36 Class SecretaryMaureen McGinn;



37 Class SecretaryKathleen Coverick ’08;



38 Class Secretary Meg Julian ’03, ’06JD;

804 Jersey Ave., Spring Lake NJ 07762; 646-246-5480; megjulian@gmail.com


39 God Country Notre Dame

Time has a funny way of altering our memories. Around campus there was always something special about an early season football game, when the air was still heavy with summer’s heat and the promise of another academic year just beginning. When this column is printed, we will be about 20 years from the September 11 attacks. Eleven days following these tragic events, a group of student volunteers and stadium staff took a halftime collection during the game vs. Michigan State. This was the last ND football game I went to with my grandfather, David Meskill. I cheered from the student section, he from the stands with some great subway alum Chicago friends and my grandmother Adelaide. We met up before and after the game for her classic tailgate lunch of grilled chicken and brownies. Until sitting down to write this, I would have argued that the game was against Michigan, not MSU. At the end of the first quarter, clad in bright red God, Country, Notre Dame T-shirts, the student volunteers passed blue recycling containers hand to hand down every row of the stadium. The total donation was more than $250K, collected in less than 10 minutes from more than 80,000 generous and grieving fans. A year later, Dave and Adelaide were back on campus one more time for the Michigan game (ND won 25-23), before their final trip east to a senior retirement community closer to family. I was studying abroad in Dublin that fall and missed their last visit to his beloved campus, but he faithfully recorded every game that season on VHS for me. The Class of 1939 started in South Bend just five years after Rockne’s death and departed campus just before Leahy’s arrival. They celebrated their senior ball in the new Rockne Memorial. The head football coach was Elmer Layden ’25. A feud kept Michigan off the schedule following ND’s win in 1909, but Coach Layden is partly responsible for bringing the rivalry back with games in 1942 and 1943. Mark Mitchell ’96 shared another wonderful memory of the last game he attended with his grandfather, Mark J. Mitchell Jr. During his senior year, the Irish were heavy favorites against Northwestern; however, quarterback Ron Powlus ‘97 slipped and went down, ending a late Notre Dame rally. The Wildcats held on and began their first Rose Bowl season since 1949. Mark was in the student section and met his grandfather after the game for a meal at Tippecanoe Place. On the way to the restaurant, Mark J. was not in the greatest mood and quickly ordered a gin and tonic in a tall glass. He then toasted Northwestern, saying, “If we have to lose to someone, it might as well be to a class act like them. I don’t think we’ve dropped one to Northwestern since Ara was their coach...” and then began the stories about the Era of Ara: “Of course we lost to Northwestern my freshman year, 1935…” The football team was always “we” or “us” to members of this class and many others. How else would you refer to it? Although twilight is fading to night, memories such as this deserve to live on. While Alumni Association check-in lists of who attended what games may be lost to history, this fall will be the 86th football season since this class first walked campus and “We beat Ohio State in the Game of the Century.” It is likely that the final trips to ND for most class members were during the late 1990s and early 2000s. I’d like to collect and share these stories as well as the other accomplishments of the children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren of the class. Go Irish. — Seth O’Donnell ’04; 17 Marion St., East Greenwich RI 02818; 603-828-7335; seth.odonnell@gmail.com