Class of '84
April 2000

Dear Gustie:

Greetings! It just occurred to me that this is my first class letter to you in a new millennium. I don’t know about you, but I found myself feeling a bit nostalgic as one millennium came to an end and a new one was ushered in. Of course, I also started feeling old when I got to thinking that I was now in the same position as my grandparents, who lived in both the 1800s and the 1900s. Talk about sobering! Anyway, it’s a new year full of possibilities.

I’ve been traveling a lot lately, for both personal and professional reasons. I took a winter vacation with my mom; we went on a Caribbean cruise and had a lot of fun. I was particularly captivated by Curaçao, the third port of call, but all four islands were distinctive. I’ve been off to various parts of the U.S. visiting college clients, and recently had a chance while on one such trip to visit the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum. It was a fun and interesting museum (which is probably why I spent 51/2 hours there!). Soon I’m off to Searcy, Arkansas; San Francisco; and Long Island—as you can see, my destinations are diverse.

I want to take a moment to personally thank Gregg Backstrom for writing the guest class letter this past January. Ken and I know it takes time to write the letters, and we both appreciate that you gave up some of yours, Gregg, to share some thoughts with our classmates.

Next, I have some very exciting news to share about one of our own—P. Brett Smith. This past year has been a banner one for Brett, and now Gustavus is honoring him as well. As you may know, Brett was named Minnesota’s Teacher of the Year last October and is now in contention for the national award. As such, he’s been in demand as a speaker (over 100 speaking engagements) and I happened to catch him one afternoon on MPR. In May, during Reunion Weekend, Brett will receive another honor—and a first for a member of our class. Brett will be among the recipients of the Distinguished Alumni Citation. Congratulations Brett on your many honors!!!

Brett is an elementary music teacher at O.H. Anderson Elementary School in Mahtomedi. He and his wife, Jodi McCormick, who is the high school choir director at Tartan High School in Oakdale, live in White Bear Lake. Brett continues to perform and has been a leader in his profession, and is the president-elect of the Minnesota Music Education Association.

I thought you might like to read about Brett for yourself. Below is a copy of a release about his Minnesota teaching honor:

Fundraising Update

If you’ve already sent in your gift to the Gustavus Fund for this year, THANK YOU! If you made a pledge earlier this year, now is the time to make good on it (through February 29, there were $175,000 in outstanding pledges). If you would like to make a gift, you still have time. The fund year officially closes on May 1 so it’s not too late. As of March 31, Gustavus had received 45 percent of the overall unrestricted Gustavus Fund goal of $950,000. Overall support for the Fund, at that time, was at $1,503,765, due in large part to the efforts to raise money for the Kresge Challenge and campus beautification.

As far as the Class of ’84 is concerned, here are our stats:

Total in Class: 478

Donors (6/1/99 to 3/15/00) 148

Dollars (6/1/99 to 3/15/00) $14,040.11

Percent Participation 31%

Class News

A few of our friends recently passed along news and so naturally I want to share it with you. Here goes.

  • Shari McKenzie Campbell (Rochester, Minnesota) is a nurse practitioner in medical oncology at Mayo Clinic. She works with lung cancer patients. Shari and Gary Black are engaged to be married; Gary works for Ford Meterbox. Congratulations on the engagement! Shari’s sons, Rayn and Rhys, are in 4th and 2nd grades, respectively.
  • Laurey Comeau (Chapel Hill, North Carolina) works for the University of North Carolina as a research analyst.
  • Tom Dahl (Farmington, New Mexico) is currently a site manager at the Healthsouth Outpatient Clinic in that city—a position he began about the time of our reunion, which is why we didn’t see him at that time. Prior to taking this position and moving the family to New Mexico, Tom was a traveling physical therapist for American Mobile Therapists. He and his wife, Kelly, have two sons: Tommy and Jimmy (who was born June 18, 1999—belated congratulations!).
  • Joan Bayer Engstrom (West Bend, Wisconsin) teaches children with learning disabilities at an elementary school in the West Bend school district. John is the principal of Badger Middle School.
  • Loree Miner Hinderaker (Minneapolis) has been a stay-at-home mom for the past two and a half years—and she loves it! Her daughter is now three (time does fly!). Her husband is a partner with the law firm Faegre & Benson.
  • Steve Johnson (Oakdale, Minnesota) graduated from Luther Seminary in St. Paul last December with a Master of Divinity degree. Congratulations Steve!
  • Randy Lee and his wife, Kristin ’83, welcomed a son, Torsten Bernard, on January 12, 2000. Congratulations!
  • Eva (Gustafsson) Lindh (Kullavik, Sweden) lives outside Göteborg with her family. She and her husband, Börje, have two children: Sofia, 5, and Johan, 3. Eva works at IBM in Göteborg as a professional development manager with IBM Global Services.
  • Lynn (Lutz) McGinty wrote to tell us that she has reentered the work force and is now a reserve teacher in the Manitowoc Public Schools. Dan continues to serve as CEO of Holy Family Memorial Health Network.
  • Mark Munson (Marion, Illinois) continues in his position as executive assistant to the warden at the U.S. Penitentiary. His wife, April, is a personnel specialist at the same facility.
  • Pavel Pojdl now makes his home in London where he works for J+S Trading Company Ltd.

News From The Hill

• The new Campus Center was officially dedicated on April 8. It is quite a facility! The new Center (which was built to the north of the old union; the old part that included the food service has been renovated) houses the Market Place (the new dining facility), welcome desk, Book Mark, Admission Office, Courtyard Café, post office, Residential Life Office, most student organization offices, KGSM, the Dive dance floor and lounge, Student Health Services, Women’s Awareness Center, flat-screen computers of e-mail retrieval, the Diversity Center, the Career/Internship Office, the Community Service Center, the Advising and Counseling Office, the International Education Office, and the Student Activities Office. Nearly everything to do with student life is in one place, and it’s a bustling hub of activity. You can just feel the energy in the place.

• Two area chapters have events planned in May:

  • Portland: May 2 or 3
  • Chicago: May 6 (Cubs game and barbecue dinner)

• During Reunion Weekend on May 27, ORBISC, a Granlund sculpture in memory of Cecil Eckhoff ’56, will be dedicated. The ceremony will be held at 3:30 p.m. near Hello Walk.

• A few faculty and staff are retiring this year from the College. I’m sure if they are old friends that they would love to hear from you.

  • Paul Aasen, Director of Financial Assistance
  • Chaplain Richard Elvee
  • Tom Gover, Professor of Chemistry
  • Samiha Ibrahim, Professor of Mathematics and Computer Science
  • Dennis Johnson ’60, Vice President for College Relations
  • Kay Wold, Associate Professor of Nursing

• On May 16 there will be a special hors d’oeuvres supper and tribute in the Twin Cities to honor retiring Chaplain Richard Elvee. Everyone is invited! Here are the details:

  • When: May 16 (Tuesday), 5:30 p.m. (program begins at 7:00)
  • Where: Hotel Sofitel (Bloomington)
  • Cost: $25 per person
  • RSVP: By May 12 to the Alumni Office (800-487-8437; or to Alumni Events at

• If you haven’t heard already, Larry Moore ’76 has retired as Gustavus hockey coach. He is planning on entering private business in the Twin Cities.

Campus news

International House Being Built

Ground was broken during the first week in March for the new international house. The residence hall will house Crossroads, the Swedish House, and the Office of International Education. This 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. The $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

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 them posted on any e-mail address changes.

Well, that brings me to the end of another class letter. I hope your spring will be a joyous one and perhaps our paths will cross in the coming months. If not, you know you can always find me in cyberspace at Until next time!

P.S. Recently a friend sent me a bit of humor via the Internet that I thought you too might enjoy. As someone who travels for business, I found this particularly funny. Enjoy!

Occasionally, airline attendants make an effort to make the "in-flight safety lecture" and their other announcements a bit more entertaining. Here are some real examples that have been heard or reported:

1. From a Southwest Airlines employee: "There may be 50 ways to leave your lover, but there are only 4 ways out of this airplane ..."

2. Pilot: "Folks, we have reached our cruising altitude now, so I am going to switch the seat belt sign off. Feel free to move about as you wish, but please stay inside the plane till we land ... it’s a bit cold outside, and if you walk on the wings it affects the flight pattern."

3. After landing: "Thank you for flying Delta Business Express. We hope you enjoyed giving us the business as much as we enjoyed taking you for a ride.

4. As the plane landed and was coming to a stop at Washington National, a lone voice comes over the loudspeaker: "Whoa, big fella. WHOA!"

5. After a particularly rough landing during thunderstorms in Memphis, a flight attendant on a Northwest flight announced: "Please take care when opening the overhead compartments because, after a landing like that, sure as hell everything has shifted."

6. From a Southwest Airlines employee: "Welcome aboard Southwest flight XXX to YYY. To operate your seatbelt, insert the metal tab into the buckle, and pull tight. It works just like every other seatbelt and if you don’t know how to operate one, you probably shouldn’t be out in public unsupervised. In the event of a sudden loss of cabin pressure, oxygen masks will descend from the ceiling. Stop screaming, grab the mask, and pull it over your face."

7. "Weather at our destination is 50 degrees with some broken clouds, but they’ll try to have them fixed before we arrive. Thank you, and remember, nobody loves you or your money, more than Southwest Airlines."

8. "Your seat cushions can be used for flotation and in the event of an emergency water landing, please take them with our compliments."

9. "As you exit the plane, please make sure to gather all of your belongings. Anything left behind will be distributed evenly among the flight attendants. Please do not leave children or spouses."

10. "Last one off the plane must clean it."

11. From the pilot during his welcome message: "We are pleased to have some of the best flight attendants in the industry. Unfortunately none of them are on this flight!"

12. Overheard on an American Airlines flight into Amarillo, Texas, on a particularly windy and bumpy day. During the final approach, the captain was really having to fight it. After an extremely hard landing, the flight attendant came on the PA and announced, "Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Amarillo. Please remain in your seats with your seatbelts fastened while the captain taxis what’s left of our airplane to the gate!"

13. Another flight attendant’s comment on a less than perfect landing: "We ask you to please remain seated as Captain Kangaroo bounces us to the terminal."

14. An airline pilot wrote that on this particular flight he had hammered his ship into the runway really hard. The airline had a policy which required the first officer to stand at the door while the passengers exited, smile, and give them a "Thanks for flying XYZ airline." He said that in light of his bad landing, he had a hard time looking the passengers in the eye, thinking that someone would have a smart comment. Finally, everyone had gotten off except for this little old lady walking with a cane. She said, "Sonny, mind if I ask you a question?" "Why no, ma’am," said the pilot, "what is it?" The little old lady said, "Did we land or were we shot down?"

15. After a real crusher of a landing in Phoenix, the flight attendant came on with, "Ladies and gentlemen, please remain in your seats until Captain Crash and the Crew have brought the aircraft to a screeching halt up against the gate. And, once the tire smoke has cleared and the warning bells are silenced, we’ll open the door and you can pick your way through the wreckage to the terminal."

16. Part of a flight attendant’s arrival announcement: "We’d like to thank you folks for flying with us today. And, the next time you get the insane urge to go blasting through the skies in a pressurized metal tube, we hope you’ll think of us here at US Airways."

Class of 1984 E-Mail Addresses:

• Gustavus Alumni Office:

• Carole Arwidson:

• Gregg Backstrom:

• Anna Carlsted Behnen:


• Barbara Blumer:

• Susan Bodlak:

• Shari McKenzie Campbell:

• Mel Chez:

• Laurey Comeau:

• Debra Dirlam:

• Ken Ericson:

• Brian Flagstad:

• Peter Ford:

• Lynn (Fasching) Giles:

• Todd Gillingham:

• Eric Gilhoi:

• Ed Griese:

• Scott and Laurie Hagen:

• Chris Heiser:

• Jim Herbers:

• David Huls:

• Joe Janasz:

• Ann (Engelmann) Johnson:

• Kelly (Rome) Johnson:

• Jim Kapoun:

• Uwe Kausch:

• Damon Larson:

• Lynn (Barberg) Lindahl:

• Eva (Gustafsson) Lindh:

• Susan (Astrup) Lundquist:

• Gordon Mansergh:

• Steve Mattson:

• Dan and Lynn (Lutz) McGinty:

• Lois (Dobberstein) Meacham:

• James Miller:

• Vicky (Burmeister) Mitchell:

• Pete and Cassandra (Weltsch) Nelson:

• Ranel Voss Nordstrom:

• Jim Olsen:

• John Owens:

• Keith Paap:

• Agnieszka Perlinska:

• Pavel Pojdl:

• Annika Ramsköld:

• Betty Wannarka Ringeisen:

• Nadine (Thode) Rippelmeyer:

• Theresa Rocker:

• Dale Ross:

• Kristin Carlson Schultz:

• Jill Sherman:

• P. Brett Smith: Psmith@TIES.k12.MN.US

• Kevin Sheys:

• Carin Thomas:

• Linda (Williams) Tollefson:

• Rebecca (Eggert) Thoen:

• Dave Torgerson:

• Ed Worden:

• Marilee (Buss) Zalewski: