Class of 1957 Fall 2018 Class Note

Pat Wade Fraker

204 Beath Road

Boothbay, ME 04537-5030

(207) 633-0321


Shortly after the publication of our news in the spring 2018 MAINE Alumni Magazine, I received a most welcome email from Paul Taiganides. Paul reported that last April he had a very successful staging of his play The Trial of Socrates: A Drama in 1 & ½ Acts.

Paul authored the play based on an abridged but unedited Apology of Socrates by Plato. He added the chorus to relate relevant historical facts and to act as defense lawyers do in modern court proceedings. He embellished the dramatization of the Socrates Apology with cameo appearances of Classical Age of Greece personalities. Reports from viewers were stunning. One person wrote: “Taiganides’ Socrates was bold, passionate, and convincing. The addition of practicing lawyers and a federal judge added authenticity to the proceedings and credence in the final verdict.” Another wrote: “Taiganides’ production of Socrates’ Apology is timely, entertaining, and instructive. Students and the general public in attendance were engaged and even enthralled by the Columbus production.” Paul publishes a magazine, Greek Ethos. His daughter Katerina lives in Washington and would like Paul to take her to Maine to show her his days at UMO as a foreign student. I’m hoping that will happen and that Paul and Katerina will visit us in Boothbay. Paul spent the three summer months at his home in Greece on the island of Crete, where he hoped their nine grandchildren would join them. He said they are scattered in universities from Colorado to Edinburgh, Scotland. Paul would like to read more news of classmates in the alumni magazine.



Rod Spearin wrote a wonderful letter saying he sees from time to time PEK brothers Jim Varner, Earl Adams, and Joel Stinson. Rod retired in 1993 after 38 years in education, the last 23 as a school superintendent. He started a hobby of collecting sheet music and now has 3,000 to 4,000 pieces. Rod has a Maine album with the word Maine in each title. In that album Rod said there’s a great story of the 1914 University of Maine marching band that went as a unit to WWI. They departed from Bangor with Bananas [T. Bear] waving them goodbye. Besides playing their music, the men were used as stretcher-bearers and front line fighters. They returned to Maine a depleted unit. Rod did some research on Bananas, which I found intriguing and think you will, too.


“The original Bananas was born on the northeast slope of Mt. Katahdin about 1914 and was presented to the retired police chief of Old Town, who was caring for wild animals as his hobby. He loaned this bear cub to the University of Maine, where he was introduced at a football rally later in 1914. When the cub entered the auditorium, he stood on his head and the crowd went ‘Bananas’ giving rise to the name for all future mascots.”


Rod’s two daughters were New England Patriot cheerleaders and state champion gymnasts. His youngest daughter, Tia, last winter won an all-expense-paid trip to the Super Bowl for two!


On May 18 we had our annual U of Maine women’s luncheon at the Muddy Rudder in Falmouth with 19 in attendance. Members of the Class of ’57 were Jane Barker, Ann Dingwell Knowles, Connie Doe Leslie, Jan Higgins Nolan, Dru Nesbit Pedro, Liz Hibbard Smith, and Pat Wade Fraker.

Also in attendance were Babette Gwyn, Jane Quimby Biscoe, Gail Carter, Marilyn Graffam Clark, Rae Clark-McGrath, Judy Demerchant Cohen, Sandra Daley Denman, Jane Pomroy Jacobson, Roberta Wyer Morrill, Mickie Mitchell Shibles, Betty Boyson Tacy, and Cynthia Rockwell Wright. As always we enjoyed seeing each other and catching up on each other’s news and news of those who couldn’t make it. The group signed a card for Lois Whitcomb, who had never missed one of our luncheons. Lois appreciated hearing from those who attended. Her new address is 1855 Low Meadow Blvd., Unit 246, Castle Rock, CO  80109. If you would like to be on our list for the next luncheon, contact Pat Fraker (see top of column).

Barbara Swan Pineau and husband, Marty ’58, are now living at 205 Linden Ponds Way, Hobart Grove, Apt. 523 in Hingham, MA  02043. Marty is having some heart issues, and they felt they wanted to be closer to their son, daughter, and grandchildren who live nearby. Linden Ponds is a retirement community with all levels of care. Barbara said they are very much involved in the many activities offered and are happy there.


Bud and Jan Higgins Nolan, together with their daughter and son (all University of Maine graduates) attended last fall’s Maine football game in Portland. Look for their photo in this edition of the magazine!


It is with sadness that I report the passing of Phil Fowler on May 23, 2018. Phil was an educator his whole life. Another loss to our class and to the university is Max Burry, who died on June 4, 2018. Max was an active member of our class and also with the U of M Alumni Association, leading the early efforts in planning for the fundraising, design, and construction of the Buchanan Alumni House. The main arbor in the garden is named in his honor.


Bob Smith wrote to note the passing of one of his fraternity brothers at TEP, Dr. Stanley Falkow ’55, and to share news of some other friends. Bob said he is retired from the field of cardiology. He and his wife Barbara reside in Brentwood, TN, and still enjoy traveling. His other news concerned Richie Alin and his wife Sue, who spend retirement between Palm Beach and the Berkshires. They enjoy their children, grandchildren, and traveling. Rich is still an active tennis player and golfer. Bob Margolin and his wife Ginny reside outside of Hanover, NH and travel frequently. Another friend and classmate, Marge Janicola, lives in West Palm Beach, FL also. Thank you, Bob, for sharing this information.