Class of 1953 Spring 2018 Class Note

Nancy Schott Plaisted

7 Ledgewater Drive

Kennebunk, ME 04043

(207) 967-1380

65th REUNION September 13-15, 2018


It’s January as I write, with my 17.5-foot tree still up (perhaps make ornaments from the trunk?) and decorations like I have my own Christmas Tree Shop. (My son said all I need is Santa Claus toilet paper.)

First, please note my new email address. Second, mark your calendars for our 65th Reunion September 14-15 (Friday-Saturday) in Orono. Let’s try and be there for one another. Now, on to your fellow classmates.

Zeke Mavodones, of Poughkeepsie, NY, sent me the following email: “This last summer when we were on family vacation at Higgins Beach, ME, our family gave us a surprise 60th wedding anniversary party at the Higgins Beach Inn. There were 75 family members present, a small band, dancing, hugs galore, a big special cake, and champagne.

“It was wonderful. You ask my secret for 60 years and that is: think twice before speaking once; and having a wonderful wife and mother. At Thanksgiving we gathered in Massachusetts as a family with my daughter’s family, but not with 75 people. This Xmas all came to our home in Poughkeepsie for a holiday celebration, kids, adults, gifts, a tree, fireplace, and all. My wish is stay healthy and look forward to our 65th UMaine gathering.”

Patrick Therriault, of Tiffin, OH, sent me this email in November: “I was just reading your article in the MAINE  Alumni Magazine and saw the comments from Dave Beppler. Dave is a fraternity brother from Phi Eta Kappa and we were both in the Cass of ’53. He was, and I am certain is, still a very nice person.” [That he is.]

“After graduating from U of M I spent two years in the Army and following my discharge went to UConn and earned a degree in physical therapy. My first three years of practice were in New York City at the Institute of Physical Medicine, where I met my wife, Jackie McGuire, from the Bronx. And while in the city I attended NYU, which partnered with the Institute, and received my master’s in physical therapy.

“In 1960 we moved to Ohio and five years later another physical therapist and I started our own practice. For the next 27 years we had a wonderful time doing what we loved. Now I am retired and enjoying warm weather year round in Ohio, Hawaii, and Florida. We have three children, nine grandchildren, nine great-grandchildren, and one on the way.”

Barby Girard Dorman, of Irvine, CA (32 miles south of LA), originally of Auburn, a Latin major, was one of my three roommates in Colvin Hall. She’s still her bubbly self (despite some sore muscles), and still on the Homeowners Association Board (507 homes), and serving as its secretary. A bridge player, she keeps it going in the Terrace Clubhouse. She spoke of her roommate, the late Dottie Booth Dimitre (mine was M. Joan Hall), and the only other Latin major, the late Mary Newton. Barby, who taught Latin for 32 1/2 years and received her master’s in English in California, has a married son and a granddaughter.

Frances Willett Foster, originally of East Corinth, now of Vestal, NY (near Syracuse), a home ec major and a Pi Beta Phi, spent her first year off campus and then became roommates (and keeps in touch) with Phyllis Noyes Scantlebury. A lieutenant major of ROTC at Orono, she’s the mother of three sons (her husband, Kenneth, has died). Frances, who once managed a kitchen, now enjoys reading, among other things.

Anthony “Tony” Chiaravelotti of Newton, MA, since 1960, is originally from Lewiston (LHS classmate of mine. He used to shuttle his grandkids, but now he’s keeping busy downsizing, but not moving. “I’m trying to hold the house together,” he said. Tony and his wife, Mary (her late brother was one of his best friends), are the parents of three, grandparents of four, and great-grandparents of two. As to reunions: “Not my nature,” he said. Tony spoke of his two brothers: Frank, of Lewiston, some four years ahead of him, whose daughter now is heading the Italian bakery; and Mario ’57, who has relocated from North Conway, NH, to Atlanta, GA. And what is Tony driving? “Something a little better than a shopping cart — a 2016 Honda Civic, metallic silver,” he said. (I’ll speak up for Honda. I had a Civic, an Accord, and an Odyssey, all gray, and loved all three.)

Shirley Ginn, originally, and now, of Bangor, drives a Volvo, and is recovering from knee surgery. A year ago she broke her kneecap, a plate was put in, and taken out in the winter, and soon she hopes to be back swimming three times a week. She also spends time at her cottage at Green Lake, 18 miles from Bangor, with her dog, Duchess, a five-year-old, off-white Standard Poodle. She spoke of her high school and college classmate, the late Gladyce Baker Stais ’52, and how she went to Westbrook Jr. College for one year, two years at UMaine, and then to work at her father’s freight company, Fox & Ginn. She’s retired, her life “very dull,” no traveling, but she does go out to eat, see a movie, etc. (I don’t even swim, Shirley!) Speaking of movies, try to watch the romantic comedy Leap Year on Netflix or Amazon. I’d watch it a third time! Takes place in Ireland.

Lois Welton Byrne, originally of Northampton, MA, now of Oceanside, CA, drives a ’99 navy blue Volvo station wagon, 60,000 miles, with a University of Maine sticker and San Diego license plate. A Chi Omega gal, she had a career in clothing, textiles, retailing, and worked for G. Fox in Hartford, CT. Born on Thanksgiving Day 1931, she laughed and said she figured that day was declared a national holiday after her. Sure! At present, undergoing cataract surgery, in both eyes, she and I carried on a telephone conversation so long I might as well have hopped a plane, spoken in person, and written a book! Here are a few things we talked about: She plays pool at the clubhouse, “supposedly the best-equipped billiard hall in Southern California;” lives in a 55-and-over development with no personal services but lots of leisure activities; she married John, a naval officer she met on a blind date (he died in 2011); her father was with National Cash Register, so the move to Bangor; has lived in 23 different houses; favorite place, Mt. Desert Island; paints mostly abstract acrylics, sold six recently; Colvin roommates with classmate Charlotte Troubh of Cambridge, MA; has a son, Chris, 60, of Carlsbad; a daughter, Grace, 59, of Escondido, and her three children; Lucy, 29, a golfer, soon to be married; Claire, 26, a golfer; and Jack, an engineer.

Thanks to all of you who made this column possible. See you at reunion!