Class of '64
March 2007

Winter Greetings to all our Gustie Classmates!

It’s Linda and Joanna checking in again.  And it is post ‘blizzard’ in Minneapolis.  The recital of school closings (now via email, cell phone, and TV instead of WCCO radio) is over for now and the sounds of snow plows and snow blowers fill the air.  Isn’t that enough to make all snow birds pleased with their choice of location!  Even Gustavus closed for a day.

Linda Leonardson Hallman makes the most of winter.  We’ll start with her portion of the letter.

Yesterday when I looked outside I thought I was in a violently shaken snow globe.  The wind was blowing and the snow was coming down horizontally.  It is Minnesota and it is March.  Last night as I looked out the window before going upstairs for the night, the streetlamp made the new fallen snow look like piles of diamonds.  Quite beautiful!

It has been a wonderful winter here.  When we were teaching skiing to the little kids through Tonkawood Ski School, it was warm and the ski area had made snow.  One hardly had to zip the jacket, wear a hat or gloves.  My charges were five and six-year-old girls.  Some quite dubious about the chair lift and skiing fast…  On the last day, though, they were zooming through the race poles.

Sue Bolmgren Anderson invited me to share her timeshare again in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.  It was sunny, warm, right on the ocean with lots of palm trees.  We stayed for ten days.  We arrived on a Friday night and could not check into the timeshare until Saturday.  Sue found a cheap hotel on the Internet before we left.  When we checked in we were put on the fourth floor…no elevator and we got the giggles with the thumping sounds of our heavy suitcases.  We opened the door.  OH, NO!  One full-size bed.  We were too tired to complain, so we agreed to keep to our side and made the best of it.  It was funny, though.  I wore my Gustavus T shirt but got no comments from anyone.

We had a great week, riding the city buses, going out of town on adventures, meeting new people and even saw a whale from our beach chairs.

On the plane home, Sue learned that Winona, her town, had gotten 31 inches of snow while we were in Mexico.  Her daughter said the snow was up to her crotch.  I haven’t heard from her since this weekend pile of more snow.  Oh, well, it is March and the snow won’t stay for long.

Tomorrow I leave for Arizona.  I will visit Gary Kenning, who is renting for two months in Sedona.  Hopefully, we’ll get in some hiking and painting.  Ina Street Sickels invited us to Green Valley for the next weekend.  Ina called to confirm while she was in Aspen, Colorado.  Ina and her husband, David, were in New Zealand earlier this winter.  I am excited to look up my cousin in Paradise Valley and maybe will be able to see Merideth Hougen Hale in Rio Verde, Arizona.

Thankfully, I have a wonderful son, Gus Hallman ’00, who keeps an eye on my house while I am gone.  He is working hard at his own SuperGus Handyman Service.

Three of us will drive to Colorado for the last two weeks of March.  Judy’s daughter is living in Crested Butte, Colorado.  So we will ski together and the kids will zoom down the mountain much faster than the old ladies…  Then we drive to meet a group of friends and ski at Aspen for the last week.  We’ll arrive home to do taxes and celebrate Easter.

Sue Bolmgren Anderson said she would go with me to a Mini Cooper Rally in Deals Gap, North Carolina the first weekend in May.  It is in the Smokey Mountains.  Someone who was there last year said it was beautiful.  We will be staying in Fontana Village in a cabin on Fontana Lake.  There is a stretch of highway 11 miles long that has some 300 turns on it.  Hopefully by then I will have the full size Swedish flag in 3M vinyl on the top of my ’06 Blue Mini Cooper along with some racing stripes on the sides, front and back.

I have written Marcia Weyrauch Sympson in Louisville, Kentucky that we may stop to say hi.  I do think that Ed and Neta (Frykman) Lamp are on the way too…  We hope to have time to say hi there as well.

Now the sun is shining and the neighbors and their kids are out shoveling out.

Doesn’t Linda have fun!

We would love it if all of you would send in some stories or news of what you have been up to so you can read about other classmates.  Write about what you are doing or what you think…  Or how you are celebrating your 65th?  Or did you attend any of the Gustavus reunions in Florida or the upcoming Arizona gatherings?  Or Gustavus concerts or athletic events?  Send it to Gustavus and they will get it to us so we can have other classmates read about it.  The next letter should go out in April, SO DO NOT WAIT TO WRITE.

Joanna Carlson Swanson took an early winter vacation―and is now back in Edina waiting for spring.  Jack and I love vacations by the water and spent two fantastic weeks in Sanibel and Venus, Florida.  One afternoon was spent with Karen Benson Hanson at her newly restored home on Pine Island.  Karen became an expert on hurricane restoration after she lost her home several years ago.  She lives at the northern end of the island, sees the bay out of every window, drives a red convertible, and spends six months in Florida.  It was wonderful to be with her again.  We also went biking with Hilt and Donna Olsenius Hammer on Sanibel.  That is a great place for retirees to bike– wonderful trails with no hills.  Wish we could have stayed longer.


Sue Blomgren Anderson writes:  “Life is good, retirement is fantastic.  Reconnecting with fellow classmates last fall was special.  Being at Karna Peterson’s home with Linda Leonardson Hallman and Gary Kenning paging through the ’64 yearbook was a hoot.  What a mind jogger.  If you are looking for more out of life, reconnect with your Gustie friends and family.  If your health is an issue or you just want to feel over all better, please call me at:  507-474-1451 or email at”

Mark Eckman sent this in: “I am on the board of directors of the nonprofit, Spring Point Project.  Our mission is to develop disease-free pigs to serve as islet cell donors for transplantation into humans with diabetes.  This will eventually lead to life without multiple daily insulin injections for individuals who require them to stay alive only to suffer multiple complications in midlife.  Good control of blood sugar levels has been shown to reduce complications.  Much better control occurs with transplantation compared to insulin treatment.  Thus, it is very likely that the devastating nature of diabetes with onset in children will be greatly reduced.”  Mark refers us to the website,  Mark continues that it has been an exciting and challenging experience.  All the people involved have a real passion for this work.  Most have an intimate exposure to diabetes―Mark’s son, James, has been battling this curse since he was seven.

(Spring Point Project is affiliated with the University of Minnesota.  I clicked on the website and it contains a wealth of interesting and exciting reports as well as a timeline for moving forward.  If you surf the website, you’ll find Mark’s picture and bio under Board of Directors.)

Linda Lindborg Miles married Dennis Baehr last October 7.  Belated Congratulations, Linda and Dennis!

In case you missed class news in the Quarterly, here is a repeat(or reinforcement given our age)

Lois Banke is a trainer in safe community nursing and director of education at Asante Health System.  She lives in Ashland, OR.

Alan Hoppes is an information technology manager for the Port of Tacoma.

Gordon Olseen is an agent for State Farm Insurance and lives in Tipton, Iowa.

Rudd Thabes is a family physician at the Clearwater Clinic and was re-elected county coroner.

That completes our class news!  This looks like a low―so here’s what you can do!  News can be submitted electronically to:  Make it a habit to send in information, tell the Guslink callers, or send with your gift.  Your classmates love to hear about your work, family, vacations, travel, and other activities.  Then we can share it with those who remember you fondly.  Having read this appeal twice, you will all want to comply!

Speaking of gifts, as of the end of January 31 - 34%of us had given a gift to Gustavus.  The total was just over $25,000.  Thanks to all of you who have given!  The Alumni Fund closes the end of May 2007.  That translates into just three more months to participate in this year’s annual giving.  We know you’ll want to be included.  Thanks to all of you who will give a gift in the coming weeks.


Alumni Awards Announced

The Alumni Association announces the following 2007 awards selected by the Alumni Board of Directors.  Greater Gustavus AwardGiven to those who, by deed, have notably advanced and aided Gustavus Adolphus College:  Russ and Jan (Ledin) Michaletz ’74 ’74

Distinguished Alumni CitationsRecognizes outstanding and exceptional professional achievement

Paul Peterson ’94, principal, St. Peter High School, Minnesota State High School Principal of the Year.

Margaret Anderson Kelliher ’90, house speaker, Minnesota House of Representatives.

First Decade AwardsRecognizes early professional achievement

Jennifer Pleuss Spande ’97, diplomat, Political and Economic Section, U.S. Embassy, Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

Alexander Hill ’97, senior scientist, Medtronic, Inc.

The Greater Gustavus Award and Distinguished Alumni Citations will be presented at the Alumni Banquet on Saturday, May 26, and the First Decade Awards will be presented during Homecoming Weekend, October 13.

Energy Wars

Minnesota colleges and universities competed during February in the Campus Energy Wars.  The Campus Energy Wars challenge was to see which campus conserved the most energy throughout the month.  Gustavus students and faculty made a concerted effort to change their behaviors by turning off unused lights in their dorm rooms or classrooms, unplugging appliances, and lowering thermostats to reduce energy consumption.  The culminating event was a campus competition to pedal stationary bicycles to see who could pump the most energy into an electrical generator supplied by the Minnesota Department of Commerce.

Linnaeus Symposium Celebrates Birth of Carl Linnaeus

In celebration of the 300th anniversary of the birth of Carl Linnaeus, the Swedish botanist who established genus/species used today, Gustavus will host its second Linnaeus Symposium: Linnaeus @ 300 on Wednesday, April 25, 2007.  The daylong conference will feature presentations by ethnobotanists, Mark Plotkin and Paul Alan Cox, Linnaean scholar and impersonator Hans Odoo, and author Paula Robbins, who has written about Pehr Kalm, one of Linnaeus’s “apostles” to America.

Upcoming Alumni Events

  • Tucson Gustie Gathering - March 16
  • Phoenix Gustie Gathering - March 17
  • Easter Bunny Breakfast at Mt. Olivet Church in Minneapolis - March 17
    Sun City Gustie Gathering - March 18
  • Linnaeus Symposium - April 25
  • Gustavus Association of Congregations – April 28
  • MAYDAY! Peace Conference: Community Food Security - May 2
  • Celebrating 75 years of the Gustavus Choir - May 5
  • Celebrating 75 years of Theatre Reunion  - May 11-12
  • Class of 1962 - 45th Anniversary Reunion – May 25 & 26
  • Class of 1957 - 50th Anniversary Reunion – May 25 & 26
  • 50 Year Club Reunion – May 26

Take care.  Enjoy.  Remember Sue’s advice to reconnect with Gustie friends.  Send in news.  (Send in money!)  And we’ll be in touch this spring.


Joanna and Linda

1964 Class Agents