Submitted by Charles A. Tritschler on Monday, 12/16/2019, at 4:44 PM

LEWELLEN S MERRICK '51 (1929-2019)  Welly stands out as an independent in a class noted for that trait. Both his grandfathers, his father and his son are Amherst grads.  However, he joined nothing on campus or involving the college thereafter.  He became an accomplished electronics engineer without graduate stu'dies. After over twenty years he returned to the family farm with equal productivity.  He became a leader in many dimensions in Wilbraham Mass founded by a Merrick in 1741. A Memorial Service and luncheon will be held on Saturday, January 18th at 10 AM at the Wilbraham United Church.

Kendalls and Longsworths 2019-08-27

This photo portrays 1951 classmates heavily involved with Amherst. Of immediate interest is Polly Longsworth's research on Emily Dickinson now a multimedia rediscovery in near cult status.    


Classmates continuously involved in many aspects of Amherst

KIRKPATRICK HALL The Kirkpatrick Lecture Hall in the new Science Center was dedicated Friday May 10, 2019 with three generations of the family participating with John '51 and Phyllis. Classmates attending the lecture, reception and dinner were:  Polly and Chuck Longsworth, Joy and Tom Bushman, Judy and Fred Luddy and Charlie Tritschler.


This year the Kendall family, including John Kendall '51, donated the archives of their philanthropy and now note four Amherst generations. The range extends from the innovations of Kendall bandages for WW I by Henry Kendall, '99 to his grandson '50, winning the Nobel prize in Physics. Kindly CLICK below for more:        


Cornell Brooks '19 Cornell William Brooks II '19 was awarded the Thomas H. Wyman 1951 Medal which is awarded to the senior class member who best represents the highest standards in scholarship, athletics and/or extracurricular activities, community service, integrity, character, and humanism. His record at Amherst includes : "While studying  both psychology and the pre-health sciences, Cornell was a captain of the Track and field team, an e-board member of the Kidney Disease Screening and Awareness Program (KDSAP), Vice President of the Council of Amherst College Students of Color, a study leader in Athlete Bible Study (ABS), as well as a Senator for the Amherst Association of Students. Brooks is passionate about medical research having completed summer internships at the National Institutes of Health (where he participated in a collaborative project with the FDA to investigate how organs, particularly the brain, respond to small heterogeneous areas of energy deposition from high magnitude MRI scans) and Yale Medical School (where he worked on the use of surgically implanted devices to provide patients with warnings of upcoming seizure activity). Brooks has aspirations to attend medical school after his two gap years in which he is working as Research Associate in Cardiac Surgery at Yale Medical School." 


WILLIAM C. PURDY '51 (1929-2019) PHD The range and power of Bill's attainments are remarkable. Bill sang with the Glee Club and excelled with the swim team.  Amherst and Mount Holyoke were home for Bill's extended family. Purdy earned a PHD from MIT in chemistry.  Complementing his many teaching awards, he and his lab generated signiicant published reserach.  He became a chaired professor at McGill in Montreal.  He and Chris retired in Libertville Ill to be with their daughter Lisa and son Scot '77. His family and classmates revere him on his passing.

ALVA MOOG, JR '51 (1929-2019) All mourners of the passing of Al Moog have slept at home or in hotel on a matress which his company joined other firms in originating as the SERTA brand.  Al  managed his entity for years with great success until selling out in 2007.  Al married Jean from Smith and they raised six fine sons and his extended family revered him.. Alva Moog's philanthropy extended over manyy years.

PAUL F. COON '51 BS (1929-2019)  Paul enjoyed his time at Amherst as if predestined.  He passed happily from Deerfield to the soccer field to the Beta House into marriage.  Paul followed a successful career in hotel management after his graduation from the Cornell Hospitality School.  Paul Coon was chairman of our class' hugely successful 55th reunion. His loving wife Maureen, family and classmates deeply mourn his passing.

LEE N. SHAW   '51 (1930-2019)  Lee became an Amherst stand out along with his dad and brother.  After football and basketball at Amherst, he worked in international finance for JP Morgan, retiring after a quarter century as vp.  Expert in the intricacies of foreign exchange, he was also an officer in the Treasure Coast Amherst Club and managed his farm in the Finger Lakes area of New York to grow into a major operation.  The class extends its condolences to his wife Claire and family.

ROBERT C. KNOWLES '51 MBA (1929-2018) Bob supported the college loyally as class agent for years. Active in reunions, he bonded with many classmates on some of the pathways  around Amherst:  Andover, Harvard Business School,  Navy Fleet Officer, global travel and a remarkable career in financial consulting. He is mourned by his wife Nancy, his daughters, his family and his class.

HORACE E. LAPRADE  '51 LLB  (1926-2016)  Frenchy arrived with our class on campus already an air corps veteran. He played soccer and was active with classmates at Amherst. However, Horace married Teresa Hamilton in the summer of '49 and  moved into the then substantial married student housing .  She and their six children lead a large family in mourning for their beloved father.  Teresa made her career at Amherst College and Horace developed a formidable practice in financial counseling and insurance.

WALLACE W. ANDERSON, JR '51 M DIV (1930-2019) Wally was one of the 1951 ministers who honored the passing of classmates at Reunion time. So his turn has come to be welcomed by his maker.  "Legacies" at college seem regarded with some scepticism these days and Wally did follow well n the tracks of his own Dad, '22, H '47.  Father and son earned Phi Beta Kappa degrees and then graduate Master of Divinity with honors from Union Theological Seminary.  A dedicated pastor and activist in his own right, Wally was also an all-around athlete. Many coaches sought his talents for their teams, if off the front page   Wally is revered by his family and parishioners whom he had largely outlived in his life of service.

W. MERCER COOK '51 LLB (1930-2019)  Merce came to Amherst from Dunbar High in DC as second generation Amherst alum dealing with Jim Crow Washington.  With Haitian French almost a first language, he followed his Dad '25 H '65 to a Phi Beta Kappa degree and a Fulbright.  Mercer then took up law at U of Chicago and settled in Hyde Park, Chicago.  Adjusting to that indigenous culture,  he navigated to such functions such as deputy Illinois State's Attorney. The class extends its respects to his family and its own continuing Amherst legacy.

WLLIAM L. HANAWAY  '51 MS, MA, PHD (1929-2018)  Bill retired as an emeritus professor of Near Eastern Languages and Civilization at the University of Pennsylvania.  He traveled widely with the navy and in historical Persia, which became his academic area of expertise.  After his PhD at Columbia, he and his wife Loraine made their careers at Penn. Bill was active at reunions and the NY class dinners. The class extends their respects to Loraine and his daughter Anne.

DONALD P. COHAN  '51 LLB (1930-2018) Amherst surely owes much to Don for his generosity and he continually proved his respect for Amherst.  Judging from the number from his family through three gererations graduating from Amherst, he instilled his spirit of legacy and giving. Don exhibited grace in his extraordinary focus, drive and competitive spirit in his varied achievements at the highest levels. The class shares its genuine concern and gratitude to Trina and her family.

THOMAS M. LEE '51 (1930-2018)  Words do not do justice to Tommy's subtle effects on our community.  After more than two weeks at sea and then by train across the USA, he was truly welcomed to campus all the way from China in 1947.  He followed his father '27 (schooled so differently at Andover) to admission to Amherst.   In 2018, with Hong Kong less than a day's travel away, it is hard to imagine the depth and breadth of his only 17 years, which "Tommy" brought to our campus without prior classroom schooling.  Lee's family endured life in Shanghai and also in unoccupied Chungqing during the Japanese pillaging of his homeland. Then the Lees transitioned to British Hong Kong from the civil war on the mainland. With a unique wit and wisdom, Tommy adjusted to unlikely turns and did honor to his alma mater. His class extends their kindest regards to his widow, Hideko, and his brother, John '59. Lees and Kendalls in Capetown       

This photo shows Nancy and John Kendall '51 visiting Hideko and Tom Lee in Capetown,SA. click to enlarge.


CHARLES A. PITTMAN III '51 (1930-2018) Charles retired as vice president, worldwide sales, of the Pittman group which was in the forefront of high tech computer controls of equipment. The firm was taken over by Ametek, Inc.  Pittman was active as an oficer of the Vero Beach, FL alumni club.  The class extends its sincere condolences to his widow Claire.    

HENRY CARTAN CLARKE '51 (1929-2018)  Cartan rightly enjoyed a remarkable career with Marsh & McClennan, just the one firm, not uncommon for his vintage. Among his many accomplishments, he was a family man and Pat survives with seven children and successive generations.  Including his Dad, eight of his family attended Amherst and Cartan maintained  frequent connections with the college.

HARLEIGH V. S. TINGLEY '51 MBA  (1929-2018)  Van continued his vigorous extra curriculars to the end leaving us "with a bang" . He died hiking at 89 years of age in Wisconsin.  He was a great sailor before he came to campus and was an adept skier all his life.   Van was the ultimate New Englander, but also thrived in the wilderness of the West. This Harvard B School consultant teamed with his wife, Lu, in adventures around the USA but also in Greece and France. He followed his cousins to Amherst and was vital in supporting his class functions. 

 DAVID C. FULTON '51 LLB (1929-2018) Dave did not just talk Amherst, he walked his talk.  Fulton had remarkable accomplishments beyond college, yet this footnote to his passing needs to recognize his role chairing our reunions to join with Bill Maloney et al to mold a "1951" tradition of articulated inclusion.  Dave was the entrepreneur of  the Fulton legacy as he led three siblings and offspring into the Amherst fold. Heartfelt condolences to Stella and the family.


John O. Waterman '51 (1929-2018) John joined the navy and served on the carrier US Boxer.  He  made his career as a trusted financial advisor in Providence, Rhode Island, his home for all his life. A veteran member of  St. Martin's Church and the Narraganssett Yacht Club, John was a stalwart of social service clubs. At Amherst he was active on the college teams and in his fraternity.  John is a great grandfather and his devoted family mourns his long life of achievements. 

H. Craig Bell '51 (1929-2017)  Craig made his career in automobile retailing and owned the Bell Chevrolet dealership in Grand Rapids, Michigan  for  years with great success.  He came to Amherst from Deerfield Academy  and joined Phi Alpha Psi in the midst of its racial integration. He  married Jane Proctor as a senior and they raised seven children.  He retired to his ranch in Arizona which he continued to manage as he was able. The class extends its condolences to his large extended family. 

John F. Keydel '51 MBA (1930-2018) John played a key role in the emergence of the largest auditing, consulting firm on the globe.  Starting as a midwestern CPA and rising to the partner managing international expansion, John led the network now branded Deloitte.  After his degree from Harvard, Jim served in the army overseas. With his remarkable wife Jane, he remained loyal to Amherst and his class. Ever modest, Keydel reported to his classmates that some years he enjoyed and endured the rigors of 160 days overseas.  Starting from Cranbrook School, John and his family always found time for leadership of the Episcopal Church with one son becoming a minister in their faith.  

James A. Gast '51 MS, PHD (1929-2017) Jim's career began before Amherst laboring near his home  at Woods Hole Oceangraphic. He continued through his doctorate at the University of Washington in the same discipline.  Prof. Gast established the Oceangraphic department and its Pacific coast facility at Humboldt State University, the farthest North arm of the system .  Dr. Gast was a pillar in Arcata, California, establishing its community college after retirement.   He served in the US Marine Corps Reserve, did active duty  and joined the Lord Jeff Club.  Jim is survived by his wife Thea, three sons and grandchildren.

Stuart E. Methven '51 MS (1927-2017) At 90 years of age, Stu passed away last month in Brussels, Belgium where he retired with his dear wife, Nicole.  Methven is among the last surviving army veterans who provided vital diversity to the active adolescent campus culture on his arrival in 1947 and onward. Becoming a career CIA officer, he became a hands on agent of the USA in wartorn Southeast Asia and Zaire. He then transitioned to applying his expertise at the Hudson Institute overseas. He wrote two "tell all" books on his counterintelligence experiences. His family, including thirteen great grandchildren (some kind of record for 1951), mourns Stu whose adventures testify to his living the liberal arts mission.

Reginald R. Frost '51 (1929-2017) Reg joined the CIA right after graduation and pursued his productive career there until retirement. Frost married Evelyn Comey who had just graduated from Smith. Reg shared with us word of their stations from Germany to Japan and the fine family they raised.  However, our classmate unfortunately did not share much of what he did in the CIA. They settled in his other alma mater, the Exeter community, and devoted his retirement to social service.  Evelyn assisted Reg in his declining years and she survives with her children and grandchildren.

Richard G. H. Harris '51 (1930-2017) Dick joined the US Navy and pursued a career in the public utility industry.  After experience with Florida PL, he became executive VP of Colonial Gas. Harris retired to Maine and the class extends its condolences to his wife Jean.

Dean Blanchard, Jr '51 MS (1929-2017) Dean exemplified the Amherst tradition of secondary school faculty, as he taught math and coached at the St. George School. Son of an Amherst grad, Blanchard became an  army officer in the Korean War after graduation.  A widower, he is grieved by several generations of his family. 

Donald W. Smith '51 (1926-2017) Don came to Amherst a veteran of World  War II.  Smith was a social worker for the state of New York. Don wintered in Jupiter, FL with his wife, Shirley. Four generations were saddened at his passing.

Frederic T. Nugent '51 MS (1929-2017) Fred became a leading architect after his studies at Columbia and in France. He settled in Holland, Michigan in the prospering Grand Rapids and lakefront resort complex. He ably reflected the culture in this current Midwest center of conservation. The class extends their condolences to his wife Nancy and to their family.

  Mcgrath and Foy John W. McGrath '51 LLB (1929-2017) Another icon of the the class of 1951 has passed. Though many classmates already have died before him, his survivors grieving his death can hardly imagine Amherst the same without their classmate, star student, athlete and leader. Moose not only was a major real estate developer, but stood up for Amherst ideals in each stage of his illustrious career. The class extends its condolences to his wife, Mary, and his family.  John "Moose" McGrath '51 is shown with Reece Foy '18, star quarterback of the College's 2015 undefeated football team, taken in Honolulu. John's teammate, Bobby Minn '51, preceded Reece in bringing his talents from Hawaii.


2017 Wyman Medal

Beselot Birhanu '17 has been awarded the Thomas H. Wyman 1951 Medal.  She concentrates in the health sciences and anthropology. Bessy's summer internships have been at hospitals in Lima, Peru and New York.  She has worked as a resident counselor in Drew House and the new Greenways dorms.  Ms. Birhanu speaks Spanish and Amharic, the language of Christian Ethiopians. Thus, she has also pursued studies in antiquities with her background in a cradle of humanity .  She also is certified and works as an EMT. Tom would be fascinated by her background. The Thomas H. Wyman 1951 Medal, established in 2003 by his classmates, is awarded to that member of the senior class who best represents the highest standards in scholarship, athletics, and/or extracurricular activities, community service, integrity, character and humanism.



 Amherst College has announced the establishment by Kirk and Phyllis of a chaired professorship to be awarded to a faculty member whose teaching and scholarship include the interdisciplinary investigation of law, religion, philosophy and society with an emphasis on ethics.  Biddy Martin has now written Phyllis and John:  "I am deeply grateful for your remarkable gift, which has a transformative impact on the entire Amherst community." Martin wrote that Wills Is a member of the National Humanities Center and authored an invaluable text Christianity in the United States. The installation of David Wills as the Kirkpatrick 1951 Professor. was in Pruyne Hall in Fayerweather Building on Sept. 19, 2014 at 4:30 PM  followed by a reception in the Beneski Museum of Natural History.

Featured Book



Higher Education?
by Andrew Hacker '51

After nationwide reviews praising Andy Hacker's latest book critiquing higher education, Amherst has provided its alumni a multimedia portfolio highlighting the book and Andy. Don't miss our classmate's own take on his documentation of the growth of spending in our revered universities. Andy's sharp insights so familiar to the class of 1951 is not front page on the college web site, however.  You can link from the topics below to catch other aspects of the sheer fun of Andy's intellect and wit. The audio interview with Andy is especially hard to find, a tiny pointer scale, which you need to click to start the sound. Watch out. 

Message from the Author - Andrew Hacker '51

Most of my books have been quite sweeping in scope, dealing with  race and sex and wealth, not to mention the fate of the American nation.  But a few years ago, my domestic partner Claudia Dreifus, suggested that I descend  from my Olympian perch and look at my own backyard: the academic world, which I’ve inhabited all of my adult life.  I agreed; but on the condition that we write it together. She’s an award-winning journalist, and would ensure that the book would focus on real people. That’s how Higher Education? got started.

The best way to give a taste of what we’ve done is to cite some of our chapter headings, which convey much of what we say.

In real dollars, tuition charges have tripled in the last generation, more than any purchase Americans are called upon to make.  Why College Costs So Much explains why.  One cause is proliferating bureaucracies (“director of “collaborative engagement,”  “coordinator of learning immersion experiences”). Another is an amenities arms race (five-story climbing walls, orange-ginger tofu steak for dinner). In these and other cases, it’s students who pay, with two-thirds now graduating in debt.

 College sports entertain close to 100 million spectators each year, with many more watching on the tube. Yet of the 629 football teams, only 14 cover their costs.  The Athletics Incubus shows how even low-profile teams skew campus priorities.  The University of Texas spends  $56,859 on each of its volley ball players, leaving less money for classroom instruction.

 Even at liberal arts colleges, promotions now call for research, not dedicated teaching.  Almost a third of the Williams faculty is on sabbaticals in a typical year.  The Professoriate wonders how much of what they publish is really needed. In a recent 14-year period, academics churned out 2,791 papers on William Faulkner.  Their real purpose: to bulk up résumés.

 Medical care is supposed to enhance a nation’s health.  And higher education?  In The College Crucible: Add Students and Stir, we ask how  those classroom-campus years actually affect individuals.  In fact, holders of  bachelors’ degrees do differ from their high school counterparts.  But not in ways colleges would like you to believe.

 As should be evident, we’re not pleased with many of the turns higher education has been taking.  Too much of it isn’t higher;  much isn’t  even education.  (We don’t count fashion merchandising or resort merchandising as liberal arts.)  But in our travels, we came across several  Schools We Like.  We explain why Arizona State University and Notre Dame, and Evergreen State College and Raritan Valley Community College, do better by their students than many institutions with prestige names. 

Revival of Student Singing of Amherst Songs - Hobie Cleminshaw

Listen to the Amherst Songs here.

As I have indicated to several of you, when the class of 1951 was at Amherst the singing of Amherst songs by students was an important and enjoyable part of our experience at Amherst. This same tradition continued for many years after our graduation and then for some reason faded away. On the basis of talking to many students, it seems clear that most students(excluding members of the singing groups) do not know the words to the songs or have regular occasions to sing the songs. With your help and input, several members of our class would like to see what steps might be taken to revive this tradition, which fosters school spirit; strong bonds with Amherst, other students and alumni; bridges among the many diverse groups and students on the campus; a stronger sense of community.

Here are some possibilities for your consideration:

  1. Restore the policy of giving freshmen a CD of Amherst songs. Several freshmen told me that this was not done in 2012.
  2. Give freshmen the written words to the songs.
  3. Give CDs and words to individuals and groups involved in efforts to revive the singing.
  4. Find students in each dorm to learn the words and sing the songs in the dorm.
  5. Strengthen programs in freshmen orientation to acquaint them with the songs and their history and the value and enjoyment in learning the words and singing the songs.  At Homecoming 2012, I was told by two freshmen that a song workshop was offered but that few attended. What about getting the help of the musical groups in orientation?
  6. get the musical groups to be part of efforts on a continuing basis. I know that the Glee Club in 2011 and perhaps last year tried to sing and teach the songs in freshmen and other dorms in the weeks before Homecoming. You advised me that certain of the musical groups sing the songs at concerts and other campus events. It would be great if the Glee Club would agree to continue its teaching role.
  7. Foster the singing of the songs by musical groups and students at athletic events, the Homecoming bonfire; the Keefe campus center; Valentine.
  8.  Play parts of the CD of Amherst songs at Keefe and Valentine.
  9. Have words to several songs printed in the Student from time to time.
  10. Make special efforts to enlist freshmen as part of the planning group or of a particular part of the eventual plan. The same holds true persons reflecting the diversity at Amherst.
  11. Have an article in the Student from time to time explaining the revival efforts and seeking volunteers.
  12. Try to get the support of Resident Advisors.
  13. Contact the heads of various campus groups.
  14. Restore the tradition of having seniors gather in the Quad before graduation to repeatedly sing the Senior Song ( "Strangers once etc). Last year the Choral Society tried to teach the song to seniors for the Senior Assembly.
  15. Down the road, consider an Amherst song competition among the dorms and perhaps other groups. All participants would be required to know the words. Perhaps monetary prizes could be offered.

I want to acknowledge that several of the above ideas came from my conversations with you.

Regards, Charles H.(Hobie) Cleminshaw, President, Class of 1951


Marcus Munsill and Robert W. Fritz

Dear classmates,

I am sorry to report the death of two classmates: Marcus Munsill and Robert W. Fritz. Marc Munsill died on February 27, 2013. Before entering Amherst, Marc served in the U.S. Marine Corps during 1945-1947. At Amherst he was a popular member of DKE, having served as president during his senior year. Marc was an excellent athlete in golf and football and the recipient of the Tom Ashley football award given to the player who "best played the game." For 25 years he worked for a yarn manufacturing company, and in 1981 he formed his own yarn company. Those who knew him regarded Marc as a kind and thoughtful person and a great friend. He leaves four children, nine grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.
Bob Fritz died on May 14, 2013, in Seattle, WA, after an illness of some months. His Chi Psi brothers and others will recall his friendly smile and his outstanding career at Amherst. He won four letters in football, and in his senior year he served as business manager of "Sabrina" and as chairman of the House Management Committee. Also, Bob was chosen for Sphinx and Scarab. After Harvard Business School and three years in the U.S. Navy Supply Corps, Bob started a long business career, which included consulting and working with early-stage growth companies and troubled companies in turnaround situations. His son has set up a site with pictures and memories: forevermissed.com/robert-walter-fritz
                                                                        Hobie Cleminshaw '51



Dick Sexton reports on the 43rd ’51 dinner in NYC:  An impressive get-together of 1947-51 classmates (including three former alumni class presidents), from near (the City, Andy Hacker and Dick Sexton, and New Jersey, Skip Hunziker and Norma) and far (Chicago, Washington D.C., Vermont, Cleveland, Baltimore, and Philadelphia, respectively, Dick Denison, Len Kolsky, Gary Holman and Joan, Dave Fulton, Nebs Blaisdell, and Jeff  Hartzell, with real social “interchanges” (better than the new kind, Facebook, Twitter, et al. )

Conversations included college days, the new curriculum, and good friends. I handed out an excerpt from a 1951 essay by Professor Baird on English 1-2:  (“…some decent writing does get done, and the student sees it happen. I am well pleased when he finds himself saying, as one surprised, ‘Why I know what I am talking about.’  And there may be by-products. The student may come to respect good writing, however plain. He may even recognize as the marvel it is the human being’s power of making order out of chaos.”)  

Sexton  argued that such wisdom from the old written print world is needed for resistance to the deterioration of public discourse in today’s tv sound bite culture. 


Alvertus Jackson Morse '51 JD (1930-2011)


NORTHAMPTON -- As a Northampton District Court judge of 25 years, Alvertus Jackson Morse used a common-sense approach in the administration of justice and was remembered here in legal circles as a kind and decent man who brought an old-school, fatherly quality to the bench. Morse, a Northampton native who also served seven years handling care and protection cases in Franklin County Juvenile Court at the end of his career, died Sunday at his Pelham home. He was 80.

"He's noteworthy in terms of how he went about the business of judging," said Judge W. Michael Goggins, acting presiding judge of Northampton District Court. "He was incredibly patient and also incredibly, genuinely inquisitive about each matter that came before him. The result of that was generally whatever the matter was before him, when it was over, everybody felt that they were well heard."

Morse, a Republican, whose grandfather Alvertus Jason Morse was mayor of Northampton from 1916-19, was the third generation of his family to practice law in the city, said his son, Richard Morse, of Amherst. Jack Morse graduated from Amherst College in 1951 and from Cornell Law School in 1954, and served in the Army from 1954-56 before returning to Northampton to practice law with his father, Alvertus Davis Morse. He served two terms on the Northampton City Council and ran unsuccessfully for mayor in 1963.

His ascent in the halls of justice came in 1973 when, after years of closing real estate deals, drafting wills and researching land records with his family law practice, Morse was tapped by former Gov. Francis W. Sargent as a special justice. Morse had little to no criminal trial court experience when he was appointed, but he nevertheless would develop into an outspoken and compassionate justice, say attorneys who appeared before him over the years. After six years as a special justice, Morse was named presiding judge in Northampton District Court in 1978 and served until 1997.

"He always tried to do the right thing, which is what you want from a district court judge." said Northampton attorney Stella Xanthakos, who appeared before Morse as both a prosecutor and defense attorney over the course of a decade. "He had a lot of personality. He had a very big heart." hortly after leaving Northampton District Court, Morse was called back to handle care and protection cases in Franklin County Juvenile Court, which he did for seven years. "Those are emotional and protracted cases," Goggins said. "Not a lot of guys would have done that. That was hard, hard work."

In a Gazette interview in 1989, more than a decade after being named presiding district court judge, Morse said he never let his position of authority get to his head, or as he put it, "a feeling that I'm some kind of God Almighty." "That's something that I always resented," he said. "When judges put on their robes and forget they are lawyers. Sometimes they forget they are a member of the human race." 



Class of 1951 In Memorials

Picture of John Frautschi '51 MEMORIAL: JOHN JONES FRAUTSCHI ’51 (1929 - 2017)
John’s obituary is posted on the college IN MEMORY site, which we commend to you. This brief memorial complements the Madison, Wis., tribute to his achievements and generosity with specifics important to fraternity classmates. How did Frautschi get to Amherst? Many Amherst students were legacies and in pipelines to campus. For others the key was Admissions Dean Bill Wilson. John came aboard from a Colorado Springs Prep noted for snow skiing and a family of iconic Wisconsin grads, e.g. president of the Alumni. Yet Wilson was able to sell John on Amherst’s providing a reach beyond existing positions. John was especially devoted to STEM studies, the ski club and Theta Delt. From Amherst, John headed for a B.S. degree at Carnegie Tech, foremost in graphics and printing. Conscripted, the army sent John to Ft. Belvoir to apply his knowledge to formidable printing requirements in the military. With such a diverse background, John started with the Democrat Press turning out statehouse jobs. In that era of growth and rapid technical innovation in print, John made continuous adaptations. The company was renamed Webcrafters to brand the new technology applied. The product line went national in quantity and quality of text books with accessories. As publishers and politicians inked adoptions for school systems, many turned to Webcrafters to produce 24/7, up-to-date text packages. Your Amherst kin may have used these colorful texts in their studies. As for the outreach of brother Jerry, he managed a key investment, his wife’s smash hit, American Girl. An educational hallmark few Amherst homes lack. John’s marriage and family were made in heaven and his son Kip ’85 is an able Amherst grad. John could not escape adversities, especially as his dear copilot Mary succumbed to cancer. This tragedy came too early.

John Kirkpatrick
Charlie Tritschler
Dick Sexton


imageMEMORIAL: ROBERT J. RUNSER '51  MBA  (1929 - 2010)
Robert James Runser, 81, of Stony Point, Virginia, passed away on Saturday, July 17, 2010.  He was the loving husband of the late Vera Runser and beloved father of the late Jeffrey Runser and his daughter who survives him, Robin Runser. He is also survived by his “grand-dog” Sierra, who played a special role in his life.

Bob was born in Berkley, California on May 12, 1929. He was a prominent financial executive. As Vice President Comptroller of the Signal Companies, in the early 1980s he oversaw the largest corporate merger in U.S. history at the time. In retirement, he served on a board charged with making recommendations to Congress on reorganizing the nation’s failed savings and loan system.  He was a 1951 grauate of Amherst College and  was awarded an MBA from the the University of California. Berkley.  He was a eminent CPA, like his father before him.

He was active in community service in California as the Chairman of both the Los Angeles and San Diego chapters of the March of Dimes.  Upon retirement, Bob and Vera moved to their lovely farm in Albemarle County. They traveled extensively and both enjoyed their active participation in Virginia politics. Bob was an avid golfer and fisherman.

His daughter Robin expresses heart-felt thanks to the outstanding, caring and compassionate staff at Martha Jefferson House in Charlottesville. Both she and Bob considered them part of the family. A funeral service for Bob will be conducted in the chapel of Teague Funeral Service on Saturday, July 24, 2010 at 10:00am. Friends and family will gather at the chapel one hour prior to the service. Interment will immediately follow in Monticello Memory Gardens.


ST. THOMAS — The Very Rev. Thomas W. Gibbs III, dean of the All Saints Cathedral Episcopal School, died Sunday in his home.

Dean Gibbs, 80, had delivered his final two sermons at All Saints Cathedral Church that morning, reflecting on the lesson of Mary and Martha in the Gospel of Luke.

“Dean Gibbs will be missed, because he’s been a familiar face for all of us,” All Saints Senior Warden Reubina Gomez said. “He’s seen our children and grandchildren go through life. He went suddenly, and he will be missed.”

Gomez, who said she has known Gibbs for more than 50 years, called him “a great advocate for punctuality, education and discipline.”

Gibbs came to the Virgin Islands and All Saints in 1958 from Evanston, Il., where he was bapitzed and confirmed as an Episcopalian at St Andrews Church, and became the rector of All Saints. Although officially retired, he served as acting rector for the church and dean for All Saints after Dean Ashton Brooks left two years ago, until his sudden death.

Throughout his time here, Dean Gibbs held leadership positions in the Episcopal Diocese of the Virgin Islands. Tom was a graduate of Evanston High School in Illinois where he was a top student and track star.  He received a BA degree from Amherst College In 1951, where he was the first black to join the social fraternity Phi Alpha Psi. He lettered in track, was a member of the student council and elected to the Sphinx honorary society. He was initiated to the scholastic honor society, Phi Beta Kappa as a senior.  He served in the US Army during the Korean Conflict where he was assigned to army intelligence.

After discharge, he enrolled in the Episcopal Seminary in Cambridge, MA where he earned STB degree.  His initial calling was with the national church, before going to the Virgin Islands. He became the legendary headmaster of the Episcopal Prep School there.  Numerous graduates went on to Ivy League universities (including the governor) and also to his alma mater. 

The Phi Psi Affair: “Unfraternal Conduct”

The obituary for Thomas Gibbs ’51
(In Memory, Fall 2010) contains only a brief allusion to an important event in Amherst history, an event in which Gibbs played the central role. In the spring of 1948 the undergraduate members of Phi Kappa Psi, the Amherst chapter of a national fraternity, issued an invitation to Tom Gibbs, a black freshman, to join the fraternity. Although Phi Kappa Psi was not one of the five Amherst fraternities that at that time still had exclusionary rules, the leaders of the national organization did not react favorably when they learned of the Amherst chapter’s intentions. After some not-so-cordial negotiations during the following summer and fall, the Amherst students notified the national organization of Phi Kappa Psi that they were determined to proceed with Gibbs’ initiation. At that point the national organization suspended the Amherst chapter, which reorganized as Phi Alpha Psi, a local fraternity. Three weeks later Gibbs, together with the other sophomore pledges, was formally initiated into Phi Alpha Psi.

Although it now seems hard to believe that an invitation to a black student to join an Amherst fraternity could cause such a furor, the “Phi Psi Affair” was national news. In The New York Times alone that fall there appeared at least six news items on the topic and an editorial, which read in part: “The Amherst College football team beat Williams on Saturday by a score of 13 to 7, but it may be that another sort of victory, won on the Amherst campus on Friday, will be longer remembered. Until Friday, Amherst had a chapter of the national Phi Kappa Psi fraternity. On Friday that chapter was suspended by the national executive committee for ‘unfraternal conduct.’... In this episode we see the real meaning of a liberal education. An Amherst degree has always been respected. It will be more respected now.”

Robert H. Romer ’52

Memorial: Fredson Thayer Bowers Jr. ’51 (1927-2010) 

Mary Ellen and Fred Bowers at either end of the bench at their summer home with their family 

BOWERS, Fredson Thayer Jr. 82, of Newton Highlands, died at his home February 18, 2010. He was the beloved husband of Barbara (DeVito) Bowers for 54 years. Devoted father of Mary Ellen Bowers of Cambridge, Joyce LeBlanc and her husband Robert of Green Oaks, IL, Julie Quattrucci and her husband Louis of Scituate, Pamela Ward and her husband Justin of Lovell, ME, Carolyn Leskanic and her husband Mark of Needham and Fredson T. BowersIII of Hong Kong. 

BornApril 7, 1927, Bowers attended Newton High and theFessendenSchool.  He served in the US Navy from 1945 to  1946. Fred was a 1951 graduate ofAmherstCollegewhich he attended as a veteran. He majored in political science, was on the ski team and joined the Kappa Theta fraternity.   Fredson contracted polio from which he made a courageous recovery.  He became an  underwriter  for the Cigna Insurance, until his retirement.

Fred was the loving grandfather to Bobby, Jason, Emma, Lou, Jack, Conrad, Austin, Zoe, Matthew, Lauren and Hailey, and the brother of the late Joan (Bowers) Stout, Peter and Stephen Bowers. 

Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10:30 amon Monday at Mary Immaculate of LourdesChurch, 270 Elliot Street, NewtonUpper Falls. Burial St. Mary's Cemetery in Needham. Instead of flowers, donations may be made to St. Francis House, 39 Boylston Street, Boston, MA02116or www.stfrancishouse.org

Memorial: Geoffrey Gordon Jackson ’51, MS (1929-2009)


JACKSON, Geoffrey Gordon Of Norwell, MA andCotuit,MA formerly ofChevy Chase,MD andWashington,DC diedDec. 23, 2009 at the age of 80. He leaves behind his loving wife Patricia Jackson and two sons: Joshua Banfield Jackson and Lincoln Desmond Jackson.  

Geoff attended The Putney School, Kiski Prep and graduated fromAmherstCollegeclass of 1951. His father also attended Amherst, before becoming an army officer in WW I. Geoff enlisted in the Coast Guard as a medical corpsman during the Korean War.  He then received his Masters fromColumbiaUniversity. He had a long career in hospital administration and was later involved with the supervision and refinement of medical coding for Cigna. 

He was a devoted father and grandfather. He was an avid reader; he loved to ski, play hockey and was a devotee of opera. Throughout his life he played a wide variety of music on the piano ranging from classical to jazz to pop. Although Geoff raced and cruised on larger yachts throughout his life, his true love was for his Cotuit Skiff #60, a 14' 6" class of wooden boat raced only in Cotuit. His sons continue to maintain and race the boat Geoff built in 1954. In his later years he took great pleasure watching his grandchildren carry on this racing heritage.

He grew up inChevy Chase,MDandWashington,DC. Geoff's family originally hailed from Denver and Colorado Springs, CO where the family history is preserved at the Pioneer Museum (the original family homestead), as well as at Colorado College, the Denver Public Library and Brandeis University.  

Relatives and friends are invited to join the family at a Memorial Service, 11 a.m.Sat., Jan. 2, 2010at CotuitFederatedChurch, 40 School Street, Cotuit, MA02635with a reception following at the CotuitCenterfor the Arts. Donations in his memory may be made to the ACM Yacht Club, Cotuit, MA, The Cotuit Center for the Arts Cotuit, MA or American Heart Assn. 20 Speen St., Framingham, MA 01701. For an online guestbook, please visit http://www.mcnamara-sparrell.com/