Class of '58
May 2002

Dear ’58ers

Did you miss the March class letter?  So did I!  A cold spring caused me to miss those earlier dates.  Suddenly the school year is ending, outdoor baseball is here and the Alumni Office is begging/demanding a spring letter.

Reminder, the Alumni Fund closes May 31, the end of the fiscal year.  We need donors!  The renewed emphasis is to return to the percentages in class participation.  I checked the donor list a few days ago and saw many familiar names―but also noticed some familiar names missing!  And, we need new names!

At this late date, I am willing to say (well, almost say) that the amount is not important.  We need donors!  You must have a spare envelope, or you can give online by going to the Gustavus home page at ―thanks for reading and acting!

Now, for news, recent and old.  Carolyn (Lund) and Gene57 Sandvig were at the Olympics; Gene is on the technical committee for speed skating.  Dick and Katherine Sodergren have a new grandson, Eli Jones, born January 7, 2002.  (Thanks for the gift.)  Dorothy (Palm) and Dick ’56 Chilkott continue to live in Auburn Hills, MI.  Dorothy continues to substitute teach on a limited basis.  Dick preaches about twice a month in various churches and continues his music interest by singing in the Detroit Swedish Club's male chorus.  This chorus, along with many others, will sing at the convention of the Central Division of the American Union of Swedish singers in Waukegan, IL in June.  (Thanks!)  Karen (Lange) and Richard ’59 Thorpe have retired and will be moving to Nevada.  Karen has been working at the Intel Corporation.  Karen, how about an email with news of your move or a life history, or tidbits to share with your classmates?

Dick Eklund was on campus in February and we had a chance to visit.  Dick works as a sales associate in men's clothing at JC Penney in Rosedale and also as a starter at Braemer Golf Club.  Dick and Kristie's son is studying at Luther Seminary and will be interning in Cedar Falls, IA next year.  The alumni office reported that Jim Nold died October 4 in Tomah, WI.  He is survived by his wife and three children.

Carolyn and Tom Engquist are both retired and spend time traveling, including England and Scotland last fall.  Their children live in Portland, OR; Houston, TX; and Prior Lake, MN; so part of their travels are to make family visits, including two months in Houston this winter.  They often visit Gustavus for music events.  Tom is also on a committee for a Gustavus band reunion in 2003.

Beverly (Duncan) and Roger ’57 Anderson split their time between Red Feather, CO (June-October) and the rest of the time at Sun City West.  They saw many classmates at Roger's 40th reunion from Augustana Seminary last summer.  They will also be back this fall for Roger's 45th reunion at Gustavus.  They also keep busy with volunteering for Habitat for Humanity, etc. Bev has been tutoring a student wanting to pass her GED and also serves on the Foundation Board for Bethpage in Omaha.  Beverly Gustafson Akermark continues her interest as a stain glass artist.  Ralph is retired from teaching.  Bonnie Cook Nordby just retired as a department manager for JC Penny.  Deloris Peterson Overstad had a stroke four years ago, but uses a walker and gets around.  She has 4 daughters, 13 grandchildren and 1 great grandchild!

Ellwood Johnson continues to move forward in his battles with cancer and now thinks he will live to be 100!  (I believe him.)  Roger and Judy Roettger have retired to Venice, FL to live at a golf course and play golf!  They go back to Michigan for a month in the summer―what a life!  My wife, Jan, and I had dinner with Bob and Ranae Peterson this week.  The Petersons are back from their winter travels in Texas, Colorado and Florida.  Thanks to Bob for his help at Phonorama!  Phil and Nancy Lindau were also on campus for a dinner honoring Axel and Lori Steuer.  Phil is chairperson of the Campaign Cabinet and leading the charge to raise $100 million.

Ken Kozel retired from teaching, but continues to do public addresses on occasion―fashioning his voice after Kyle Montague!  James Cone sold his physical therapy business in December, retired and spent the winter in Florida.  One son, Steve, is a Gustie and is a chiropractor in the Twin Cities.  Mary Brink Fowler continues in real estate with Prudential Premier Realtors.  Ken Jorgenson works for Harcourt, a testing business in K through 12 in San Antonio, TX.  Ken was a financial manager for Emory University for many years.  John Sternaman continues in the oil jobbing and paving business in Black River Falls, WI.  He hopes to bring his grandson to visit Gustavus soon.  John's son, Andy, is in business with him.

(Thanks to all of the above for their pledges!)

Arlene Jornlin Ramberg and her husband moved to Chisago City two years ago and love living on the lake.  They have eight grandchildren with six being under four years of age.  Robert Christenson is CEO of ConferenceStar, an Internet company that webcasts conferences and educational events.  Jim Edman retired from DuPont in September and has replaced the alarm clock with a yellow lab! (got to be a story there somewhere).  Aljean Van Winkle Loving continues to live in Winthrop Harbor, IL. 

(Thanks to all of the above for their gifts to the Annual Fund!)

Please email me at  Let your classmates know about your life!  I will be at this address for at least another year.  And, remember the May 31 deadline for your gift.  Cheers!

Owen Sammelson

1958 Class Agent

P. S. Now for some campus news written by a current Gustavus student:

Campus News:

Hi!  This is Tracey Hanson ’02 again writing from the Alumni Office.  For those of you who haven’t previously heard from me, I am a senior double majoring in Communication Studies and Business Management.  I am a seasoned Alumni Office veteran, as this is my fourth (and final) year here.  After not having taken a J-Term class, spring semester and the homework it entails has been hitting me hard.  Contrary to popular belief, the “senior slacker” final semester has been just the opposite for me.  My time at Gustavus has flown by, especially this final year.  The fact that it is March and I am still without a job is beginning to be a constant thought in the back of my mind.  It also seems to be a constant thought in the minds of my parents, although it seems closer to the front of theirs!  Spring semester has also been the final opportunity to be all together with classmates, so much time has been spent socially with roommates and friends.

As I will be graduating in June, this will be the final time you receive updates from me.  I now will also move into the alum category and step into the real world.  I’m not sure I’m completely ready for the change, but I’m darn sure that I better get ready because it’ll be here before I know it!  Here is some news from Gustavus.

Interim President Named: The Board of Trustees of Gustavus announced that it has selected The Reverend Dennis J. Johnson ’60 as the interim president of the College.  The Rev. Johnson succeeds Dr. Axel Steuer, the thirteenth president of the College, who announced January 21st that he was resigning at the end of the current academic year after having served as president for the last 11 years.

In 1985 he accepted the position as Vice President of Church Relations of Gustavus Adolphus College and in 1996 was named Vice President of College Relations.  During his tenure in the College Relations position, he twice served as interim Vice President for Development.  Previously, he served on both the Gustavus Board of Trustees and the Alumni Board.  He retired from Gustavus in 2000.  In the last year, he has served as the Bishop’s Associate for the Minneapolis Area Synod of the ELCA.  Dennis and his wife have two children.

Hello Walk On-line Alumni Community ( has been launched and Gusties of all ages are invited to join this meeting place for anything from small talk to debate to caring conversations.  Hello Walk at Gustavus is the sidewalk running from Uhler Hall on the north side of campus past the front of Old Main to Pittman Hall on the south side, which, for decades, was the main “artery” and gathering point on campus.  Even though the campus landscape has changed, the spirit of Hello Walk continues with you joining the conversation on the virtual Hello Walk.  Associate professor of political science Chris Gilbert will guest host a discussion on politics for the months of May and June.  Check it out at

Reunion Weekend for the 50 Year Club and Class of 1952 is May 31 & June 1.  A schedule of events and registration material was sent in April.

The Gustavus Alumni Fund closes May 31 – help us reclaim 50 percent participation and our national recognition for alumni giving.  All gifts, no matter what the size are appreciated.

Homecoming 2002 & All Sports Reunion Celebrating the 100th Anniversary of Intercollegiate Athletics is September 21.  Homecoming Weekend will include reunion gatherings for classes of 1957, 1962, 1967, 1972, 1977, 1982, 1987, 1992, 1997 and 2002.  Class reunions will be held in Bloomington at the Radisson South Hotel Friday evening, and Homecoming events including class and all-sports reunion events will return to campus for activities Saturday.  A schedule of events and registration material will be mailed in August.  A schedule will be published in the summer and fall issues of the of the Quarterly.

It was an extremely successful winter sports season at Gustavus.  Women’s hockey won the MIAC regular season championship with an undefeated record and advanced to the Frozen Four National Tournament, finishing third in the nation. The men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams both won MIAC titles, the first time in Gustavus history.  The women’s Nordic ski team won its first MIAC championship.  Men’s basketball placed second in the MIAC during the regular season and MIAC playoffs, and advanced to the Sweet Sixteen before losing to number one ranked Carthage College.  Men’s hockey finished second in the MIAC regular season and playoffs.  Women’s basketball finished fourth in the MIAC and advanced to the conference playoff for the first time ever. The women’s indoor track team finished second and both the men’s Nordic ski team and men’s indoor track teams placed fourth in MIAC action.  The women’s gymnastics team advanced to the NCGA National Championships.  Five Gustavus coaches were named Coach of the Year in their respective sports – Jon Carlson (women’s swimming & diving), Mike Carroll (women’s hockey), Mickey Haller (women’s basketball), Scott Jerome (women’s Nordic skiing), and Brett Petersen (men’s hockey).

Evelyn Sponberg Young’s 90th birthday celebration

The Twin Cities Chapter of the Alumni Association invites all Gusties and friends of former Gustavus food service director and 2002 Alumni Fund Chair Evelyn Sponberg Young ’33 to her 90th birthday celebration on July 25, 2002 at Mt. Olivet Lutheran Church, 5025 Knox Avenue South, Minneapolis, at 6:30 p.m. with a 7:30 p.m. program.

Evelyn will be serving her famous red velvet cake and all guests will receive a loaf of her famous Swedish rye bread. A book of remembrance will be compiled as a gift for Evelyn.  Please send remembrances and stories of Evelyn to Alumni Office, Gustavus Adolphus College, 800 West College Avenue, St. Peter, MN 56082.  Reservations should be made with the Alumni Office at 800-487-8437, e-mail at or visit our web site at, alumni, events.

NOBEL CONFERENCE® XXXVIII, The Nature of Nurture – The Early Years, will be held on campus October 1 & 2.  The conference will explore the forces that are most important in shaping a child’s personality, gender identity, and language acquisition and learning ability.  History, discoveries, research, and clinical studies will all be surveyed to draw a better understanding of biological forces and environmental influences on brain development.

For more news and information about Gustavus, check out the web site at