Class of '61
January 2001

Dear ’61 Classmates,

How quickly the calendar moves and now we find ourselves in the New Year. One of the managers in our office had a quote attributed to Ring Lardner on her desk: "The years slip by quickly enough; it’s the days that are tough!"

These greetings and the class letter come to you from your volunteer "guest writer." As part of the preparation for our 40th reunion-year, Virgene was soliciting volunteers, so I decided to "give it a shot." If necessary, please forgive me if I have misinterpreted Virgene’s notes, misspelled names or mixed names between your children and your grandchildren. You can be the judge of how well I have done.

If you can help with the reunion planning, please contact Virgene (e-mail is "" or phone 763-588-6338) or call the Gustavus Alumni Office at 1-800-487-8437. We need ideas AND volunteers to assist with the nitty-gritty details of making them work. As a reminder, our reunion will be in the fall to coincide with Homecoming on September 21 and 22, 2001. The Friday evening dinner or reception will be held at the DoubleTree Hotel (Minneapolis Airport) near the Mall of America while the Saturday luncheon, homecoming events, and football game will be held on campus. More details will be forthcoming in future letters. Save the dates!

Pictures could be an option for a subsequent class letter if we can get them from you and find the scanning equipment to make the letter preparation viable. Do you like this idea? Do you have pictures of Gusties from get-togethers? From work or church? Let Virgene know what you think.

Christmas in Christ Chapel, Heaven and Nature Sing was performed the first weekend in December under the direction of Chaplain Brian Johnson. Gustavus continued its somewhat non-traditional programming with this impressive portrayal of Creation with numerous readings, many excellent photographs displayed on a huge screen in front of the Chapel, plus choral and instrumental music.

Year-end often is associated with the clean up of our financial records and tax preparation. For all of you who have given so generously in 2000 we would ask one thing more: see if your employer or insurance company matches gifts to institutions like Gustavus. Lutheran Brotherhood and Aid Association for Lutherans do match gifts; you can get the forms from the Development Office (1-800-726-6192). Some companies match gifts from retirees too. Matching gifts are an effective and no-cost method of leveraging what you have already given. Please check and then mail your forms.

Happy New Year! And what is my wish for you and yours in the New Year? I like the hopes (for his children and grandchildren) articulated by an associate editor of the Washington Star-News more than 30 years ago:

"One hopes that their world will be worth living in and that they will make their way in it; that they will love and be loved, that they will know their duty and find the strength to do it, that they will find a sufficient measure of joy to counterbalance the necessary sadness that each life holds.

One hopes that they will not fall into the error of believing that ties of blood are unimportant, that bonds of community are meaningless, and that a love of their native land is somehow shameful.

One trusts that they will recognize that they have duties as well as rights, obligations as well as privileges, for without this recognition they will inhabit a spiritual wasteland."

May all of this, and more, be yours in 2001.

So many of you have announced retirement and grandchildren, I decided to try for some categories. Again, please let Virgene know if you like this style or have suggestions of any kind.

The Alumni Office has added some specific campus notes and news items. They convey the vibrancy and sense of mission that are at the core of our beloved college.

Campus News

The Gustavus campus is enjoying another busy and exciting January Term with 2300-plus students enrolled for credit! We are offering over 100 January Term courses, including 16 travel courses (plus 36 international courses through our UMAIE consortium). There are also 15 courses on the special Environmental Studies theme for J-Term 2001. Some of these courses include, Chemistry in the Environment, The Literature of Winter, Geographical Issues in the Third World, Global Environmental Change, Amazonia: An Eco-Historical Perspective, GIS in Environmental Analysis, The Changing Face of Agriculture, and Environmental Journalism. Next year (2002) the January Term theme will be "Global Village" and will feature both international and domestic diversity focused courses. After that J-Term themes are planned for "Service-Learning" (2003) and "Undergraduate Research" (2004).

You are invited and encouraged to attend these upcoming national chapter alumni events. Invitations are sent to alumni in chapters. For more information, please call the Alumni Office at 800-487-8437 or look on the web at

  • Albuquerque Chapter, Gustavus Choir Concert, January 28
  • Santa Fe Chapter, Gustavus Choir Concert, January 29
  • Denver Chapter, Gustavus Choir Concerts, January 30 & 31
  • Rapid City Chapter, Gustavus Choir Concert, February 1
  • Sioux Falls Chapter, Gustavus Choir Concert, February 2
  • Twin Cities Chapter, Gustavus Choir Concert, February 4, Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Church, 12650 Johnny Cake Road, Apple Valley, 3:30 p.m.
  • Gustavus Band Home Concert, February 4, Christ Chapel, 7:30 p.m.
  • Gustavus Choir Home Concert, February 10, Christ Chapel, 7:30 p.m.
  • Marco Island gathering February 24
  • Vero Beach gathering February 25

Reunions 2001

50th Anniversary Class and 50-Year Club reunions will take place on campus, May 25-26 for the Class of 1951 and the 50-Year Club. Registration material will be mailed in April.

A reminder that all other reunion classes (1956, 1961, 1966, 1971, 1976, 1981, 1986, 1991 and 1996) will have their reunions at Homecoming on September 21-22. Class gatherings will take place in the Twin Cities at the DoubleTree Hotel, Minneapolis Airport at the Mall, on Friday, September 21. Homecoming activities will take place on campus on Saturday, September 22.

Will you help Gustavus remain strongly church related? Encourage your ELCA congregation to join the Gustavus Adolphus College Association of Congregations. There is no cost. For more information, call the Office of Church Relations at 800-726-6194 or e-mail Craig Johnson at

Class News:


Remember the opening quote that it’s the days that are tough? Lorna Jafvert Reed (Friendswood, TX) last taught full-time in 1969. For the 2000 academic year, she tried a contract and is teaching kindergarten. Bottom line is that she got the class from Hell! She calls them her "Post Office" class, as she is sure that their pictures will be on the wall of the post office soon. On a happier note, Eric plans to be married in April. Milt retired at the end of October and was considering going back as a contracting engineer. Mary Nelson reports that "Bethel New Life" is working on a new "smart, green building." Fuel cells to heat the building are among the innovations to be incorporated in the structure. She does a lot of traveling to various meetings and especially to Washington, D.C. Mary spent time this past summer at a Minnesota lake. John ’59 and Linda Lundgren Erickson and others were also there.

Don Bjorklund was hunting grouse and turkey near Grand Marais in mid-October. He has children in Farmington, MN and Milwaukee, WI. Mary Ann Swanson Strand has been supporting friends who are battling cancer. She has grandchildren in college plus one who is a high school senior and another in 9th grade. She was in Minnesota this summer at the family cabin.

Pauline Matson Smith lives in Hudson, WI and works as an accountant for Rebuild Resources in St. Paul. Pauline shared that her daughter, Denise, had a baby girl in April. Last December (1999) she moved from a town house to a "regular house with grass to mow" and loves it! This spring they plan to move their pontoon from the Mississippi River to Lake Lida in Ottertail County. Working on some house construction projects, Pauline observed that "50 pounds sure is a lot heavier than it was 40 years ago." Paul and Alice Nelson Holm were in Africa in June, visiting Tanzania. They had a great time, which included a safari and visits to schools. During Phonorama, Alice said they were planning to go to Northfield (Paul had a conference at Carleton and a brother lives in Northfield). Katie (living in Michigan) has a girl and Karin has a two-year-old in Superior, WI.

Bruce Johnson lives on a lake between Alexandria and Fergus Falls, MN. He has a fishing business and gets to fish a lot. He had just released a 6-pound walleye when Phonorama called. Here’s a plug for Bruce’s "smart bobber," a lure he designed and sells. Bruce travels to see his children, a daughter who lives in New Jersey and a son living in Seattle. Mary Beth Longe Malloy and her husband, Dan, bought a home in the woods not too far from their store. They are semi-retired and have hired help (for "Malloy Custom Pianos" in Cedar Rapids, IA) so they can be gone more. They like to golf and go somewhere warm in the winter. Their son-in-law restores old pianos for them.

Bill ’60 and Carol Hansen Benson (Kandiyohi, MN) traveled to London for the marriage of their son, Dan, at Easbourne on the English Channel. Dan was the "genie" in "Aladdin" for a pantomime tour of Great Britain during the Christmas holidays. We extend our sympathy to Bill on the death of his mother, Ellen. Gary Hillman and his wife, Judy, were in Minnesota the week before Phonorama; they enjoyed the fall colors, but didn’t think they compared to what they saw in New England several years ago. Two weeks earlier, the Hillmans were in Washington, D. C. to visit their daughter, Stephanie. While there, they visited Phil and Carol Cope Nord who live in nearby Glen Burnie, Maryland. Their son, Lee, lives in Denver.

Buckle up out there! Judith Lenzen was in a major auto accident on July12th. She was not injured and said her air bag and seat belts saved her. Judith reports she is not retired, "just tired." Now she has a 22-mile commute to work from her home in Sun City West, AZ. Marcee Muller hopes to teach one more year (2002). She has lived one-year in a house with only one level. Marcee remains very involved with athletics; her activities have been constrained by the eye surgery that was necessary this past summer. Recovery has been hard and necessitated sleeping on a special donut-hole pad. Marcee was in Reno during June to participate in the National Bowling Tournament (and others as well).

Carolyn Olson Lamphere (Lincoln, NE) said she and Bob are both still working. They spent 3-4 weeks this past summer in Alexandria. Go BIG RED!

John Domes and Joleen enjoy camping in northern Minnesota, Iowa, and the Rochester, MN area. They have eight grandchildren and one great grandchild. Three of the grandchildren live in Albert Lea, two live in northern Minnesota, some live in Grand Rapids, MN and some live in Florida; it means great visiting! Jim and Judie (Brown) Mortenson have bought a new condo in Bonita Springs, FL. They will be there in November and potentially again in February. Neither Jim nor Judie has retired. Judie loves her work at St. Stephen Lutheran Church and the congregation is growing. Daughter, Chris, and husband, Don, live in a new home in Mounds View. Greg lives in Osseo. Their granddaughter, Alisha, is in 7th grade and grandson, John, enjoys playing hockey.

Alan Eliason teaches courses three days a week at Willamette University in Salem, OR. He has been there for four years and is a professor of information technology. Willamette University is a lot like Gustavus, according to Alan. He has written about 25 books. They travel quite a bit and have skied in northern Italy. His youngest son runs a violin school in Portland (40 students) and plays in the symphony orchestra. His other son lives in Denver and is a climber.

Janet Williams Kaas (Pottstown, PA) loves square dancing and sailing. Her mother is 91 and lives only 10 minutes away. Steve, who is her youngest, married Margaret in May; they live in Maryland where Steve has a new job. Nancy Hunziker Herforth (New Paltz, NY) said "too much of business." They are doing assembly programs for elementary schools and were doing one on "Rider of Freedom" when Phonorama reached her. Nancy: can we get a "Rider of Freedom" to participate in our 40th reunion celebration?

Craig and Arlyce (Peterson) Johnson are still working. Their son lives in Columbus, OH and their daughter in Milwaukee, WI; both are still single. Arlyce’s mother passed away the week before Phonorama at age 94. You have our sympathy, Arlyce.

Maralyn Magnuson Anderson enjoys living in Lancaster, PA, one hour from Philadelphia. Maralyn was in Grand Forks, ND in May to celebrate her father’s 100th birthday. Her brother runs the family-owned grocery business. Joanne Linnee likes playing with her granddaughter in Winona. She works part-time at Pendalton’s Engraving (awards) with a variety of responsibilities and is currently upgrading her computer skills. Joanne likes Winona and sings in a couple of choirs. She works with a Gustie (who was a freshman when we were seniors) and knows other Gusties at her church including the pastor (a mid-70’s Gustie).

Jim Lehman (Newport News, VA) is semi-retired. He owns property and likes to travel a lot. Scandinavia, France? No. Africa and Hawaii. His son is an army officer in Hawaii. Jim has a 45-foot sailboat for sailing in the Chesapeake Bay area. He was newscaster for some years and also did interviews and documentation for commercials. Miriam Lind Lagus was in New Zealand for a medical conference this June. She said that New Zealand was very beautiful in winter. She attended the Nobel Conference and was looking forward to Christmas in Christ Chapel.


Sandra Allumbaugh Bolin and her husband live on a lake. Both are retired and find themselves much busier than when they were working. They live within 20 miles of four grandchildren and have seven plus one "on the way." All are in Minnesota. Sandy is into genealogy. In addition, twice a year she and Bill spend a week working at an Elderhostel with Rev. Clair Johnson.

David Wettergren retired as superintendent of schools in Stillwater, MN and began some "short work" for Springsted, Inc. The "short work" occupies three-fourths of his time and he now is senior vice-president for management services. Dave has started on special studies in education and also does studies in many areas of government. He and Janet have a grandson, Samuel David, born in April to Douglas ’89 and Isabelle in San Leandro, California. Congratulations to Ron Zaniewski! Ron, who is a retired teacher, was inducted into the Gustavus Hall of Fame on October 28. He competed on Gustavus teams that won four conference team titles and was undefeated in the 100-yard-butterfly during four years of competition. He also set two MIAC records during his outstanding career. We have just heard from Arnie ’60 and Carol Weisbrod Johnson that Ron is scheduled for open-heart surgery in late January. During the surgery he will receive a valve. Ron, your classmates pray that the surgery is successful and that you will experience a timely recovery.

Marilyn Clark Tanner (Hot Springs Village, AR) had just returned from a trip to Texas. Retirement is great! Jim golfs and they have a motor home. Her father, 88, is not doing well and Marilyn and Jim help her mother with him once a week. Marilyn and Jim had a great trip to Europe; spent most of the time in Italy and saw the Oberammergau Passion Play in Germany. Mary Erickson Lindahl quit work to take care of her husband who has had back surgery, issues with the carotid artery, pneumonia, and infections. Her daughter graduated from River Falls (WI) in 1999 and teaches English and Spanish in Cannon Falls.

David Linne feels like "King of the Ranch" now that he is retired. However, he has a job at Rutzorgan Co. (forgive us if we butchered the spelling) where he had wired keyboards the day we called. Dave and Jean will be grandparents in December! They tore down their old cabin and are building a new one. Dave Frykman has retired from teaching, but keeps active by continuing to coach girls’ basketball. He was in Norway recently and hopes to return to Europe next year. His nephew is the quarterback at Moorhead.

Samuel Dahlquist (Vassalboro, ME) is retired, but has taken a full-time position in a Virginia hospital pharmacy where he serves veterans on an outpatient basis. During the months between jobs, Sam and Anita were in Minnesota for a visit. Mary Strand Anderson (Springfield, VA) says retirement is highly recommended. This status permits her to be a perpetual volunteer. She is heavily involved in a group making quilts and animals for overseas folks and for flood victims in North Carolina. Two grand babies were born the past year, Trevor, son of Carolyn and Greg McFall (Maryland) in February, and Fletcher, born to Krista and Jason Reed on September 10 in New Jersey. The "battle of the boys." Mary also has one granddaughter.

Ralph Swenson retired as the director of corporate accounting for 3M at the end of 1999. In April, he was elected to the St. Croix County (WI) Board of Supervisors where he serves as vice-chair of the finance committee and as a member of the personnel committee. Their first grandson was born in Shanghai (he is a U.S. citizen) in September of 1999. Marlys (Schneider ’63) and Ralph have been traveling to see little William. They went to Shanghai in March and took three trips (late summer and fall) to Ithaca, NY where Paul, wife and son now live. Paul is completing his final year of graduate studies at Cornell University. Marlys and Ralph took a tour to Europe in July that included the Oberammergau Passion Play. Their daughter lives in Milwaukee. Janice Wenlund Weir said Bob is fully retired, but keeps busy with odd jobs. They have eight grand-children aged six months to five years. They travel for a month to someplace warm and planned to be at Disney World for 2-3 weeks this year.

Janice Berntson Davick said her husband is mostly retired. She works about two days a week at "Happiness Is" gift shop. Liv (hope we spelled this right) is still in broadcasting in Los Angeles and lives in Culver City, CA. She’ll marry one and a half years from now. Andrew is in his first year at Hamline Law School. He married Shana Brewer on April 29, 2000 in Cedar Rapids, IA. Janice’s mother is 91 and lives in Willmar.


Karl Ostrom moved to Tacoma, WA where sons, daughters and grandchildren live. He said it was hard to leave northern Minnesota. Karl will be a consultant in environmental policies. He has children working in the same general field.

Michael and Julianne (Johnson ’62) Blaese lived in Maryland for 33 years and now live in New Hope, PA where Mike works for a little biotech company. Mike commented that company life is different. There are multinational considerations and one needs to worry about raising funds! Elise ’89 is working on her MBA at the University of North Carolina. Kristy is an air traffic controller who will be married during the year.


Corrine Goplin Slaughter (Farmington, MN) had just received word of a new grandson at Phonorama (the fifth grandchild). Soren Malm, was born to Scott ’87 and Ann (Jaeger ’87) Malm on October 18 in St. Paul. Corrine likes retirement. She spends time at their cabin during the summer and enjoys traveling. Their youngest son lives in France. Don Fultz and Eunice (Holm ’63) were in Africa (Tanzania) for five and a half months and will be rotating in and out on a three-month cycle. A granddaughter, Lauren Ashley, was born on September 5. They also have a grandson who is two and a half.

Rudy Gulstrand, Jr. said they are grandparents. Julie ’90 and Bill St. Leger adopted Alexander in May of ’99. They are moving to Nova Scotia on Cape Breton Island. Rudy was in Minneapolis to help his mother with some minor surgery. He has a sister living in the Twin Cities area. Lowell Rasmussen lives on a lake near Nevis, MN. His wife’s mother was 91 on November 7. They plan to go to Florida again for the winter; they stop in Atlanta enroute and return there for Thanksgiving and Christmas. They have a new grandchild: Elsie Alexis Leach born in St. Paul one day after Labor Day. In total, there are five grandchildren┬ż four girls and one boy.

Tom and Barbara Jeske Norquist (Modesto, CA) have a new grandson: Alden Maxwell Norquist born to Martin and Joshlyn in Turlock, CA (there’s a Swede or two there!). Esther Lippert (Dick’s Mom) lives there. She is 91. Tom’s mother is still working in the office at age 89. Barb’s mother was celebrating her 90th in Oakdale during November.

Dale Gustafson (Manchester CT) is still a Twins fan. He retired on his birthday, March 22, from his job in vocational counseling. His wife, Patricia, had two major surgeries this year and is still recovering. He and Patricia have a new grandchild: Liz Barry born 9-13-00 to Britt and Mark Barry in Philadelphia (Mark is with the Philadelphia Enquirer). Ned and Sue (Peterson ’63) Larson have a new grandson: Connor Michael Reagan born January 23, 2000 to Barbara and Mark in Colorado. Ned and Sue spent August in Colorado spoiling him. Ned drove to Bulton, CA to meet Tom Hedin ’60 who is battling cancer. Tom and Ned were roommates for one year at Gustavus. Ned works three days a week and golfs two days a week. Some of his golf time is spent playing in tournaments.

Jan Sanftner Elvekrog has a new title: assistant dean of the college of arts and sciences at Oakland University. Maury’s firm is involved with a lot of writing. They took a Caribbean cruise in the winter and loved it. During June they spent almost two weeks in South America in conjunction with a Rotary Club function in Buenos Aires. Maury is the president of the Detroit Area Rotary. Kirsten started at the University of Chicago on an MBA. Jon and Allison (San Francisco) have their first son, Jon Payne, on July 18, 2000.

In closing:

These are all the news items from Phonorama, the Alumni Office and your E-mails. To paraphrase Dean Martin: "Keep those cards and letters (E-mail and phone calls are fine too) coming in: me and my Jeanie (Virgene in this case) read every one!"

God Bless You All!

Ralph Swenson

1961Guest Writer