YAM Notes: March/April 2007

Winston Lord is now serving as co-chair of the Overseers of the International Rescue Committee; the recently-retired NBC anchorman Tom Brokaw is the other co-chair. Winston served for several years as co-chair of the board. IRC helps refugees in more than two dozen countries, with a budget of $250 million. Admirable in its dedication, IRC ‘s growing responsibilities — its territory includes Darfur, the Congo and Afghanistan — reflect the miserable state of millions of people displaced by sectarian and tribal violence and political upheaval, a situation that can only grow worse if everything goes to pot in Iraq, which I suspect it will despite the recent “surge” in American forces.

Alexander Gaudio, a quiet voice over the years, is practicing medicine with his son Paul, an arrangement that takes him from Hartford to Boston’s Eye and Ear Infirmary one day a week, where he “gives back,” in his words, for all he learned there years ago. That, in turn, springs Paul to teach one day a week at Yale. Another son is a cardiologist and a third a professor in anthropology linguistics, while wife Christine has a family therapy practice in Hartford. A busy and productive bunch.

Among Rabbi Bill Cutter’s many missions is “enhancing awareness of critical health issues in the American Jewish community”, as well as a pastoral work project in Israel. All this will cause him to reduce his work load at Hebrew Union College. Even so, he remains our class’s only
bi-coastal rabbi.

Terry Weaver and his wife Lois continue to battle multiple illnesses but are bouyed by the extraordinary exploits of son Patrick, an Olympic cross-country skier who will ski this winter for the Subaru factory team and who ran a marathon at the Great Wall of China over New Year’s.
In November, Ed Werner and Georgia traveled northward from Washington, D.C., scooped up Jim and Dot Tracey in Wilton and trundled off with various offspring to the Bowl for the Princeton game, then hooked up the following week in what he described as a “dismal bar” back in D.C. with Charlie Hoyt, where they and a bunch of other alumni watched a much more satisfying game against Harvard. The first weekend in December, Ed returned to New Haven for the dedication of the new Catholic Students’ Center attached to St. Thomas More Chapel, and while there he encountered Alex Ercklentz and Margilde, and the four went to Mory’s for dinner. Then back to Washington where he and Georgia hosted Mike and Yvonne Dixon at dinner. It occurs to me that Ed is doing all my work for me.

Sometimes, after we publish the news of a classmate’s death, more news comes in after that issue has gone to press that deserves notice in a later issue. We received a lovely letter the other day, for instance, from Beverley Brockus, the wife of John Dorsey Heinberg, whose death and stellar career as a public servant were noted here several issues ago. She reports that among those at the funeral were Bob Ferguson, Toby Terrell and Art Hotchkiss. She also said that on impulse, and with the encouragement of Ed Greenberg, she decided to attend the class’s mini-reunion in Santa Fe, where, as the class’s only widow in attendance, she met with a “rewarding and thoroughly heartwarming” reception. “John cherished his Yale connection,” she
wrote, “and I was glad for the opportunity to be there for him.”

Also in the catch-up department, it should be noted that 24 classmates ranging from Bob Arias at the front of the alphabet to Bill Waldorf at the back attended the memorial service in New York for Kathy Gertz, Ben’s wife — a tribute to both Kathy and Ben — and that Jim Hinkle, Jim Sheffield , Woody Ives and David Schroeder were among the large gathering at Gerry Studds’s memorial service at the Kennedy Library, where the speakers included Ted Kennedy and Barney Frank, a Massachusetts Congressman.

The sad news this month is the death of Wallace Emmett “Toby” Tobin III, who died Dec. 21 after a long battle with brain cancer. Toby was one of those endlessly youthful, generous, full-of-life people with a zillion friends and no adversaries except possibly rival navigators whom he regularly and cheerfully outfoxed on the high seas. . Apart from his family — Harriet and three children, Briggs, Ashley and Bliss — his greatest love was the sea, a relationship born during during his childhood days in Massachusetts and reinforced during his Naval R.O.T.C.
days at Yale and (after time out for a Clare Fellowship at Cambridge) six years in the Navy navigating large ships. He held several management positions over the course of his life, most recently at the Bear Island Paper Company in Maine, but he was happiest on a sailboat, whether
racing or merely cruising the seven seas, often in the company of classmates . Toby was the youngest crew member of the 1958 America’s Cup defense, aboard “Columbia,” and later served as navigator in two subsequent America’s Cup campaigns, aboard “Intrepid” in 1967 and “Valiant” in 1970. He was also a stalwart advisor to many sailing organizations. A memorial is planned for April 14 at MidCoast Presbyterian Church in Topsham, ME. Probably the best place to get further details is from Bliss, who relayed the sad news, at blisstobin@hotmail.com.