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Class Notes

Judith Breckell's son, Joe, attends KSC and is in the Sustainable Product Design and Innovation program.

Donna McGrath Drouin MEd '91 was appointed commissioner of the Connecticut River Joint Commission in February 2011 and elected president of the Walpole Historical Society in April.


Audrey French Renaud writes: "Hi. I wanted to catch you up on a few things. I've been living in the little town of Dixie, WA, for more than 11 years. It's quite a lifestyle change, but the move has allowed me to reach heights that I only could wish for in New Hampshire. I am a member and occasional soloist of the Walla Walla Choral Society, have been in a folk band, have been on stage at Walla Walla Little Theater, and have sung at the Walla Walla Fair and at Muddy Frogwater in Oregon. I've made a CD called Stone Walls, which has 11 original songs, an original poem, and a rendition of "Amazing Grace" that has made even hard hearts melt. Right now it has to be ordered through me, but I'm going to soon have it available on CDBaby. I'm also a certified teacher of music and English, but haven't yet been able to find a teaching job. Instead, I work as a program manager at the Adult Day Center in Walla Walla. I make jewelry and dream catchers and lots of other stuff and sell it at crafts fairs. Remember my little daughter, Hannah? She now has five children. She and three of the children recently visited me from New Hampshire. I've been back East at least once a year. The last time was in 2010 for my mom's funeral. It was nice to have family out here for a change. Very soon I'm planning on making a demo "tape" for Garrison Keillor of Prairie Home Companion. It's my dream to be a part of his show. Wish me dreams come true."

IN MEMORIAM: Charles Torpey '81
July 1, 2011


Remember Reunion, June 1-3, 2012! Save the date and start getting in touch with classmates now!

From Mick Carlon: "I live on Cape Cod with my wife, Lisa, and our two daughters, Hannah and Sarah. I'm entering my 28th year as a teacher in the Barnstable system. In December, Leapfrog Press will be publishing my young adult novel about Duke Ellington, Riding on Duke's Train, which has already been adopted by many school systems around the country. In December 2012, Leapfrog will publish my young adult novel about Louis Armstrong, Little Fred and Louis. I'm in constant touch with Mike "Marty" Gyra, Kim Dupuis, and Mark Lapin, but would love to get back in touch with Jim McMullen, Dave Anderson, and Andy Russell.


Randall Gates returned from his second tour to Afghanistan, where he was a NATO staff officer at the International Security Assistance Force joint command headquarters. He was presented with the Defense Meritorious Service Medal.


Class secretary Michael Trabucco writes: "Hey, classmates! I hope you all had a great summer. What a reunion we had back in June! Our very own Sue Anderson Fortier had a lot to do with the weekend's success, and I know that I, along with about 35 other '86 grads, salute her. It's been 25 years since we celebrated Senior Week, and although we're all, well, 25 years older, I'd say we still know how to have a great time. If you weren't there, your ears may have been burning, 'cause a lot of names came up and a lot of pictures were passed around. If you haven't already, check out our Facebook page: Keene State College Class of 1986. There are plenty of pictures and videos. There's also an alumni page. As I was walking around the campus, remembering how it used to be (Air Band, The Equinox, being an RA, performing at the Arts Center), it felt so wonderful to think back and look around at the place where I spent four great years of my life. (And not having any papers or exams looming over my head made it even better!) Personally, I like remembering KSC the way it was. But things have changed - and for the better, I suppose. Still, I'm a sucker for the old days. Walking around made me think about all of the experiences I had and the people I met there. I stay in touch with a bunch of college friends. But at the reunion, it was so great to spend time there, with people (some close friends and some who became friends that weekend) who were enjoying the memories as much as I was. Lots of names are mentioned below, but I want to say that Bob Lofquist and Holly Hansen (who have been friends since the beginning) continue to delight me; Joyce Manegio Sternberg and Kristina Hooper Podgwaite were so much fun to hang out with; dancing to "Mustang Sally" with Patty Cassin was a highlight; the Sigma Rho girls provided a lot of laughs; and seeing folks from Randall Hall circa 1982 like Derrick De- Marche, Troy Delampan, and Garrett VanAtta was truly a blast. So, whether you were at the reunion or not, take a minute to think back. My guess is that in the past 25 years, someone you've lost touch with has actually been thinking of you. My hope is that you'll find them soon - maybe even right here in these class notes. In the last issue, I asked that someone write a note without any personal harassment from me. Kudos go to Hope O'Shaughnessy! Happy fall, everyone."

From Hope O'Shaughnessy: "Paul Petritis '87 and I recently moved to Upstate New York, where Paul began his new job as dean of instruction last spring at Bryant & Stratton College (Greece, NY, campus). We would love to connect with any alums living in the Rochester area. We enjoy the outdoors and music with our son, Andrew."

Joyce Manegio Sternberg writes: "Our 25th reunion was a really great time, and it was nice to reconnect, laugh, and reminisce with so many old friends. The accommodations at Pondside III were nice - not quite on par with Carle Hall circa 1982 - but nice. But seriously, Pondside III is nicer than a lot of hotels, and it's hard to call it a "dorm." I loved rooming with Kristina Hooper Podgwaite! (My KSC roommate, Sue Anderson Fortier, insisted on staying with her husband, Steve.) We all had a great time going through yearbooks, photo albums, and the famous freshman register of 1982. Steve Fortier supplied us with great food and drinks for our late-night lounge party on Saturday. We even squeezed in a visit to Penuche's and had lunch at Athens Pizza. Among those who joined our reunion were Susan and Steve Fortier, Kristina Hooper Podgwaite, Kellyann Sullivan Frank, Linda Pritchard, Dave Coe, Holly Hansen, Michael Trabucco (who made me laugh so hard my stomach hurt), Patty Cassin, Leslie Burger Ringuette, Shelly Fortier, Tori Berube, Lauren Forrest Caulfield, Lisa Poirier Wilkinson, Barbara Elliott DiSenso, Lisa Panzo Smyth, Mark Halloran, John LaRusso, Jan Vivian Kielec, Derrick DeMarche, Troy Delampan, Rhonda Cote Tully, John Chia, Lee-Ann (Pollock) and Garrett VanAtta, Keith Couch, Deb MacPhee Brown, Carol Falkenham Arnold, Chris Gray, Ronda Fabian Guberman, Bob Lofquist, John Decker, and Ed Wojenski. The KSC campus has changed so much since 1986. If you haven't been back, you should take the time to visit. The new Alumni Center and the Student Center are gorgeous, as are many of the other new buildings. Many buildings are still the same, though, and it was a lot of fun just walking around the campus. I'm already planning to be there for our 30th and hope that many more people will be there too."

From Ronda Fabian Guberman: "It was great being on campus and seeing friends from the past. I especially enjoyed catching up with Michael Trabucco, Garrett and Lee-Ann Pollock VanAtta, Rhonda Cote Tully, and John Decker! There were lots of great memories shared throughout the day!"

Kristina Hooper Pogdwaite writes: "Hi, all. I had a spectacular time at our 25th reunion! I came away with a whole new appreciation for having attended such a wonderful college. Our new Alumni Center is amazing! My time was well spent reuniting with old friends such as Joyce Manegio Sternberg, Steve and Sue Anderson Fortier, Kellyann Sullivan Frank, and Linda Pritchard. We girls continue to get together regularly to celebrate our friendship and birthdays. I also got to spend time catching up with Troy Delampan. New friends included Holly Hansen, Michael Trabucco, Derrick DeMarche, and Dave Coe. Funny how it only took 25 years to meet them! I had the privilege of giving my 18-year-old daughter, Katherine (she's attending UConn), a tour recently and was surprised by how sentimental I was in sharing my knowledge of Keene and KSC. I feel truly blessed to have had the opportunity to attend Keene State!"

From Steve Fortier: "Sue and I had a great time at the 25th reunion, reconnecting with classmates and celebrating all the great things that everyone is doing. It was extra special for me that many of Sue's friends were there for her final weekend of duties as Alumni Association president. I agree with her successor when he said that 'Sue led the Alumni Association through a transformational period that will serve Keene State students and alumni well for decades to come.' Sue and I are still co-directing the Meeting Waters YMCA, which serves the Fall Mountain region of New Hampshire and the Brattleboro, Bellows Falls, and Springfield regions of Vermont. In May 2010, Sue graduated from Springfield College with a master's degree in human services with a focus on organizational leadership. Our son, Sean, is a junior at KSC, where he plays soccer (red-shirting this year after knee surgery in July) and is majoring in social sciences."

Lisa Poirier Wilkinson writes: "I attended the 25th reunion with Lauren Forrest Caulfield, Jan Vivian Kielec, Barbara Elliott DiSenso, and Jenny Desmond Wojenski '87. We stayed in a suite with none other than Michael Trabucco, our fellow Owls Nest 3 neighbor, Holly Hansen, Leslie Burger Ringuette, Steve and Sue Anderson Fortier (our hard-working, outgoing former Alumni Association president), Joyce Manegio Sternberg, and others. The campus and new Alumni Center are beautiful. There are lots of changes. It was wonderful to reconnect with fellow '86 alums and meet alums from other classes. We, of course, also got in a visit to our old stomping ground, Penuche's, and played a rather spirited game of foozball. Our Saturday afternoon gathering at Oya Hill - a very different Oya Hill than we remember - was a lot of fun, with Steve's 1980s music playing in the background. Sue put together a great slide show that brought us right back to KSC in the mid-'80s, including many pictures from Senior Week. It was a fantastic weekend. Thank you KSC and all those who participated in the planning. Sue Fortier and Tori Berube - great work!"

From Raymond Bleau: "Sue and I have been getting into fixing and showing old cars! I have a 1970 Camaro Z28 and Sue has a 1966 Mustang. We miss all the ZBT fraternity brothers and Sigma Lambda Chi brothers for which I was a founding father. Keene was and is an awesome college."


From class secretary Michelle Morris Ayer: "I've been derelict in my duties as class secretary for a few years, so I've vowed to fix that! To get us back in the habit of sharing our news and updating each other on where life has taken us since leaving KSC twenty-four (what?!) years ago, I'll start:
"To paraphrase the popular t-shirts, life has been good. My family and I live in Hingham, MA, and I work in Boston at RBS Citizens. My two boys are both in the middle school this year (one 8th grader and one 6th grader) and at the risk of being cliché, I can't believe how fast the time has gone by. To think my eldest will be in high school next year is mindboggling to me. They are terrific kids and I enjoy every moment with them (even when the teenage angst kicks in). My job is challenging and fast paced, but I really enjoy it. Working full-time and raising a family has its challenges, but nothing that can't be managed with a lack of sleep.
"Pamela Smith Dyerv and I got to spend some time together in Boston this summer. We had a great time catching up and reliving the good ol' days. Pamela works as a fitness and Pilates instructor in Connecticut and it shows: she looks terrific! We were hoping to see Kathy Thomas over the weekend but the plans didn't work out. Kathy is doing great, too, still living in Maine, two fantastic children, Thomas and Samantha. She recently saw some PMD brothers at a fund-raising event for ALS in Ipswich, but I'll let her fill you in on the details (this means you have to write back, Kathy!).
"I haven't spoken to Jan Girvan in far too long, but when I finish writing this, I am going to call her because I miss her and feel terrible that I don't keep in touch like I should.
"There are so many of you out there that I've lost touch with and I would love to hear how you are doing. I know Facebook is a great way to stay connected, but I haven't jumped on the bandwagon yet. Since I'm not on FB, I'm hoping folks will be in touch the "old fashioned" way and reach out to me though email. I'd love to hear from anyone and a few particular names that come to mind are: Karen Ann Margaret Bell, Karen Flannery Zacoroli, Diana DeMartino O'Leary, Jen O'Brien, Paul Ouellette, Jim Quine, Dan Hooper, Scott Farnsworth, Kate Caron, Donna DiPerri, Sue Miller, Bill Jacobs, Sue Paige, Cindy Knight, Eric Germain, Chuck Cabot, Tom Pratt, Ron Kurr, Jack Webb, Mark Gardner, Cathy Reilly, Renee Villane, Mary O'Hanlon, Ed Namath. I hope some folks will write and fill us all in with what's going on in your life.
"Our 25th reunion will be next summer so let's try to reconnect and get a great group back up to Keene next year for the big event!"

Remember Reunion, June 1-3, 2012! Save the date and start getting in touch with classmates now!


From Jeff LaValley: "Classmates and friends, looking back at the past few issues of Keene State Today, I am reminded there has been little news from yours truly. Technology has made it easier to stay in touch, whether following Facebook, tweeting on Twitter, or simply emailing tidbits of news.
"I recently sent a birthday card to my cousin and received a thank you for reviving a "lost art." This led to somewhat of an epiphany that there is indeed something to be said for keeping in touch the old fashioned way - through snail mail. With that in mind, I would appreciate the opportunity to hear from each of you. Okay...if you really want, you can still use Facebook, Twitter, or any other method to let me know of any recent family news (weddings, births), professional accomplishments (new job, promotion), awards and acknowledgments, travels, meetings with classmates, etc.
"Eric Weinraub was married for the second time on June 11, 2011, to Paula Siegel in Lake Oswego, OR, where they reside with their dog, Cooper, and children, Tannon, 8, and Paige, 6. Chris McDermott and Mark MacAuley '91 were in attendance. Eric is a senior systems architect for Pegasystems, Inc.
"Just a gentle reminder that our 25th Reunion will be here before we know it in 2013. Now is not too early to start gathering ideas for the types of event(s) you would like to see, along with ideas for a class gift in honor of our special anniversary with our alma mater. Please contact one of your class secretaries if you would like to assist in planning!"

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