Class of '55
April 2000

Dear Classmates:

It was 48 years ago last week that I survived "Hell Week" and became an active member of the Kappa Sigs. Vividly I recall sitting around the bon fire at Mount Olympus after taking the pledge. Ever since, spring at Gustavus sounds the tocsin of fun, fellowship and warm memories in my head. Maybe you also recall similar moments of that spring so long ago. I say a special hello to all my old frat buddies and classmates: George Torrey, Homer Russ, Phil Eckman, Dick Lundborg, Larry Lee, Paul Carlson, Waldo Lindquist, Don Churchill, Earl "Tubby" Doering and Arlo Lien. Wherever you are and what ever you are doing I say thanks for helping make my Gustavus experience a highlight of my life. I hope you non-Kappa Sigs will forgive me this indulgence.

In late March I had the pleasure of participating in Phonorama. If you haven’t done it I sincerely recommend it to you. You have the opportunity of calling old friends, not just to ask for their money but to hear their interesting stories as well. For instance I had a long conversation with Clarice "Chickie" Tack Swisher. Yes, she still goes by the nickname "Chickie." Chickie is working as a writer and editor with her daughter who apparently is her boss. Best wishes, Chickie. Then I went out to California to talk with Don Ranstrom who recently retired as a campus chaplain. He sounds like the same Don who worked with me on the 1955 Gustie Annual (along with my wife Lucy (Fogelstrom ’56). Then I traveled cross continent to catch Don Lortie who was just settling down in his Manhattan apartment to watch his favorite TV program; "Do you want to be a millionaire?" How fortuitous I caught him while he was thinking of money. All the best and thanks, Don. Sorry I missed talking to many more, but I talked to a lot of answering machines.

Thanks to all who gave to the Gustavus Fund. If you haven’t, there is still time before the books close for the current appeal. Gustavus gave us all a leg-up in the game of life. Let’s all help to continue its marvelous traditions.

Our reunion dinner will take place at the Hotel Sofitel in the Twin Cities on Friday September 29. Put it on your calendar. Don Swanson is the M.C. It will be a wonderful time, I guarantee it.

There are some other dates I want to emphasize. On Tuesday May 16, starting at 5:30 p.m. at the Sofitel, a tribute will be given to Chaplain Dick Elvee who retires after this school year. Although Elvee came after our graduation, there are many of us who became his friend and we will want to pay him tribute for his unique contributions to the life of Gustavus. On Saturday May 27, at 3:30 PM a Granlund sculpture will be dedicated on Hello Walk to the memory of our late friend and former vice president for alumni affairs, Cecil Eckhoff. I can hear his staccato laughter as I write this. I’m sure Cec will be there.

Campus News:

International House Being Built - Ground was broken during the first week in March for the new international house. The residence hall will house Crossroads, the Swedish House, and the Office of International Education. This new facility will support the mission of bringing an international perspective to the curriculum and preparing students to communicate and compete in the new millennium. The 80-bed, 30,000 square-foot facility is scheduled to open in the fall of 2000. The $5.4 million building is going up west of Olin Hall.

Forensics Team Earns International Awards ― The College speech and debate team captured two championships and six other awards at the recent International Forensics Association tournament in Paris, France. Both Gustavus debate teams compiled a 3-1win-loss record. The team's strong overall performance earned Gustavus a fourth-place Sweepstakes Award. Gustavus attends international forensic competitions every other year.

Men’s swimming and diving team completed its most successful season in Gustavus history finishing undefeated in both non-conference meets, with a record of 7-0, and conference meets, at 6-0. At the MIAC Championships, Gustavus placed first for the first time since 1960. They beat conference power St. Olaf, who had won 20 consecutive MIAC titles before this year. Earlier in the year, the Gusties also handed the Oles their first conference dual meet loss since 1981, breaking an Ole streak of 96 straight wins. Please read the Spring Quarterly for complete winter sports recaps or visit the athletics site at gustavus.edu.

Upcoming campus and Alumni Association events:

  • MAYDAY! Conference/"Vietnam: 25 Years On," April 26, Campus
  • Arbor Day Celebration, April 28, Campus
  • Chicago Chapter, May 6, Chicago Cubs baseball game and barbecue picnic
  • Tribute to Richard Q. Elvee, May 16, Hotel Sofitel, Bloomington, 5:30 p.m., 7:00 p.m. program
  • ORBISC dedication, a Granlund sculpture in memory of Cecil Eckhoff, May 27, 3:30 p.m., Campus
  • Reunion Weekend for 50-Year Club, Class of 1950, War Years, V-12/5, May 26 & 27, all events held on campus
  • Homecoming/Reunion Weekend for Anniversary Class 1955-2000, September 29 & 30, Friday night events at the Hotel Sofitel, Bloomington, Saturday events on campus
  • Gusties in Volunteer Endeavors, October 7, Twin Cities and national chapter locations

Members of the New Millenium: Knowing that we are in a technological age, we want to encourage all alumni to get involved and get online. If you have access to a computer and the Internet, we hope you will check out the Gustavus Alumni Association homepage regularly. We publish information about upcoming events, post class letters, provide information about the Alumni Office, list e-mail addresses of alumni and more. Check us out under the alumni section at gustavus.edu.

We are planning on corresponding on a regular basis with all alumni who have e-mail addresses. Please send a message to alumni@gustavus.edu so we can get you on the list. (Also, be sure to keep us posted on any e-mail address changes.)

If I don’t see you before, I hope it will be at the Sofitel on September 29. All the best.

Dick DeRemee

1955 Class Agent