Class of 1947

Apr, 2022

Irene Margolis Backalenick writes: “After a lifetime as a freelance journalist/theater critic, I just published In the Theater World. This collection of New York City (Broadway and off-Broadway) reviews represents the last phase of my work as a theater critic from 2004 to 2015. It celebrates my 100th birthday and is published by Amazon Press.”

From the November/December 2017 Issue

Irene Margolis Backalenick writes: “My family and I celebrated my 96th birthday Aug. 12. Though I was a journalist writing for the New York Times and other national publications for many years, I went on to a PhD in theater history and have been a theater critic for the past 30 years. Now I have turned to a new genre, poetry. My first two books of poems, titled Rueful Reflections Book 1 and Book 2, are now offered online at Amazon.com . My works have appeared in various poetry journals. My son, Paul Backalenick ’72, is also a writer, having just published his first novel, Development, which is selling on Amazon.com .” 

From the September/October 2017 Issue

Irene Margolis Backalenick writes: “For years I was a journalist writing for the New York Times and other national publications, but I returned to school in the 1980s to get a PhD in theater history and to become a theater critic. Now, at age 95, I have turned to a new genre—poetry—and have been published in several journals. My own two published books, Rueful Reflections, books one and two, are now available at Amazon.”

From the September/October 2016 Issue

Richard M. Morris is still doing Biblical studies research as a retired Episcopal priest.

Anne Renzi Wright (see Joan McMaster ’60).

From the July/August 2014 Issue

Ralph E. Heinzerling writes: “I’m still sailboat racing and winning on Manhasset Bay, N.Y. I enjoyed racing on Brown’s intercollegiate racing team. Still kicking.”

From the September/October 2013 Issue

James C. Sisco and Ida J. Sisco celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary on July 5. Their daughter; daughter-in-law; three grandchildren, including Gregory Sisco ’07 ScM; and four great-grandchildren joined them for the occasion. Jim is retired and enjoys playing golf and bowling. He is a member of AARP and SOI organizations. 

From the March/April 2013 Issue

Doris E. Cooney Davis writes: “For the last two years, I’ve lived in Georgia with my daughter and son-in-law. My other daughter lives in California with her husband and two daughters. I have five grandchildren and one great-grandchild. I enjoy oil painting.”

Joan Van Raalte Hellinger writes: “Sadly, my husband, Bernard, passed away this year. I am still in psychoanalytic practice in Beverly Hills and frequently see Barbara Solomon Spitz in Newport Beach. We both look forward to hearing from classmates.”

From the September/October 2012 Issue

Irene Margolis Backalenick reports: “The class of ’47, meeting for its 65th reunion during Commencement weekend, had reason to celebrate: the class had met its goal of $47,000, a gift (contributed by 47 percent of the class) which was presented to the University. Nat Brush Lewis was elected the new class president, with Irene Backalenick as secretary.

“On hand for the class luncheon were class marshals Gerald Tucci and Joseph Dowling. Elizabeth Reilly Socha, also a class marshal and reunion cochair, chaired the meeting. With only two other alumnae present—Joyce Wetherald Fairchild and myself—the men decidedly outnumbered the women. Also attending were Ray Barnstone, Stanley Blacher, Irving Berstein, Burton Fain, John Lawlor, Joseph Matarazzo, Thomas McCormick, Rev. Richard Morris, Howard Smith, and Roger Williams.

“Considering their ages, well into their 80s, the class was grateful to have so many alumni able to participate. They represented the 210 surviving class members. Joseph Matarazzo spoke about maintaining a healthy lifestyle at that age, stressing the importance of exercise.    

“Staff reunion coordinator Lisa Griffin helped the luncheon and class dinner run smoothly. She brought two students—Laney Caldwell and Zainab Syed, both class of 2014—who shared their Brown experiences.”

Irving Berstein writes: “Our class attended Brown during our country’s most trying times, World War II. Many of our classmates made the supreme sacrifice, and I regularly cry when I recall those horrible times. After serving in the U.S. Navy and earning a chemistry PhD from Cornell, I founded a company to study the effects of testing nuclear weapons in the atmosphere. Later I worked in a joint division of health sciences and technology at Harvard and MIT. I now split my time between Vero Beach, Fla., and Lexington, Mass. I have two sons. I still regularly attend Brown football games in rain or shine or snow. See you there!”

Anne Renzi Wright (see Joan Hoost McMaster ’60).
 

From the January/February 2012 Issue

Fred Collins writes: "My wife of over 60 years, Gladys, died in December 2010. I continue to be active in community and church affairs and enjoy having daughter Wendy, granddaughter Heidi, great-granddaughter Julie, and their families near me in Green Valley, Ariz."

Richard Morris writes: "In September I went to Brown to see my granddaughter enter through the gates in the eight-year medical program. I am still functioning as priest associate in my local parish when needed."

Herman Trotter writes: "After desultory stints as a securities analyst, salesman, and advertising copywriter/account executive, I spent 44 wholly enjoyable years as classical music critic for the Buffalo News, and in retirement am still writing as emeritus critic. My second wife, Rosa, and I have had many wonderful European travels and are still vitally active."

From the November/December 2011 Issue

Bob and Mary Hodnett Hay (see Bob Hay Jr. '75).

From the July/August 2011 Issue

Richard Lukin writes that he became a grandpa at 81, when his daughter Melissa Lukin '82 adopted "a 2-year-old Mayan princess." His new granddaughter, Karla, is now in kindergarten and fluidly conversational. Melissa is executive director of CORA, a domestic-violence service agency in San Mateo, Calif. Richard writes that he visits as often as he can and recommends the joys of adoption.

Eleanor Nadler Schwartz writes: "My age continues to astonish me, but it's not hindering me in any way. I travel to Melbourne, Australia, once a year to visit my three Aussie grandchildren; I work two days a week in the archives at the American Museum of Natural History; I study Italian, read a lot, and never watch television. In the unlikely event that anyone remembers me, I'd enjoy hearing from you."

From the January/February 2011 Issue

Jay Z. James celebrated his 90th birthday with his five children on Aug. 28 at his home in Fort Myers, Fla. Attendees included his son Jay James Jr. '69 and Jay's wife, Beverly Burton James '71; daughters Judith, Janis, and Jill; and his son Jeffrey. There were also five grandchildren and one great-grandchild. Jay is enjoying his retirement, which includes sports, politics, and two weekly bridge clubs.

From the March/April 2010 Issue

Melvin H. Kirschner writes: "I just published my first book, more than 60 years after leaving Brown. All Medicines Are Poison! reflects only one issue I deal with. Actually, it's a view of the health care system we have in this country, its shortcomings, and how I believe it can be fixed. When I started in medical school, there was no Brown medical school, so I applied only to the California schools where I worked and lived. I've gone to five universities, but Brown was my favorite. I lived on campus. The University's warmth and affection for the students was unequaled. I've remained in contact for more than 60 years. I truly believe that my time at Brown set the standard for my life."

From the January/February 2010 Issue

Joseph Dowling Jr. has been appointed to the board of overseers of the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Mass. In June he received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from the Harvard Medical School Department of Ophthalmology and the Massachusetts Eye & Ear Infirmary. He continues his ophthalmology practice at the Rhode Island Eye Institute and enjoys playing tennis and golf, traveling, and spending time with his 11 grandchildren.

From the September/October 2008 Issue

Irene Marjolis Backalenick reports that the class of '47 met for a mini-reunion luncheon on Commencement day. On hand were copresidents Irving Berstein and Gerry Tucci, reunion cochairs Elizabeth Reilly Socha and Joseph Dowling, and Roger Williams and Eileen Cummings Heaton. Irene writes that plans are underway for the 65th reunion in 2012.

Anne Renzi Wright (see Eunice Bugbee Manchester '52).

 

Epoch.jpg

From the July/August 2008 Issue

Domenic Canna is vice chairman of the Bristol Housing Authority and serves on several committees promoting affordable housing. He was recently honored as one of the longest-serving commissioners in R.I.

From the May/June 2008 Issue

Natalie Brush Lewis writes that she enjoys living in Maine full-time.

Gordon L. Stuart still rides motorcycles.

From the March/April 2008 Issue

Claude Raymond has been living an action-packed life. He has five daughters, one son, and eleven grandchildren ranging in ages from 2 to 21.

From the November / December 2007 Issue

Paula Jespersen Diehl ’54 AM is still actively involved in the arts. She writes that she was honored to be selected as one of four composers for this year’s music improvisation event, SoundExchange 2007. The American Composers Forum in Philadelphia and Ars Nova Workshop had announced that the event represented distinctive stylistic schools of composition. Ten musicians were selected to perform the music prepared for the April 22 concert. Paula writes: “I selected seven, including—for the first time and with some trepidation—the use of electronic sound in her ensemble. It worked!” The venue was the Studio Theatre of Annenberg Center, Philadelphia.

From the September / October 2007 Issue

Class secretary Irene Margolis Backalenick reports: “The Class of ’47 met for its 60th reunion at the 2007 Commencement with a good number on hand to celebrate the event. Class luncheons were a time for recalling the past and sharing the present. Dinner was given over to further college reminiscences and an election of new officers presided over by class president June Miller Wilbur. With the new election, Irving Berstein and Gerald Tucci were named copresidents, Irene Margolis Backalenick secretary, and Elizabeth Reilly Socha and Joseph Dowling reunion cochairmen. The $101,000 class gift to the Brown Annual Fund was the second highest amount ever for a 60th anniversary class. Class members who could not attend the reunion shared their own post-college memories by mail.

“Class members enjoyed the forums and appreciated the baccalaureate ceremony highlighted by the deeply moving speech of Nobel Prize–winner Craig Mello ’82. The next day the ’47ers walked through the Van Wickle Gates with the procession, exuberantly saluted by onlookers. One of the oldest classes at the Commencement weekend, we were hailed, apparently, for having weathered the sixty years. Leading the class down the hill were class marshals Irving Berstein, June Miller Wilbur, and Natalie Brush Lewis. Also at the forefront were trustees Joyce Wetherald Fairchild and Joseph Dowling.

“Of the surviving class members (328 men and 90 women), these attended the reunion: Robert Abel, Irene Margolis Backalenick, Irving Berstein, Stanley P. Blacher, Edwin Bliss, Frances Richardson Brautigam, John F. Brown Jr., Hope Finley Boole, Doris Cooney Davis, Joseph Dowling, Joyce Wetherald Fairchild, Avis Goldstein Feldman, Anthony Flack, George Gordon, William Hoverman, Elizabeth Van Egmond Husung, William Kaplan, John Lawlor, Natalie Brush Lewis, Joseph Matarazzo, Winifred Porter McGillivray, Gerard Ruflin, Eleanor Nadler Schwartz, Howard Smith, Elizabeth Reilly Socha, Gerald Tucci, June Miller Wilbur, Roger D. Williams, and Anne Renzi Wright.

“Several alumni suggested more frequent mini-reunions for the class, possibly joining forces with the classes of ’46 and ’48. The next reunion, it was suggested, could be 2009. Reunion cochairs Elizabeth Reilly Socha and Joseph Dowling will be in contact as plans develop.”

Robert Abel writes: “My last reunion was preempted by my oldest grandson’s Bar Mitzvah. At my previous reunion, I was still president of the New Jersey Marine Sciences Consortium. I semi-retired to the Stevens Institute of Technology, bringing with me the Cooperative Marine Technology Program for the Middle East, which I had inaugurated. I received my tenth three-year contract from the U.S. Department of State to maintain the program. I have been working with the Egyptians, Israelis, and Jordanians, and started recruitment of the Saudis. More recently, the Moroccans, Tunisians, Palestinians, and Lebanese have joined the program with colleagues in other universities. I’m in the process of stepping down from the New Jersey Marine Fisheries Council, but also serve on the Board of the Jersey Shore Partnership as a Congregation Trustee and on committees of the Cosmos Club.”

Norman Brooks was honored in June 2006 at the annual meeting of the Nebraska Conference of the United Church of Christ, on the 60th anniversary of his ordination. He has been retired since 1986 and a resident of Lincoln, Neb.

Richard H. Bube, who was a professor of material science and electrical engineering at Stanford until he retired in 1997, continues to live on the Stanford campus. His wife, Betty Meeker ’48, died in 1997, and he has since remarried. For many years Richard has been an active member of the American Scientific Affiliation and has authored thirteen books. He has four children.

Rena Benson Burstein writes: “This year I became an honorary member of the American Association of University Women after fifty years of active membership, primarily in the Philadelphia branch. I had a wonderful ‘hen’ party (women only) for my 80th birthday in July. Now husband Eli and I are getting ready to move into a retirement community. Daughters Joanna ’71, Sara, Miriam, and twin grandchildren Susanna and Graham are the delights of our lives.”

Burton Fain writes: “I established Burton Industries, an industrial electronics manufacturing facility, in Rhode Island in 1970. Although it was sold to an English company in 1986, I continued with them in an advisory capacity for two years. I retired for four weeks in 1988, then began working part-time in the industrial electric business, which I continue to do today. I am married to Lois Jagolinzer Fain ’49, and we celebrated our 57th anniversary at this year’s reunion weekend! Our winter residence has been in Jupiter, Fla., since 1988. I keep active playing golf and bridge, and attend fall and winter courses at Florida Atlantic University with Lois. We enjoy attending alumni get-togethers in Palm Beach.”

Joan Van Raalte Hellinger writes: “I’m still enjoying practicing psychoanalysis and am sorry to have missed my 60th, as the 50th was so memorable. We visit our two sons and their families in Boston and Santa Cruz, Calif., and I am still in frequent contact with Barbara Solomon Spitz ’48 in Newport Beach. My best to everyone.”

John Thorne writes: “I’m sorry to have missed our 60th reunion, but just returned from China and couldn’t fit it all in. I had an exciting entrepreneurial and venture capital career, in Los Angeles until 1972, and then in the Pittsburgh area. I recently retired as Morgenthaler Emeritus Professor of Entrepreneurship at the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon and have had more time to travel and catch up with other activities. My three children went to Brown, so I guess some of its great education rubbed off! I’d be glad to hear from any of you.”

June Miller Wilbur writes: “Oregon’s Columbia River Gorge is Northwest grandeur at its best. The Oregon coast is pretty nice too! Living here has been an adventure, topped off by being close to my kids and grandkids.”

From the March / April 2007 Issue

Irene Margolis Backalenick writes: “I continue to work as a theater critic covering shows in New York City and Connecticut, writing for several publications and Web sites. My son Paul ’72 is a Web site designer who designed my Web site. I would like to hear from my old Brown/Pembroke buddies.”

From the January / February 2007 Issue

Domenic C. Canna, of Bristol, R.I., retired in 1990 from Allstate Insurance as a general agent. He has been married to Yola for fifty-nine years and has four children. He has held many municipal positions in Bristol and is presently vice chair of the Bristol Housing Authority. He has also chaired many fund-raising events in Bristol County. He is presently fishing, hunting, and spending time with his ten grandchildren.

From the September / October 2006 Issue

 

Nat Brush Lewis writes: “I have decided to sell my house in New Jersey and move full-time to my home in Port Clyde, Maine. I am still painting full-time (at least when I accomplish this transfer).”

Anne Renzi Wright (see Eunice Bugbee Manchester ’52).

From the September / October 2004 Issue

Richard Lukin reports that his daughter Melissa C. Lukin ’82 now heads an organization dealing with domestic abuse and that Kenneth Crowe ’48 has retired as head of the physics department at UC Berkeley. Richard says Kenneth “is still doing interesting international things.”

June Miller Wilbur has moved from Hingham, Mass., to a retirement community in Tigard, Ore. “ I am enjoying the Northwest, as well as the closeness to my kids and grandkids,” June writes.

From the May / June 2004 Issue

Robert Anderson and Joan Fitzgerald Golrick (see Nancy Schuleen Helle ’55).

Robert Elsner was belatedly presented with the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart, and the POW Medal for his service in World War II.

From the January / February 2004 Issue

Jack Thorne writes: “I finally retired from my second career, as professor of entrepreneurship at Carnegie Mellon University’s Business School, after some entrepreneurial ventures in the Los Angeles area. My three children are also Brown graduates. We are now enjoying life in the country about fifty miles east of Pittsburgh.”

Anne Renzi Wright (see Eunice Bugbee Manchester ’52).

From the March / April 2003 Issue

Ramon J. Elias writes: “Margery ’48 and I live on forty-five acres without fax, computer, cell phone, or cable. Our foundation comes from the great liberal curriculum that allowed me to have two majors and four minors with the distribution requirements that existed long before Ira Magaziner ’69 mesmerized the faculty into the Alice in Wonderland fantasy that still seems to be proving itself. Now small freshman seminars are the answer to higher education. Despite the system, the mind still triumphs.” Ramon and Margery celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary late last year by taking a 7,000-mile transatlantic cruise to Europe.

From the November / December 2002 Issue

Charles W.D. "Chick" Gayley writes: "Amazingly, I'm still alive, kicking, and reasonably healthy. I retired from Lucent Technologies after thirty years as itinerant journeyman manager since 1984. I still build models. My wife, Denny, and I also enjoy traveling in the United States and Canada and chasing down buildings that were once one-room schools."

Anne Renzi Wright has been named treasurer of the Brown Alumnae Club of Kent County.

From the July / August 2002 Issue

Hope Finley Boole wrote in March: "I'm looking forward to seeing old friends at our 55th in May. Life is sweet and full of grandchildren - eight in all, ranging in age from 2 to 22."

Winifred Porter McGillivray wrote in March: "I'm looking forward to our reunion in May. My husband, Gordon, and I are always glad to welcome any friends and classmates to Edinburgh."

From the May / June 2002 Issue

Report from reunion headquarters: "Reunion plans are complete. We hope to see you at Brown for a great weekend, May 24-27. Join us at your class events, Campus Dance, the Pops Concert, and the Commencement March. Register at alumni. brown.edu. If you haven't received your reunion mailing, please contact (401) 863-1947; reunions@brown.edu."

From the November / December 2000 Issue

Hank Greenberg (see Michael Greenberg ’86).

From the September / October 2000 Issue

Joan Fitzgerald Golrick (see Hank Vandersip ’56).

From the July / August 2000 Issue

Ed Fitzgibbons, of El Cajon, Calif., writes: "I’m still flying my home-built experimental airplane (an N800EF). I am on the board of the Experimental Aircraft Association’s chapter 14 in San Diego and am membership chairman for the San Diego Ultralight Association. My wife of fifty-two years, Dorothy, and I have two sons, one daughter, eight grandchildren, and one great-granddaughter."

Elizabeth Reilly Socha, a retired clinical psychologist who lives in East Providence, and her husband, Ernest, celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. Betty and Ernie write that they are cherished by many friends and family members, including five children and ten grandchildren. Spotted shedding a tear of joy at the anniversary celebration was their son, Steve ’76.

From the March / April 2000 Issue

Gordon L. Stuart, of Corrales, N.Mex., writes: “Nineteen ninety-nine was an interesting year. I did 4,000 miles with a sidecar, visiting grandchildren in Oklahoma and relatives and high-school classmates in Michigan. I traveled five days by car in Luxembourg and eleven days with a motorcycle tour in Germany, France, Switzerland, Austria, and Italy. Then I spent four days river-boating on the Rhine with friends. In the fall I visited friends in Palm Springs, Canoga Park, and Newport Beach, California. I slowed down for the last part of the year ­ only a Thanksgiving trip to Oklahoma.”

From the January / February 1999 Issue

Richard H. Bube, Stanford, Calif., has been an emeritus professor of materials science and electrical engineering at Stanford University for six years, remaining active in the department. His thirteenth book, Photovoltaic Materials, was published in June (Imperial College Press, London, and World Scientific Publication, Singapore). He also continues to write and teach on topics related to the interaction between science and Christianity. He served as university chair on a number of Ph.D. exams in engineering, and once again edited the Materials Science Alumni Newsletter, which he founded twenty-two years ago. Since the death of his wife, Betty, in April 1997, his four children have visited regularly.

Gordon Stuart, Corrales, N.Mex., writes: "I last reported that Mrs. Stuart and I were scheduled to do a motorcycle trip to Europe. We had to cancel it. She got quite ill and passed away July 16."

From the July / August 1998 Issue

Gordon L. Stuart writes: "Our health is back and we will take our ninth motorcycle tour of the Alps, Dolomites, etc. The weather is good enough here in Corrales, N. Mex., that I get to ride one of my four motorcycles almost every day, even in the winter. Sometimes I resort to the side car."

 

Obituaries

Aug, 2022

Thomas F. McCormick ’47, of New London, N.H., formerly of New Canaan, Conn.; Feb. 10. He was a claims adjuster for Liberty Mutual for five years post graduation. In 1952, he was hired by IBM to be a door-to-door electric typewriter salesman, which began a 33-year career with IBM traveling the world working in the Office Products Division and ultimately at IBM corporate headquarters in New York. He was an active member of several organizations, including director of the USAlliance Federal Credit Union, cofounder and president of the Licu Corporate Federal Credit Union, director of the New Hampshire Golf Association, and director/treasurer of the Granite State Taxpayers Association. He also served as a member of the New Hampshire House of Representatives for two years. While at Brown, he was president of Delta Kappa Epsilon and played football and baseball. He once had a tryout with the Brooklyn Dodgers. Later in life he was involved in youth baseball as a coach and created a Pony League, which had not existed at the time in his hometown of New Canaan. He is survived by four children and nine grandchildren.

Aug, 2022

Elizabeth Van Egmond Husung ’47, of Rush, N.Y.; Mar. 12. She was a Latin teacher and a librarian. She retired from Rochester Public Library in 1995. She was active in her church and enjoyed traveling, camping, and spending time with her grandchildren. She is survived by three children and their spouses, and five grandchildren.

Jun, 2022

Joan Kunkel Tanner ’47, of Issaquah, Wash.; Dec. 2, from complications of COVID. After raising a family, she was a physician for the Portland State University Center for Student Health and subsequently opened a family practice clinic in Portland. She was president of the Oregon Academy of Family Physicians and participated in Oregon Medical Association committees. She was an avid reader and and well informed about world affairs and local politics. She also obtained her private pilot license and enjoyed traveling. She is survived by four children and a brother.

Apr, 2022

Gerald F. Tucci ’47, of Port Washington, N.Y.; Oct. 2, after a short illness. His attendance at Brown was interrupted by service in the Navy; after graduating, he attended Harvard Business School and graduated with an MBA. His career included work for the American Can Company, the Artcraft Hosiery Company, and Leach and Garner before he transitioned to being an entrepreneur in 1963, starting Micro Contacts. During the course of his career he obtained several patents and bought/founded other companies. After the passing of his wife, his son joined Micro Contacts and all the other companies morphed into Microtechnologies. He was well known and remained friendly with many university, neighborhood, and club friends over his lifetime. He is survived by his longtime companion, Hilda Ostheimer; three children and their spouses, including son Francis ’91 and daughter Amy Tucci ’00; and eight grandchildren. 

 

Apr, 2022

Doris “Dolly” Fisher ’47, of Worcester, Mass.; Oct. 11. She was a real estate executive with Fisher Properties and Dorel Realty in Worcester for many years. She was also a founding member of Beth Israel Synagogue and its sisterhood and a member of the Genesis Club of Worcester, and the Worcester Chapter of Hadassah. She enjoyed playing bridge, golf, tennis, swimming, and traveling. 

Jan, 2022

John B. Lawlor ’47, of East Greenwich, R.I., formerly of Rumford, R.I.; Aug. 15. He was a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy, and upon completion of his active duty he began his medical residency in urology at Rhode Island Hospital. He completed his surgical residency at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital in New York City and returned to Rhode Island to join the staff at Rhode Island Hospital. In 1976, he was named chair of the department of urology, overseeing the urological training of Brown University medical residents, and he established Urological Associates (now Brown Urology). He took pride in teaching the next generation of physicians. He volunteered with his parish, participated in medical missions to Romania, and helped those new to the U.S. learn English. He was a lifelong learner, taking computer classes in his 80s so he could email his grandkids and learning to Zoom with family and watch movies on Netflix while isolated during the pandemic. He never stopped reading and enjoyed sailing. He is survived by four daughters, including Elizabeth Lawlor ’82; a son; a son-in-law; seven grandchildren; and six great-granddaughters. 

Jan, 2022

Joseph E. Jones ’47, of Millcreek, Utah; Aug. 10. His career encompassed a variety of positions, including working for the FBI and serving as director of security/chief of police at the University of Utah, working as a financial advisor and realtor, and serving as regional representative for the American Cancer Society. He was a devoted member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, where he served as high councilor and sang in the choir. At Brown he was a member of the men’s soccer team and he was a World War II veteran of the U.S. Navy. In retirement he enjoyed gardening. He is survived by his wife, Donna; 10 children; grandchildren; great-grandchildren; and great-great-grandchildren. 

 

Jan, 2022

Stanley Blacher ’47, of Providence; Aug. 7, after a brief illness. He was president of Blacher Brothers, Inc., which was comprised of manufacturing and real estate businesses. He was active in his community and served as a member of the Capital Center Commission, chairman for the Providence Redevelopment Agency for almost 20 years, treasurer and trustee of the Miriam Hospital Foundation, a member of the Corporation of Rhode Island Hospital, trustee of the National Jewish Center for Immunology and Respiratory Medicine in Denver, and a member of the board of Fleet National Bank. He proudly represented his class as class marshal at his 70th class reunion and enjoyed playing golf at Ledgemont Country Club, which was cofounded by his father. He is survived by his wife, Marcia Cohan Blacher ’49, and two sons, including Richard ’73. 

Oct, 2021

Albert T. Owens ’47, of Albuquerque; Apr. 7. He served as an officer in the Navy for 11 years on destroyers. Following the Navy, he received a master’s degree in electrical engineering from the University of Southern California. He joined Hughes Aircraft as a telemetry engineer and eventually became program manager of communication satellites in the company’s space systems division. He retired in 1988. He is survived by a son, a sister, and several nieces and nephews.

Aug, 2021

Ayres Holmes Stockly ’47, of Falmouth, Me.; Jan. 9, of congestive heart failure. During his time at Brown, he spent the first two years in the NROTC. He was a graduate of Cornell University’s School of Architecture, Art and Planning in 1953 and was then drafted back into the Navy for two years, serving in the Pentagon in Naval Intelligence. Following his military service, he moved to New York City and worked in the office of Mies van der Rohe and Philip Johnson when the Seagram Building was their principal project. In 1958, he and his wife traveled abroad to study architecture in Japan, Cambodia, India, and Italy, subsequently moving to Falmouth in 1966, where he established his architectural practice, Stockly Associates Architects, in Portland, which continued until his retirement in 1990. He was a supporter of Greater Portland landmarks and contributed to the rehabilitation of City Hall Auditorium, now Merrill Auditorium. He enjoyed spending time with his family on Vinalhaven Island (Me.). He is survived by his wife, Didi; three children, including daughter Mariana Stockly Tupper ’83; and five grandchildren.

Aug, 2021

Burton Bellow ’47, of Rockville Centre, N.Y.; Jan. 25. After graduating, he worked as an applied physicist for the U.S. Navy’s Underwater Sound Laboratory in New London, Conn., and then for several companies, including Pratt & Whitney, Kaman Aircraft, and General Applied Science Laboratory. In the mid 1960s he turned his attention to teaching, serving as an instructor at Adelphi University and Nassau Community College, and finally as a professor of physics at the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point, N.Y., from which he retired in 1999. He enjoyed traveling, book clubs, playing piano, bridge and chess, and spending time with his family. He was a lifelong fan of Boston sports teams, especially the Red Sox. He is survived by his two sons, a sister, and nieces and nephews.

Jun, 2021

Frederick J. Schachinger ’47, of Wayne, Pa.; Jan. 8. Upon honorable discharge from the Navy, he worked for Sears, Roebuck and Co. in New York City. He retired to Wayne after 35 years and enjoyed the outdoors, sailing, and building and repairing. He is survived by his wife, Mary; five children and their spouses; 10 grandchildren; a sister; and several nieces and nephews.

Jun, 2021

Irving B. Lees ’47, of North Palm Beach, Fla.; Nov. 26. He was an ob-gyn in Palm Beach for more than 40 years, serving at Good Samaritan, St. Mary’s, and Palm Beach Gardens Hospitals. He served in the U.S. Navy and spent weekends and summers with the family sailing out of the Sailfish Club, receiving awards as skipper and navigator for the Southern Ocean Racing Conference and Block Island races. He taught judo and played the drums. He is survived by four children and their spouses, including son Madison ’79 and daughter-in-law Susan Lesueur Lees ’79; 10 grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.

Apr, 2021

Gustav Getter ’47, of New Rochelle, N.Y.; Oct. 18. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy and attended Brown for officer training. He also earned a master’s degree in civil engineering from Polytechnic Institute. Upon return to civil life, he worked as an engineer prior to founding his own firm. His engineering firm­—which through a variety of partners and mergers always bore his name—created internationally recognized and award-winning designs, specifically the Hush House, which continues to be in use by the U.S. Navy and other armed forces in several locations to this date. The Hush House is a building in which a jet can be parked and turned on in order to test it, while keeping the outside quiet and clean from exhaust. Despite selling his firm—Getter, Segner, and Gironda—to Sverdrup Corporation and retiring, he remained available to answer questions from those who continued to seek his advice. He was awarded the Department of the Navy’s Naval Facilities Engineering Command Certificate of Commendation and the American Council of Engineering’s Engineering Excellence Award. He authored chapters on highways, bridges, pavements, and harbor engineering in Civil Engineering Data Book, a standard reference work. Gus sponsored two foster children located in Manila and visited them on multiple occasions. He volunteered with the United Way of Westchester County, was a member of Temple Israel Brotherhood, and enjoyed skiing into his 80s and ballroom dancing with his wife Ruth, who died just three days before he did. He is survived by daughter Elizabeth Getter ’81; son Chip ’76; a son-in-law; and two step-grandchildren.

Apr, 2021

Elizabeth Reilly Socha ’47, of East Providence, R.I.; Oct. 7. She was employed for many years as chief clinical psychologist for the State of Rhode Island. A long-time member of the American Psychological Association, she was a vocal advocate for those with intellectual and emotional challenges. She was an active member of the Pembroke Club of Providence for more than 70 years, serving in many positions, including past president and hospitality chairperson. She was also a member of St. Martha’s Rose and Altar and the East Providence Historical Society. Elizabeth was a master quahogger and instructed many generations in its finer points. She is survived by two daughters; three sons, including Stephen ’76; 10 grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

Apr, 2021

James C. Sisco ’47, of Smithfield, R.I.; Dec. 17. He worked in the insurance industry for Mutual of New York. He also worked as an accountant for many years before retiring. He was an active member of AARP and the Sons of Italy and a U.S. Navy veteran of World War II and the Korean War. He is survived by a daughter, a daughter-in-law, three grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren.

Apr, 2021

Raymond S. Barnstone ’47, of Framingham, Mass.; June 17. After Brown, he went on to graduate from MIT’s Sloan School of Management. He had a long and successful career in financial management at Raytheon, Booz Allen, Honeywell, and Codex. He was also a part-time professor of finance for more than 40 years at Northeastern’s D’Amore-McKim School of Business. He was a member of Temple Beth Am in Framingham for more than 50 years and was active in its Brotherhood. In retirement he enjoyed photography and traveling with his wife Helen, exploring New England, California, Europe, and Japan. He is survived by four children, including son Wayne Barnstone ’77; four grandchildren; and a great-grandson.

Nov, 2020

Stanley E. Sugarman ’47, of Baltimore; May 7, of cancer. He was a retired landlord and real estate business owner. After serving in the U.S. Navy during World War II and graduating from Brown, he moved to Washington, D.C., and began teaching science at John Philip Sousa Junior High School. He married and settled in Baltimore and became a co-partner of Homewood Realty for many decades. Disturbed by the fact that African American soldiers who returned from fighting in the Korean War were being denied housing, he provided high-quality and affordable housing to low-income people in Baltimore. He was twice the president of the Property Owners Association and taught landlords about the principles of providing high-quality property management. He eventually had two real estate firms, Homewood Realty and Sugarcorn Realty, and managed a portfolio of 500 rental units. He was an avid cyclist and a member of the Baltimore Cycle Club. He is survived by his partner, Phyllis Posner; a daughter; and five grandchildren.

Aug, 2020

Phyllis Markoff Homonoff ’47, of Shrewsbury, Mass., formerly of Warwick, R.I.; Feb. 7. She worked at Jewish Family Services before marrying and founding Harold’s Furniture in Rhode Island, which she and her husband operated for 50 years. She supported several Rhode Island civic organizations and charities and particularly enjoyed coffee ice cream. She is survived by three children and their spouses, including son Marvin ’71; four grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

Aug, 2020

John L. Dixon ’47, of Tuscaloosa, Ala.; Feb. 28. He worked at Downingtown Ironworks in Exton, Pa., for 10 years before moving to Tuscaloosa to open Southern Heat Exchanger, Inc., which is now one of the largest designers and manufacturers of heat exchangers in the world. He was an avid reader and lifelong learner. After retiring from Southern Heat, he studied photography at the University of Alabama and earned a bachelor of fine arts degree. He chaired several committees within his church and volunteered with Meals on Wheels. He was also a docent at the former Westervelt-Warner Museum of American Art. He enjoyed sailing, gardening, and traveling. During World War II he served in the U.S. Navy aboard a minesweeper. He is survived by his wife, Ruth; three children and their spouses; five grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

Jun, 2020

William P. Sayer ’47, of Dayton, Ohio; Jan. 2, after a brief illness. He worked as an accountant at Standard Register and SCM Allied Egry Business Systems. He enjoyed singing in his church choir for many years, painting, sailing, and playing tennis. He is survived by seven children, 15 grandchildren, and 13 great-grandchildren.

 

Jun, 2020

George Deckey ’47, of Eastchester, N.Y.; Jan. 10. He was a professor of chemistry at RISD from 1947 to 1966 and at Rhode Island College from 1966 to 1987. For several years he was a member of the admissions committee at RISD. He volunteered at Save the Bay, the American Chemical Society, and the Arabic Education Foundation. In 1993 he was awarded the Esther B. Small Award for Volunteer of the Year at Save the Bay. He enjoyed carpentry and restoring antique furniture. He is survived by his wife, Gloria; son George ’84 and his spouse; son Robert ’85 and his spouse; daughter Chantal Simon ’86 and her spouse; son Jeff ’88 and his spouse; 11 grandchildren, including David Deckey ’15, Ben Deckey ’20, and Isabella Deckey ’22; a brother-in-law; a niece; and four nephews.

 

Jan, 2020

Domenic C. Canna ’47, of Bristol, R.I.; Oct. 7. He was retired after a 40-year career as senior agent for Allstate Insurance Company. He was active in his community and enjoyed the outdoors and traveling. He is survived by three children, 10 grandchildren, and nine great-grandchildren.

 

Nov, 2019

Charles T. Hutchinson ’47, of East Greenwich, R.I.; July 1. After serving in the U.S. Navy, he worked at American Thread Company for 27 years. He worked his way up the corporate ladder from editor of the company newspaper to vice president of human resources. In 1984 he joined CVS as a senior vice president of human resources and retired in 1990. He spent the next 18 years doing pro bono human resources work for several local nonprofit organizations, including Tides Family Services. He enjoyed sailing, golfing with his grandson, playing tennis, summers on the Cape and traveling the world with his wife, Lillian, who survives him. He is also survived by a daughter, two grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.
 

 

Nov, 2019

Marghretta Gilbane Hogan ’47, of East Providence, R.I.; May 15. She worked as a manager at the former Gladdings Department Store in Providence and as a senior analyst at WSBE Channel 36 Public Television in Rhode Island. She served as corporator of Women & Infants Hospital and was secretary of the Manhattanville Club of Rhode Island, and treasurer of the Women’s Auxiliary of the Pawtucket Medical Association. She is survived by two daughters, two sons, 11 grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.

 

Nov, 2019

Joan Van Raalte Hellinger ’47, of Beverly Hills, May 26. She worked as a reporter and editor in New York City before marrying and moving to Beverly Hills. She continued to learn, earning a master’s in counseling at age 52 and at age 64 completing a doctorate in psychology and psychoanalytic training at the California Graduate Institute, where she spent more than 20 years as a teacher and training analyst. She enjoyed helping family and friends and is survived by two sons and daughters-in-law, two grandchildren, a brother, and a niece.

 

May, 2019

Richard Morris ’47, of Cumberland, R.I.; Dec. 14. He entered the Episcopal Theological School in Cambridge, Mass., in the fall of 1947 and received his Master’s of Divinity in 1950. He served at All Saints Episcopal Church until 1952, when he became the first rector of St. Thomas Episcopal Church in North Syracuse, N.Y. In 1965 he accepted the position of rector at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Lakewood, Ohio, where he remained for 20 years. In 1985 he retired from parish ministry and moved to Pittsboro, N.C., and was interim rector at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in Raleigh. In his retirement he also became a liturgical consultant to churches. He returned to New England in 1999 and became an active member of Church of the Advent in Medfield, Mass. Working with the church’s vestry, he oversaw the construction of a columbarium to honor the ministry of the parish’s founding rector, his grandfather, Rev. Guy Wilbur Miner. He is survived by his wife, Marjorie; six children, including Jonathan ’78; 20 grandchildren, including Margaret Thorsen ’15, ’19 MD; eight great-grandchildren; a brother-in-law; and several nieces and nephews.

May, 2019

Harry B. French ’47, of Gladwyne, Pa.; Dec. 7. He worked as an investment banker in Philadelphia. During that time, he discovered a struggling company that developed a handheld searchlight. The company became Streamlight Inc., founded in 1973 and now in its 46th year. In 1994 he was made chairman of the company. He was a U.S. Navy veteran and enjoyed boating, skiing, Dixieland jazz music, and watching sports. He is survived by his wife, Phyllis; four children; and seven grandchildren.

May, 2019

Jean Hansen Biggs ’47, of Oak Park, Ill., formerly of Kingsville, Tex.; Jan. 16. She was a retired library director. She held professional positions in Dartmouth College Library, North Carolina Law Library, the Presbyterian Pan American School of Kingsville, and the First Presbyterian Church of Georgetown. She enjoyed reading and is survived by two daughters and sons-in-law, and two granddaughters.

Mar, 2019

Sybil Tanenbaum Zeftel ’47, of Wilmington, Del.; Dec. 5. She was a high school math teacher in Wilmington for many years. She was active in community and political life, serving in leadership roles in the National Council of Jewish Women, League of Women Voters, and Jewish Family Service. In retirement she volunteered with supportive services for domestic violence victims and the homeless and served on the board of Sojourners’ Place. She enjoyed playing bridge, solving crossword puzzles, the opera, and travel. She is survived by three children, including Mona Zeftel ’74 and Peter ’78; six grandchildren; sisters Leslie Puner ’48 and Lynne Switzky ’64; and a brother.

 

Mar, 2019

John H. Fooks ’47, of Canonsburg, Pa.; Nov. 30. He was employed at Westinghouse Electric Corp. for 46 years and served as vice president and director of productivity and quality control. He was a member of Delta Upsilon. He is survived by his wife, Rosalie; four children; six grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren.

 

Mar, 2019

Irving A. Berstein ’47, of Indian River Shores, Fla.; Oct. 26. He was the founder, chairman, and CEO of Hygeia Sciences Inc. Hygeia developed and sold First Response brand over-the-counter pregnancy tests and ovulation predictor tests. Hygeia was then acquired by Tambrands, Inc., maker of Tampax brand products. Previously he served as CEO of Controls for Radiation, and later he was on the founding team that led research development at Harvard-MIT health sciences and technology division. He was a member of the Young Presidents’ Organization, the World Presidents’ Organization, and the Chief Executives Organization. He enjoyed playing tennis and is survived by his wife, Sue; two sons and their spouses; and three grandchildren.

 

Jan, 2019

Henry A. Wilkins ’47, ’49 ScM, of Leesburg, Va.; Aug. 21, of cancer. He was an electrical engineer for Westinghouse Electric Corp .(Md.) and retired in 1994 from Asea Brown Boveri Inc. (Md.) as an account executive. He served in the U.S. Navy during both World War II and the Korean War and was a member of the American Institute of Electrical Engineers, the Institute of Radio Engineers, and Phi Gamma Delta. He is survived by four daughters; two sons; 15 grandchildren; and 12 great-grandchildren.

 

Jan, 2019

Wilson J. Remick ’47, of Rochester, N.Y.; Sept. 1. He was employed as an engineer in the General Electric Company’s aerospace division for 35 years. During World War II he served in the U.S. Navy. He was a member of the American Institute of Electrical Engineers and Delta Upsilon and is survived by a daughter; a son; five grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

 

Jan, 2019

Arthur W. Eade ’47, of North Adams, Mass.; Aug. 25, after a brief illness. He taught math at Hamden High School (Conn.) and later became head of the math department. He co-authored a series of high school math textbooks published as part of the Prentice Hall Modern Mathematics series. After moving to Massachusetts, he taught at Northfield Mt. Hermon for a year and then joined North Adams State College (now Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts) math faculty, where he became an associate professor. During his tenure at MCLA, he helped found the computer science department. He suffered a stroke in 1983 and retired the following year. An avid ham radio operator, he was also a talented photographer, a World War II Navy veteran, and a member of the American Federation of Teachers. He enjoyed jazz and opera music and playing chess. He is survived by his wife, Marilyn; a daughter; three sons; a grandson; a niece and two nephews.
 
 

 

Jan, 2019

Elliot T. Bugbee Jr. ’47, of Longmont, Colo.; July 29. He worked at Triangle Publications as an advertising sales representative and in 1958 was appointed to the national advertising staff of TV Guide magazine. Possessing a baritone voice, he was in the New York company of Oklahoma! and was a member of Actors Equity and the American Theatre Wing. Additionally, he was a soloist at several New York City churches. He was also a member of the Advertising Club of Greater Boston and the former Lantern Club. During World War II he served in the U.S. Army. He enjoyed hiking in New England mountains, canoe trips on northern Maine lakes, and, after retirement in 1988, took pleasure in woodcarving. He is survived by his wife, Anne; two sons; a daughter-in-law; two grandchildren; and a brother.

 

Nov, 2018

Mary Hodnett Hay ’47, of Hilton Head, S.C., formerly of Portsmouth, R.I.; July 6. She was a school teacher in the Providence and Portsmouth school systems before becoming a homemaker. She resumed teaching once her children began attending school. She volunteered in the Bluffton (S.C.) library and enjoyed reading and playing golf. She is survived by her husband, Robert ’47; sons Robert Jr. ’75 and Michael ’78; daughter, Margaret Hay ’81; four granddaughters, including Catherine Hay ’15; and sisters Jane Hodnett ’48 and Barbara Hodnett ’52.

Nov, 2018

Richard H. Bube ’47, of Santa Clara, Calif.; June 9. He was professor emeritus at Stanford Univ. Between 1948 and 1962 he was a member of the research staff at the RCA David Sarnoff Research Laboratories in Princeton, N.J. In 1962 he joined the faculty of Stanford, where he served as a professor in the departments of materials science and electrical engineering. From 1975 to 1986 he was chairman of the department of materials science. He was the author of six scientific books and more than 300 research publications. As both a Christian and a scientist, he wrote seven books and more than 100 articles on issues in science and Christianity, striving to help scientists understand Christianity and Christians understand science. He was also a faculty sponsor for the InterVarsity Christian Fellowship at Stanford and taught an undergraduate seminar on the interaction between science and Christianity for 25 years. He taught adult education classes at several churches and was a member of the American Scientific Affiliation, as well as editor of its journal for 25 years. He was also a member of the American Physical Society, the Optical Society of America, and Sigma Xi. He is survived by four children and their spouses and five grandchildren.

Nov, 2018

Julian M. Brownstein ’47, of New Britain, Conn.; June 6. After serving in the U.S. Navy during World War II he had a career in radio sales. He later established Julian Associates in Newington, Conn., and began a career as an executive recruiter. He is survived by his wife, Joan; six children; and grandchildren.

Sep, 2018

William E. Stone ’47, of Philadelphia, Pa.; May 7. He was a retired pastor who had served in several locations, including Connecticut, New Hampshire, Maryland, and Pennsylvania. He was a member of the 112th Field Artillery Assoc., the Military Chaplains Assoc., and the Retired Officers Assoc. of Philadelphia. He is survived by three children, three grandchildren, a great grandchild, and a brother.

 

Jul, 2018

Ralph E. Heinzerling ’47, of Port Washington, N.Y.; Jan. 25. He was a freelance commercial artist and an accomplished sailor who won countless races; crewed on sailboat races to Hawaii, Buenos Aires, and Bermuda; and was the 1942 Snipe World Champion with his brother. He ran marathons and half marathons for more than 30 years into his early 80s. He also enjoyed playing golf, fishing, gardening, reading, and classical music. He was a World War II U.S. Navy veteran and member of Kappa Delta Rho. He is survived by three children and their spouses, four grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.

 

Jul, 2018

Fred L. Corey ’47, of Woonsocket, R.I.; Feb. 16. He started a career in the construction business, working for 10 years at the Dimeo Construction Co. in Providence. In 1959 he was appointed Public Works Director for the City of Woonsocket, where he served until 1966. In 1970 he founded the Corey Construction Co., from which he retired in 1991. He additionally served as Public Safety Director for the City of Woonsocket and was president of the Municipal Public Works Assoc. He was a World War II U.S. Navy veteran and a communicant of Our Lady Queen of Martyrs Church. He enjoyed playing golf. He is survived by a daughter, a son, five grandchildren, and seven great-grandchildren.
 

 

May, 2018

Mary Keating Coogan ’47, of Boonton, N.J.; Dec. 20. She was a real estate agent with Mountain Lakes Realty in New Jersey and cofounder of The Barn Theater in Montville, N.J., sitting on its board of directors for many years. She enjoyed tennis, skiing, golf, and cheering for the New York Giants. She is survived by three daughters, a son, 10 grandchildren, and nine great-grandchildren.

 

Apr, 2018

Eileen Cummings Heaton ’47, of Providence; Nov. 10. She was a secretary at Brown and a substitute teacher at St. Pius V School and a volunteer at Fatima Hospital, both in Providence, and a member of the Garden Club. She is survived by a daughter, two sons, and three grandchildren.

Feb, 2018

Peter A. Neidecker ’47, of Buena Vista, Colo.; Aug. 28, after struggling with heart issues and non-Hodgkins lymphoma. He was a World War II veteran of the U.S. Navy. He later worked as a consultant in New York City then as a plant manager and director of Dominion Chain Co. in Toronto, Canada. In 1959, he founded National Wire in Denver. He served as president of the United Way of Niagara County, Canada, was on the board of trustees of the Kent Denver School, and was a member of the Rotary Club in Englewood, Colo. Delta Kappa Epsilon. He enjoyed sailing, skiing, fly-fishing, and playing tennis. He is survived by his wife, Dody; three children; eight grandchildren, and six great-grandchildren.

Feb, 2018

Drusilla Johnson Spraitzar ’47, of Newark, N.J.; June 2. She was a homemaker and enjoyed baking, poetry, and solving the New York Times crossword puzzles. She is survived by a daughter, a son, five grandchildren, and four great-grandsons.

Feb, 2018

Philip Wilson ’47, of Portsmouth, R.I.; Sept. 22. At Brown he earned the Foster Prize in French and was a Francis Wayland scholar and a member of Phi Beta Kappa. After Brown he entered the Portsmouth Priory, now the Portsmouth Abbey. In 1951 he took his vows to become a monk, continued his theological studies in Oxford, England, and was ordained a priest in 1953. His first mass was said at St. John’s Church in Warren, R.I. He lived a life of service to both the monastery and the school.

Feb, 2018

Nancy Joy Eaton Zang ’47, of Nashville; Jan. 9, 2017. She was a retired realtor. She is survived by a son.

Send us your news! 
Help us keep your class updated.

 

Send us an obituary
Help us memorialize your departed classmates