Class of '56
September 2002

Dear Classmates,

Hope you have had a grand summer and now can enjoy the cooler beautiful days of fall.  As you can tell by the “centerfold” in the summer Gustavus Quarterly, we (Carolyn and Jo) are having a lot of fun at this class agent business!  An added benefit is that we are revitalizing our long-standing friendship!  Some of you may remember that we went to Stockholm on the Bernadotte European Study Tour (BEST) program the summer of 1955 to study at the Swedish Institute and then we toured Europe together.  Others in the BEST program that year included Joan Kassekert, Janet Renquist, Carol Roberg ’55, Carole Johnson ’55, Marcia Halgren ’57, Marlys Dahlquist ’57 and Lois Madsen ’59.

Congratulations to all of us!  We surpassed the class donor goal set for us (Alumni Fund 2001-02 which ended May 31st).  We had a 75.4% record with 126 donors!  Thanks for your participation and your support of our alma mater…………..now to the future and next year’s goals!

Your help at our fall PHONORAMA would be greatly appreciated.  It is a great opportunity to support the 2002-03 Alumni Fund, to get re-acquainted with “old” friends via that important telephone call, and to socialize with classmates.  You might be surprised how much satisfaction can be achieved from these efforts!  If you can volunteer to call October 7-10 at the Double Tree Hotel in Bloomington OR October 14-17 at the U.S. Food Service (formerly Alliant) in Eagan, please call Carolyn (651-774-7351) and say “yes” to a great evening of college friendship and camaraderie.

Chuck Colberg, who retired in 2000, and his wife, Dodie Lofstrom ’57, spend the summer months in northern Minnesota and the rest of the year they are “wherever they happen to be.”  At least some of the time is spent in Iowa where they also have a home.

Mary Gruse Jennett is also retired.  She and her husband have a home on Big Stone Lake, but spend three winter months in Arizona.  They have a son in Arizona and a new grandson to spoil.  Their daughter (three grandchildren) lives in Eagan, MN.

John Patzwald has been the superintendent of schools for the past ten years in Anderson Township near Cincinnati, Ohio–an 8,000 student school district.  His youngest son will graduate in 2004 and on that very same day, John will retire!  He and his wife plan to move to Arizona after retirement.  John has two other sons–one is a golf pro in Scottsdale and the other is in the computer business in Dallas.  All three of his sons have followed their Dad onto the basketball courts and John says that the youngest one shows great potential and is already being looked at by prospective college coaches.  John has not been in Minnesota for 25 years, but promises to consider coming back for our 50th class reunion.  He says he has wonderful memories of his years at Gustavus.  So, John, we look forward to seeing you in 2006!

Bette Bainbridge Moe worked in the floral design department of Bachman’s Nursery for 18 years and now does piece work at home.  She is also ordained as a healing minister.  She and her husband live in Richfield and have a summer home on the Whitefish chain of lakes.  When in northern Minnesota, she is close enough to Carole Kilander Griggs, who lives on Ten Mile Lake near Hackensack, for them to meet for coffee!

Chuck Hoverson writes from Minneapolis that he “and his wife are retired and the kids are scattered and that’s about it.”  He sends greetings to his friends. 

Jean Brown Larson lives in Edina and is still a tough competitor on the tennis court! 

Barbara Brunkow Avery resides in Kentwood, Michigan, and writes that she is still doing Home Care for senior citizens and occasional COTA work.  During the summer of 2000, she had a “wonderful trip to East and West Germany…and the highlight was the Art Center in Dresden.”  [Editor’s note: Hopefully, all those magnificent paintings were saved from this summer’s devastating flood waters!!]  In December, 2000, Barb vacationed in Puerto Vallarta and in December, 2001, she was in Nassau.  This November she plans a trip to the Mexican Aztec Country.  She attended her daughter’s college graduation in Denver last spring and invites us to imagine driving the freeways with a graduation class of 7000!!!  We’re sorry to hear about your car accident, Barb, but glad you were not hurt.

Alden Backman lives in Alexandria and retired six years ago from full time ministry.  He now does some interim ministry work and, at the time of phonorama, had an interim position at Noringa Lutheran Church in Lowrey, MN.  When time permits he enjoys visiting his three children and six grandchildren who live in MN and North Dakota.

Mona Amundson Burns likes to travel (had an extended trip to Venice, Florence and Rome last winter) and play golf.  She keeps out of mischief with two part-time jobs and as a docent at the Minneapolis Art Institute.

Moon Mullin reminded us that he had written this class letter for Bob Erdman once last year!  Perhaps he would like to do it again??!!  He is retired in Oak Run, IL but does work for H&R Block during the tax season.  He recommends two books he has recently read:  Dr. Robert Schuler’s (you know the telecast minister) “My Journey” and Bill O’Reilly’s  “The Spin Zone.”

Kent and Carol Lindberg Musser leave their home in Mound to spend three months in Mesa, Arizona each winter golfing, hiking and taking day trips.  They enjoy having guests, especially their three children and families.  They usually get in a couple of rounds of golf with Faye Reber when she’s in the vicinity.  They also continue to be enthusiastic about traveling and are looking forward to a trip to Spain and Portugal this fall.

Charles and Myrtice (Jostad ’58) Haney have a Portland, OR address, but winter in Palm Springs, CA and spend most of the summer at their ranch in Montana.  They are obviously enjoying retirement!

Lynn and Bev Runez Carlson live on Beaver Street in Beaver Dam, WI.  Lynn has been vice president of the Wisconsin Council of Problem Gambling for five years, is president of the New Beginnings Homeless Shelter of Dodge County, is on the Board of the Lutheran Teenage Athletic Program (was president for many years), and volunteers three days a month at the front information desk of their local hospital.  Bev is very active as a volunteer at their church.  Kudos to both of you for your continued involvement!

Frosh Memories (thanks to Lucy Fogelstrom DeRemee who gave us many yellow and crisp issues of The Gustavian Weekly)  Here are just a few of the things you have probably forgotten!!  We’re not responsible for errors and omissions.   Anyway, Carolyn hadn’t entered the hallowed halls of Gustavus as yet so she has the ultimate disclaimer.  More frosh memories next time…

  • Remember Freshman Initiation Week including “double button,” Kangaroo Court with Judge Goldie, bowing low before the statue of Gus, and carrying the trays of seniors?!  LeRoy Sanders and Phil Peterson showed off their green beanies for a picture in the Weekly.  Acting president, Ron Brown, claimed that the talent shown at the Freshman Pepperpot would “prove to the glorious seniors that we do have talent and gray matter in the cranium.”
  • The St. Peter Chamber of Commerce hosted the freshman class to a welcoming party at the Armory and treated us to cokes, hot dogs and a free movie!
  • Our illustrious elected officers were president Dick Erickson, vice president Ron Brown, secretary Jo Gould and treasurer Bob Wagner.  Short term senator was Craig Olson while long term posts went to Mary Swanson and Byron Holcomb.
  • Fall enrollment totaled 951…60-70% were of Swedish descent!
  • Remember that first Homecoming???, picnic in Swede Park, traditional pepfest, torchlight parade, bonfire on Wahlstrom Hill, Mrs. Young’s special breakfast, etc. etc.
  • Beverly Martens, Barbara Carlson, Joan Kassekert, Corrine Wellendorf, Miriam Johnson and Barbara Brunkow were inititiated into the Home Economics Club at a tea and candlelight ceremony.
  • The college bookstore advertised “the campus in color on a nickel postcard.”
  • The regional conference of the Lutheran Students Association was held at Gustavus in November.  Patsy Jaegar, Paul Peterson, and Chuck Haney were on the registration committee.
  • Lester Bierman, Lynn Carlson, Jo Cipra, Miriam Johnson, Lucy Fogelstrom, Vonnie Anderson, Faye Reber and JoAnn Johnson quickly got involved as reporters for the Weekly.
  • Karen Johnson was selected to edit the academics section for the Gustavian; Pauline Anderson, feature section; Marilyn Swanson, sports; and Bette Bainbridge, album division.  Other energetic frosh who got involved their first year with the production of the Annual were Barbara Carlson, Jo Cipra, Helen Sandgren, Jody Lindall, Joan Kassekert, Jo Gould, and Mary Swanson.
  • Walt Richter gained fame as the campus photographer.
  • At the end of October, “Ogling with Ogie” (Vern Ogren) reported that Don Hauskens gained 255 yards and Don Roberts 207 yards for the Gustie football team in just four conference games!  Other frosh players who helped the team become conference champs were Ray Johnson, John Speliopoulos, Larry Baker, Bob Wagner and Jack Henderson.
  • Karen Sandelin did the Human Relations posters seen around the campus in November.
  • Pauline Anderson was elected as “budget balancer” for the Women’s Athletic Assn.  WAA members will remember selling ice cream bars at the high school tournament basketball games!
  • In November, Jean Lunnis ’54 wrote that “the benevolent freshman class has taken pity on all manless coeds on G.A. hill and declared open season on all unattached Gustie bachelors for the purpose of snaring a date for the big Sadie Hawkin’s Day they are sponsoring.”  Did you get your man???
  • Roger Delgehausen, Janice Samuelson, Robert Elletson and Dallas Blenkush had parts in the production of “The Madwoman of Chaillot.”
  • Freshman debaters victorious in many events were Charlotte Swansson, Ron Brown, and Dallas Blenkush.  Later in the year, Ron won the 78th Annual National Oratorical Assn. Contest at Northwestern University with his oration, “Arithmetic of Survival.”
  • Jean Brown headed the committee in charge of the sponge-throwing booth at the Winter Fair!
  • Basketball coach Gus Young said it was “the best frosh crop we ever had” --- John Patzwald, Bob Wagner, Don Dahlstrom, Bob Erdman, Jim Springer, Jerry Huse, Jack Colvard and Don Roberts.  Gusties ended in 2nd place in the conference.
  • Charles Kindgren performed as Balthazar in the Christmas opera, “Amahl and the Night Visitors.”    Beverly Matson and Phyllis Sletten were accompanists.
  • Lucy Fogelstrom painted (in tempera) a “section” window in Wahlstrom which was featured in one of the Weeklys to show our Christmas spirit for the holiday Open House.
  • The College Choir, directed by Eugene Casselman, went on a tour in January to various mid-western cities and to Canada.  Included in the seventeen new members were soprano Mary Swanson, alto Melba Johnson, tenor George Hieber, & bass Keith Garlid.

Please keep those cards and letters coming.  We love to hear from each one of you……and we do want to have a “newsy” class letter this winter.  Carolyn has already booked travel plans to Hilo in January as we are at our best with our class musings on the beach AND she has a suitcase ready to transport your news notes to the beaches of Hawaii!

Carolyn Jens Brusseau (651) 774-7351 St. Paul

JoAnn Johnson Lundborg (509) 548-6574 Leavenworth, WA   lundborgs@aol.com