responding to political outrage, and trying not to notice which part of my body doesn’t work as well as it used to. Reunion was fantastic.” Personally, grandson Ozzie arrived in May, joining Karolina, Max, Laszlo and Isaac.  My son, Neil, is headed for law school and daughter Johanna runs the Pavillion at the National Gallery in DC.  With Josh is in NoCal, Neil in KY, and Max in north Georgia I spend a lot of time going East-West to see the grandkids. Still working – running a nonprofit in Fairfax, VA helping the homeless get back on their feet.  Pat Rosner Kearns

  2. 1967: Summer 2016

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    1967

    Patricia Rosner Kearns
    kearns.patricia@gmail.com

    Lots of anniversaries, generational achievements, old marriages, new marriages, pursuit of new careers, travels, retirement/nonretirement and acquiring new skills reported by the class of 1967 as we move forward. Thanks to all who responded quickly to my panic email of pending news deadline. My apologies to those who are not on the email list. I actually had letters printed out and envelopes labeled but then the grandkids arrived for 10 days!  Patrosnerkearns. Joh Van Wert Thompson writes: Our first grandchild just graduated from high school and will be attending VA TECH in the fall. One of the highlights of our year was a trip to Cuba in March with Joan Peschel Young and husband Bob.  My husband, Michael, even brought back some Cuban cigars.  We all loved Cuba and found the people very friendly.  Old Havana is beautiful with its lovely squares and architecture.  Even saw lots of those 50′s cars! Love retirement!!!!  Hope to see lots of you at our 50th! Jane Rowell Arnold is still living in New York City and working as Director of Admissions at the Episcopal School. Married to Alex (47 years) Two married sons. Three grandchildren. Not interested in retirement! My biggest news, Cheryl Wray Kirk writes, is that my grandson had his Boy Scout Eagle Ceremony last month. He built a small stage with backdrop and wheelchair ramp for our church day care center as his project. This represents four generations of scouting in my family. My father was an Eagle Scout, I was a Girl Scout for 10 years and earned my 10 year pin, my youngest son Phil became an Eagle Scout, and now my grandson Lucas is an Eagle Scout. It meant so much to me. Attending the ceremony was Margo Emrich Trexler, mother of two Eagle Scouts and of course Hood buddy and family friend. She and her husband Bob drove 4 hours to attend. Judy Lehman Ballinger is enjoying life to the fullest. She writes: Why am I responding to an email before 8am?!!  Life remains way too busy, but the good stuff fills most of it: art, family of 9 grandkids (some requiring visits to Costa Rica and San Francisco), community, friends, 5th year of marriage, etc.  I’m not sure if local & national politics and my feeble attempts to address social issues (support for immigrants and our Islamic center) count in the “good stuff” category, but they do consume a lot of thought. As a member of the Hood Board of Trustees, Cynthia Newby is totally enjoying the Board, especially the opportunity to observe Andrea Chapdelaine‘s first year in office. Cynthia writes that President Chapdelaine is a terrific leader; “we are very lucky, I think, to have her in charge of the key efforts re credentialing, strategic planning, and enrollment. New senior staff – VP for Enrollment Management Bill Brown and new Provost Dr. Debbie Ricker–equally impressive.” Barbara Morgan Herron says it was really great to see and visit with Laurie Seymour Carlson when she came to Annapolis last October (2015). They met up at a Navy football game, and enjoyed cheering the Mids on to a win. The short film that I wrote and produced was finally finished, and I was invited to screen it at the 4th Annual Female Filmmakers Showcase in Baltimore this spring.  Funny thing. I wrote and produced it (which included everything from making costumes, lining up locations and hiring a caterer to trimming the leading man’s hair), but until then hadn’t thought of myself as a filmmaker. Beyond that, I’m trying yet again to learn to play the guitar. Wish me luck! (Keep on strumming, Barb.) Best regards from hot Georgia! Writes Gail Witham Pohl. Today is our 49th anniversary (June 17), so we’re thinking about how Doug and I met at a Shriner Hall mixer.  It had to be moved to Meyren because it was so well attended despite the umpteen inches of snow on the ground.  Good Hood memories! May Mumma Ohman wrote, “Hi Pat… here is a “flash from the past.” In the summer of 1966, I went to Chile as a Hood College Ambassador. It was a remarkable experience that changed the course of my life. (As a result of that time in Chile, I worked as a Pan Am stewardess for several years after graduation… wanting to see more of the world.)  The program was called The Experiment in International Living– and Susan Wadia-Ells talked me into applying and going. (She had gone to Iran the year before with the same program.) The group from 1966 just had a 50th reunion  We managed to get 5 of the 10 original group members together in Rochester, NY– skyed two others.  One of our Chilean families came– five of them! It was an amazing experience.  Something very good– from the Hood we knew 50 years ago– lives on. I hope as many of our classmates who can come, will come– to our 50th Reunion next year! Looking forward to that! Kris Campbell Joyce wrote, “We just returned from a 2 week safari in Tanzania which was wonderful with Thomson Travel which has a supportive role in that country. We were able to learn a lot about the land, animals, and people for my art and teaching and would definitely recommend that travel company.” From your class reporter. Not much from Northern Virginia. Working to help the homeless, taking a nonprofit to the next level – stuff I did 30 years ago! Updating my 100 year old house to get ready for sale –eventually. Trips to see grandkids in Sonoma and north Georgia take up most of my vacation time. A nice Caribbean beach with drinks with umbrellas sounds good right now. But I second Jane Arnold’s comment– retirement? Why? Pat Rosner Kearns

  3. 1967 Class news- Fall 2015

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    Patricia Rosner Kearns
    kearns.patricia@gmail.com

    Deborah Aldrich says she loves to read about our classmates is having a good year. “I’ve just lost some major weight and feel so much better. Walking every day in beautiful Newburyport. Coming up on the five year mark breast cancer free which is great. My daughter just went through a much more difficult bout with it. I added two wonderful kittens, Jethro and Findlay McDoodle, to my cat house.” Gail Witham Pohl writes: In May, we took a wonderful cruise on the Elbe River going from Berlin to Prague, and in July we took a driving trip through some of western U.S. and Canada (over 5000 miles). We’re still involved in square dancing and volunteer work, and I lead a Bible study group. The grandchild count is now 20. We are blessed! Johanna Van Wert Thompson say, turning 70 has been great fun with a family Caribbean cruise, there were 22 of us! Michael and are very active in Bruton Parish and working with the homeless. We even have a therapy dog and Michael takes him to a retirement home as well as a women’s shelter, to interact with the residents. One thing that has come to fruition in this 70th year is a scholarship at Hood which my two sisters, Punkie Van Wert VanAs ’69, and Susie Van Wert Loustaunau ’72, and I have established. The Virginia Munson Hammell ’67 Trading Room was constructed in Rosenstock Hall over the summer and is now open for classroom use. Kristina Campbell Joyce says she is planning to stay in their house in Massachusetts for life if possible, so did some work around the place this summer.
    “Our grandchildren Emma (13) and Ryan (11) are growing up fast. Our daughter teacher is in Boston so we see her often. BJ and I traveled to Iceland and Greenland for my art and teaching–Artic Art theme and that was an adventure. BJ is still in the family business for printing and drafting supplies and is happy working as I am too.” Ruth Conger Crespi writes from Rhodes, Greece, “at the end of a great two-week trip here. I return October 1….to the wonderful man in my life, who I dated in New York in 1968. Life can be so unpredictable, especially at 70! … I had a nice visit from Susan Starr Bracken, who was traveling back to North Carolina after a month in the northeast. While she was here we joined Cynthia Newby for lunch. I see my cousin Mary Starr Smith Adams (Class of ’54) from time to time at her home in Newtown, Connecticut. I look forward to visiting Kristin Muller (MS, Class of 2014) this fall at her studio in Dingman’s Ferry, Pennsylvania. (Kristin was a ceramic student of mine at SCSU many years ago.) … My daughter Louisa has been living and working in Tokyo for the past 14 years. Daughter Jodie is a chiropractor in Davidson, North Carolina. She and husband Mike Silver have two children. Son Scott, his wife Becky, and their three children live near me in West Hartford. They are both chemical engineers. Life is good.” Ann Goodhart and husband Jim Delgado just returned from a cruise in the Canadian Arctic and along the coast of Greenland. It was an amazing experience full of dramatic landscapes, cold and ice, warm local people and not much wildlife. Marjorie Mumma Ohman & family have been in their Arlington, Virginia house 37 years now. The only message she has is– I hope all who can, will come back to Hood for our 50th Reunion. The campus never looked lovelier, and there are so many new developments in the college curriculum. Sometimes I half-wish I could go back again and study something new there now. It is always a pleasure to return. Patricia Rosner Kearns Finally, your class reporter has transitioned once again. I spent the winter in Connecticut taking care of my mother who passed away in March at 90. In June, I joined a small local nonprofit as executive director near my home focused on getting homeless families out of shelters and into permanent homes earning a living wage. The kids continue to fly the coup. Oldest son Josh, moved to Sonoma County but still works in DC; youngest son Neil moved to Louisville, Kentucky, and son Max is still in North Georgia. Grandkid count is four, 3 boys and a girl and I don’t get to see them enough!

  4. 1967: Winter 2015

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    Patricia Rosner Kearns
    kearns.patricia@gmail.com

    The request for news for the online column came while I was away so my apologies to my classmates for the dirth of responses but will try to update as they roll in. Classmates on the Eastern half of the U.S., all the way down to the Florida border, have had their challenges on the weather front. It was almost spring and the weather kept on coming. I’m a Yankee and I love the snow but the older I get the less fun it is. It’s not like I get a snow day from school. The only parts of the U.S. that seemed to escape the extreme cold and snow were those places that make a living off snow. Two of my sons went skiing in Utah and said there was very little snow. I flew over the Rockies on my way to California and noticed a lot of bare spots on the range. But I digress… back to the issue of getting older, most of us are about to or have just hit the big 70. So what? Remember when Hood sent us a survey asking us how it felt to hit 50? Was that really 20 years ago? Where did it go? So, I have to ask: how does it feel to turn 70? Personally, I’m grateful and still waiting to see what I’ll be when I grow up. In reality, for many of us, we are facing retirement (of sorts), taking care of aging parents and making sure the next 20 years are all we can make them be. Debbie Smith Aldrich wrote from Snowmaggedon (Boston), “I just turned the magic 70-years-old in a blizzard. The snow around Boston has been monstrous. A sheet of plywood on my snow piles makes a garage for my car.” Meredith Cook Held wrote from Dallas, “I am still busy working in real estate in a hot market in the Dallas, Texas area. I love what I do and have been involved at the grassroots level keeping the area’s power company from putting 138 kV lines down the middle of Main Street, a developed area in Frisco, Texas, where I live. I got the Realtor Association at the state level (Texas Association of Realtors) involved and we have been awarded significant funds from the Issues Mobilization Political Action Committee to fight the power company’s proposal. Now the National Association of Realtors is watching what’s happening since this could happen elsewhere. It’s been really exciting to see what can happen when many people band together to make a difference. I’ve been given the Strike Force Award by TAR for my efforts. Also, last July my husband and our two daughters took a fabulous vacation to Hawaii. We spent eight days touring the Big Island, going to the Keck Observatory at the top of Mauna Kea, seeing the volcano Kilauea, shopping at the farmer’s market in Hilo and basically just having a great time! One of the best vacations ever!!”

  5. 1967: Summer 2014

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    1967
    Patricia Rosner Kearns

    kearns.patricia@gmail.com

    Angela Milea Mogin asks all members of the class of ’67 who remember Dr. Lewis’ classes if they would like to contribute to the Dr. Virginia E. Lewis Fund (institutional advancement department). Judy Lehman Ballinger is enjoying new places: activities in Berks Co., Pa., getting to a Hood basketball game and meeting local alums. “My silk painting business keeps growing, grandkids have increased to seven. My first-grade teacher asked us what we wanted to be when we grew up and I said, ‘artist.’ I celebrated my 69th birthday and I am finally grown up and an artist! I enjoyed seeing Ginny Munson Hammell last summer in Cape May. I planned my first trip to Europe since 2001 to an art workshop in southern France,” said Judy. Ginny Munson wrote, “I spent a wonderful few days in March-April with Pat Jones VanMater at her and Peter’s digs in Naples and trying to work my way down to Sicily. Daughter Hilary is an attorney, son Davis still not sure about his career.” Ginny lives in Alexandria, Va., and loves it. Not this winter! She is on the board of community lodgings, moving families to independence through transitional housing, job training and education programs. Marianne Kearney has moved to Woodstock to her beloved childhood summer place. The address is 167 Glenford Wittenberg Rd., Glenford, NY 12433; 845-6570-6224. Retired from education in St. Louis, she engages in local activism having joined the hydraulic gas fracking controversy in New York state . Company is always welcome so stop by or stay when traveling near the Hudson River Valley. Kris Campbell Joyce’s 96-year-old mother Ann passed peacefully in her sleep Feb. 8. “The French House triple roomies, Judy Lehman Ballinger, Cheryl Wray Kirk and I have all lost our mothers over the past couple years but have been sharing what an impact these losses are and I am grateful to have this comfort.” Beth Costello Hobby said, “life has had its ‘ups and downs’–the fall tornadoes missed the house but detritus landed all over the yard, a roll of wallpaper, a German hymnal and a bucket  of charcoal briquettes. Among others, I have been doing art work again. My sculpture, assemblages and collages may cause conventional residents to raise a few eyebrows. I lost my mom in February just short of her 91st birthday; not visiting her every week has been one of the ‘downs’. Partner Sandy’s health is not always the best, but I have been blessed, although I do not always recognize the lady in the mirror! The best ‘up’ I have is fabulous 8-month-old great-nephew who plays bongos and dances and goes by the name JAME-O. Who could ask for more in a kid?” Ann Goodhart enjoys retirement and spends time gardening, reading and cooking. She returned to the East Coast in 2010, retiring after 40 years as a librarian, the last 13 years as a library director in Vancouver. Husband James Delgado is director of maritime heritage for National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and an underwater archaeologist. They spend their travel time visiting new granddaughter in California. Cynthia Newby is semi-retired and writes for McGraw-Hill––more happily, working in the garden (garden conservancy tour planned for Sept. 7). Cyndi shared a great quote from Margaret Atwood, “In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt.” Gail Witham Pohl now has 18 grandchildren! Doug has retired but still teaches at the Univ. in Georgia. They enjoyed a trip to China in December and planned to head to Uganda this summer where their daughter’s family lives, including eight of their grandchildren whom they have not seen for two years. Gail keeps up with Dorrie Macgregor Spurlock who works full-time at the Univ. of Utah in Salt Lake City after teaching first grade. Elly MacHale Szum wrote from Bucolic, N.H. After Hood, Elly headed to Cambridge, Mass., where she met husband Richard and earned a master’s degree in education focused on the emotionally disturbed child. She taught troubled children until twins were born in 1982. She retired this past year as an elementary school librarian. Richard retired after globetrotting for Siemens. Daughter Carolyn works in Beijing, daughter Kate and husband are in Ithaca, N.Y., and her twin brother John is in the U.S. military in California. Elly and Richard enjoy their home and gardens. We are limited to 750 words; apologies for the edits and cuts. Full report is online at http://classnews.hood.edu.

  6. 1967: Winter 2014

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    Judy Ballinger reports, “The combination of being newly married to a man also recently retired from “regular” work and both of us getting increasingly busy with our own and friends’ art ventures has snowballed into a much too busy schedule. Our challenge now is figuring out how to slow down.”

    Kris Campbell Joyce was a guest artist in Hokkaido, Japan, for one week and then traveled the country with BJ for two more weeks. Kris had taken a semester course on the history of Japanese art at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts and was well prepared for some of the things she saw. That trip was the highlight of her year.

    Leilani Chen Viney retired 2 years ago, and is still a little in shock. “I’m still doing competitive ballroom dancing both with my husband and a professional teacher. It’s the closest thing I know of to the fountain of youth! I still keep in touch with my roommate, Gwenn Sterling Engle.”

    Beth Costello Hobby enjoys “gardening, s’mores in the backyard with friends, not riding that darned bike like I should, eating out, giving art restoration seminars, re-doing the church landscaping, having a glass of wine now and then with my buddies, and really enjoying most of what it is to be 68! And, I’ve been a Great Aunt now for 5 months – how fun is that?”

    Barb Cummings Stacks had very busy year. “We have just moved into a smaller house and are buried in boxes. Our new address: 42 North Main Street, Essex, CT. Telephone: 860-581-8770. There was interest in my book at our reunion and I am excited to share that it has been published. Childhood Roots, Raising Children Birth to Eight. Please email me for a copy.”

    Angela Milea Mogin has a new grandson, Jason Andrew, the second son of youngest daughter Lauren Mogin Giamonna, born last January 23.

    Ginny Munson Hammell moved twice in a year. “I have considered moving to Florida, but there are too many connections here…and now that I’m alone, I relish the (fast diminishing) friends and haunts here. Unhappily, no grandchildren yet.”

    After teaching high school students with mild to moderate learning disabilities for sixteen years, Kitty Nevin Rieske was more than ready to retire. “Now I am enjoying being able to stay up to watch the Red Sox win the World Series and then sleep in the next morning! We can now travel on non-school vacation weeks and stay for more than a week.”

    Jeanne Perkins Hofferkamp and Steve are expecting their third grandchild in December. They took a great road trip to Arizona and visited Grand Canyon and are still enjoying retirement.

    Laurie Seymour Carlson spent the first half of the year recovering from a labyrinthectomy. “Since I live just a five-minute walk from my daughter & granddaughter, they are a big part of my life. I love it and feel truly blessed!” Her son and his family are also nearby.

    Debbie Smith Aldrich has been free of breast cancer for three years. “Our library and my church provide me with a lot of pleasure.” Her children are both nearby, two grandsons are in college with one more to go, and Debbie has four great-grandchildren through a step-daughter.

    Johanna Van Wert Thompson and Michael and both “retired” from part-time jobs this year and have very full days attending grandchild functions, traveling, and taking classes through William and Mary. “Fall is a wonderful time to visit Williamsburg and I would love to hear from anyone whose journeys bring them to this section of Virginia.”

    Gail Witham Pohl and Doug had a memorable 2013, with trips to Italy and China, and a surprise quadruple bypass for Doug in August. One week after Doug’s surgery, they were in Pennsylvania for Gail’s 50th high school reunion. “The doc made me promise to drive and to make very frequent stops!”

    Barb Wood Spellman had a busy year. “My husband retired in August of 2012 so there has been more time for travel. In October we added two granddaughters to our family. That brings us to seven grandchildren and four of them are girls — quite a change for someone who had four sons.”

    I, Barbara Morgan Herron, retired at the end of June and started helping Craig with his film and video work. A highlight was working with actor Eric Roberts. I’m also retiring as Class Reporter. It’s been fun, but it’s time to move on.

  7. 1967: Winter 2013

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    Barbara Morgan Herron here. Since the deadline for class news was between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, I asked classmates what they are thankful for in 2012 and what they are looking forward to in 2013. Kristina Campbell Joyce is thankful for being blessed with achievements, family and dear friends. “I know from personal and my friends’ experiences, the impact of losing a parent, spouse, sibling, grandmother, aunt, friend, leader and so on. Since the negative in life does occur, I am thankful for the positive paths we are forming to deal with those so we might have a peaceful, healthy earth from the grassroots up.”

    Babs Cummings Stacks is especially thankful for close relationships. “Returning to Hood in June reminded me once again that lifelong roots were planted 45 years ago. The friendships, the values have remained. I am hopeful that such strength will continue to bond us!” She recently had dinner with Linda Carlson. Susan Wadia-Ells, founding director of the nonprofit National Breast Cancer Prevention Project, just published Birth Control Drugs: Learn the Terrible Truth, volume one of the Busting Breast Cancer: 7 Simple Steps e-book series. The series focuses on seven lifestyle habits that can help prevent this terrible disease. Check it out at amazon.com. Sue is based in Manchester, Mass. Nancy Esau Jeschke has much for which to be thankful, having had heart bypass surgery and a cancerous tumor removed from her tongue. “I taught for 40 years and had a sign that read ‘attitude is the paintbrush that colors the mind.’ I truly believe that how we view what happens to us in life can make our lives positive or not. I have always preferred the positive.”

    Cynthia Newby cannot forget what happened during our first semester at Hood, on Nov. 22, 1963. “I am looking forward, but with a twinge of apprehension, to a peaceful presidency for Obama’s second term in office, with the joint political will to tackle our very real problems without violence in our country.” Patricia Rosner Kearns had a great Thanksgiving with all the Kearns kids and grandkids—and sprained her ankle right after they left. Pat welcomed her second grandson in August. Her mom is doing well in Connecticut, but she lost her dad two years ago. She still works as director of development for the D.C. area at the American Diabetes Association and is looking forward to more vacation time in 2013. At press time, Diane Smail Robertson was awaiting the arrival of her second granddaughter. “Isn’t it great how your heart just expands with love to make room for all the ‘dear ones’ in your life? Re: 2013: As crazy as it sounds, I am just looking forward to celebrating the joys that God brings into my life. I don’t know if it is a result of growing older or not, but I’ve come to recognize that those quiet daily happinesses are what really matter most to me!” Debbie Smith Aldrich is thankful for her wonderful kids, grandkids, great-grandkids and two wonderful cat buddies. “I’m thankful for a wonderful childhood, Hood College education, great marriage and years of experience that have made me what I am today. Sounds corny, but it is the truth! Looking forward, I’m blessed with the ability to find fun and friendships throughout the year, hopefully some travel and lots of laughing.”

    Cynde Swanson Lawson is most thankful for her husband and two sons Shandy and Tory as well as her job as a crisis counselor, and travel. Her most recent trip was to Scandinavia in June. “I am most looking forward to the publication of Shandy’s young adult novel, The Loop in April.” Johanna Van Wert Thompson and Michael spent Thanksgiving week at the Outer Banks of North Carolina with their three children and eight grandchildren (ages 2-14). They still live in Williamsburg, Va., and would welcome visitors from Hood. They enjoyed a family cruise to Bermuda in June, a trip to Alaska in September, met Joan Peschel Young and Bob for lunch, and enjoyed an overnight visit with Sally Raube Chandler and Jim while traveling in New England. Gail Witham Pohl looks forward to Skyping with her daughter’s family (including 8 of her 16 grandchildren), who are serving as missionaries in Uganda. Gail was having cataract surgery in January, and was looking forward to improved vision and spending lots of time with her other grandchildren.

    Barb Wood Spellman recently enjoyed a four-day visit with Ginny Price Bracken in North Carolina, and spent an afternoon and evening with Sue Bracken, who lives nearby. Husband John retired in August after 43 years of practicing dentistry, and on Sept. 22 their youngest son got married in their yard. “I am thankful that it didn’t rain during the wedding ceremony and that we are healthy enough to enjoy our new unstructured life.” Barb looks forward to lots of travel. Jayne Winters Mathews is thankful that she can still get up every morning, go to work and actually enjoy what she is doing. She is one of those people who “failed” retirement and feels much better doing something worthwhile. “I work with nonprofits and get involved in most of the problems that face people today. I look forward to better times in 2013, and having gone to a woman’s college, I’m thankful that women play a much larger role than ever before in everything and look forward to a female president soon. Anyone who is down this way, the Carolina Coast, stop by, we’re always here.”

    I, Barbara Morgan Herron, hope to retire before summer. Keeping busy won’t be a problem. Almost every weekend between Labor Day and Thanksgiving I was painting sets, combing thrift stores for costumes, appearing on set as an extra and otherwise helping my husband on his latest film project. I have a long list of house, garden and sewing projects, too. Happy 2013 to all!

    Class Reporters:

    Barbara Morgan Herron
    (410) 664-0976
    cymraesteg@aol.com

    Judith Lehman Ballinger
    (609) 425-6631
    judyballinger@hotmail.com

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