class notes

1940s

40 License Plates

The back page of the last issue featured 21 personalized license plates related to Notre Dame. I personally have had ND 40, or some version of 1940 and ND, on plates in Indiana, Illinois and Arizona. I recall seeing a 1940 ND plate from Iowa. It would be very interesting to find out how many other states have special 1940 plates. Why don’t you or a surviving relative let me know about special plates that have been in your family? Tom Sheehan, son of Lawrence “Pete” Sheehan, who passed way before our 50th reunion, wrote to bring us up to date on the Sheehan family. He recalls meeting us at the ACC after games and relates that his mother died about 20 years ago. He has been working at St. Elizabeth Hospital in Youngstown OH the past 25 years and his brother, Pete, is editor and general manager of the Youngstown Catholic Exponent. Both are married and each has two sons. We appreciate the extra effort to bring us up to date. Father John Schroeder, SJ, passed away in New Orleans. He spent a great deal of time working in Belize. As I recall, we had five other priests among our classmates: Paul Hackman, Bob McEnery, SJ, John Payne, CSC, Bill Tobin and Francis Valentini. Please let me know if there were any others. Our parish priest commented that at our age we always have our wonderful memories to keep us going. Kay and I agree as we have such delightful memories of our undergraduate days as well as all the class activities on campus and away. In recent months, I have heard from Bob Grisanti, Phil Donahue, Bob Frost, Bob Molin, Bill O’Brien and Bernie Sequin, but certainly I would appreciate word from others of you who are still able to communicate, such as Lou Cenni, Doug Eby, Bob Gillespie and John Trapp, among others, as we need all the help we can get. Kay and I continue to get along fairly well but have some difficulty adjusting to no longer having the independence of our own car. It is a challenge, but we keep praying for help as well as for all of you. We send out a special request to you, your children or grandchildren who even read this column to please send us news of some sort so we can continue with interesting “who we are” class reporting. — Bob Sanford; 3212 N. Miller Road, No. 106, Scottsdale AZ 85251; 480-998-5380 and 480-433-7916; r40shorty@aol.com

41 Until We Meet Again

It is with a heavy heart that I report that the class of 1941 lost two members recently. Ray Schlesier passed away on July 25; his son Ray Schlesier ’73 wrote to inform the class. Called “a Notre Damer from the heart” by his son, Ray was a proud father of an ND son, and two Domer grandchildren. He loved ND and our Blessed Mother. I also learned from Jamie Eifert ’84 that fellow Cincinnati alum Bernard “Bud” Brockman died on June 23 at the age of 94. Upon graduating, Bud immediately joined the Marines and was a member of the Third Marine Division, involved in the invasions of Bouganville, Guam, and Iwo Jima. He was awarded the Bronze Star and a Purple Heart. Bud returned home to a sales career, and then joined the purchasing department of the city of Cincinnati until his retirement in 1987. He worked on the renovation project of the Union Terminal as the Museum Center. Bud devoted over 8,000 hours of volunteer service to Mercy Hospital Anderson, winning the Volunteer of the Year award; he also was a volunteer with the public library. Dr. Richard Leahy informed us of the passing of his beloved wife, Marjorie June Doyle Leahy. Marjorie was working as a nurse when she met Richard, who was serving as a Navy doctor during World War II. The couple celebrated their 70th anniversary last December. Please keep your classmates and their families in your prayers. — Meg Julian ’03,’06JD; 171 E. 89th St. No. 5C, New York NY 10128; 646-246-5480; megjulian@gmail.com

42 Reverberations

There are good reactions to the family reunion in Machu Picchu last month. First was a warm note from Nancy Hardart hailing my climbing the Andes; the altitude is 10,000 feet. Actually, I didn’t hike up; a small glass-topped narrow gauge railroad took us up near the top. Nancy laments that she can only play doubles tennis now. Nancy, that’s more than 90 percent of ’42 survivors can do. Ray Rowan also responded; he is so enthralled with Machu Picchu that he has returned three times. Joe Sommers thanked us for the news and the photos we sent him. So did Gene Hunt, who has caught the writing bug a bit late in the game but better late than never. Thank you notes came from Jim Frick, whose granddaughter Amanda ’14 graduated last May from ND. Congratulations Amanda. Judge Miller has retired to his ranch near South Bend, closing down the longest tailgate parties for ’42 visitors at home games, 26 years. They were always top reunion sites, with super hospitality bar none from the Miller family, graciously managed by Eva Johnson, his devoted companion and a great lady. No members of ’42 are able to travel much these days, even if there were a place to gather by the stadium. None have said they are planning to attend this fall. In Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, “For everything, there is a season and a time for every matter under heaven…a time to keep and a time to cast away…” And so the time has come for the Circa ’42 newsletter to end. Memories will continue. Thank you to all the supporters of Circa ’42 lo these many years. Also I appreciate our printer, Mark Meurlot, who kept the presses rolling from the beginning of Circa ’42. We thank Father Malloy for offering a Mass in the Basilica on July 7 for the members of ’42, the greatest guys I have ever known. I will continue to serve as class secretary for the Class of ’42 in this magazine. Write or call me whenever you have an item or a thought that needs sharing. — John Kirby; 110 Upland Road, Kentfield CA 94904; res/fax 415-925-0544

43 Class Secretary — Bob Masters ’05;

202 Remington Court North Drive, Apt. C, Mishawaka IN 46545; res 574-904-8315; bus 574-234-0121

44 Reunited

I shared a lovely Friday afternoon of Reunion weekend with Tom O’Reilly at the Morris Inn. Tom shared stories of Tom Clemens and Vince Meli and their affinity for suits along with an excerpt from the 1940 student manual: “Freshmen can secure permission to be absent from the University until 10 p.m., at the discretion of their rectors. Permission for absence till midnight is given to a freshman not more than once a month.” Freshmen or inmates? I enjoyed learning about his family as well. I’m saddened to report that Tom lost his wife Jean in May after 63 wonderful years together. When he’s not in Fort Wayne, Tom enjoys spending time with family in Frankfort MI. Unfortunately, we somehow missed Ben Mammina (whom Tom referred to as the only red-headed Italian he’s ever known) in the crowd as I understand he too ventured to campus for the day. I caught up with Phil Meyers and his granddaughter Laura Myers ’11 at the bookstore. Phil is a self-proclaimed “villager” who moved with his family to South Bend when his father received a teaching opportunity. Phil was able to finish school in two and a half years. Prior to retirement, Phil was an aeronautical engineer. Tom and I looked for Dan Foley and Frank Waldeck, and I later caught up with Frank via phone. Frank came to campus on Friday just after I departed and was able to meet Phil at the 50-Year Club dinner. The next night he enjoyed dinner at a traditional favorite, Sunny Italy. Frank had recently come from a reunion of his WWII division in Gainesville TX. It consisted of 21 men and several hundred of their family members. He sent me a photo from a minireunion held in March 2008 with Mass celebrated by Father Bill Seetch, CSC, in Keenan Hall. He also shared that the long postponed senior prom was held in 1994, 50 years late. I reviewed the official attendee list and didn’t note any other names from the class who were in attendance, but if you were there and have stories to share, please do so. I recently spoke with Dr. Harold Haley of Roanoke VA. He served in the army, attended medical school and had a distinguished career in medicine, including serving as a professor at four medical schools and as associate dean at two. He spoke fondly of his friends Chuck Patterson and John Lynch. It was great connecting with everyone this quarter, and I hope the mild summer treated you well. Thanks for keeping in touch. —* Laura (Julian) Fraser ’00*; 989 Belaire Court, Naperville IL 60563; 773-255-9843; lejulian00@yahoo.com

45 Look Ahead, It’s Coming

“It” of course is our 70th reunion, June 4-7 next year. Already class president Dennis Scully is making plans. He’s been telephoning class members and has commitments from eight. Besides himself, he reports that Bob Thomas, Jim Griffin, Bill Klem, Vince Cushing, Frank McFadden, Bill Glass and Jim Ruff plan on attending. If any others of you think you can attend, let me know at the address below and I will report it in the next issue. Details of the reunion will be mailed to all of you later by the Alumni Association, but Denny would like to know of your plans as soon as possible. He guarantees a “hospitality suite” for class members. Three class members were among the 18 Holy Cross priests celebrating significant ordination jubilees this spring. Rev. Edwin J. Kadzielawski, CSC, Rev. George Bernard, CSC, and Rev. R. W. Timm, CSC, observed the 65th anniversary of their ordination at a Mass of Thanksgiving at the Basilica. In his retirement, Father Kadzielawski lives at Holy Cross House at Notre Dame. Father Bernard had served at Notre Dame and Holy Cross College. As readers of this column know, Dick Timm continues his almost lifelong work in Bangladesh. Don Claeys died in May at his home in Holy Cross Village. A native of South Bend, he joined the NROTC program after graduation from John Adams High School and served in World War II and the Korean War. He also served 33 years in the Navy Reserve. While stationed in Hawaii, he met his future wife, Peg Schaffer, then a captain in the Marine Corps. After leaving the service, Don joined the family candy business and worked there as vice president and treasurer until his retirement. He is survived by Peg, 16 nieces and nephews, 26 great-nieces and nephews and 12 great-great-nieces and nephews. — Ted Weber Jr.; 1400 Geary Blvd. Apt 1409, San Francisco CA 94109; 415-674-8771; theodoreweber@comcast.net

46 Class Secretary — Bill O’Neil; William.oneil@verizon.net

47 Distant Fond Memories

John Molinarolo of Muddy IL writes that in November 1943 when he was 17, he enlisted in the Navy V-12 program and officer training. “I later received my degree from Southern Illinois and was in business after my military years. I married my beautiful and loving Frances Eleanor Jarvis on August 2, 1950, have two daughters and one son. After 56 years, Eleanor passed away with a stroke. I stole her from the nuns at St. Mary in Terre Haute IN. I have a warm feeling for the school that I knew, mixed in with the United States Navy Reserve. In the 12 months there, it was hectic being from a different world: the early Masses, the morning conditioning runs around the stadium, the frustration of not understanding a problem without counseling. I am happy that I was allowed to enroll. My enrollment had been done by the school, and I was awaiting orders from USNR. My Eleanor and I enjoyed football weekends and stopping over and spending time at St. Mary of the Lake near Terre Haute. Recently I have been in St. John’s Hospital, Springfield IL having a trans aortic valve replacement (TAVR). It was done Thursday, July 24. Now I am home. It’s amazing; there were only two punctures in the groin. No open chest. Maybe prayers helped. Take care and Go Irish.” Ed Sweeney attended the 2014 Reunion with his daughter, grandson, Brendan Meyer ’06, and granddaughter. The only classmate there was Father Ed Ruetz, but as always he had a most enjoyable time. His daughter calls Notre Dame her favorite place on earth. Need any more be said? Ed turned 91 on July 1 and already has a reservation at the Morris Inn for next June. Jim Simon, sense of humor still intact, reports, “I’m still alive and in pretty good shape. I’ll be 90 in October so things could change overnight.” Retired ND swimming coach Dennis Stark writes expressing his amazement and disappointment that the University’s Physical Education and Wellness Department was eliminated and forwarded a copy of his poignant letter to the South Bend Tribune. It is being replaced with a seven-themed program of study focusing on classroom seminars and smaller group discussions based in residence halls. Why not let the students get outside and talk while they run or play? Apparently the freshman swimming test has been dropped as a requirement, which is about 38 years too late for me. Classmates who passed away and will be missed include Dr. James Stuart Boren, 89, of Houston TX on March 18. Known as “Stu” by his friends and family, born on June 11, 1924, in Houston, he practiced medicine for 45 years. He married Virginia Ann Boren in 1946. Stu grew up in Houston, where he attended St. Anne’s Catholic school and St. Thomas High School. He graduated from ND and Tulane Medical School. Stu served as a captain in the Air Force. He was in general practice for five years before moving his family to Houston in the early 1950s, where he began practice in urological surgery. Stu’s passion was serving his patients and loving his family. His hunting and golfing buddies always enjoyed his sense of humor and his caring and compassionate love for people. He leaves behind an enduring legacy of two sons who are doctors, a daughter, 10 grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren. I look forward to hearing from class members with news and stories. Call or email me. — *Michael Morris ’80; 949-433-8568; michaelmorris07@gmail.com

48 Mateys

Could you ever conceive of a WWII Naval base with thousands of midshipmen devoid of an officers’ club? Well, that was the case right here on Our Lady’s campus, where the Navy bowed to ND’s rule that made recreational alcoholic consumption verboten. But fear not, God provides. In this instance it was a two and a half story, gleaming white colonial homestead on Peashway Street, about three blocks south of Angela Boulevard and ND’s southern perimeter golf course, within walking distance of campus. Air conditioning didn’t exist so the doors and windows were wide open. The high noise level of the hilarious partying of the jam-packed home, which was lit up like a Christmas tree, shed its merriment for blocks around. But that was characteristic of the vivacious and sparkling host and hostess, Ginny and Rudy Moritz, advertising manager of South Bend’s popular Drewry’s Brewery. Their domicile housed both the Moritzes and the Detroit-based Smiths, Drewry’s president. When Rudy decided to wed, God led him to a Canadian convent where he found his lifelong spouse: a beauty that would have made King Solomon proud. She met his every stipulation, bearing him two charming daughters, the elder of which was already engaged to one of the handsomely uniformed midshipmen training at ND. The younger daughter was a sophomore at Saint Mary’s College. The Smiths had an adopted daughter the same age who attended Hillsdale College in Michigan. The two eligible, beautiful young ladies became magnets for ND’s love-starved students, as well as a mission for Ginny to act as matchmaker. So a small contingent of ND students found their way into Ginny’s good graces, a development she welcomed with open arms to fill the void of no sons and to perform the many household tasks that facilitated her role as community hostess.

I was selected as one of several eligible, classmate suitors designated as a partner for the Smith daughter. We performed the usual duties such as shoveling snow, disposing trash, bartending, etc. We were all one happy family in a home away from home. Here the campus principals, civilian and military, community leaders et al, discoursed and negotiated as their wives discussed the latest gossip. As a result, the house soon became too confining. So at a time when every nail and screw was rationed, the Moritz homestead proudly sported a most welcome extension to better accommodate the ever increasing guest list. This was no small feat, but the Navy procurement clout stepped forward in yeoman fashion including the choice liquor brands. An unnamed classmate succumbed to Ginny’s overtures and her second daughter became a bride: mission accomplished. Rudy gave the bride away and also gave the wed couple an advertising agency he owned in the Tri-City area. Inevitably we parted company when the draft reared its ugly head.
Post war, the Smiths bought the Moritz homestead. The Mortizes built a luxurious California ranch-style house on an exclusive South Bend golf course where each family lived as empty nesters. Rudy expired prematurely and Ginny spent her last days in an assisted living facility across North Michigan St., near Holy Cross. The Navy went home and ND redoubled its campus. — Dan Gentile; PO Box 2671, Scottsdale AZ 85252; res 480-425-1240 or Eileen Zander; 1815 Hartman Drive, South Bend IN 46617; bus 574-631-7505; ezander@nd.edu

49 God Bless Us – Everyone

This year’s Reunion 2014 saw a mellow and enthusiastic group of ’49ers return as 50-Year Club attendees. They included Charles Carter, Fred Crowe, Joe Geisel, Bob Gregorits, Ed Jordanich, Dick Kirk, Al Lesko, Carl Liebscher, Joe O’Brien, Jim Rotchford, Ray Rusek, Ed Schildknecht, Jim Schuster, P. Sheehan, Ray Sobota, and Carl Wolford. All enjoyed the events, especially the stories told at the dinners and hospitality suite. Hats off to Al, Jim and Dick for their efforts. Frank Finn of Dallas checked in, reporting that he is still percolating and vertical. He is taking on a project of recording responses from newcomers on their knowledge of the glories and history of our days at Notre Dame. Frank is putting all this material together now. Hopefully he’ll share the finished product with us. Andy Nester ’10 sent along a notice that his grandfather, John Nester, Cincinnati, passed away in June. John and his son, Jim ’81 and grandson, Andy, all have Mechanical Engineering degrees from ND. Other ND grads in John’s family are father Harvey ’20, uncle* Herbert ’28, son Bill ’78 and niece Cheryl ’78. Needless to say, ND has had a profound impact on the Nester family. Saddened to see the recent obit of a star ’49er, Rev. Al D’Alonzo, CSC*. His 60 years of CSC service saw him in more than 15 community administrative posts. Al was a member of the ’44 Irish football team and was awarded the Distinguished American Award by the National Football Association and the College Football Hall of Fame. Recently Al Lesko and I were rehashing some old football stories. Maybe you’ll remember many more. Al opined that newly minted high school stars that made the Irish freshman squad were not all that sophisticated. He told of a trip to Atlanta to play Georgia Tech just two weeks after enrollment. On Thursday on the train out of Chicago in the dining car a promising lineman, Steve O., complained: “This isn’t Friday, why do we have to eat this filet mignon seafood?” Years later those in the stadium at the season opener saw Steve Oracko kick a field goal, holding off Purdue for a 28-27 win. Were you there? Did you hear it? It was a booming voice from heaven that spectators heard. “God Bless You Steve Oracko.” No? Guess it was Coach McArdle then who was hunkered down in the scoreboard. Rounded third, heading for home, hoping to score in the great Field of Dreams. — Joe O’Brien; 18120 Cloverleaf, South Bend IN 46637; 574-271-8323; obie49nd@comcast.net