YAM Notes: September/October 2019

For those of you who were there, and those who were not, I recommend a quick digital journey to our class website, which can be found simply by typing Yale Class of 1959 into Google. The website, woefully underused in my view, contains some great pictures of some great people having a great time at our 60th Reunion in May. Hats off again to the two brilliant organizers, Randy Nye and Charlie Nolan, who produced a strong turnout and, with help from plenty of others, a record 60th Reunion gift.

For delayed afterglow, I recommend Saturday trips to the Yale Bowl this fall, where the usual suspects — Hallas, your truly, Greenbereg, Gertz, but mainly the Griffiths — will again be tailgating in Parking Lot B next to the Cage at Saturday morning home games — the first of which is against Holy Cross on Sept. 21, followed by Cornell on Sept. 28 and Fordham on Oct. 5, and including Penn on Oct 26, Columbia Nov. 2 and Harvard, Nov. 23. Six homes games, and none of them at night, which was a bad idea for out of town fans.

John Torinus — journalist, entrepreneur and longtime leader of Serigraph, a successful manufacturing company that has withstood the hollowing-out of the midwestern industrial base — — has regularly given back to his Wisconsin home town of West Bend. His latest venture, undertaken with wife Caroline, is the restoration of a 1929 art deco movie palace that went dark in 2006, which he hopes to “light up again” with classic movies, concerts and local theater. He sees it as the capstone of 50 years of downtown redevelopment equal to the renaissance of other rust belt cities.

Dave Inkeles informs me of a book (now available on e on Amazon) recently written by Walter Alber and called “Gently Fixing Global Warming — How We Got There and Where We Must Go.” Walter is president of an engineering company bearing his name in Paradise Valley, Ar., and owns more than 40 patents, many having to do with reducing energy consumption. The book not only sounds an alarm but offers practical ideas about addressing the problem.

Most of this column involves departed classmates.This month’s roll call:

George Decas, a lifelong resident of Wareham, MA., died in February. George received his law degree from Penn, practiced in his own firm from the early 1970s and served on the Middleboro Tiwn Coincil for nealy our decades. He was active in local historical preservation and in New England historical matters generally. He was a delegate to the 1980 and 1984 Republican conventions, and, honoring his heritage, maintained a residence in Athens, Greece. he is survived by two brothers and a sister.

Thomas Robert Turner Manning, an Englishman, died In Diss, in the county of Norfolk, England in February. Though considerably older than most of us (he was 87 when he died) he graduated in 1959, he returned home and served as an attorney in Diss for most of his life after Yale. He took great satisfaction from his lifelong service to the Norfolk Churches Trust, an organization devoted to the preservation and restoration of medieval buildings. No information as to survivors.

Frank Kneisel diied in Westport in March. A graduate of Harvard Business School in 1965, he was a successful corporate executive and became chief financial officer of Champion International, later International Paper. He was most proud, however, of his service to the two communities he called home, Westport and Castine, Maine, where he summered most of his life. He is survived by Mary, his wife of 50 years, two sons and a daughter. .

Don Freytag died in April in Vero Beach, Fl. He, too received an MBA from Harvard, in 1963, served as an intelligence officer and jumpmaster in the 82nd Airborne, where he made 27 jumps. , worked in senior in several corporations( including Warner-Lambert and Pepsi), taught economics and business policy at Ohio State and ran his own management company in Columbus, Ohio . In later years he divided his time between Vero Beach and Nantucket, where he was interred in a private service. He is survived by by Betsy and three sons.

Jim Tracey died in March in Wilton, Ct. , where he and his wife of 56 years, Dorothy, had lived since 1968, which is roughly when Jim became one of the town’s s leading doctors, with affiliations at Norwalk Hospital and the Yale University School of Medicine.After graduating ro pedical school at Yale, and completing his internship and residences in New York City, Jim spent two years in the U.S. Army Medical Corps, including service as Chief of Medicine at the 85th Evacuation Hospital in Qui Nhon, Vietnam. A devoted Yale graduate, and an alumni interviewer for any years, Jim s survived by his wife, a son and three daughters.

See you, I hope, this fall. And write when the spirit moves you.