Penn Willets Fullerton
124 Linden Ln.
San Rafael, CA 94901
Susan Sudduth Hiller
4811 Garrison Rd.
Little Rock, AR 72223
Keenan Colton Kelsey
101 Hawthorne Ave.
Larkspur, CA 94939
Jane W. Nelson
407-C N Hamilton St.
Richmond, VA 23221
Dear ’66 classmates,
How many of you attended your 50th high school reunion? Both Keenan and I felt that we had come full circle with our classmates and were able to share our feelings, memories and experiences so openly. Our SBC 50th is not too far away (shock of shocks!). Let’s start preparing now to be there! Our 45th was unexpectedly a meaningful weekend at Sweet Briar. The best part, I think, for the dozen of us who attended, was the luxury of sitting around and getting to know classmates whom we perhaps hadn’t gotten to know well when we were at SBC.
Thanks to all of you who responded with your news!
Let us know if you did not receive the email requests so that we won’t miss you next time.
Robin Cutler Maw reports that her two high school reunions last fall were wonderful for her. She still lives in N.Y.C., but commutes often to Calif. to see children and grandchildren. So Keenan, Randi Miles Long and I hope to hook up with her soon! Robin recently got together with Ann Mason Curti, also Ginny Butters. And it sounds like Robin is in the midst of getting a new book published!
Penny Steketee Sidor was blessed with her first grandchild Danny this past Christmas Eve. On Labor Day weekend her second son was married, so there’s lots of happy family times going on!
Randi Miles Long and Herb have had a great year of Reunions: their 50th high school in Westport, Conn. and two more in Md. this fall—she has loved reconnecting with classmates from those years, and particularly getting to know others she had not known well before. She found this to be very true at SBC reunions as well. Preparing for her mother’s 90th birthday has been a huge focus for Randi this year: boxes of letters, genealogy, finding people she thought were lost, all rewarding but overwhelming at times! Randi’s life is blessed with four wonderful grandchildren from daughter Melissa in Charlotte, and with having son Kent living right nearby in the Bay Area. She looks forward to seeing everyone at Reunion!
Andrea Pearson Pennington is welcoming her first two grandchildren, born in 2011. “They will keep us young!” she reports. Having now retired after 28 years as Juvenile Court Referee, she spends time volunteering with children. “Second graders are full of hugs and always glad to see me!” She works with the League of Women Voters, especially in areas where their efforts intersect with opportunities for kids. Another project is civic engagement with teens from a distressed community in Mobile. These bright and enthusiastic kids give her hope for the future!
“Retirement continues to be good to us!” writes Martha Madden Swanson from D.C. She and David enjoy classes at Georgetown as well as athletic events on campus, especially the sailing team. They followed the team to Austin this past June to watch them win the Co-ed national championship! Martha reports that they have also been traveling abroad this spring in between the other parts of their busy life. She and David continue to raise funds for a Jesuit school in the slums of Kenya, for children whose parents are AIDS victims. This has been extremely rewarding work. Martha and Dave’s children live in both the D.C. area and in L.A., where she and Dave love to visit!
Joe and Pamala Jones Brown celebrated 46 years of marriage in Aug. and enjoy living close to their four sons and five grandchildren. Pam’s jewelry design business, “Stoneprints Jewelry,” is going well with website and trunk shows. She includes many artifacts gathered from travel over the years in her work. Pam says she uses her French major often and that Sweet Briar prepared her well for every aspect of an entrepreneurial business. She recalls getting to take private classes on Chinese history and art with Dr. Roland because no one else had signed up! Her walks in the SBC dell inspired her to a lifelong respect and appreciation of Earth’s gifts.
Muriel Wikswo Lambert continues to teach and do research at N.J. Medical School. She too has an adorable new granddaughter and expects the second one mid-December! All three of her children are in medical school! Go, Muriel!
Tom and Mary Anne “Coon” Calhoun Farmer have been on the road since Tom’s retirement from real estate: South Africa, Zimbabwe, Portugal, Spain and France! They now have six grandchildren and celebrate their 45th anniversary in Oct!
A note from “Memaw”—do you know who this classmate is? Anyway, we are sending her news, because many of you probably do know! (I loved what you have written, Memaw! ) She is blessed with five beautiful grandchildren to enrich her life, with a granddaughter off to college this fall! Memaw is a real estate specialist for Baltimore County, Md., and has just bought a second home on Lake Champlain in upstate N.Y. where she plans to spend the better part of the year when she finally retires. “Those are the stats. There have been massive highs and lows along the way, but you don’t want to hear about those. Suffice it to say, we have all survived and even thrived at times.”
Sally Kalber Fiedler writes from “drought-stricken Richmond.” She and Jay are also traveling during their first year of retirement. A cross-country trip took them to see their grandkids over last Christmas. A Black Sea holiday is scheduled for this fall. Sally shares that “mobility issues” are making these adventures more challenging by the day. She and Jay love having time together and lingering (finally!) over coffee and the newspaper!
Hopefully you have heard by now that our class has lost three wonderful people in the past year. It is with great sadness that I relay the news of their passing: Anne Mercer Kornagy, Cindy Michel Blakely and Patricia Martin Rodier. If you should want to contact their families, the alumnae office can supply you with addresses.
Physical challenges are all a part of our aging, unfortunately. The news from Sidney Turner in Baltimore is particularly distressing because she has polycystic kidney disease. Astonishingly, her husband also shares this same condition! She is exploring whether or not she is a candidate for a transplant. Sid and her husband are both participating in a study at the Rogosin Institute in N.Y.C.—they’re the only married couple with this same disease! She welcomes insights from anyone who has faced or is going through a similar situation!
Judy Wilson Grant writes from Denver that she plans for her two-year-old granddaughter to be Sweet Briar bound! Her new grandson arrived July 24! Judy reports, “All is good in Colorado these days!” (Judy, you wrote this before all the bad fires, so we hope that all is well with you and your family this summer!)
Our classmates continue to connect! Jeannie Jackson Exum and Marcia Pace Lindstrom have had wonderful times over duplicate bridge, even attending a workshop with Nancy McLean Parker ’67. Between hands, they talk about fun classmates and SBC memories!
Four others who have managed an annual visit each year (!) are Keenan Colton Kelsey, Jane Nelson, Susan Sudduth Hiller and Penn Willets Fullerton. This year’s venue is N.H. to see fall colors. Last year we gathered for Penn’s daughter Lucy’s wedding in the Calif. wine country. Was that a blast!
Jane loves her work as chaplain at Westminster Canterbury, Richmond, where many alumnae live. She enjoyed a particularly special Holy Land pilgrimage last Feb. with a group from her church. High School and family reunions in Culpeper have been really high spots in her life recently.
Susan and husband Chuck celebrated their 15th wedding anniversary last spring with a trip to Warsaw and Krakow, Stuttgart and Budapest. Her life includes regular visits to see her daughter and grandchildren as well as continuing work with two Hospices and one lay chaplaincy group in Little Rock. Joining their children in Snowmass for skiing is frosting on the cake each year. Susan reports that her cardigan corgi Finian is convinced that the UPS , Fed-Ex, and USPS come just to see him!
When we meet in N.H. it will be partly to celebrate Keenan’s retirement after 18 years of active Presbyterian ministry! In the midst of a compelling career she managed to travel to the Baltic area last year and Cuba recently. She gets to care for grandbaby Betty every Friday and vacations with grandboys Miles and Sammy whenever she can.
Life continues to be full and happy for Penn, with five grandkids, three of whom are close by. Teaching creative writing in the public schools brings her much pleasure these days, and she is trying to get some picture books published (it looks so easy when you’re reading one to your grandkids!) She and George have a little place in the Sierras for weekends, and love to hike and fly fish when not mending the cabin roof or building a fence! It’s great to have Keenan and Randi right nearby in the Bay Area!
Overall, Retirement, Grandkids, and Travel seem to be repeated themes in our lives right now. We recognize that we all have particular challenges and special prayers go out to those classmates facing health issues and difficult transitions. All of our hearts are with you. Once again, many many thanks to those of you who helped create this class message. We hope that you will feel as we did when reading the notes that we have a truly outstanding class! How lucky are we!
We hope that you will all remember to mark your calendars for Reunion, May of 2016. Let’s aim for a record turnout!
With much love to you all,
Keenan, Jane, Susan and Penn