Class of '52
May 2007

55-Year Reunion

Reunion dates ― May 25 & 26, 2007


It’s a beautiful spring morning in Minneapolis, MN, and I'm offering you an opportunity you can’t pass up!  Time is running out―SHORTLY―and if you want to be counted on the list of contributors to the Gustavus 2006-2007 Alumni Fund Drive for the BEST PRIVATE COLLEGE in the country, you must act now.  The books close on May 31.  So get out your checkbook or plastic and hurry on down to the post office ASAP.  Ride your bike if gas is too high and you just gave your last few dollars to your college of choice which, of course, is Gustavus!  Don’t be late even if your class agent is!

If you want to have LASTING INFLUENCE upon the world, you must INVEST in people’s lives.  And if you want to MAXIMIZE your investment, then you must invest in those lives WHILE THEY ARE YOUNG!  ~George Barna, World Hope International


This should inspire you!  RUTH GUSTAFSON JETTE writes that she and Chuck are putting their third grandchild through the University of Las Vegas and have sponsored eight children through Christian Children’s Fund.  They still have enough left to bless Gustavus with a generous donation as they have for years.  Ruth also writes caring personal letters to me which I cherish.  We heard from BILLIE PIERSON POLLARD from Cowgill, MO.  WAYNE FARNBERG continues to serve as a retired judge in central and northern Minnesota.  He and DOROTHY (BUGGE X55) live on Lake Darling near Alexandria, and their kids aren’t far away, Fargo, Moorhead, and Bloomington.  I think that CAROLYN MOLL TENNEFOSS has left California and moved to Biltmore, NC, near Asheville.  Such a beautiful part of the country!  She has retired after 52 years as a psychotherapist in Santa Cruz, CA.  Wow!  First, back surgery and then a knee replacement has impeded her progress, but just a little.  Carolyn, I had a knee replacement at exactly the same time.  When I see you this coming weekend at GA, we’ll share stories and compare scars!

I think WALLY DROTTS has completed his 34th part-time retirement pastorate.  That must be a record, Wally.  And more to celebrate―he and Jean’s 50th wedding anniversary is soon.  He writes, “Getting older, but God is good.”  I like that.  Dear MARION HIER FREDERICKSON and husband, Ken, had a rough year health wise.  I’m sorry.  I’m sure there are a number of us experiencing that same thing.  She says, “2007 has to be better!”  With that attitude it has to be, Marion.  HALDO NORMAN and Jane (Nielsen ’53) sent a picture of their great-grandson, Theodore HALDO Green, age 1 then.  They gave him a Gustavus sweatshirt which he’s wearing in the picture, and, of course, he’s holding a football!  If we hang on long enough, we might see his star rising on the new field at Gustavus.  He’s almost 3, and you know how quickly the years go by!  I’m saving this one for the scrapbook.

“Don’t let your eyes adjust to the dark.”  ~John Francis Maher

I must tell you of sadness as well.  HAROLD HORTON of Hopkins, MN, died in February, 2006; DONN ERICKSON, Albuquerque, NM, died last December, 2006; JIM NELSON, Palm Harbor, FL, died in February, 2007, as did LAURA CARLSON DANIELSON of Niceville, FL.  All of them are survived by close family and dear friends.  Personally, and as a class, we extend our caring and sympathy.  At one time we walked that same path; our lives touched one another; we were changed by our common experience.

MARIE SCHAFER BENSON gave me a wonderful gift, “Marie’s Memories―Farmer’s Daughter in Africa.”  From information in personal journals, diaries and letters, she has composed her own memoir beginning when she was born near Okabena, MN, growing up on the farm, her years of public schooling and then Gustavus, and finally her years with Stan as missionaries in Tanzania until 1992.  It’s fascinating to read, educational and inspirational.  I would recommend that you ask Marie for a copy, on loan if nothing else.

“Preach the gospel always, and when necessary, use words.”  ~old Franciscan slogan

There is one more matter on which we must reflect.  Maynard Jacobson and I have had a conversation about Garmame Wondafrosh and Seifu Selassie.  You all will remember them, I’m sure.  On a very white campus in the ’50s, they were quite obvious.  They came from Ethiopia, Africa, in 1948, and Garry roomed with Maynard, Jim Nelson, and Jack Clark.  I’m not certain where Seifu lived.  Maynard has written a detailed biography of Garry from his first days at Gustavus to his return to Addis Abbaba, Ethiopia, where he was executed by hanging in the city square as an example to all who chose to involve themselves in a progressive movement of much needed reform.  At that time he was about 31.  Maynard and Garry were close friends; they believed they would meet again some day probably in Ethiopia.  They never did, but in 2001 Maynard attended an international medical meeting there and was introduced to a surgeon from Ethiopia.  “At one point I told him I had a college roommate who was from Ethiopia and who returned to Ethiopia.  Upon hearing his name he indicated that it is now a famous name in Ethiopia.  The name of Garmame Wondafrosh is now in their history books as a “martyr for progress” in their country and is now taught in their schools.  He wanted to know what there was about Gustavus that led to the development of such a great man.”  This has been confirmed by others.

The reason I am telling you all this is that some discussion has taken place with the Advancement staff at the college to honor Garry through a class scholarship.  This has been at the urging of his roommates and friends.  We could

1)  Rename our existing class scholarship which is still $4,000 to 6,000 short of the minimum

     $25,000 to make it active

2)  Create a new, endowed scholarship in Garry’s memory

3)  Create a current (not endowed) scholarship of at least $2,500 per year for 4 years, a total

     of at least $10,000.

We need feedback.  I will make available to you more information regarding Garry’s life, but perhaps you have stories of your own that could be included in a rich biographical sketch.  Please respond to these questions:  Are you interested in renaming our current scholarship?  Would you contribute to make up the needed difference?  Would you prefer that we leave the situation as is?  Do you have anecdotes to share about Garry and/or Seifu?  Would you like to establish a new scholarship in Garry’s name?  Please email me directly at or send your comments to the Alumni Office at Gustavus.  I will tell you that Maynard and I are on the same page and would like to consider renaming our current scholarship.  However, we have no right to make that decision without input from the donors.

Be sure to read Mary Oliver’s poem “Wild Geese” this spring.

“You do not have to be good.

You do not have to walk on your knees

for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.

You only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves.

Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.

Meanwhile the world goes on.........

Now you go on, find it, and finish reading.  PLEASE PUT YOUR CHECK IN THE MAIL IF YOU HAVE NOT ALREADY DONE SO!  For all your gifts we give thanks.

Collect many marvelous, memory moments this summer.  Wishing you strength in the morning, peace in the evening, and a little joy in between.

Go Gusties!

Barb Eckman Krig

1952 Class Agent


Gustavus Forensics Team Continues to be National Leader

The Gustavus Adolphus College Forensics Team participated in the 30th American Forensics Association National Individual Events Tournament (AFA-NIET) in April, earning a top 20 national ranking for the first time in school history.  Fourteen of the top 20 schools are Division I institutions.  The team has had a full schedule of tournaments this year, although the AFA-NIET is considered by many to be the most competitive collegiate forensics tournament in the country.

Refer a Gustie

Are there outstanding students in your church or neighborhood?  Are there sophomores or juniors in high school who are related to you or are friends of your family and whom you think could be a good fit at Gustavus?  Please send their names to the Office of Admission at Gustavus to help recruit the next generation of Gusties.

Gusties Gather!  Hosts Needed

Gusties around the world are called to gather on Sunday, September 30th.  The Alumni Board is designating this day as a day to intentionally connect with other Gusties.  In its inaugural year last August, 60 hosts planned events.  Want to do more to be connected with Gustavus?  Sign up to host a Gusties Gather! event for your neighborhood or with your friends.  Sign up by contacting Alumni Board member Dick Swenson ’62 at: or 612/824-8052.

A Royal Affair — Razzle Dazzle

Save the date!  Saturday, October 27, 2007 is Gustavus Library Associates’ biennial benefit for the Gustavus Folke Bernadotte Memorial Library.  It will be held at the Sheraton Bloomington Hotel in Bloomington, MN.

If you have volunteer time to offer . . .

If you have an auction item to donate, or know someone who does . . .

If you know someone who should receive an invitation . . .

If you would like to contribute financially to defray expenses . . .

We’ll welcome your call today!

Co-chairs:  Susan Engelsma Wilcox ’73, 952/944-5972 and Nacia Dahl ’92, 952/808-3212.

Rare Flower Bloomed at Gustavus

A Titan Arum or Amorphophallus titanum, otherwise known as a Corpse Flower, bloomed in the Department of Biology’s greenhouse May 12-14 and 7,000 thousand visitors came to observe.  The first known Corpse Flower to bloom in Minnesota, this rare flowering plant is found only in the tropical rainforests of Sumatra, Indonesia.  The largest un-branched inflorescence in the world, the flower’s name comes from the repulsive scent it omits during and after its bloom period.  The plant’s cluster of flowers can grow to almost 10 feet, although the plant at Gustavus was slightly smaller.  “This plant is one of the wonders of the botanical world,” says Brian O’Brien, associate professor of chemistry who received and planted the seeds in 1993.

Upcoming Alumni Events

  • Class of 1962 - 45th Anniversary Reunion — May 25 and 26
  • Class of 1957 - 50th Anniversary Reunion — May 25 and 26
  • 50 Year Club Reunion — May 25 and 26
  • Gusties Gather! — Sept. 30