1957: Summer 2014

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Barbara Thomas Yinger: Bob and I went on the Hood Alumni River Cruise to Holland and Belgium in April. My friend, Barbara Beckhelm Moore, was also on the trip. Her father was professor in the music dept. at Hood in the 40’s and started the Naval Academy involvement with the Hood Choir to perform the Messiah on campus. Her sister Gretchen graduated from Hood in 1960 and was also on the cruise. Bob and I will be traveling from California to Miami through the Panama Canal. I’ve finished two bed quilts and took a class at the Norfolk Quilt show in February completing the double wedding ring pattern for my granddaughter who is getting married in October. We are still living near the Chesapeake Bay in the Northern Neck of VA. crabbing, fishing, playing mahjongg, judging flower shows, and tending our vegetable garden..

Nancy Tressel Brown: Old age and what we do for amusement. I now have two cats and decided last week to teach them to walk on a leash. First you have to get the collars on the cats. Two Band-Aids later I decided to just put on the leashes; three more Band-Aids. I decided to just trail the leash and have them follow me. The final resolution was my trailing a very pretty pink leash with no one on it. And, two cats following me – sort of – along with checking out all the neighbor’s bushes, et al. All was not lost. A very handsome young man got off his bike to say “M’am, I don’t want to hurt your feelings, but I think you lost your dog”. I’m not sure about the M’am part. Hope it’s this much fun at “The Home”.

Roberta Geehan Horton: I fell while hiking in Idaho last August and had rotator cuff surgery in February. I’m progressing nicely with physical therapy, and looking forward to visiting Ireland, land of some of my ancestors, this summer.

Dolores O’Connor VanVleck: (A note from husband, Dale)The past year began well but did not end well. We had gone more than a year without anyone in the hospital. I had a kidney along with a large enclosed malignant tumor removed in August of 2012. So far that seems to have gone okay. In late January of 2012 Dee had a bursa in her right elbow removed because of bursitis caused by scoliosis which had caused her to lean so much that the pressure on the elbow caused the bursitis which then became infected. She had not been able to walk for several years. The ‘wound’ on her elbow resulted in rehab of 10 weeks followed by a trip to the wound doctor every two weeks for a total of 20 months. She was able to resume work with a physical therapist early last summer but water therapy could not be resumed until the wound was declared healed in October. She enjoyed the physical and water therapy which was needed to retain upper body strength for transfers from wheel chair to chair and shower and bed. Together we managed quite well despite the food I prepared. Then in mid-November had a colon bleed (ischemic colitis) with three weeks in hospital and re-hab. It is apparently not uncommon and seemed to heal itself. She returned to the physical and water therapy as if nothing had happened. After one week I found her semi-conscious on December 13. From the emergency room she went directly to intensive care. (The week-end we planned to do Christmas cards.) We still don’t know what the original cause was. The only outward vital sign was very low blood pressure. We kept expecting her to be out in 3-4 days as had happened other times. This time she got progressively less responsive. After two weeks we were told she had no chance of surviving due to perforation of the colon resulting in sepsis. An operation was really not an option. We were shocked. All blood cultures had been negative. Vital signs did not seem bad but the medications and oxygen and fluids probably disguised the severity of the sickness. She died three days later. The intensive care nurses did all they could and kept her from having any pain. After the first day she could not talk because of the ventilator.

Obit: Dee  (O’Connor) Van Vleck, 78, died December 29, 2013, peacefully, after a short illness. Born in Philadelphia, Pa. September 8, 1935. Philadelphia High School for Girls. Bachelor of Arts, Suma Cum Laude, Honorary Marshall, Mortar Board, Hood College, Frederick, Maryland. Master of Science, Syracuse University, Syracuse, N.Y., Beta Phi Mu, International Library Science Honor Society. Life was not always fair but she never gave up. Leaves husband of 55 years, Dale; daughter, Elizabeth of Dallas; son, John of Atlanta; and granddaughter, Audrey of Atlanta.  In younger years, a many faceted volunteer. Loved animals, especially wolves and cats. Loved history, books, and learning. Appreciated and supported the Arts, especially music – Brahms, Bach, Beethoven, and more. Devoted member of NPR, PBS, and NET/Radio. Contributor to many causes including the homeless, hungry, oppressed, children in need, and endangered and neglected animals.  Memorial services for family and friends, Spring 2014, at Lincoln Memorial Park. Memorials to Foundation for Lincoln City Libraries, 136 S 14 St, Lincoln, NE 68508. Arrangements by Lincoln Memorial Funeral Home. Condolences can be left at: lincolnfh.com.

Virginia Smith Durland: Bill and I just sold our long time home in Colorado Springs and are looking for a place that will take us and our beloved dog. I will give the alum office an update when we get a new address. Our biggest news is that we now have two great granddaughters – one born last August and the second this past January. Spent a restful 3 months at Pendle Hill Quaker Center as Friends in Residence in Wallingford, PA from March to June and saw many old friends from Bill’s Bucknell days, but found it very hard to re-acclimate to low altitude, humid weather and are very glad to be home. We have too many grandchildren to report on all of them, but one grandson is studying to be a chef and one granddaughter is off to Thailand to study acupuncture and massage therapy. All the rest are equally imaginative. Our daughter, Fadwah, who is a certified nurse-midwife has just opened her own clinic/women’s health center in Boca Raton and is reveling in being her own boss. We see many of Bill’s Bucknell classmates and fraternity Brothers, but I haven’t been so lucky over the years. Any Hoodlums that come to Colorado Springs, please look us up! (719) 635-8686 Peace is Possible

Audrey Goetz Swart: We are living in the Upstate of South Carolins ,near Clemson Univ. We moved here from Florida 12 years ago to be close to two of our four daughters! We have seven grandchildre ranging in age from 28 to 14—all doing well in very stages of education!!!
Sam and I are well:enjoying this beautiful area and many activities. I am very involved with my Church and serving God. We have traveled to many foreign lands and in the States!! In fact I’m leaving next week with a daughter for Turkey and Greece!! My email address has changed to audsam@charter.net.

Mara Eckstein Garcia-Bunuel: Every year I enjoy my Renaissance classes, usually I have coordinated a semester class. We are off for the summer. In May I took a riverboat trip to Russia; it was quite wonderful; lots of international guests; went all the way to Northern Russia (Karelia) and then south to St Petersburg. When one sees all the gold, the jewels, the crystals, etc. one understands why there was a revolution, just like in France and other places. My oldest grandson just graduated from Friends School and the family is off to Italy and Spain.

Sarah Bulin Hanson: Our lives are exceedingly quiet and travel is now more often to the doctor’s office or the hospital. Of course, grandchildren  are the delight in our lives. In April, I spent a long weekend with my son’s daughter, Olivia, at Elon University. (He drove!!!) She’s coming to visit July 22. My granddaughter, Hannah, in Charleston , has a job with a fast growing organic skin care co. (rms) and she gives me lots of samples! My grandson, Brandon, just finished a month of National Guard Training and has started a new job in financial services. Last, but by no means least, I hope everyone has given to the Hood Fund this year. Let’s send Dr. Volpe out on the high note he deserves!  Douglas and I will make our annual visit to Capon Springs in September. This wonderful spot is still owned by our late classmate Claire Austin’s family. Claire’s son and daughter are very involved and we will enjoy our time with them as well as relaxing in a mountain retreat.

Carolyn Stevens Amstutz: Hope I’m not too late!!  I’ll fill you in on a little of my news.  First and foremost, I was in Naples FL for a month in March, and spend a terrific weekend in Bonita Springs with Alice (Riddle) and Fred Metry.  The first night  we had dinner at their golf club with Tressie and Roger Brown, and the second night Jacke McCurdy and her sister Arden came to Alice’s for dinner.  What a really good weekend that was!  After Naples I spent a week with my daughter and her family (who live in England) at Disney World.  My granddaughters are 6 and 9, which added to the excitement.  I must say, however, that visiting Disney for four days is not for the feint of heart!!   I guess I really am 78!  I’m off for a few days in northern Vermont and Canada with  my Albany NY daughter, and then in August will be in Scotland and England for two weeks. Beside my travels, I’m still playing bridge, a bit of golf, and am on the search committee for a new minister for our church – a daunting task.

Mary Jane Harkness Nace: Dick and I just returned from a wonderful few days visit with Cathy Goss Newhouser in Dunwoody, Georgia.  It’s been several years since we were together and this was truly a special visit.  As you can imagine there was lots of reminiscing; laughter; and tales of our Hood days.  Since Dick had been a part of our Hood years, he enjoyed hearing us talk about all our Hood-stuff. Dick and I moved to Hendersonville, NC in 2011 and we discovered, with this trip, that the drive to Dunwoody is only 3+ hours. The three of us plan to get together more often.

Molly Smith Sperandio: This was my summer of travel with the main destination my granddaughter’s high school graduation in Davis, CA.  I decided to drive around the USA visiting friends and family and fell in love with our northwestern states which I had never visited before – such beauty is awesome! I was gone 39 days and drive 9,742 miles during which I had to service my Prius twice – for the 115K and 120K miles – and buy 2 new tires.  FL to PA road trips in March and September for family reunions round out the travels.  What a joyous life!  I deal with the aches and pains of spinal stenosis and CHF, but who doesn’t have their health problems?  We do what we have and want to do and life goes on!

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