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New Class Notes 1940

IN MEMORIAM: Martha Wood '40 of Bethlehem, N.H., died Nov. 13, 2004. She taught for more than 30 years in the Landaff Blue School, West Lebanon School district, and Lakeway Elementary School district.


Barbara Stimson received a long letter from Chester Brach who lives alone, but is well and happy and keeps active between housekeeping and gardening. He visits his son in California twice a year and attends his grandson's Peewee games. Chest goes dancing every Saturday night with a lady friend who also joins him on trips to the mountains, lakes, or shore. At 86 years old, he is a very busy person.

We talked to Norma Walker '51 and she had shoulder surgery and has recuperated. She sets up our Golden Circle meetings in New Hampshire and the last one was at Havenwood/Heritage Heights in Concord. Barbara Rowe Freese helped her set it up. Barbara and John '42 have retired there.

Irene Nelson Koski is still active as recording secretary for the Cheshire County Retired Educators.

Elese Wright Tarris joined the KSC alumni meeting at Heritage Heights. She is using a walker and is in good spirits. She has moved to Loudon, N.H., to be with her granddaughters.

Neal and Harriet '43 Perkins spent the summer at Walpole and returned to Florida in August. Neal reported on the Teacher Education Scholarship Endowment Fund that was started in 1927. The class of '44 has contributed to it and contributions are still welcome! He wrote that in our college days, if we worked in the dining room, we were allowed $3 a day, which was one half of a week's board. He also wrote about the pride we have in our professional accomplishments and our contributions to teacher education.

Ginny and Barb keep in touch at Delta Kappa Gamma meetings, lunch dates, and frequent phone calls.

Barb's old farmhouse had visitors from California, Colorado, Washington, D.C., Michigan, Virginia, and Australia last summer. They kept busy seeing the Cog Railway, Mount Washington Hotel, and other sights. The Old Man of the Mountain is still missed by all.

Ginny helps the family next door when needed - take one or two to the dentist, go to games (soccer) - and the grandson, who is 7, comes over to see her. Ginny manned the Gorham Information Booth a few hours each week (closed now for the season), and is active in church life. She showed paintings using egg yolk and watercolors at the Delta Kappa Gamma meeting at Colebrook Country Club. Ginny still travels to see a daughter in California.

On a sad note, Andy Schricker and Bob Stillings are no longer with us. I talked with JoAnn Stillings, who has moved to California to be near a son and daughter. She sends her love to all.

Send your news and let us know what is going on in your lives, please.


From Peggy: "I got a note from Ruth Callender Lee, who is happily remarried and living in a senior community in Zephyrhills, Fla. We remember Ruth's beautiful singing voice, a talent she kept up during the years, singing in various choirs and choruses around the state. A note from Shirley Read Blinn quite some time ago stated that the central New Hampshire Class of '42 was meeting regularly for lunch and also the retired home economics group got together occasionally. It's nice to know our classmates are still in touch. That's great after 63 years."

From Hal Streeter: "It doesn't seem possible that we will have been graduated from KTC 63 years. Each time I receive Keene State Today, I turn to the class notes section and find nothing for the class of '42. Each time I say to myself, 'I must write to Peg.' Chic and I remain relatively well. I tell people, as long as pharmacies keep enough pills on hand, we will be fine. We still live in Enfield, N.H., at Mascoma Lake where we have been for about 35 years. I am still working a couple of days a week at a lighting store called Illuminations by Wm. Patrick in West Lebanon. I enjoy the people and the paycheck puts a little food on the table. The Golden Circle luncheons have afforded me the opportunity to see a few (very few) of our classmates. The ones I see most are Charlie Costas and John Freese. Chic and I attend most of the luncheons. I only wish more classmates could find a way to attend reunion. I have yet to miss one since the spring of 1946. It is always a treat to see those who do attend and the changes on campus."

From Carlene Watson Rausch Hartshorn: "Greetings from a 1942 graduate of Keene Teachers College who has lost contact with the College since I am no longer the class agent for raising money. I get back for reunions and send my money to the scholarship that our class is interested in. My big news of the year is that I took a trip to Scotland last summer with my oldest son and his family. There were six of us. We spent 10 days there and visited many points of interest, including the castle that my forbears, the Watsons, lived in at one time. My first husband, Bob, died of Lou Gehrig's disease (ALS) in 1974. I married Clint Hartshorn, who died in 2001, so I am a widow now but I keep very busy with the church, DAR, and Eastern Star. I walk three miles each day and have the same weight that I had in college. In fact, I can wear the same clothes that I did then. My children are spread all over the country: Robert Jr. is in Georgia, Betty in Iowa, and Carl in Massachusetts. I see them about twice a year. I have eight grandchildren and am in good health, thanks to my home economics training. I still think that Keene Teachers College is the greatest."

From Phyllis Bean of Manchester, N.H.: "I eagerly look for news of the Class of '42 each time the alumni magazine comes. We certainly were a different class - coming in with the hurricane and leaving with the war. I only taught for eight years. I spent my long working years as an accounting clerk in banks and as a store manager (S&H Green Stamps, remember those?). I finished my working years as a cashier in Caldor and Hannaford Supermarket. All my jobs kept me in contact with a variety of people, which I enjoyed. I miss this contact now that I've retired. I've been widowed for six years and live with my son and daughter here in Manchester, where we've lived for 40 years. I don't have grandchildren, so I borrow my neighbor's once in a while. Spend a lot of my time reading. Mr. Drenan at KTC started me on a lifelong leisure-time activity. I particularly enjoy it now that I no longer drive and don't get out much."

From Howard Smith of New York, N.Y.: "I believe I am the only one in the class engaged in academic teaching. I am a full professor at Columbia University School of Medicine. My field is otolaryngology/head and neck surgery. My activities involve making hospital bedside rounds with our residents, teaching medical students, running a small laboratory, and interviewing prospective residents for our department. I work three days a week at the medical center.

"I started a plastic surgery program in Honduras to train Honduran general surgeons in the art of plastic surgery. The three-year program is certified by the University of Honduras. Residents in our Columbia department rotate in the program to gain experience in congenital facial deformities. All of my medical activities are pro bono and have been since my retirement at age 70.

"On the home front, I paint landscapes and still lifes. I manage about 50 canvasses in oil each year. On a more physical basis, I manage, with my caretaker, about 400 acres of land in Lake Placid, N.Y., including over four miles of private roadway. In the past I restored antique wooden boats and now limit my woodworking to building furniture in such styles as Queen Anne, Hepplewhite, and Mission. I have given up playing tennis and squash since an attack of Lyme disease 20 years ago. I continued downhill skiing in Europe, out West, and at Lake Placid every year, but may consider hanging up my skies in favor of preserving my knees.

"I am converting my medical photographs into digital form for preservation. This project may take the rest of my life since the collection exceeds 500,000 slides. My wife Ora and I are in good health. Our children (four) are married and we have eight grandchildren at various rungs on the educational ladder."

In a letter from John Freese, he said he liked our class picture on the Christmas letter and picked out four classmates he recognized! How about that! Have we changed that much? He served in the U.S. Army from l944-46. He worked in industry at Bryant Grider Co. in Springfield, Vt., for 40 years until retirement in l981, then wintered in Florida for six months for another 21 years. He now lives at Havenwood retirement community in Concord, where he and wife Barbara '41 stay busy with hobbies. They have one son who teaches at the N.H. Vocational-Technical School in Keene and has been biking in Australia.

IN MEMORIAM: Virginia Coburn Clark '42 passed away in November 2004.


From Carolyn Nichols Pregent: Clifford and I are planning to leave the pond to live with our daughter in Keene this winter. The distance we travel for medical attention and household needs will be greatly shortened. I am going to enjoy being close to the College.

Louise Perkins and I have kept in touch. She enjoyed her summer at Lake Massasecum, rowing around the lake in the early morning. In September, Marge Howe Herlin, Barbara Adams, and Louise journeyed to Nashua, N.H., to visit Evelyn "Twissie" Woollett, who lives with her daughter June. Twissie was in good spirits and so glad to see them. You can imagine that they never lacked for conversation. Twissie's little granddaughter was an enjoyable addition.

I had a letter from Donnie Davis Poudrier. She sent a photo of her damaged mobile home in North Port, Fla. This occurred during the hurricanes this year. Donnie was grateful for all the help she received from family and friends. Very few of her belongings were saved. Now she is in an apartment for people over 65 and she is volunteering at the Veterans Hospital.

Barbara Brown Charbonneau e-mailed me that her home was not destroyed but her electricity was off for several days and she evacuated several times.

Barbara Adams called with news of several other classmates. We were glad to hear that Barbara's home was not damaged. Barbara heard from Twissie Woolett again. She is still doing well and enjoying her granddaughter every day. Lois Moore Querim is playing tennis three times a week. Keep healthy, Lois.

Barbara also heard from Pat and Art Shedd, who are keeping healthy and active. Art is till supervising students in New York. Harriet and Neal '41 Perkins had no damage to their home. They have moved to Tennessee. We hope other classmates in Florida had little or no damage.

In our last telephone call, Louise Whitten Perkins spoke of an exciting experience she had. In November, Paul '39 and Louise's son David and son-in-law John, both retired colonels in the U.S. Army, assigned the honor of colonel to Richard Perkins of the U.S. Marines. Nineteen members of their families joined them at the Pentagon. Col. David Perkins was very proud to install his brother to their high office. Louise met General Pace, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. They also went on a tour of the Pentagon and she was amazed to view a little city there. Later they dined in a private dining room. They were all impressed by the elegance and simplicity of the memorial commemorating 9/11. The next day they enjoyed the excitement and pageantry of the Annapolis/Delaware football game.

This will be the last time I will be compiling class notes. I have severe macular degeneration and it is very difficult to write under a magnified lamp. I have enjoyed keeping in touch with classmates and sending the news on to others. Will someone please volunteer to the Alumni Office to continue with our notes?

Editor's note: We'll miss your good words, Nickie. You've done an outstanding job! Thank you.


Barbara Clark Stone of Red Bluffs, Calif., writes: "My husband and I camped for two winter months as usual near Yuma. We attended the wedding of our first grandchild to be married and the high school graduation of our seventh grandchild. I have a swallowing problem for which a cause has not been determined. We are still square dancing and playing tournament cribbage."

From Connie: Polly Fisher Bailey called to let us know that Jean Palumbo Hunt had open-heart surgery last summer and is also recuperating from a right hip replacement. Also that Thelma Follensbee Lovell is enjoying her winter in Bradenton, Fla. During that first hurricane in August, some of the airports in Florida were closed so Barbara Butler Stone and Wilfred had to extend their summer visit in New Hampshire by one week. They were relieved to find their home undamaged. The following week, however, they had to evacuate to their daughter's and returned after the next storm to find much devastation in the park where they live-50 houses destroyed and many others in need of extensive repair. This was the first time in their 23 years in Palm Bay that three hurricanes hit in one season. Barbara sent a snapshot of one of her hobbies - an unbelievable collection of magnets that covers almost every inch of her refrigerator! She plays bingo once a week and cards "all the time."

On Sept. 4, Ida Parsons Valla and Stephen attended the wedding anniversary of their daughter Juanita and her husband Lloyd Nolan at Pleasant Lake Park, Warner, N.H. Ida asks whether we have any KTC amateur radio operators. She and her husband talk to friends on the Central New England Net almost every day and invite you to join them. Ida is Net Control nearly every Thursday morning from 6:30 to 8 on 3.955Mhz. Her call sign is KAIFMQ and Stephen's is WICUE.

After college, Priscilla Mills McKane and her husband lived on Sheepshead Bay, across the river from New York City. She was substituting in schools around Brooklyn, which she found interesting but not exactly fun, waiting to be called and then trying to figure out how to find the school that called. So, after much urging, she decided to take the big test to qualify for full-time teaching in N.Y.C. The test consisted of 300 multiple-choice questions covering 12 subjects. Of the more than 2000 women who took the test, fewer than 700 passed, and Priscilla was 92nd from the top. She credits her success to being an avid reader since childhood. Her advice to parents? "Teach your children to love books." Her family gathered to take her out to dinner to celebrate her 80th birthday. Her three sons and their families live in Keene, as does Priscilla. She sends regards to all and says her thoughts are with us along with memories of a good life - lots of fun, normal troubles, and unusual experiences.

Barbara Manning Gregoire keeps in touch by phone with Jadwiga Sokul Lagace and Nick Meleones. After graduating from Keene, she taught sixth grade for two years in Enfield and later in Wilton, where she met her husband-to-be and taught high school physical education and coached basketball. Her last 25 years of teaching were in Temple, N.H. She and Mary Buttrick Pelletier both worked there and continue to be good friends.

The high point of the past year for Priscilla Stevens Hutchison was the KSC Alumni Cruise to the Caribbean. It was an 80th birthday gift from her sister Mary Lou LaCoste and niece Debbie Murray. She writes, "What a fun, fun time. My first cruise. If you haven't been, try it. You'll love it! Accolades to Mike Maher and his crew-they made it a fantastic, memorable experience." After teaching for two years in New Hampshire and five years in Portland, Ore., where she'd had all the modern conveniences, it was a complete culture shock when she married an Idaho farmer, moved to Hamer, Idaho, and lived in "five rooms and a path." Her new home was a 280-acre hay, grain, and dairy farm with a wood-burning cookstove. She knew nothing about farming, cooking, or canning - especially on a woodstove. Not only did she learn, but she also raised three boys and one girl, and taught for 17 more years. We'll share more of her experiences in the next issue.

Sadly, Mary Kachavos Kallechy lost her husband Petro three years ago. She keeps busy doing water aerobics twice a week, helping her hearing-impaired client with shopping and other activities, being involved with church activities, and reading many of the current best-sellers. She also plays Bunco with 12 friends once a month. She says her calico cat is good company.

Barbara Clark Stone still enjoys square dancing, tournament cribbage, reading, and writing. She wrote her memoirs in 1997-98 and adds to them several times a year by writing a family newsletter. She compiled a small book of her poems last summer, giving copies to family members and friends. She also likes to compose pieces for the piano and recently wrote two that she recorded on tape. She, four of her children, and several grandchildren celebrated her 80th birthday in March at her youngest daughter's home in southern California.


As news is received for our 58th class letter (one each fall since graduation!), Eleanor Bowhay Zahner of Coral Gables, Fla., writes: "I've just returned from a 12-day cruise on the Queen Mary II to Canada, am very active in the travel world with Wally's Travel Service, and I also play on two tennis teams."

Geneva Moore French of Fort Myers, Fla., writes: "I visited relatives in New Hampshire last summer, climbed Mount Washington, and spent a week at Wells Beach. I still walk five miles per day and play golf three times a week."

Harriet Bixby Curtice phoned to tell of her third trip to Alaska.

Alberta Johnson Wood is still baking goodies daily for her extended family.

None of our classmates living full- or part-time in Florida mentioned hurricane damage to their homes.

Millicent Williams Caton writes in typical Milly fashion: "I love life as long as I can drive!"

Shirley Hooker of Tilton, N.H., writes: "No news. Same old, same old. Still working as a massage therapist after retiring from teaching - 24 years now."


From Peggy: I attended the Golden Circle homecoming luncheon in October with Shirley Hubner Tyler '47. Also attending was Joyce Chickering Jernberg. The occasion included a good meal, nice visit, and a tour of the wonderful science center led by Alumni Director Mike Maher '72.

In August, Joyce had a great two-week trip to various places in Alaska. It was marred only the fact that hurricane Charlie chose to wreak havoc in Florida while she was far away from her winter home. She later went down to help clean up the devastation and to get repairs started. She returned there in December, and in January, planned to visit western Caribbean ports of interest. She added, "But there's no place like New England in the summer and fall." I agree.

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