Dear ’72 Classmates,
Hope you all are safe, dry, and warm, in light of the recent bad East Coast weather from Hurricane Sandy. I’m your new Class Secretary and really need some news from you to include in our class column for the Spring 2013 Alumnae Quarterly. Tell me what is going on in your life! Any get-togethers with other Smith classmates/alums? I can take pictures (with identifying info about the event pictured), which we can post on our ’72 class website.
Send all your notes to me. Please respond ASAP as I have a Nov 12 deadline for receiving info to post. This info will be published in the Spring Smith Alumnae Quarterly. Thanks so much. Stefanie Cargill ’72 Class Secretary
Nancy L. Ashton: Much of 2012 has been spent dealing with cancer (cholangiocarcinoma), cancer treatment and other medical problems. I plan to be at the next Reunion!
Susan N. Begg: I was released early from Albion Correctional Facility on a “merit parole” Aug 6th. I’m now in my house in Ithaca, NY, working part-time at the Briar Patch Vet Hospital. I do in-house cytology, attend AA meetings daily, am an active member of Ithaca’s UU congregation and have season tickets for Cornell Hockey!
Shelly Feldman: My mother, age 86, fell ill in July 2011; she was in and out of the hospital until her death, May 27, 2012. I commuted between LA and Detroit many weekends to give my siblings respite and spend time with my mom. It was physically and emotionally taxing, but most rewarding. During that time I injured my spine and (separately) developed Meniere’s disease with severe vertigo. However, one hour after my mother’s mourning period ended, my daughter’s third child was born, and will carry my mother’s legacy. After the funeral I returned to LA and had seven-hours of surgery to fix my spine. I recuperated over the summer, sampling retirement. I resumed part-time pediatric work in Sep 2012. Thanks to all who supported me – I feel blessed.
Susan Gutchess: Helen Ingalls, my partner of 23 years, is now my wife! We were married Aug 2 in a small ceremony in my mother’s backyard in Sandwich, NH.
Deborah J. MacKelcan: My husband Douglas Walker MacKelcan, Jr. died on July 30, 2012, after a rapid progression of MSA. This was followed shortly by another death in the family. I have just been trying to keep my sanity while dealing with all the paperwork.
Chris Ethier Murphy: I recently retired from 29+ years as a mainframe computer programmer in the financial services industry in Hartford and Seattle areas. Totally blind, I used speech and Braille technology to do my job. Improvements in information access for the blind have been remarkable. Web site ease-of-use varies widely depending upon the design, but I am thrilled to access so much information independently and spontaneously. For years, I wanted to read the New York Times, but could not because I was blind. Now I access their web site daily. Apple is an outstanding manufacturer with products readily usable by people with many disabilities. Voice output options are free. Household appliances and consumer electronics are frustrating for the blind. My sighted husband helped me learn to use an iPhone for audible books and other apps.
Ann C. Playe: Husband Steve and I are living in Chicago with our daughter Eden and her infant son Max after her young husband died suddenly of a heart attack, Feb 2012. Eden is in graduate school; I am Granny Annie the Nanny (doing college admission work for College Karma, partly owned by Sally Rubenstone’73); Steve works in two Urgent Care clinics. Despite the sad circumstances, we have so much joy from little Max, a happy, adventurous, and sweet baby. Hope abides and life goes on.
Robin Rainie-Lobacz: Enjoying life aboard the 50′ sailboat we always wanted. We can’t afford to retire and cruise yet, so we sit in a slip in sunny SoCal until the economy improves 🙁
9 years ago I was diagnosed with bone marrow cancer and inner-ear nerve damage, caused by toxins at an industrial plant where I performed architectural services. A true “Erin Brockovich” story in Orlando, plant owner Siemens ICN admitted to dumping toxins for years. Many people were injured, too many died. After years in court, we settled a toxic tort lawsuit.
I am slowly recovering, with bone marrow cancer in partial remission. I’ll be on chemotherapy for the rest of my life, but blood counts are “almost normal” and stable. When I was diagnosed, I was a single parent. Daughter Melissa, 10 yrs old, was my caregiver until she left for Harvard, where she is now a sophomore. I am so proud of the fine young woman she is becoming.
I am creating a new life. This is not the journey I planned, nor am I where I expected to be, but I give thanks that I’m here.
Katherine Wies Dietz: Living in Boston, I see Nancy Fitzpatrick McKenna and Helen Heard Hetherington often. Best news: son Carl, 1st Lt.USMC, returned safely in Sep from Afghanistan tour.
Sec. Stefanie Solnick Cargill, 1224 East La Jolla Drive, Tempe, Arizona 85282, firstname.lastname@example.org.