Class of '69
April 2000

Dear Classmates,

I'm starting with many apologies for being so late that the current class letter will have to mailed in a shoebox, given the amount of good material that I've accumulated. But since there are some important things that you need to know now, I'll postpone the letter with the Christmas news a little longer.

It seems to me that it should still be January, but something happened to it. All of a sudden it was time for the Girl Scout Sunday potluck―and that's in March! True to form it's been a fast slide to this point in the year. Time's whizzing by so fast I almost feel the wind whistling in my ears. Unfortunately my colleagues sometimes suggest another cause, but this year I seem to be grabbing onto a sturdy table and trying to just hang on.

First, as always, thanks so much for your generous support of Gustavus. It's incredibly appreciated! Our class maintains such an impressive percentage of donors―thank you all for being part of that impressive group.

One quick reminder of another sign that time's slipping away―I went from winter to needing to include a note that the fiscal year ends May 31. If you have a pledge still out it would be especially well received if it gets in for 1999-00.

The Campus Center was dedicated last Saturday―the same day as the Gustavus Association of Congregations annual convention. Unfortunately we didn't get to that this year, but what I saw of the Campus Center on St. Lucia Day was incredibly impressive.

On Thursday, May 18, the Alumni Association will host a Faculty Awards Banquet in Alumni Hall to honor faculty and administrators who are retiring and those who have served 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, and 40 years. Retirees this year include: Director of Financial Assistance, Paul Aasen; Chaplain Richard Elvee; Professor of Chemistry, Tom Gover; Professor of Mathematics and Computer Science, Samiha Ibrahim; Vice President for College Relations, Dennis Johnson '60; and Associate Professor of Nursing, Kay Wold. The social hour and dinner starts at 5:00 and the cost for the event is $10. If you are interested please reserve by calling the Alumni Office at: 800-487-8437 or email

Two days prior to that, Tuesday May 16, there will be a special event to honor Chaplain Elvee. "Everyone is invited to an hors d'oeuvres supper and tribute on Tuesday, May 16, 5:30 p.m. at the Hotel Sofitel in Bloomington. A program will begin at 7:00 p.m. The cost of the event is $25 per person. RSVP to the Alumni Office by May 12. Phone: 800-487-8437, e-mail, or in the Alumni Events at

Saturday, May 27 is the date for the dedication of ORBISC, a Grandlund sculpture in memory of Emeritus Vice President for Alumni Affairs Cec Eckhoff ’56. The dedication will be on campus at 3:30 p.m. "near Hello Walk." Following the dedication there will be a 4:00 vespers service and the alumni banquet for all at 5:30 p.m. If you are interested in attending I know the above numbers will put you in touch with the specific location.

Ground was broken during the first week in March for the new International House. The new residence hall will house Crossroads, the Swedish House, and the Office of International Education. The new facility will support the mission of bringing an international perspective to the curriculum and preparing students to communicate and compete in the new millennium. The 80 bed, 30,000 square foot facility is scheduled to open in the fall of 2000. This $5.4 million building is going up west of Olin Hall.

Forensics Team Earns International Awards ― The College speech and debate team captured two championships and six other awards at the recent International Forensics Association tournament in Paris, France. Both Gustavus debate teams compiled a 3-1win-loss record. The team's strong overall performance earned Gustavus a fourth-place Sweepstakes Award. Gustavus attends international forensic competitions every other year.

Men’s swimming and diving team completed its most successful season in Gustavus history finishing undefeated in both non-conference meets, with a record of 7-0, and conference meets, at 6-0. At the MIAC Championships, Gustavus placed first for the first time since 1960. They beat conference power St. Olaf, who had won 20 consecutive MIAC titles before this year. Earlier in the year, the Gusties also handed the Oles their first conference dual meet loss since 1981, breaking an Ole streak of 96 straight wins. Please read the Spring Quarterly for complete winter sports recaps or visit the athletics site at

As I finish by again directing you all to a web site, don't we need to marvel at the wonder of it all? The other day I was complaining that it was taking too long for messages to appear on my screen and one of my same age teaching partners reminded me that I can remember putting a purple piece of paper on a round metal drum, rapidly turning a handle, and getting full of purple ink.

In spite of the fact that I'm about to head out into snow to pick up Karlie at swimming lessons and race over to church from there, I wish you a lovely spring―which I know it soon will be again. Sunday evening we went for a walk on our favorite trail at St. John's and got to listen to and watch the resident loons―presently no doubt lamenting their too early arrival. For now I'll simply say that we'll look forward to the opportunity to get together at the Elvee event. We'll need to treat it like a party to gradually move up on the idea of Gustavus without him. Hopefully he will return frequently and maintain visiting hours. Last summer at synod I suggested that perhaps he might want to consider posting his availability in advance.

Take care,

Jane Norman Leitzman

1969 Co-Class Agent

P.S. Members of the New Millenium: Knowing that we are in a technological age, we want to encourage all alumni to get involved and get online. If you have access to a computer and the Internet, we hope you will check out the Gustavus Alumni Association homepage regularly. We publish information about upcoming events, post class letters, provide information about the Alumni Office, list e-mail addresses of alumni and more. Check us out under the alumni section at

We are planning on corresponding on a regular basis with all alumni who have e-mail addresses. Please send a message to so we can get you on the list. (Also, be sure to keep us posted on any e-mail address changes.)