Class Notes
1955 to 1946 Graduates


From Helen Varady Keyser:

Mother Nature smiled on the 50th reunion of the Class of 1955 as the first combined men’s and women’s classes took part in varied activities. We also had a good turnout!

In attendance were Roger Amick and Claire, Mary Polak Barkis and Ed, Max Braune and Jutta, Tom Clay, Bob Detweiler and Katrina, Jim Dever, Rose Mandic Donchez and Francis, Lou Esposito and Dolores, Jim Evanko and Grace, Dr. John Galgon and Catherine, Gerry Schadle Haines, Chris Lutton Andersen, Ted Houseknecht and June, Bam McCombs Justice, David Kerchner and Barbara, Mike Lutkus, Francis Petruny and Nancy, Ray Salabsky and Pat, Charles Schaffer and Jean, Joan Landrock Schlegel and Wallace, Bob Shaup, Arthur Spengler and Ilene, Shirley Homer Sutton, George Warfield and Mary, and me with my husband, John.

We all enjoyed the 50+ Club Breakfast on Saturday morning in the HUB dining room. All our classmates received a gold 50+ pin from Dr. Rokke.

Following breakfast, a memorial service was held in Borhek Chapel, led by Rev. David Schattschneider ’60, with Mary Pongracz ’52 as organist. Names of deceased professors and classmates were read, including Pat Leun, Cindy Ross, Fred Haack, Dr. Franklin Scholl, Harry Fenstermaker, Donald Guman, Rev. James Ritter, Al Goguts, and Dale Williams.

The Class Reunion Parade had three bands, greyhounds, and classic cars. (Joan and I rode.) We threw lollipops to the children lining Main Street, as this was the first time the parade left North Campus and ended at South Campus. Our blue class banner read “United We Stand,” the Class of 1955 being the first merged class of men and women.

The alumnae of Moravian Seminary and College for Women observed our 263rd Founder’s Day celebration—“A Morning on Church Street”—beginning with a reception Friday at the home of President and Mrs. Rokke, followed by the Moravian Lovefeast in Peter Hall, where we gathered to share cookies and coffee, memories and fellowship. Ruth Hemmerly Kelly ’41, our speaker, portrayed Countess Benigna: Missionary, Educator, and World Traveler. At our lunch table in Clewell Dining Hall were Beverly Bell ’56, Renee Johnson Dragotta ’56, Bam McCombes Justice, Joan Landrock Schlegel, Nancy Zeleski Frantz ’53, and myself.

Some belated news: We are sorry to learn of the death of Tom Clay’s wife about two years ago. Also, belated congratulations to Jim and Grace Evanko on their 50th wedding anniversary, which they observed in December 2004 at a party given by their children at Holy Family Church in Nazareth.

Rose and Francis Donchez noted that their son, Bethlehem Police Commissioner Francis Donchez ’87, was selected to receive the 16th annual Crime Prevention Award from the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency.

It was wonderful to see Bam McCombs Justice from Sarasota, Fla., Mary Polak Barkis and Ed from Marietta, Ga., Mike Lutkus from Cottonwood, Ariz., and Max and Jutta Braune from Emigrant, Mont.

I want to thank Bertie Knisely ’69 and staff for a job well done; also our co-chairmen, Mike Lutkus and Joan Schlegel, and their committee for all their work. Thanks also to Ray and Pat Salabsky for all their help, to Rev. David Schattschneider and Mary Pongracz, and to John Williams of the Development Office and his wife Mary Ann, who were always there for us.


From Helen Desh Woodbridge:

Beverly Bell ’56 and classmates Shirley Beck Dutt, Lois Lutz Geehr, Marian Wagner, and I met at the president’s reception on Founder’s Day. It was a rainy morning. I chatted with Elaine Wagner Martinez ’52, Pearl Stein ’57, Karen Johnson Berry ’57, Fern Bachman ’51 and June Shafer Scholl ’51. Fred Geehr and Anne Enright ’52, Founder’s Day Committee chair, added to our luncheon conversation.

On the afternoon campus tour we met Edward M. Zamiskie ’54, a retired teacher from Saucon Valley.

At Saturday’s 50+ breakfast, we made a new acquaintance: Carol Buechner McMullen ’51. I wore a gold blouse and socks and a purple skirt, and I was delighted at Carol’s offer of her MCW dink, as I haven’t located mine in 50 years! In the parade to South Campus, Bev rode while Shirley and I walked, wearing our purple and gold sashes and singing our Alma Mater.



From Mary T. Pongracz:

Founder’s Day was a wonderful part of reunion weekend. Evelyn Buss Conover, Alice Shofer Durner, Anne Enright, Elaine Wagner Martinez, and I represented Moravian College for Women’s Class of 1952. We want to remind you that our 55th reunion is fast approaching!

A memorial service for Bobbee Edwards Bacon was held June 18 in New Jersey.

Reunion May 19-20

From Carol Buechner McMullen:

We will celebrate our 55th class reunion May 19-20, 2006! Your suggestions and ideas are welcome, and I hope to see you there. 

I attended the 2005 reunion weekend, where I met June Shafer Scholl ’51 and Fern Bachman Koplin. We enjoyed the Founder’s Day Lovefeast, especially the talk about Countess Benigna. On Saturday, Debbie Irwin Fleagle joined us for the traditional parade. We opted to walk, as it was a nice day; from the Church Street campus, we took the bus back with the Moravian greyhounds and their handlers. 

Out in New Mexico, Nancy Oplinger Dover continues her walks and bike rides. She and Ed attended their grandson’s graduation summa cum laude from Colorado State University. They are planning a trip to Hawaii for a reunion with friends in July; in the fall, they will travel to the Chesapeake Bay.

On June 23, I joined June and Fern along with Lois Shafer and Dick Smith, Janet Fabian and Paul Andre and Vanita Egge Marvin for lunch.


From the Alumni House:

The class of 1950 had a representative group at the 2005 Alumni Weekend, when it celebrated its 55th reunion.

Those who came were George Adams and his wife, Phyllis, from California, Lou Bender and his wife, Betty, and Bill Ringer and his wife, Dot, all from Florida. From New Jersey were Manny Roman and Bill Vinczi; and from the Bethlehem area, there were Justin Carisio and his wife, Gen, Tony Jaso and his wife, Pat, Bill Matz, Marvin Henkelman, and myself. I’m in my 12th year in the financial services area with Prudential Financial, having completed 42 years in the wholesale lumber business as president and treasurer of Scholl Lumber Co.

We were in the College’s parade down the “Moravian Mile,” marching and riding from North Campus to South Campus. You had to be there to see Bill Matz in the sidecar of a motorcycle that some alumni volunteered for the parade. Bill sat there like a Buddha, carrying one of the Class of 1950 signs: “Hats off to Moravian!”

The class sends its thanks and appreciation to Justin Carisio for preparing our black top hats, blue sashes bearing the class year and “Still the Best of the Best” slogan, and the signs.

Of those class members returned the alumni survey, some planned to attend; but, as often happens, they couldn’t make it. These included Dean Garland from Baltimore, Md., Ira Lutsey from Tulsa, Okla., Eric Schulze from Lyden, Wash., Robert Kramer from Sinking Springs, and Wilbur Jackson from Bethlehem.

Lou Bender still flies his ultra-light plane; George Adams has taken many Jeep trips in the Mohave Desert; Tony Jaso and his wife have completed 20 years of volunteering at Bethlehem’s MusikFest; Ira Lutsey teaches computer basics to other seniors; Manny Roman volunteers with the American Cancer Society and teaches conversational English to foreign students; Eric Schulze is a director of older adult ministries; Justin Carisio enjoys the time he devotes to watercolor and oil painting; Dean Garland has a new-found interest in writing a news column for local newsletters; and Bill Ringer walks the Gulf beaches looking for sharks’ teeth.

Though retired, Bill Matz has had interim pastoral assignments in four parishes in New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. Recently he has been an adjunct professor of philosophy at Moravian College and Northampton Community College. He has been on the Salvation Army’s advisory board for 25 years. He is also a borough councilman in Nazareth, a member of the ethics committee of the Visiting Nurses Association of Eastern Pennsylvania (Hospice Division), and writes the “Spiritual Journey” column in the religion section of the Easton Express-Times.


From Norma Boldt Wynne:

I answered the phone the other day, and a voice on the other end said, “Hi! Lulu’s back in town!” It was Louise Scott Gross, who, after she retired from teaching, moved to Lake Wallenpaupak, then to Florida, then to Carlisle and Mechanicsburg. She has moved back to Bethlehem and is delighted to be there. Her son, Bob, with whom she lives, has been named assistant superintendent for human resources for the Bethlehem Area School District.

Jean Whitaker Cliff e-mailed that she has moved from her daughter’s house, where she has lived for the past 13 years, to Prescott Lakes Senior Center, where she keeps busy playing bridge. In June, Jean was in Ohio for her oldest daughter’s 58th birthday and, two days later, for her son-in-law’s retirement as headmaster of a private school. Jean thinks Mitchell and her husband will move back to Tucson, as they love the West, but will wait until their older son gets his law degree from McGill University in Montreal. Jean remembers that the sisters of Phi Mu used to baby-sit Mitchell!

My daughter Linda and I were planning a trip to Aruba in September. We hoped no hurricanes would strike, as Ivan did last year, flooding the island leaving us stuck at our lodgings.

From Thomas F. Keim:

Roland Leibenguth ’48 sat with Charles Barner and me at the Alumni Weekend luncheon in May. Roland is retired from AT&T, where he was a senior engineer. Charlie is living in Myerstown at the Evangelical Congregational Stone Ridge Retirement Village.



Reunion May 19-20

From Ada Zellner Flower:

Mark your calendars! On May 19-20, 2006, we will celebrate 60 years since our graduation from Moravian College for Women. It doesn’t seem possible to me. So much has happened to us, our families, and to our Alma Mater in these 60 years.

Grace Keeler Hodge and David celebrated their 55th wedding anniversary in April 2004. As is their custom, they spent the summer in Chatauqua, N.Y., and then were back in Florida in October.

Phyllis Clark has been doing a lot of home decorating and upgrading. She’s thinking of getting a second Puli.

Anne Rosenau Smythe and Bill Smythe say they’ve slowed down a bit but then go on to describe a long wonderful trip to Italy in March 2004. Back home they continue their “circuit” trips to visit their children. They also continue to explore new sights in Colorado. Ann comments on the beauty of their home. “If you are lucky enough to live in the mountains,” goes the saying, “then you are lucky enough.”

After three runs as Miss Daisy and three of On Golden Pond, Eve dePoalis Johnson ’49 does not miss her theater career. During the 2004-05 school year, she traveled weekly to Newton, Mass., to stay with her granddaughter Sarah, who was ill with Lyme disease. Eve and Dick and son Rich cruised the inland passage of Alaska. Rich is an itinerant art teacher who travels to schools in the Midwest and Southwest, staying a week at a time. Their daughter Kim is a teacher of children with special needs. In June 2005, Rich, Kim, and granddaughters presented Eve and Dick with a “work week”: they took care of the many home maintenance jobs that every house needs, while Eve coached the crew.

L. Barbara “Bobby” Shepherd and her son, Shep, continue in their real estate business, though Bobby says Shep is the active one. Bradenton was spared the hurricane damage that hit the rest of Florida. Bobby enjoys opera, travel, visits from grandchildren, and lunch with friends. In August, she and a group of friends cruised from Copenhagen to St. Petersburg.

Marian Emig Hoffman continues to travel. She visited Valdez (where the Exxon oil tanker broke apart) and the Columbia Glacier. In 2004, she traveled east by car with her sons, stopping at old haunts and then attending a first-ever Hoffman family reunion in Pennsylvania.

Frank had open-heart surgery in April. He has recovered well (despite some bumps along the way). We have, of course, curtailed our travels and activities. We, too, are awed by amazing medical care and the support of family and friends.