Dear Mike:

If your ability to maintain weight had kept up with your magnificent writing ability, you would look like Twiggy the model (not the squirrel).

I was glad to see your references to the two political giants of our class, President Phillips and President Buck.  Phillips was a smart guy to link his campaign to the famous gas company sign and Buck was astute to link his campaign to the Senior Bar.  John Buck and I were the final two classmates to leave campus after our first reunion, in 1971.  Stanford was our dorm for the Reunion.  I bunked with Corey Hart.

I have a humorous Phillips story.  He is one of the country’s top attorneys, as you pointed out, while Buck has become the biggest developer in Chicago.  Phillips has also done a lot of public service work.  He contacted me in 1982, when I was serving as the Chief of Staff for the Sheriff of Los Angeles Country.  He was working on a handgun initiative (quite topical, considering today’s events).  John had come up with a ballot initiative, from the liberal side of the politics, which also recognized some of the desires that we in law enforcement were concerned with, from the conservative side of the politics.  I arranged a meeting between John and my boss, the six-term Sheriff.  Although the Sheriff was well aware of John’s professional reputation, I was pleased to add that he was an outstanding character guy on top of that.

Anyway, the Sheriff was given to needling people and when John presented his desire to do something about handgun violence, the Sheriff said “I’ve been working on this problem for 20 years.  Where were you back then?”  John said “I was at Notre Dame with Cappy”.  Pretty funny.

You’ve got a wonderful group of folks in your cc: list………..Rico Gonring was one of my favorite baseball players for the Irish.  You could have plugged my book on ND Baseball (NOTRE DAME BASEBALL GREATS-LOL).  Tony Andrea and Bob Basche should still be singing rock and rock, except Bash has made too much fame and fortune in his career.  I still remember listening to Johnny Moye on the radio………a great D.J.  Flats and the Wombat and Jackoboice………….all ND greats.

Thanks for the memories, old friend.



From: Michael Caolo [] 
Sent: Saturday, February 23, 2013 5:13 PM
To: Anthony P. Rivizzigno; Bob Basche; Bob Lombardo; Cappy Gagnon (H); John R. Phillips; Mark Gonring; Tony Andrea
Cc:; Dick Van Etten; Eddie Haggar;; Hank Schlachter; Jamey Toohey; John Flatley; John Jackoboice; John Moye;; Joe Pete Wilbert; Bellamy, Russell; Pat McLochlin; Jack Caolo


As I composed my email message to accompany John Flatley’s account of Glen T.’s services in Sarasota, I realized I should include my roommate of two years, John Phillips, with whom I had not spoken in about a quarter of a century. I knew John was America’s preeminent “whistleblower” attorney whose Washington law firm had been absurdly successful over the years. I first met John in room 117 of Stanford Hall in 1962 as a freshman…He was from Leechburg, Pennsylvania (pop. 3000) located along the Kiskiminetas River and was known as a major port of the Pennsylvania Canal, and I was from Sanford, Florida, home of “Twiggy”, the waterskiing squirrel….and later of Trayvon Martin shame. I knew I was not with an average roommate when on the first night, after lights out, I heard rhythmic grunting emanating from John’s side of our small room. Several thoughts raced through my mind before I realized he was doing push-ups on the floor ….thank goodness. John had done a stint in the Army so physical fitness was a continuous commitment which he continues today but unfortunately I have avoided the contagion. As I recall, John was elected our freshman class president no thanks to my being his campaign manager using the slogan/logo “PHILLIPS ‘66’. Then there was the time I tried to follow John for admission/acceptance into the Blue Circle Society but alas, it was not to be when I clearly choked in front of the admissions committee when I failed to impress them when they asked for my imitation of an internal combustion engine. More painful memories….My delusional attempt to qualify for the Bengal Bouts was even more disastrous and my “walk-on’ attempt to make the ND baseball team was sheer folly…batting audition against Ron Reed….six pitches…six whiffs before I dropped my bat and walked back to my dorm…with head down and tail tucked.

For a bit of levity, here’s a pic of John Buck and John Phillips at my wedding in Dallas in 1967…about 100 lbs. ago…..a fairly somber trio with eyes averted….subtle foreshadowing maybe? If I had known they were going to be so rich and powerful, I’d been nicer to them at school.

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