Alumni Notes: September/October 2014

The positive vibes from our successful 55th continue to reverberate. Here’s further evidence, from co-chair Austin Hoyt: goal was 128 classmates plus 105 guests for a total of 233. The actual results were 153 classmates plus 118 guests for a total of 271. The alumni association folks say this is amazingly good for a 55th Reunion. It is also further tribute to Austin and his late co-chair, Fred VanderKloot, who beat the drums with great success.

Before proceeding any further, let me remind one and all that the usual small but hardy band of 1959 football fans will gather on home Saturdays in Parking Lot B, adjacent to the Cage — Hallas, Griffith, Ittner, Atherton, Greenberg, Gertz, Kingsley, the undersigned (most with spouses) and, less frequently than in the past, George and Rose Piroumoff, who have moved to Texas. I recommend in particular the first two games, which will be among Yale’s sternest tests: Lehigh on Sept 20 and Army on Sept. 27, both with noon kickoffs. .

Many of our classmates went on to careers of great distinction in medicine. Here are two more that have not previously been mentioned in this space.

David Fedson, retired and living in France near Geneva, continues to campaign for further research into the potential of familiar drugs normally associated with diabetes and cardiovascular diseases, like statins, to help fight acute illnesses like influenza, sepsis and severe burns. A long-time campaigner for greater private and government investment in public health, David helped develop influenza vaccination programs at the University of Chicago, served for 13 years as head of general medicine at the University of Virginia and moved to France in 1995 to become director of medical affairs at Sanofi Pasteur MSD, a vaccine company.In simplest terms, he believes the world is not doing nearly enough to prepare for pandemics, a point he has made forcefully in lectures and in dialogues with reporters and editors at the Times.

A recent issue of Dartmouth Medicine features an article on prominent and recently retired Dartmouth Medical School faculty members who have spent lifetimes studying mental health and who have every intention of keeping their own brains busy in the years ahead. Among them is Bert Nadeau, who earned a Ph.D in psychology from the University of Minnesota in 1965 and arrived in Hanover in 1969, where he not only taught and continued his research but immersed himself from the get-go in local community health organizations, which at the time of his arrival were few and far between. Bert has cut back on his administrative load so that he can travel and visit offspring, but intends to maintain a clinical practice with children and their families.

In the course of his truly wonderful remarks at the memorial service on the Sunday morning of our reunion, , Bill Cutter spoke thusly of what we have lost and gained in the nearly six decades since we walked through Phelps Gate:

“How charming now appear our separate arrivals in 1955,” he began. “One was either a confident heir to the privileges of preparation, or perhaps, unprepped,was flustered by Yale’s greatness that dwarfed more modest readying. But time has changed all that difference, and now we share something far more important: a wisdom of time……”

Which, Bill said, exacts a cost: “The price for the wisdom we have gained in those near 60 years has been the loss of so much we learned to cherish here: young vigor, long life and its simple confidence, and our friends. At this hour we think especially of those friends.”

In addition to the nearly 200 names noted that day, here are two more:

The Rev. Donald Roderick Welles,Jr. died in June in Wilmington, DE., in the company of his wife Sue and his two children, Kirsten and Rod III . A graduate of Hotchkiss and the Episcopal Theological School in Cambridge, Rod taught English at St. Paul’s, ran the upper school at the Portledge School in Locust Valley, and served as headmaster of private schools in Sewanee, Tenn., and College Park, Ga. As an educator and priest, he fought racism and advocated for the homeless.

David Cantley, of Stuart, FL. died peacefully at his home in Costa Rica on March 29. He gradated from high school in Jenkintown, Pa., and lived in Massachusetts and New Jersey. He is survived by his wife, Maureen, and children Erica and Paige Cantley, Sheila, Callie and Frankie Grissman.

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