Class of '57
June 2007

50th Class Reunion Wrap up

Dear Classmates,

Well, we have all had a couple of weeks to digest our wonderful weekend together at Gustavus.  From all reports, everyone had a fabulous time.  Gustavus treated us like royalty!  The food was just delicious!  I will try to re-cap the weekend for all of you who did not make it for one reason or another.

Milt Brostrom ’49 started it all off with pictures and stories of what the campus used to be.  Milt is our classmate, David Brostrom’s, older brother and a math professor at Gustavus for many years.  He brought up stuff that I had forgotten about.  He showed pictures of the Art Barn, Classroom Annex, Rancherino, Myrum Field House (did you know that it was built as a hockey arena and only later did it become the basketball arena), North Hall, South Hall, Auditorium (also pictures of the Auditorium burning down), Old Main as a dormitory, (He showed one picture of seniors having a dinner up on the roof with their gowns and mortar boards on!) and Hello Walk as it used to be.  Then he showed some old plans of what the campus was going to look like.  There was a chapel on those plans that looked like a plain rectangle church.  Then he showed us the beginnings of Christ Chapel and how huge cement sides were poured right on site and put in place.  We saw the devastation of the tornado—it was heartbreaking all over again—and then the results of the reconstruction.  It was so interesting.

President Jim Peterson ’64 told us some of the things coming up in the future for Gustavus.  He continually thanked us for all the support we give, both with $$$ and presence at events.

Our next event was our chapel service to remember those from our class who have died.  The two Rogers did an awesome job of planning and executing it.  While Charlie Hendrickson and Judy Lund Erdman took turns reading Bible passages and Roger Anderson read the names, Barb Bredsten Stephens and John “Buddy” Peterson lit candles.  When they had finished, Roger Dahlin played “Behold a Host” on his trumpet and it was just so moving.  He has only gotten better thru the years.  Marcia Halgren Dale was our organist.  Her postlude was a wonderful arrangement of “A Mighty Fortress.”  We did not have that wonderful chapel when we were at Gustavus, but just being in that structure makes me feel in the presence of God.

We then posed for pictures on the steps in the chapel.  We looked very good I think.  You will see us in the next Quarterly.

Our next stop was The Dive (the old swimming pool for those who have not seen it) and a social hour.  Of course, it was impossible to get around talking to everyone, but that doesn’t mean we didn’t try!!  We only had to go up to the top floor of that building to Alumni Hall for our banquet.  Jayne Arvidson Thrasher was a wonderful MC.  Ted Granquist gave our invocation.   President Peterson talked to us again.  Bob Wahman, our senior class president, told some stories, Nancy Reiter Grimes thanked all those involved, and we ended by singing the Rouser, Remember, and the Alma Mater accompanied by Marcia Halgren Dale again.  Didn’t want the night to end, but I guess we are getting old cause we all went to our respective places to sleep and did just that!

I neglected to tell you about the golf match that went on in the morning.  Neither Clem nor I are golfers, so I can’t tell you about that.

We had some wonderful seminars to take in—Jim Gilbert ’62 on “Discovering our World,” Dr. Jeff Jeremiason on “Heating Up:  The Energy—Nobel Conference 2007,” Margaret Anderson Kelliher ’90 who is the Speaker of the Minnesota House of Representatives on “The Woman of the House,” and the last one Gene Sandvig, a speed-skater, referee, and administrator involved in the Olympics on “The Iceman.”

Somewhere in the middle of all that we had our luncheon with all the members of the 50-Year Club.  We presented our “check” to President Peterson.  Verlin Carlson spoke to welcome our class into the 50-Year Club.  He was great.  He called us “Glorious-Golden-Gusties-Geezers-Galore!  He told us it takes longer to rest than to get tired, and when we paint the town red—it takes a long time before we give it a second coat!  I agreed with all of it!

Finally, he said you can take the self out of Gustavus, but you can’t take Gustavus out of you!!  And when you think about it, he is right.  That school is just a remarkable place and I am just so happy and proud to call it my Alma Mater!

During the luncheon, someone prevailed upon Dick Gastler to relate his German tale of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs—of course with German accents.  He did that for us the first time at our Freshman Pepper Pot.  What fun!

I am wearing my 50-Year Club pin with pride.

Marlys Mattson Nelson

1957 Co-class Agent

PS—I just learned that we have 37 of the wonderful CDs left.  These CDs were made for our class with music from our era on them.  If you want one, let the Alumni Office know and they will send it out (800-487-8437).  When they are gone, they are gone—but I’m sure you all will want one, if only to see what a poor job I did on it!  Ha!

Reunion Wrap-up Continued

Marlys Mattson Nelson did a terrific job of re-capping the reunion.  The only things that I would add are regarding Gene Sandvig’s seminar and the Alumni Banquet.  Gene did the class of 1957 proud with his presentation on his career and the history and evolution of speed skating.  Not only did he give us the information with a Power Point presentation, but he also brought along uniforms and skates that allowed us to see and feel the changes that have brought about such a significant reduction in the speed of the skaters.  It was grand to have a “first person” account of his accomplishments and the sport.

The Alumni Banquet was held Saturday evening and featured the presentation of three Distinguished Alumni Citations.  Did you know that the class of 1957 has three recipients of this award?  They are:  David Swenson in Medicine in 1985, Marilyn Rhyne Herr in Law in 1991 and Charles Hendrickson in Business in 1993.  It was a wonderful way to wrap up the two days of festivities and it also gave the attendees a chance to say their final “good-byes.”

The reunion did not just happen.  It took the time and ideas of many from the class.  The planning really started in the fall of 2005 when Marlys and I attended a final planning session for the Class of 1956.  We were overwhelmed and thought we would never be able to pull it off.  To save us, Alumni Director, Randall Stuckey ’83 convened a meeting on a snowy day in January 2005 to allay our fears and give us some guidance.  Those who attended were Marlys, Judy Lund Erdman, Buddy Peterson, and me.  We got a broad outline of what we were to do, and Buddy promptly suggested Judy head the Giving Committee.  She agreed to do that as long as she could get Roger Anderson to co-chair it with her.  Fortunately, he agreed.  Early in the summer, we met with Kathy Erlandsen from The Gustavus Fund Office and she further defined our tasks.  We needed a chair for the Activities Committee; so one evening I drove to Anoka with a fat notebook of information.  Miraculously, I didn’t have to beg, plead, or mortgage my house!  Vada (Peterson) and Denny Carlson listened to my presentation politely and then agreed to take on the task.  Marlys and I agreed to chair the Communications Committee and that took care of the planners.  In September 2006 a group of 25 classmates from around the country assembled at Gustavus to do the final planning for the reunion.  Some of these worked on the committees and all agreed to do phoning for the class gift.

One of the best ideas passed on to us was to have classmates write their remembrances about Gustavus.  There were 22 classmates who shared their memories.  Approximately three were sent in each class letter.  I’m sure you found them as funny, poignant, and remarkable as I did.  I was very impressed with people’s memories.  It goes to show that the Gustavus experiences stick with you for years.  Marlys also made a CD for everyone in attendance that included songs from the era and songs unique to Gustavus.  She found this to be a challenging activity but did do a good job.

Marlys and I send a big thank you to all of the people who helped in the planning and preparation for the reunion.  Following is a list of those who were in attendance.  I have marked with an asterisk (*) those classmates that worked on a committee, wrote a letter, were a part of the programs or made phone calls.  I think that I kept good records, but if I have inadvertently missed someone, I apologize on bended knee!

Roger Anderson*

Roy Anderson

Ron Berg

Jon Berglund

Dave Borg

Dennis Carlson*

Vada PetersonCarlson*

Jerry Carlson

Verlin Carlson*

Roger Dahlin*

Marcia Halgren Dale*

Cubby DeCorsey*

Don Eckberg

Paul Eddy*

Sharon Johnson Eddy*

Jim Ellingson

Judy Lund Erdman*

Gale Falk*

Lois Wicktor Falk*

Peace Johns Finlayson

Marian Hennix Gabel*

Bernie Anderson Galvin*

Dick Gastler*

Barb Carlson Glenzinski

Marlaine Barlau Gnan*

Ted Granquist*

Nancy Reiter Grimes*

Mona Lovold Hawkinson

Beth Carlson Helgoe

Charles Hendrickson

Marcy Rhyne Herr*

Ellen Anderson Jacobson*

Ann Russell Johnson

Wally Johnson

Lois Knutson Keech

Gary Knoll*

Joyce Kirkvold Knoll*

Roger Krantz

Bob E. Larsen

Mary Anderson Linder

Rodger Lundblad

Jo Spooner Lundblad*

Norita Anderson Lundgren

Lowell Madsen

Ardell Waxlax Markitans

Glenn Mauston

Lois Larson Mauston*

Carole Swanson Minor*

Moon Mullin

Clem Nelson*

Marlys Mattson Nelson*

Earl Nelson

Barbara Ford Olson

Pat Hoecke Olson

Roger Olson

Phyllis Holmberg Olsson*

Carol Lundberg Owen

Phyllis Fox Paulson*

John (Buddy) Peterson*

Connie Wold Rome

Ruth Swanberg Sanders*

Gene Sandvig*

Pat Truhn Schumacher*

R. John Singh*

Fred Steiner

Barbara Bredsten Stephens*

Jane Arvidson Thrasher*

Bev Bloomquist Todaro*

Bette Kocourek Villesvik

Sandra Clark Vollan*

Robert Wahman*

Arne Walker*

Rod Westrum*

In addition, the following people either made phone calls or wrote a letter but were unable to come to the reunion:  Gayla Manuel Clemons, Nancy Irgens Derauf, Judy Anderson Tucker, Gary Gustafson, Eve Orfanidou Wincel, and Gaylene Carlson Drew.

And now the good financial news—we had a 79% donation rate.  There were 141 donors out of a possible 181 class members.  Our grand total gift was $631,115.  That amount includes a 1957 Class Endowed Scholarship in the amount of $30,926.  In addition, the chairs of the three committees did a challenge grant with the Class of 2007 in the amount of $1000.  Congratulations to us!  On behalf of the Giving Committee, the Class Agents and Gustavus, thank you for your donation!

For your reading pleasure, we’ve added the comments that Verlin Carlson and Steve Waldhauser ’70 made at our reunion―they did such a great job!  Enclosed too, you will find pictures of our class taken at the reunion compliments of the Alumni Office.  Also, the Alumni Office has sent out a survey to all those that attended, to get your opinion on how the reunion went, please fill it out and return it to them.

Again, it was such a treat to see everyone.  I must say we all looked pretty darn good.  Thank you all for your efforts and for coming to make the 50th reunion a very special occasion.

Nancy Reiter Grimes

1957 Co-Class Agent


Saturday, May 26, 2007 – 50-YEAR CLUB

By Verlin Carlson ’57

What a day!  What a month!  What a school!  What a class!  What a 50-Year Club!  ―Glorious. Golden Gustie Geezers Galore!  ...Seasoned citizens all!

As we get marvelously mature, it’s hard to find a decent mirror, modern soaps shrink clothes; instead of feeling our oats we eat them; you have to drink coffee on your own time, we do cerebral calisthenics to butt our brains and scare rust out of our arteries…  If we paint the town red, it’s awhile before we give it a second coat.

It takes longer to rest than it does to act tired―but not too tired for an organ recital.

It’s hard to remember being absent-minded.  We’ve seen more than we remember and remember more than we’ve seen.  …Alone with Joseph Sittler we’ve been “gathering diminishments.”

We may be getting older, but I prefer the “take” of elderly servant, Firs, in the play Cherry Orchard, played last February on campus by Kevin Kling ’79.  Told that he was old, Firs responded:  “I’ve lived a long time.”  And so we have…and some of the best of that TIME was on this campus.

In the fall of ’53 Marlys Mattson Nelson and colleagues leaped the River Warren, jumped on the running board, put their feet on the foot feet and the dimmer switch…and maybe flicked the spark a time or two.

The TRIPLE CROWN was just about fast horses and not an emblem for speedy Gusties.

The DEAD SEA was barely ailing;

RICHARD RUESCH was climbing mountains.

Jack Armstrong and Herbert W. Armstrong had not yet morphed into Lance Armstrong and Karen Armstrong.

NOW, cataracts are more often in our eyes than on rivers.

NOW, prices go up, body parts go down.

NOW, streaks of wisdom have replaced streaking to Wahlstrom…

CLMIATE CHANGE has Gene Sandvig, Bob Wahman and several others trading ice skates for water wings.

In trying to identify a major INTELLECTUAL LEGACY from our Gustavus years―among many―a set on TWIN COMPETENCIES came to mind:  1)  Nourshing what’s eternal and good, coupled with 2) an awareness of QUESTIONS may be more important than ANSWERS…For example, our campus had the “fragrance of God” along with attendant permanent verities…as a type of counter-point Dr. Alexis could point to Tennyson’s observation that “there is more faith in honest doubt than in half the creeds.”…Grounds for the CONVERSATION, springboards for nuances, learning some fine points that illuminate more than observe.

President Carlson once said, roughly, that the heart of the liberal arts is:  1)  becoming comfortable in the house of the Intellect.  2)  A major part of the intellectual enterprise is to furnish the rooms of this house...and not just rearrange furniture on the decks of the Titanic.

I have never gotten over the affection for Gustavus implanted during our years there…here…roommates, classmates, section mates, teammates…

Most details are gone, but the spirit of our experiences is carried by our memories…You can take yourself out of Gustavus, but you can’t take Gustavus out of you.

In recent years, I’ve developed a fondness for the letter “G”…as in signifying GRATITUDE as a kind of “word to live by.”  …I’m thinking the “G for Gratitude” and the “G for Gustavus” make an excellent team.

And, finally, to you established members of the 50-Year Club:  Be gentle with us.  We’ll try to be worthy compatriots for the trails and quests ahead…We can’t turn back the clock, but by being a good 50-Year Clubber, we can wind it up again…Thanks.

For the Class of 1957 . . .                                                                                                         Steve Waldhauser ’70

Let me start with some lines from your 1957 annual:

“. . . A glance into the window of the past will reveal vast changes in the modes of day-to-day existence, a shifting of ideas along various lines, and the gradual growth and enrichment of Gustavus. . . . The window of the future is hazed and the images on the other side are indiscernible. Only God knows what is in store for Gustavus, and the world of 1960 . . . 1975 . . . 2000 . . . 2057 . . .”

Well, let’s look through those windows again, from the perspective of fifty years later: your senior year, the fall of 1956 and the spring of 1957. Dwight Eisenhower was reelected President, but then, political rhetoric was not nearly so divisive—or uncivil—as it is now. What else was happening in the world as you were experiencing your final year at Gustavus?

Just a few weeks before you returned to St. Peter to begin your final year, Eisenhower signed the Federal Aid-Highway Act, creating the Interstate System we take for granted today . . . The USDA first formulated the “four basic food groups” (I’m sure there would have been five, but Chicken McNuggets hadn’t been invented yet!) . . . The Andrea Doria sank . . . The Suez crisis unfolded as Israel, backed by a secret pact with France and Great Britain, attacked Egypt—the crisis would topple the British prime minister, Anthony Eden . . . Ford introduced the Edsel . . . 200,000 Soviet troops and tanks crushed anti-Communist uprisings in Hungary. In November, Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev told the West, “We will bury you!” . . . Velcro was patented by George de Mestral of Switzerland . . . In February 1957 the Southern Christian Leadership Council was founded . . . Senator Joe McCarthy died in May 1957 of cirrhosis of the liver . . . Fidel Castro failed miserably in his first attempt to unseat Cuban dictator Fulgensio Batista . . . At a Miami radio station, new employee Lawrence Zeiger abruptly adopted a stage name—Larry King—and began broadcasting.

In 1957, as you were poised to spring into the “real” world:

Milk was $1 a gallon; bread was 19¢ a loaf; eggs were 28¢ a dozen.

A first-class stamp was 3¢.

A gallon of gasoline was—are you ready for this?—24¢.

Average life expectancy for Americans when you were born was 61.7 years  (so, if you’re sitting here today, you’ve already beaten the odds!).

The minimum wage was raised to $1.00 per hour in March 1956 (it’s $5.15 today and will jump to $5.85 later this summer as part of a three-step increase recently enacted, but buying power is actually about the same).

Average yearly income was about $4,500.

A new full-sized car averaged about $1,900—and $3,400 for a luxury model.

A new house cost about $20,000  (although the average selling price of an existing one-family home was around $9–10,000—today a trailer home in California can go for $2 million!).

The world’s population was 2.9 billion   (today it’s more than 6.6 billion).

The U.S. GDP was about $460.7 billion  (today it’s about $11 trillion—about 24 times larger, but only roughly 5 times as large in today’s dollars).

The Federal debt was $272.3 billion    (today it’s about $8.8 trillion —more than 32 times larger!).

Tuition at Gustavus when most of you arrived in 1953 was $225 per semester (or $450 annually), with total costs averaging about $1,100 per year    (for the coming year, tuition will be $28,125, and when you add $4,215 for room, $2,500 for board, and $410 in fees, it’s over $35,000!).

Total enrollment at Gustavus in the fall of your senior year was about 1,050 (the College enrolls more than 2,500 these days).

 Some 595 seniors will graduate tomorrow. About 190 of you graduated in the spring of ’57—85 with bachelor of arts degrees, 2 with bachelor’s degrees in music or music ed., and 104 with one of a number of bachelor of science degrees then offered. Another 40 or so we consider part of the class although they didn’t quite finish here. The most popular majors, in order, were business administration, English, physical education, elementary education, and social work and history tied for fifth. Some of you have practiced law; several of you work or worked in the medical/ dental profession, as doctors, nurses, med. techs, etc.; at least a dozen of you have served churches or seminaries. And, at least 45 of you went on to teach at some point in the years following your graduation, most in elementary and secondary schools, but also some in colleges and universities—and here I must deviate from the script momentarily to recognize one in particular. I was a geeky and thoroughly oblivious middle-school student in the South St. Paul school system in the early ’60s when I encountered English teacher Pernell Gault from your Class of 1957, who must have noticed some promise in me and at any rate awakened in me a love of language, which eventually led me to her alma mater and to this gathering, although I certainly didn’t know that at the time. And I wish to publicly thank her here for that.

In the fall of 1956, with an assist from pitcher Don Larsen’s perfect game, the New York Yankees topped the Brooklyn Dodgers 4–3 in the World Series—the Dodgers moved to L.A. a year later. Oklahoma (10–0) was named national champion in college football for the second straight year; and in late winter 1957, North Carolina edged Kansas in three overtimes for the NCAA basketball crown.

Coach Hollingsworth’s football team was conference champion in your freshman, sophomore, and junior years, as was the basketball team, led by Gus Young; and Vic Gustafson’s swim team won its third of what would be six consecutive conference titles in your senior year.

1957 classmates Dave Brostrom and Gene Sandvig were named all-conference in football in 1956, and Fran Bradley had been a two-time all-MIAC pick in his freshman and sophomore years before an injury sustained during military service ended his playing career; Glen Mauston earned individual medalist honors at the conference golf tournament.

And four of you have been named to the College’s Athletics Hall of Fame in the intervening years: Bob Wahman in 1991 for hockey; Gene Sandvig in 1992 for football (although, as you will learn shortly if you attend the Reunion Seminar at 2 p.m. in Alumni Hall, speed skating has been his passion for many years); Fran Bradley in 1995 for his football, basketball, and baseball prowess; and Gary Gustafson in 1999 for football and track.

Significant things were happening in science and technology in 1956–57. In September 1956, IBM introduced the Model 305 computer, capable of storing a whopping 20 megabytes of data. The first commercial disk drive, called RAMAC (random access method of accounting and control), was developed by IBM and sold for $50,000. It used 50 disk platters, each two feet in diameter; together they held all of five megabytes of data. In 1957 about 1,000 computers were sold—and not a single one had a Windows operating system! . . . In November 1956, Walter Brattain, John Bardeen, and William Shockley were awarded the Nobel Prize in physics for the invention of the transistor. Two of Shockley’s hires, Robert Noyce and Gordon Moore, later went on to start Intel Corp. Shockley himself was a featured speaker at the College’s first Nobel Conference, in 1965, and Brattain made an appearance here 10 years later.

Meanwhile, in Old Main, which housed all the sciences then, you were carrying on experiments as well, under the watchful eyes of Doc Glass (1950–1986), or Arne Langsjoen (1948–1985), or Chet Johnson (1940–1978), who still are around today to give succeeding generations a hard time!

Others who taught you and still make occasional appearances on campus these days include Milt Brostrom, Bob Esbjornson, Vic Gustafson, Phil Knautz, Ellery Peterson, and Brad Thompson. And you undoubtedly have favorite professors—legends who define a Gustavus education—whom you will remember vividly even though they are no longer with us. . . .

 At the Oscar Awards ceremony held early in 1957, Around the World in Eighty Days captured Best Picture, Yul Brenner was named Best Actor for his role in The King and I, Ingrid Bergman was Best Actress for Anastasia, and Anthony Quinn got the Supporting Actor nod for Lust for Life. But you’ll remember many other movies: Giant, The Ten Commandments, Twelve Angry Men, The Bridge on the River Kwai. The Man Who Knew Too Much gave us the Oscar-winning song, “Que Sera Sera.”

And, speaking of music, your senior year was marked by Elvis Presley, who had six songs on the charts, and Pat Boone, whose “Love Letters in the Sand” was the #1 seller of 1957. You listened to “The Twelfth of Never” by Johnny Mathis, “Love Me Tender” and “Don’t Be Cruel” and “Hound Dog” and “All Shook Up” by Elvis, “Blueberry Hill” by Fats Domino, “Young Love” by Sonny James or Tab Hunter (take your pick), “Round and Round” by Perry Como, “Little Darlin’” by the Diamonds, and “A White Sport Coat” by Marty Robbins. Harry Belafonte’s #1 album Calypso gave us the “Banana Boat Song” and a new fad.

Meanwhile, on campus, you who sang in the Gustavus Choir embarked on a two-week concert tour through Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, New York, Washington, D.C., Pennsylvania, Indiana, and Iowa;

Or, if you played in the Gustavus Band, you toured in Wisconsin and northern and western Minnesota.

Or, you sang with the Gustavus Singers or the official College Quartette, or you played in pep bands or the symphony orchestra.

As the World Turns and The Edge of Night premiered in 1957 . . . Lucille Ball and Phil Silvers were the stars of your must-see TV, but you may not have known that Lucy was a redhead since televisions were black-and-white. Leave It to Beaver debuted on TV and West Side Story debuted on Broadway. Television variety shows and westerns were as frequent then as CSI is now.

Variety shows ruled on campus too, but you also were involved in theatre—Pirandello’s Six Characters in Search of an Author, Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew, and the annual children’s play, Snow White and the Seven Dwarves—as well as other dramatic and forensics events.

On the literary front in 1957, Eugene O’Neill won the Pulitzer Prize in drama for Long Day’s Journey into Night, and John Kennedy in biography for Profiles in Courage. Lawrence Durrell published the first volume of his Alexandria Quartet. And when you could take a break from studying, you were reading From Russia with Love (Ian Fleming), On the Road (Jack Kerouac), Please Don’t Eat the Daisies (Jean Kerr), Kids Say the Darnedest Things (Art Linkletter), The Assistant (Bernard Malamud), Doctor Zhivago (Boris Pasternak), Atlas Shrugged (Ayn Rand), On the Beach (Nevil Shute). And who can forget The Cat in the Hat (Dr. Seuss)?

You weren’t yet writing any books in 1957, but Dave Swenson and his staff cranked out the Gustavian Weekly, chronicling news of all major campus events.

We loved our pageants: Marian McKnight, Miss South Carolina, was crowned Miss America 1957.

Meanwhile, you crowned Donna Reinhardt (Gustafson) your 1956 homecoming queen. Judy Lund (now Erdman) had reigned as Frost Week queen the year before, and Barb Bredsten (now Stephens) was the Lucia Queen in your sophomore year.

Verlin Carlson and Carol Sweeney (Neuman) led the Class of 1957 academically, both graduating summa cum laude. Bob Wahman was your senior class president. In the years since your graduation, three of you have been honored by the Alumni Association with Distinguished Alumni Citations for professional achievement and service—David Swenson in 1985 for his achievements in psychiatry, the Hon. Marilyn Rhyne Herr in 1991 in the field of law, and organ maker Charles Hendrickson in 1993 in the field of business. The Rev. David Pearson served on the College’s Board of Trustees between 1978 and 1984

Among the grads (and those “x’s” who left St. Peter before finishing or received their degrees elsewhere but nevertheless gather over the years with the rest as the Class of 1957), 46 are no longer with us. Of the 186 living and located, 107 of you reside in Minnesota these days, while 79 live out of state (11 each in California and Florida, 9 in Wisconsin). Traveling farthest to get here? Pat Truhn Schumacher, who lives in Camarillo, Calif., and edged out Barbara Bredsten Stephens of Sonoma, Calif., by about 14 miles. On the other hand, Verlin Carlson probably could have walked from his home!

Around 170 of you married, 49 to other Gusties (at least the first time!), including 18 who married classmates. You had anywhere from zero to seven kids; 49 of you sent at least one back to Gustavus, and I’ve been privileged to meet some of them here. Some 75 of you have returned this weekend to renew acquaintances with each other 50 years later. And I think I’ll stop now so you can do more of that!