Class of 1965 Summer 2022 Class Note

Greetings from Florida! As I write this, I am in the throes of buying a house down here, juggling paperwork
and inspections with work for The Republican Journal in Belfast, ME. With one reporter gone in February,
the editor having retired in April, and our remaining reporter out with COVID-19, I’m both acting editor and
staff. Crazy time.
In classmate news, Dana Connors announced in April that he will retire at year-end as president and CEO
of the Maine State Chamber of Commerce, a position he has held since 1994. An article in MaineBiz said
Dana has overseen “a wide range of advocacy and economic development initiatives, partnerships and
efforts on behalf of Maine’s business community.”
An Aroostook County native, Dana later received an honorary doctorate from our alma mater in 2015. He
became city manager in Presque Isle in 1968. After 16 years there, he was appointed commissioner of the
Maine Department of Transportation, a post he held under two governors. He also served as then-Gov.
Angus King’s transition director before taking the Chamber post.
At the Chamber, Dana created Maine & Co., which recruits businesses to Maine, and “Making Maine Work,”
a series that focuses on key economic development issues. A champion of education, he created the
Chamber’s Education Foundation.
James Dolloff was inducted into the Orono High School Athletic Hall of Fame in October 2021 during half
time during the Red Riots’ homecoming football game. Jim was a two-way lineman who earned all-
conference and all-Eastern Maine first-team status as the Orono football team outscored its opponents 200-
32 en route to winning the Little Eight Conference title and a share of the 1960 Class D state championship
his senior year. He went on to play center and lead Orono in rebounding as the Red Riots boys basketball
team captured the 1961 Class L state title.
Back in the spring of 2021, I received an email from Bill Waterhouse, my friend of almost 60 years. We met
in psych lab, where we filled out countless questionnaires whose answers revealed our personalities,
preferences, and idiosyncrasies — lots to laugh about, and Bill’s wry humor added to the fun.
Over the years, we visited each other often — usually during road trips because I lived mostly in New Jersey
and he in Massachusetts. I got to know his wife, Claudia, and his children when I was northbound to Maine,
and occasionally I rolled in early enough that he could cook an exquisite meal for us, his favorite pastime; on
one visit he casually announced we were having veal birds — standard fare for Chef Bill.
A man who went to great lengths to nurture friendships, Bill always made it a point to visit as many friends
as possible — maybe just for a few hours, occasionally overnight, sometimes longer for gatherings with his
Beta Theta Pi brothers at Brownie’s camp or at the Mitchells’ home.
Later on, Bill beat esophageal cancer — only to suffer heart problems in 2018. As he had downplayed the
seriousness of his illness, he likewise joked about the solution to this new issue — a Left Ventricular Assist
Device, or LVAD; in effect, a battery-powered heart with a pack that hung at his waist.
In his email, Bill offered some black humor about the aging process and suggested I edit or rewrite it for
publication. He called it “Shelf Life.”
Talking about the stages of life (youth in the fast lane, mid-life in the travel lane, senior years in the
breakdown lane), he noted that we humans, like food products, have an “expiration date.” Signs of its
approach: loss of cranial hair that reappears on your face, ears, or in the drain; ears longer but working less
well; bionic joints; shrinking height, etc.
He suggested I come up with “a good exit line,” and added this postscript: “My expiration date was April
2018. I got extended shelf life!”
And indeed he did – until January 4 this year. All of us whose lives he enriched are grateful.