Class of '45
January 2002

Dear Classmates,

Last fall Elder Jackson, our faithful class correspondent, caught me in a weak moment and persuaded me to write the class letter for January 2002.  Many years have elapsed since my last attempt at serving our class in this way, probably around 40 years.

Well here goes.  Living as Doris (Johnson ’46) and I do about 1500 miles from St. Peter and Gustavus we sometimes feel that we are out on the far edge of Gustavus news.  All of us Gusties out here look forward to our winter get-togethers when President Steuer and Alumni Director, Randy Stuckey ’83 plan a couple of Gustavus reunions in greater Phoenix.  It is great getting news of life on the campus and also visiting with other Gustavus grads living or visiting in the area.  (Randy, when can we plan seeing you this winter?)  The Quarterly is also a welcome visitor for all of us.  (Editor's note:  The dates for alumni gatherings are given at the end of this newsletter in the "campus news" section.)

Lets take a look at some of the Christmas greetings we received from classmates and see if we have any special bits of news.  Will and Virgie (Piesold ’49) Erickson have moved back to Texas to be near family.  They are now living in Georgetown, Texas.  George and Gloria (Piesold ’47) Schwanenberg are nearby in San Antonio.  2001 was a tough year for George with treatment for lymphoma.  Fern Erickson Bennett and her husband, Harold, are in Marin County, California.  (They met at our wedding 54 plus years ago.)

Marbury and Sylvia Anderson continue to call the Twin Cities there home, but did find time for travels to Florida and the Pacific Northwest.  Bob and Carley Engwall (also Minnesotans) were bitten by the travel bug as they had trips to Wyoming, Texas and Washington.  Elder and Renee Jackson had graduations, reunions and visits with mission field friends in the southeastern U.S.  We, Doris and Mel have likewise been "travel bums" with repeated trips to northern California to visit family, an Alaskan cruise and summer escapes to Flagstaff, AZ and San Diego.

This letter seems to have turned into a travel report on some of our class members as well as the expected class letter.  Lets close with a prayer for a good year for all of us and our families.

Mel Briere

1945 Guest Letter Writer

Campus News

Hi!  My name is Tracey Hanson.  I’m a senior, double majoring in Communication Studies and Business Management.  I’ve worked in the Alumni Office all four years and can hardly believe that I’m in the middle of my last J-Term!  After a longer-than-usual Christmas break, it’s great to be back on campus.  Instead of taking a class (and doing homework) this J-Term, I’m spending my time slaving away in the Alumni Office.  It’s great to have the extra time to relax and do other activities that J-Term allows.  Having unlimited time at home each night has made for some great cooking!  And getting to watch “Friends” without worrying about the homework you should be doing instead is also a plus! 

The campus is full of life and excitement.  The theme for J-Term 2002 is "Our Global Village," and the month will be a celebration of cultural diversity as we grapple with social, political, economic and philosophical aspects of our ever-shrinking world neighborhood.  Faculty are offering 29 different classes that tie into this global theme, many of which are travel courses.  Examples include Islam and Culture, and Chinese Cooking and Culture. 

Winter athletics are also in full swing!  Gustie teams are off to a great start and all are near the top in the MIAC.

Gustie music ensembles are also very busy.  The Gustavus Band will embark on an international tour this J-Term.  The band is touring Sweden and Norway, presenting “Music from America.”  The tour dates are January 16 through February 10.  The tour concludes with a homecoming performance at 4 p.m. Feb. 10 in Christ Chapel.  The Gustavus Choir is busy preparing for their tour of the Midwest during Touring Week in February, concluding with their home concert Feb. 16 in Christ Chapel.  The Gustavus Orchestra will tour Minnesota, the Dakotas, Colorado, Kansas and Iowa.

You are invited and encouraged to attend these upcoming alumni events:

February 2      Chicago Chapter event - 6:00 p.m. dinner, 7:30 p.m.

Gustavus Choir Concert

                        Our Saviour's Lutheran Church, 815 S. Washington St., Naperville, IL

February 16    Naples Chapter event - Naples Beach Club

                        851 Gulf Shore Boulevard, Naples

                        11:30 a.m. social, 12:30 p.m. luncheon

February 17    Vero Beach Chapter event - Dawn (Ekstrom ’67) and Ted Michael residence

                        2506 Ocean Drive, Vero Beach

                        12:30 p.m. social, 1:30 p.m. luncheon

March 7          San Diego Chapter event

March 8          Tucson Chapter gathering

March 9          Phoenix Chapter gathering

March 10        Sun City Chapter gathering

More information will be sent to alumni and friends in these chapter areas.

RSVP to Alumni Office at 800-487-8437 or e-mail

As I prepare to graduate in June, I find it increasingly hard to think about leaving this place.  It hardly seems possible that four years have flown by, and that in six months I, too, will be considered an alum.  I will always carry with me fond memories of my four years here.  GO GUSTIES!!!