White stuff on the ground, and on a few of our heads, but the promise of spring is on the horizon, so here is news of good friends. Tim Streb wrote to scold me for failing to mention news of left coasters. He reminded me that he, along with Pat Cashill and Jim Mong, had journeyed in from the west for the reunion festivities. Tim also caught up with Canton OH mates Jim Conley, Tom Belden and Dave (George) Rentschler in June and wonders whether the nine grads of Central Catholic who were in their class is the largest contingent from any high school. I am not sure, but Notre Dame of Niles, here in Chicagoland, may have sent as many or more. Loyola Academy of nearby Wilmette also sent quite a few. Jack Gerken orRay Neihengen will answer that one. (Editor's Note: In fact, ND Niles had 34 from our class of '62 graduate from the University. So far, I've "found" 30 for our upcoming 50th reunion in October. I've also been told that 34 is the record but I'm researching with ND)
Tim also mentioned Paul Fieberg, who has a home overlooking the Pacific in Dana Point (Orange County);Ed O'Connor still practices neurology in LA; Frank Murtha, a Chicago attorney reps a number of homer pro athletes; Jim "Jiggs" McAuliff hosted Tim & Caren in Vermont following the reunion; Gus Rini is a government attorney in Cleveland; "George" Rentschler spends the winters skiing in Utah. Terry O'Brien sends word from New England that he left Icore and took a new job with Cooper Industries. I also heard from Mark Meiering, who hangs out in Albuquerque and had been visiting his son and family in Eugene/Springfield OR area. Denis O'Toole, out DC way, had a special reason to celebrate the holidays because his Marine son was returning home from Afghanistan.
Reminiscence seems to be getting bigger in our lives: Corey Hart recollects when he bumped into Tony Andrea in Madison Square Garden in the early 1970s, while Corey was with the FBI. Corey also remembers encountering Bob Basche, who was working the matches at Wimbledon. Cap Gagnon, while he headed the Big Brothers organization in South Bend, took a busload of kids to a Cubs' game and who stood up right in front of them but reliever Dangerous Dan McGinn. I heard that Tom Bettag recently joined NBC's 30 Rock with Brian Williams as a segment producer. Tom previously served as exec. producer for CBS News, ABC News and CNN.
ND board member and long-time benefactor Bob Conway has just made another generous gift to the University, this time a new residence hall in London, fittingly known as Conway Hall (see page 16 of the latest ND Magazine). I heard on the radio the other day that Pat Bauer is still a force in Indiana politics on the Democratic side of the aisle.
Forget about Obama or Romney, Cappy for President! In view of Cappy Gagnon's longstanding service to ND and especially to our class, a number of people suggested at last June's reunion that he be elected class president. Long-time president John Buck agrees with this move and will graciously move to class president emeritus. To make this all official, we need your vote. You can weigh in on that score by emailing me your agreement or disagreement or by communicating through the new class web site, which is up and running thanks to Jack Gerken's tremendous efforts. Please feel free to immediately begin sharing your thoughts, photos, ideas, suggestions, etc. and here's how: you sign on to http://1966.undclass.org.
Now to the sad news of the passing of dear friends. Jim Lynch of Santa Rosa CA died in July. George Keefe of Chicago left us in December after a long battle with cancer. Jamie Toohey attended the wake and funeral, which he said were beautiful. It turns out George had been a captain in the Marines and fought in the Tet Offensive as an artillery commander. Clark Pleiss, Chicago, also left us in December following a sudden heart attack in the Caribbean, where he was attending his daughter's wedding. I attended Clark's wake. Paul Marceau passed in November in Winston-Salem, also of a heart attack. May they rest in peace.