July August 2022


Class Notes Editor – Paul Capra
4106 Stonehaven Ln SE
Olympia, WA 98501
E-mail: shonea1@gmail.com

Webmaster – Lou Allyn –
E-mail: yaleclass1961@gmail.com
Website: http://yale1961.org/

Co-Chairs, Class Council
Jamie McLane E-mail: jmclane@profexa.com
Henry Kuehn E-mail: hhkuehn@gmail.com

Coming up: New Haven MINI REUNION – October 13 – 16. Co-chairs Frosty Smith and Ed Cantor will send the invitation and registration details in July. Frosty has again volunteered to put together another Trivial Pursuit game like the successful one he did for our 60th.

[Full texts of the following obituaries can be found on the 1961 Class Website]

Tom Singleton, quarterback and safety on the undefeated 1960 Yale Football Team passed on April 27. We share a letter to the team from his wife Diane “It is with sadness that I tell you that Tom passed away on April 27. He fought and lived with Alzheimer’s for almost 8 years, and he did so with his usual style of love, patience, unselfishness, and great sense of humor. I want you to know that Tom loved his years at Yale and had wonderful memories of his time with all of you. He was so proud of THE 1960 TEAM, and I am sure he hopes that you will continue to bond and enjoy your friendships as he did with all of you. I will cherish all of my fond memories with Tom at Yale, especially those gatherings with all of you.” Diane

Ben Balme remembers the paradox of Tom as a kind and gentle man who at the same time was extremely competitive. Tom could tell an absolutely awful joke, start laughing before the punch line and get everyone in hysterics. After three years of Marine football Tom was invited by Vince Lombardi to try out for the Packers. They met at Toots Shor’s where Tom was given a $20,000 signing bonus, a huge amount for the time. Tom didn’t beat out Bart Starr (sore shoulder) but Lombardi did ask him to stay on as a defensive half. Tom was so much to all of us but most of all he was a wonderful friend.

Bob Blanchard recalls Freshman Coach Gib Holgate working with the 110 of us trying out for the team. Tom was one of about eight guys vying for quarterback. Although Tom had starred at tailback in the single-wing offense for the powerhouse New Trier High School team near Chicago, he adapted quickly to quarterback in our T-Formation. Just imagine a great running back from a single-wing powerhouse adding his skills to our T-Formation offense in New Haven. Off the field Tom was a modest guy, a great husband to his wife, Diane, and a proud father to his son and daughter and four grandchildren. Tom was so much more than a great football player. He was a loyal and generous friend and a good listener. It’s no surprise that Tom continued to travel to New Haven each fall with Diane to attend the Princeton or Harvard games in the Yale Bowl. His passion for that place never diminished.

Nicholas Gardiner passed on March 31 in New York City. John Cogswell and Ed Cantor wrote an extensive obituary which is memorialized on the Class Website. Jamie McLane added an introduction to the obituary – thanking John and Ed for their beautiful piece and hoping it might inspire other classmates to do the same. According to Jamie: “We hope for more personalized human interest stories to add to our class notes and blasts. John and Ed describe how Nick’s father wanted him to go to Harvard. Nick stuck to his Yale guns. The only problem was that he had to pay his own way. He joined the Marine Corps right out of college and served with distinction in Viet Nam. After Harvard Business School he began his business career with W.R. Grace & Company. Nick worked for several companies but was most proud of his service as president of the Radio Free Europe Radio Station. Later, he became the founder and President of Gardiner International, a prominent international search firm. Nick revived the Passy Press, a publication that dates back to Benjamin Franklin. To those who knew him, Nick was an inspiration and a loyal friend. He was a man of great integrity, an indomitable spirit, proud of the Marine Corps, proud to be an American and proud to have been a member of the Class of 1961. Ed Cussler added this anecdote about Nick: although our Lightweight Crew seldom won a race, Nick as captain made sure everyone rowed and felt included. As lightweights, we all had to stay under 160 pounds – a real challenge for Nick. We affectionately nicknamed him “Rubens.” In all the years since, I never failed to think of Nick as I walked past a generously endowed Reuben’s painting.

Rick Hauser died April 7. Jim Jalenak passed along a eulogy delivered by the Rabbi at Rick’s funeral. It speaks to Rick’s love of drama. His innovative adaptation of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter as well as other memorable works inspired by Walt Whitman and Oscar Wilde received wide acclaim. These adaptations led to cutting edge writing, directing and producing careers at WGBH, Columbia and Paramount Pictures. His later endeavors such as Beyond Broadcast and The Performance Lab used interactive technology to connect the arts community across the country. Rick loved archeology, oysters, Dairy Queen, old Saabs and new gadgets. David Freund remembers Rick during their influential Junior Year in France.

Lou Goodness passed away on February 20. After graduating from Engineering and ROTC at Yale he commanded the USS Havre on Lake Michigan during Viet Nam. Lou could walk into any space ready to share a keen intellect and caring heart. Lou aspired to bring out the best in everyone especially those who might need advice and inspiration. As a poet and ventriloquist, he was dubbed a ‘professor of fun’ bringing cheer especially during challenging times. His passion for his dogs, hiking, boating, and water sports was unmistakable.

John Horton Birely, formerly of Los Alamos, NM, died December 11, 2021. After Yale, John earned a Ph.D from Harvard in Physical Chemistry. John devoted his professional life to nuclear nonproliferation and international security. He enjoyed a 21-year career at the University of California, punctuated by stints at Los Alamos National Laboratory and as Deputy Assistant to the Secretary of Defense for Nuclear Matters. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, John worked on reducing the Russian nuclear arsenal in Ukraine, making many trips to the region. John was known for his immense integrity and intelligence. Stoic yet deeply moved by many things. A Bach fugue or a sweet ukulele song could bring tears to his eyes. John won many distinguished awards including the Department of Defense Medals for Outstanding Public Service and Distinguished Civilian Service. One of John’s favorite songs was Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young’s “Teach Your Children Well”. The lyrics that spoke most to him were ‘You who are on the road must have a code that you can live by. And so, become yourself, because the past is just a goodbye.’ John had a code – and live by it he did.

Wilford Welch brings to our attention an article in the Nuclear Engineering International journal co-authored by our November class zoom presenter Bob Budnitz who spoke on the same topic of the promise of small modular nuclear reactors. More videos and information of all the Class Zoom presentations have been posted by Webmaster Lou Allyn on the Class Website.

Class Notes Editor – Paul Capra