Culver Summer/Fall 2021
Inside: Gerry & Bill Gram ’60 GRADUATES of the YEAR
FR OM T HE E DIT OR
Culver: A Safe Harbor Every summer, after camps have ended, a new school year has begun, and the sun has that Indian summer glow that soaks the landscape with golden light, I have a ritual of setting aside time for quiet reflection. I take my Adirondack chair out by the woods in the back yard and settle in to listen and connect with nature. I have always cherished the quiet yet active universe beyond my fence line — the caravans of deer and fawns, the varied tones of songbirds and the many-hued darting hummingbirds that dive bomb the feeders. Yet I am also aware of hidden predators in the thickage — the red foxes, night robberraccoons, aggressive possums, and more frequently, the exchange calls of nearby howling coyotes. It is a valuable reminder to me that the world around us is always in motion and has a dual nature — one that constantly reinvents itself and takes us along for the ride, but also one that doesn’t ask for permission to destroy the work and lives that have been created. You can’t have one without the other. It’s the price you pay to fully engage with life. We are now nearing the second year of one of the biggest infectious diseases in global memory, COVID-19 having killed an estimated 5 million people and counting as of mid-September 2021. It is the great global leveler that has created convulsive changes in the matrix of societal norms. Navigating the long journey back to “normalcy” relies on our being able to embrace “post traumatic growth” by processing the pandemic’s physical, emotional, and psychological effects on us before charting a meaningful way forward. Above all, we must cultivate gratitude and new ways of “shining the light in dark places.” Culver has taken this charge seriously, creating a COVID-19 plan that was successfully implemented for boarding school 2019-20 and updated for school year 2020-21. A more tailored COVID-19 program was developed for Summer School this year, which generated a very low .05 percent seven-day positivity rate, allowing the word “normal” to become recognizable again. The director of the Summer Schools & Camps, Heike Spahn SS’86, summarized it: “By maintaining the Culver bubble, the campers/students were free to interact with their friends, attend classes, and compete in the end-of-camp relays. They were able to relax again - laughing, playing and learning.” This past school year and summer, I have come to view Culver through a metaphoric lens — a safe harbor. Like a harbor shelters the boats from danger when the winds blow hard and safety is at stake, Culver was a harbor that protected the students, faculty and staff from contracting COVID-19. A harbor serves as a launching place for boats to harness the wind, racing across the lake and allowing students to put their hard-earned skills to work, just as Culver provided a “safe harbor” for community members to live as “normally” as possible, despite the global pandemic. A comforting metaphor for uncertain times. Folding my chair before heading back to the house, I take a last look at the wild, tangled woods on one side of the fence and flowering bushes on the other — the dual nature of life before me — safety and danger, beauty and wildness, life and death. And I embrace it all. — Kathy Lintner
Culver Alumni Magazine
HEAD OF SCHOOLS
Douglas Bird Ed.D. ‘90
ADVANCEMENT OFFICE Chief Advancement Officer Holly Johnson
Gerry & Bill Gram ’60
ALUMNI RELATIONS Director Alan Loehr Jr.
GRADUATES of the YEAR
Legion President Raj Chopra ‘89 Chicago, Illinois CSSAA President Emily Barnes Cole SS’84 Chicago, Illinois
Hard work, commitment and, above all, flexibility, were all values and skills Gerry ’60 and Bill Gram ’60 learned at Culver. Read all about it from Culver’s 2021 Graduates of the Year.
Culver Clubs International President Michael E. “Mike” Rudnicki ‘92 W’88 Loveland, Ohio
Director of Marketing and Communications Scott Johnson ‘94, W ‘89 Editor/Culver Alumni Magazine Kathy Lintner Asst. Director/Publications Jan Garrison Marketing and Communications Project Manager Mike Petrucelli Museum and Archives Manager Jeff Kenney
INTERNATIONAL DIRECTOR Tony Giraldi ’75
STAFF CONTRIBUTORS Kirk Brown
MAGAZINE DESIGN & EDITORIAL CONSULTING Scott Adams Design Associates
PHOTOGRAPHY Cover: Chloe Broeker Inside: Paul Ciaccia, Jan Garrison, Camilo Morales, Chloe Broeker, iStock
Taking the Helm of Summer The historic three-woman leadership team of CSSC charts a course with Culver’s shared values as their North star.
Culver (USPS 139-740) is published by The Culver Educational Foundation, 1300 Academy Road, Culver, Indiana 46511-1291. Opinions are those of the authors, and no material may be reproduced without the editor’s written consent. Postmaster, please send change of address notice to Culver Alumni Office, 1300 Academy Road #132, Culver, Indiana 46511-1291.
Volume 98 / Issue 2 / Summer/Fall 2021
Student Projects Celebrate intellect The annual Honors Fair at Culver never fails to impress with the students’ novel ideas and strong scholarship.
A look back at some notable women’s “firsts” at Culver on the journey to a strong present and bright future for CGA.
i From the Editor 36 Sporting News 40 Alumni Class News
49 Culver Clubs International 50 In Memoriam 68 The Final Word
GRADUATION 2021 Culver celebrated the classes of 2020 and 2021 on campus this year.
Culver educates its students for leadership and responsible citizenship in society by developing and nurturing the whole individual — mind, spirit, body — through an integrated curriculum that emphasizes the cultivation of character.
High Challenge, High Support: Leadership Lives Here
We’ve heard it all. “Culver is a unicorn: truly one-of-a-kind.” “This place can’t be explained…you just have to experience it.” “It’s a human kaleidoscope of joy.” “Culver is family — these people will be my brothers and sisters for life.” “It’s a place that is cutting edge, yet unapologetically analog at the same time.” 4
The ethos, the essence, the soul of a place, an institution like ours can be difficult to pin down. With so many lives touched, buoyed, and shaped, the experience of Culver has tens of thousands of definitions. One thing is certain: Culver is a place where kids come looking for something. Maybe they want to learn how to lead others. They may come seeking a specific challenge. For others, it’s a springboard to the university of their dreams. For our campers, maybe they want to have the greatest summer of their lives with kids from all over the world. No matter what it is, they come seeking. What they find is so much more. In CGA, now celebrating 50 years of excellence, young women gain real, practical experience leading their peers by advancing the whole community through 200 available leadership roles. In CMA, through the shared challenge of the new cadet system, lifetime bonds of brotherhood are formed, entitlement is dismantled, and character takes shape. The military structure provides a stable framework for leadership development appropriate for young men from the greenest new cadet to the seasoned Regimental Commander. Our summer campers enjoy an intensive leadership development program in which they celebrate
Culver will lead the world in whole-person education. Aspirational and inspirational, bold, and courageous, our vision of the future will serve as a beacon as we continue to execute our mission according to our core values.
accomplishment, learn a variety of skills, and form lifelong friendships, all in the span of a six-week blink of an eye. No matter the time of year you come to campus, it’s clear that leadership lives here. Our stellar faculty, nearly ninety percent of whom have advanced degrees, offer a high-challenge, high-support teaching and learning model that educates the entire person. Faculty design learning environments that develop skills and understandings essential for responsible citizenship. Variety, depth, and student-centered rigor are the names of the game here. Well-rounded, confident scholars who can critically reason, make informed decisions, form a powerful argument, and carry on a conversation while looking you in the eye are the outcome. Rounding out the experience for every student and camper is an integrated focus on physical wellness, spiritual life, fine arts, and athletics programs. All students engage in arts curriculum and attend a regular spiritual life service. Nearly all our students are members of an athletic team. Culver students know how to take care of their minds, bodies, and souls. They come seeking. What they find is an institution dedicated to their growth and self-discovery, whose core values dwell, ever vigilant, in bronze by Logansport Gate. They find
Character, Citizenship, and Leadership embedded in everything we do. They find a mission-driven school with a distinctive blend of hands-on leadership experience, rigorous college-preparatory education, and focus on holistic wellness, plus a dash of Hoosier hospitality. Culver’s essence may differ depending on whom you ask, but our values and mission remain as steadfast as the towering sycamores guarding Legion Memorial. Recently added to these foundational statements is Culver’s vision: to Lead the World in Whole-Person Education. Aspirational and inspirational, bold, and courageous, our vision of the future will serve as a beacon as we continue to execute our mission according to our core values. As we enter our 127th school year, I invite you to see our values, mission, and vision in action by keeping up with the exciting stories and campus happenings on our social media channels (@culveracademies on Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube), the Culver Cannon Blog, and, of course, here in the magazine. Respectfully yours, Scott F. Johnson ’94 W’89 Director of Marketing and Communications
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
Honors projects bring us from ancient Rome to fantasy football, to the lab to the trading floor
Rachel Jiang explains how she shot her project’s photos during the Honors Fair.
Writing a 65-page book, complete with illustrations, is not your average honors project. But that is what Xinran (Olivia) Ma did — in Latin.
also provided everyone in attendance the opportunity to hold deeper discussions concerning individual projects.
The Culver Girls Academy junior from Shanghai wrote the book, “Hannah et Servilia: Contra Odium ad Feminas,” to highlight how women and girls actually lived and their contributions to society in ancient Rome. She teamed up with her hometown friend, Yitong (Bonnie) Cai, who illustrated the book. The book is available on Amazon, has received two five-star reviews and sold 114 copies.
Ma’s novella details how a Roman girl, Servilia, travels through time and meets Hannah, a girl in the modern United States, with the help of the god Mercurius. Troubled by the lack of information available in modern times, Servilia teaches Hannah about the true social status of Roman women, something not extensively covered by the male writers and philosophers.
Ma’s Honors in Latin project was one of 105 presented by 89 students during the Academies’ annual Honors Fair on May 21. Sixteen students previewed two projects each. The two-hour event was conducted outdoors on the Batten Quad to allow for social distancing. The event
Ma said current academic works rarely mention the roles women played in Roman society. She had to do a lot of research to find information and wrote the book to further the discussion of prominent women, both historical and fictional. The book is geared toward intermediate high school Latin students.
The projects that required electricity or a larger display area were set up inside one of the surrounding buildings. One of those was Ruicong (Rachel) Jiang’s digital photography exhibit in the upper level of the Crisp Fine Arts Center. Jiang’s display included photographs shot at home in Shenzchen, China, and the United States. While the CGA senior was home, she used the family’s Nikon 610 camera for her street photography. But when she returned to Culver, she had to leave the Nikon behind. That meant borrowing an older Canon from the school and learning how to operate it. “I couldn’t bring the Nikon,” she explained, “It’s the family camera.”
developed a successful equation for selecting the top quarterbacks each week in Fantasy Football. It was a project created out of necessity, he said, because he was finishing last in his group’s league. Harig developed an equation to predict the top players. He tested four variables, two of which ended up in his final equation. With that equation, he noticed that when given a confidence level of over 90 percent, the player scores more than 20 points. The top two players were not surprising: Russell Wilson for the Seattle Seahawks and Aaron Rodgers of the Green Bay Packers. But, Harig added, he did finish first during the last three weeks of the season using his equation.
In Eppley Auditorium, Brett LeVan ’21 (Newton, Two Honors in Wellness Kansas) and Connor Lee students conducted ’21 (Granger, Indiana) studies to find the showed videos of their best ways to improve Honors program in dance individual athletic and music, respectively. performance. Seniors LeVan choreographed two Catherine Vermeulen pieces, entitled “253 Days” (Winnetka, Illinois) and and “Anxiety Rhythms,” Samantha Hazen Michael Kuhl’s project covered salt’s influence on algae. which were performed at (Papillion, Nebraska) the spring Dancevision recital. Lee played the took different approaches to explore the mindmarimba, vibraphone, snare drum, timpani and body connection. piano for his Honors in Music project that he Vermeulen studied whether people would presented at the honors recital held earlier. perform better after completing a mental or Elle Strogilos ’21 (Schererville, Indiana) presented physical ritual before running a 220-yard sprint. her Honors in Leadership concept that was Breaking her volunteers into two groups, she incorporated into the Senior Waltz at the Final had one group watch an inspirational running Ball. Strogilos studied the role of tradition and video before their sprint. The second group ceremonies and how they communicate what performed dynamic stretching exercises before “was, is, and can be.” Based on that study and their respective timed runs. community interviews, she proposed a new CGA In every case, those doing the dynamic stretching ceremony, the Leaders’ Charge, that parallels exercises performed better than those watching Officers’ Figure. the video. While both groups did warm up before Just outside the Dicke Hall of Mathematics, Perry running to prevent injuries, she explained, the Harig ’21 (Deerfield, Illinois) showed how he dynamic stretching clearly made a difference.
105 honors projects presented by 89 students during the Academies’ annual Honors Fair on
21, 2021. During the fair, 16 students previewed 2 May
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
Hazen studied positive affirmation versus negative self-talk while doing three different athletic tasks. She had students swim, run and shoot free throws. Prior to performing each task, the students were given examples of positive affirmations or negative self-talk to repeat while performing the exercise.
Paloma Perez studied using green algae as a fuel source.
We’re constructing new facilities to foster even more excellence. Scan the code to see how the campus is expanding.
Hazen found the volunteers’ performance in swimming and running were not really impacted either way. But the learned skill of shooting free throws was impacted by the negative self-talk. She concluded that something like shooting free throws, which has a specific skill set, is more prone to mental stress than the more natural movements of running and swimming. Two Honors in Science projects focused on green algae as potential fuel source. Senior Paloma Alejandra Guerrero Perez (Tialpan, Mexico) looked at increasing the growth rate of green algae by increasing the iron level of the water during the growth phase. Increasing the iron level did cause the cells to divide faster, Perez explained, but her experiment did not yield any significant data on whether that would result in producing more biofuel. She added that a more controlled process would be needed to find if the increased cell division does result in an increased yield of oil. Michael Kuhl ’21 (Elmhurst, Illinois) studied the impact that increased salt levels has on green algae. What he found was that a little additional salt does go a long way. Adding 500 to 1,000 micrograms of salt per liter of distilled water caused the algae cells to divide at double the rate during the cultivation period. But at 5,000 mg, the level dropped slightly below the normal rate of 19 cells per day. At 10,000 mg, the cell division rate dropped just over 10 cells per day.
On a larger scale, that increased cell division could substantially increase the amount of fuel produced by the algae. That, in turn, would help bring down the cost of producing the biofuel, he said. The students running the Rubin Café as their Honors in Entrepreneurship program had the unusual experience of dealing with COVID protocols. They were forced to stay closed for the year except for a special one-day event to serve seniors and first classmen. Reese Wilson ’21 (Chicago), who served as the marketing manager, said the students spent their time recreating the café menu, experimenting with new drinks, and preparing for next year. The students also entered three virtual entrepreneur competitions. Owen Zhang ’21 (Tianjin, China) used his mathematical skills to select the best stocks for his imaginary portfolio. He found it important to watch for ripple effects in the market based on corresponding Olivia Ma with her book written in Latin. stocks rather than competing ones. One example was the impact the energy sector had on the travel/transportation industry. When the price of oil rose, the airline stocks fell, even during the height of the pandemic, when few people were traveling. Zhang ran calculations on the Standard and Poor’s 500 over a two-year period using the Determination Model and the Monte Carlo simulation. Did he invest his own money using any of his formulas? “Oh no,” he said with a laugh. “I didn’t.” But, after crunching all the numbers, Zhang said he found the best thing to do is follow the advice of Warren Buffett: maintain a diversified portfolio. — Jan Garrison
Preparing Students for Life Going Beyond the Gate or Arch
hen a Culver student walks through the Iron
to leadership? What should every student be able
Gate or Graduation Arch, what does he or
to do related to communication? As we prepare
she understand about the world and what is he or
to answer questions like these, many adults on
she able to do? Asking this question represents a
campus find themselves particularly hopeful about
shift in thinking for educators, from a traditional
the opportunities of a distinguishing characteristic
approach focused on inputs to one focused on
framework that is used across our campus. What an
outputs. Instead of beginning with authors, historic
inspiring way to speak with clarity and enthusiasm
events, and works of art to cover, a humanities
to our students about their learning and growth!
instructor might instead ask, “What would it look like if a student understood the concept of justice?” A science teacher might ask, “What would a student need to be able to do to effectively communicate or evaluate a scientific argument?” And then, of course, “How can we design experiences for our students so that they can practice, receive feedback, and develop such understandings and skills?”
Over the course of the upcoming 2021–22 school year, a talented and diverse group of faculty and staff will work together to define the competencies of a Culver graduate for each of the five distinguishing characteristics. Because students can learn and develop competencies through all their serving in many different roles: teachers, CGA and CMA counselors, athletic coaches, barracks inspec-
has begun exploring this approach to learning,
tors, homework supervisors, spiritual life staff, etc.
called competency-based learning (CBL), and how
Communication about the progress of this work
it might benefit our Culver students. In March, we
over the upcoming year, and opportunities for input
virtually hosted Eric Hudson from the Global Online
and feedback from faculty, staff, and students are
Academy for a half day of professional development
a top priority for us. We intend for the development
on the topic. It is fair to say that, given Culver’s
of the competencies to be a true community-wide
current progressive teaching and learning approach,
tion, for Culver. Eric’s visit prompted much thought and conversation, and we hope to have him back this winter to share his views with the full faculty.
While we expect to have a full set of competencies written by the end of school year 2021-22, this larger initiative will be the ongoing work of many years, as we examine our curriculum and peda-
We often hear about Culver’s “special sauce,” the
gogies to ensure that we are supporting students
elements of a Culver experience that make it unique
in developing the competencies we’ve defined.
and exceptional, and that make our graduates
Ultimately though, this work, like all our work at
unique and exceptional. As we think about what
Culver, is motivated by the potential to improve
our students should understand and be able to do,
student learning and to ensure that we have done
i.e. what competencies they should have, we are in
our best to prepare our graduates for life beyond
many ways attempting to define the ingredients of
the Arch and Gate.
the “special sauce.” As a first step in this process, the Academic Leadership Team and colleagues in Admissions and Communications have developed what we call the Distinguishing Characteristics of a Culver Graduate (see far right). These distinguishing characteristics are not only a statement of our values as educators, but also a necessary framework as we begin to think about competencies. For example, if we say our students are leaders, what should every student be able to do related
Scholarship: Students are informed scholars and resilient, critical thinkers who solve problems and generate new understandings of the world.
Culver experiences, teams are composed of adults
Over the past year, the Academic Leadership Team
CBL represents an evolution, rather than a revolu-
Distinguishing Characteristics of a Culver Graduate
Dr. Jackie Carrillo Dean of Studies
Leadership: Students practice value-driven leadership, empowering peers to achieve goals while balancing the welfare of individuals with the needs of the community. Character: Students act with integrity, embracing opportunities to practice kindness and resilience and to develop cultural humility. Well-Being: Students strive for well-being and balance through practice and reflection. Communication: Students effectively convey and interpret complex ideas through multiple art forms, languages, and academic disciplines.
Emily Uebler Dean of Professional Development Humanities Department
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
he H t g n m e i k su me l a f r O The Historic Three-Woman Team of CSSC
When I walked into the Naval Building near the end of the Culver Summer Schools and Camps session to interview the three women leaders — Heike Spahn SS’86, director of Summer Schools & Camps; Jacqui Craig Young W’93 SS’96, director of Woodcraft Camp; and Jenna Wright Gartner SS’06, director of Upper Schools — I expected to see some of the predictable fatigue that often accompanies such a constant activity-filled summer. What I found instead was a dynamic trio eager to discuss their first summer together as a team, already thinking ahead to changes they want to make for next summer and punctuating our conversation with laughter and positivity. 10
The three women are new to their positions but not to Culver. Spahn previously led Woodcraft Camp and Junior Woodcraft Camp from 2013-2021. She is a licensed attorney and had a career focused on higher education administration and law school admissions as former assistant dean at Valparaiso University’s School of Law and The University of Chicago Law School.
have a positive, safe experience. With Young joining the team on June 1 and the CSSC staff not returning to the Naval Building to in-person work until that date, they hit the ground running at warp speed. Spahn asked Dr. John Yeager, a former Culver faculty member who specializes in helping teams leverage their strengths, to meet with them and continue to build on that foundational work this fall.
Heike Spahn SS’86
Jacqui Craig Young W’93 SS‘96
Young was an assistant counselor for Deck 1 and spent six more summers on the Naval Staff. Returning in 2018, she most recently served as the commander of Cardinal Wing 3. She taught at the Perry Township Schools in Indianapolis from 2004-2021 and was named a master teacher in 2012. Gartner spent eight years teaching high school family and consumer sciences in St. Charles, Illinois, prior to joining Culver in November 2019 as the Director of the Upper School. She has worked every summer in a variety of leadership positions since 2008. Spahn framed the fundamental goal for Summer 2021 as wanting everyone — students and adults alike — to succeed and
The biggest immediate difference Spahn said she saw in the team was their ability to make good decisions quickly, with a consistent focus on the campers/students. Young, the youngest team member, agreed: “We each brought different strengths to the problem-solving process, which is why we were so successful in creating a ‘normal’ Culver experience for our students and campers.” Communication and visibility were two of the team’s immediate priorities. Each day they split up and walked different parts of the main campus and Woodcraft Camp, with the goal of engaging in conversation with students and staff, observing activities and getting a clearer picture of “inspecting what they expect.”
Jenna Wright Gartner SS’06
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
All three women cited a primary accomplishment was running a successful summer program during the global COVID-19 pandemic. As late as May, a prediction that they would be able to maintain more than 90 percent of student activities, classes, and events seemed like a pipe dream. Extensive efforts in the spring were focused on developing a comprehensive Summer COVID-19 plan, and it worked — from three times per week testing to quarantine housing for COVID-19 positive campers and staff, to having literally no one test positive on the departure PCR (polymerase chain reaction) tests. They ended camp with a .05 percent seven-day positivity rate. By maintaining the Culver bubble, the campers and students were free to interact with their friends, attend classes, and compete in the end-of-camp relays. The students and adults experienced a relatively “normal” summer experience, with only minor changes made to the plan because of COVID-19 restrictions. Campers and students were able to relax again — laughing, playing and learning. Another success was enrolling approximately 70 percent new campers. This summer’s Bronze Cs and Third Classmen were a combination of the new students/campers expected in the summers of 2020 and 2021.
The staff and returning campers rose to the challenge and worked to bring everyone up to speed about Summer School expectations. One unanticipated outcome was the overall exhaustion factor for both campers and students as well as college-aged staff. Many of the college-aged staff studied remotely through the 2020-21 academic year, so they were not initially prepared for the high energy level of daily engagement that was required. The same held true for several of the campers who did remote learning. When asked if they had thought about goals for Summer 2022, all three immediately said, “We have a list!” Their focus for the early fall months will be to review programs/classes, work on student/camper retention, and start working on staff placements for Summer 2022. They still expect to be managing COVID-19 in 2022, so they will be reviewing the tracking process and protocols for next summer. They are also looking closely at the leadership classes for next summer. Upper Schools will continue the Officer Candidate School program for the students who are only able to complete two years of camp. Woodcraft is also considering adding a Silver C Beaver/ Cardinal leadership class, plus a Gold C Cub/ Butterfly leadership class.
One unique bond that the leadership trio share is their Culver summer experience 10 years apart — Spahn in 1986, Young in 1996 and Gartner in 2006. Spahn sees this bond as “a benefit in that our summer experiences as campers, combined with our time as summer staff members, provides a unique foundation on which we can build.” The evolution of the Girls School is reflected in their experiences: HEIKE SPAHN Final rank: Girls school leader Girls: • treated more like a battalion • wore blazers and white gloves • were limited to a single Girls staff and not allowed on regimental staff • did not participate in most Naval events (semaphore, crew) • were typists in the Great Race; in 1984 she was the Deck 3 typist • did not interview for leadership positions; counselors determined those JACQUI YOUNG Final rank: Battalion executive officer Girls: • had two female battalions • were on regimental staff and carried sabers • interviewed for regimental positions • wore civvies to Homecoming and Final Ball JENNA GARTNER Final rank: Unit commander Girls: • interviewed for all positions, including regimental commander • had two all-female honor orgs: Drill Team (marching) and Honor Guard (rifles) • either rode in parades or held a position/rank in their Deck • Naval competitions limited to sailing and crew only • Bailing a wherry was a part of the Girls Great Race PRESENT DAY CHANGES • Girls are in Naval Band and Drum & Bugle Corps • Audrey Allen is the first female Naval Band drum major • Girls take a Girls School test as part of the Tuxis program • Deck 7 was created in 2015 Gartner captured the team’s collective first summer experience this way: “We empowered others while using Culver’s shared values as our guide. We drew not only from our personal journeys but also those of our former campers, new campers, families, and summer staff. At the end of the day, this isn’t just a camp or summer school — it is a life-changing, authentic cultivation of leadership and character in action.”
— Kathy Steiner Lintner First Deck 5 Counselor, Summers ’74 & ’75
At the end of the day, this isn’t just a camp or summer school — it is a life-changing, authentic cultivation of leadership and character in action.” — Jenna Wright Gartner SS’06
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
Gerry & Bill Gram ’60
GRADUATES of the YEAR
Gerry ’60 and Bill Gram ’60, shown here at their winter home in Bokeelia, Florida, are Culver’s 2021 Graduates of the Year.
“Blessed are the flexible for they shall not be bent out of shape.” That’s a mantra in one form or another you’ll hear repeatedly during conversation with 2021 Graduates of the Year Gerry ’60 (faculty daughter and coed) and Wallace “Bill” Gram ’60 (Company D) about life, Culver, and everything. Go with the flow and be happy…not because everything is good but because you can see the good in everything. And what a flow it continues to be. This philosophy certainly helped Gerry when she started at Culver Military Academy as a third classman in 1957. She was one of the first seven faculty daughters at the school. Her father, Col. Gerald Graham, had been hired as director of horsemanship. That year Culver decided to allow faculty daughters as well as sons to attend Culver. The Grahams moved to Culver in the summer of 1957 and that fall Gerry walked into her first class to discover she was the only girl in the classroom. All the other students were cadets. In fact, Gerry, like many of her fellow coeds, went through three years at Culver as the only girl in all her classes except one. “Initially there were only seven girls in a school of 850 boys so if you wanted to have friends beyond the seven coeds, these guys were it. We formed wonderful platonic relationships that exist to this day,” Gerry says. In those days, students sat in class alphabetically. Bill well remembers his embarrassment when in his first class on his first day as a Culver cadet, the instructor called “Graham” and both he and Gerry stood up to report they were present. And thus, it began.
Bill found himself at Culver that fall because the father of a girlfriend he had at the time was a Culver graduate and thought Bill would be a good fit for Culver. And, it turns out, he was. Unlike the coeds, who attended classes but lived at home and wore modest “civilian” clothing, Bill found himself in a totally new environment, away from home, family, friends, and all things familiar. “The people at Culver, your classmates, those in your unit and the faculty became your family at Culver,” Bill says. He goes on to add, “Teenage years are naturally a very formative time. I have friends from Culver that I stay in touch with to this day, 61 years later.” Bill also says the experience itself, the life lessons learned, the values, are life-forming and stay with you throughout your life. “It shaped Culver and it shaped me.” With the two of them at CMA in 1957, they became what arguably could be called the first “Culver Couple.” There was no public display of affection at all allowed on campus. So, following graduation in 1960, Bill, ever the romantic, gave Gerry a miniature of his class ring while sitting at the railroad tracks in Burr Oak. Bill spent the summer after graduation working at Culver. Then came September and he left Culver for the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. After three years in an all-boys school, Gerry went from Culver to Wesleyan Women’s College in Macon, Georgia. The separation proved too much for the young couple, so they married, and Gerry moved to Chapel Hill. They had been in Chapel Hill two years when Bill was drafted into the U.S. Army. After commissioning, he served in Korea, two tours in Vietnam and ultimately spent more than 30 years on active duty. As Bill talks, Gerry rolls her eyes and repeats her mantra, “Blessed are the flexible …” When that draft notice came, life took a major detour for them. Bill said their shared Culver experiences taught them how to handle detours, bends, twists and bumps and boulders in the road, be they large or small.
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
“They are absolutely a perfect couple to be Culver’s first man and woman of love as students. Those years at Culver were the last time they lived there but Bill tells a story about one of those Culver learning experiences. “Every cadet at that time had an M1 rifle in his wardrobe. If you got out of line, or “got sideways” with a superior, he’d make you sleep in the bed with the darn thing.” He goes on to add, “Sometimes you’d have to disassemble the rifle, spread the parts out on your bed and sleep there. Lesson learned, actions have consequences.” In basic training, Bill occasionally would get into trouble because, thanks to Culver, he could disassemble and reassemble his Army-issue M1 faster than the instructors.
Bill moved through a variety of jobs and postings, literally moving up the ranks. He notes the family moved 23 times during his career.
But thanks to their Culver experience, the Grams were able to tackle bigger problems than the naming of parts or field stripping a weapon. They agree that beyond academics, they both learned resilience, fortitude, independence, and leadership at Culver.
“Meeting new people and making new friends was so much easier because of our Culver experience. At Culver we had friends from many different social, economic, and cultural backgrounds. This made our frequent transitions ever so much easier,” Bill added.
“Neither of us planned it that way,” Gerry says. “It was just part of Army life. Culver taught us to roll with the punches, land on our feet, and move on. We followed the mantra, bloom where you are planted. Yes, there were hard times, but the military was good to us. The army sent Bill back to UNC to finish his degree and later his master’s.”
Gerry says with a smile, “In those days, the military “While the physical landscape may change some,” Bill says, “it basically stays the drafted one guy and often got the wife for free. Due same. It’s on the same footprint. It’s always interesting to me to watch cadets and to Bill holding command girls walk around the same paths we used 60 years ago. It’s reassuring to see positions at the company those traditions carry on.” and battalion level, I was very active in the military — Bill Gram community seeing that the families were cared for because it’s a very different lifestyle without the traditional family Gerry said the indesupport. Just like at Culver, we bonded with one another and pendence she learned became family.” at Culver helped her survive the many separations the couple experienced due to Bill’s duty assignments. During the 1960s, Gerry recalls Bill walked out the door one day, headed for Korea, and she didn’t see or talk to Bill Gram ’60 is greeted by the Culver Legion’s then President Russell him for 14 months. Sheaffer ’81 after Bill passed through the Iron Gate at his 50th class At the time, they reunion in 2010. had a 5-month-old, a 2-year-old and a 3-year-old. In addition to writing daily letters, Gerry often put a reel-to-reel tape recorder in “Daddy’s chair” to record normal mealtime conversation. She regularly sent these tapes to Bill, and he would return a recording of himself. “I raised children and kept the home fires burning while Bill served our country at home and abroad, including two tours in Vietnam. He flew helicopters, went to war, jumped out of perfectly good airplanes all while helping lead and train leaders of the future. Leadership is one of those things you learn at Culver.”
She was active in Army Community Service, among other things, briefing soldiers and their families before they were deployed, letting them know what a tightly-knit community could do for them. In addition to raising three sons, and supporting Bill in his career, Gerry worked as a reporter and editor for several newspapers as the family moved from post to post throughout the country and overseas. She attributes her success as a reporter to Culver where she learned to listen, study, and write. Using those same skills, for many years Gerry helped keep the Class of 1960 engaged with Culver and one another by editing the class newsletter. Both Bill and Gerry have held various leadership positions within their class and return to Culver often. In addition to class reunions, a trip to Culver also entails a family reunion. Gerry’s sister Eley Graham Kuchar is a 1967 CMA graduate and another of those storied “Culver couples.” Al Kuchar is a 1967 graduate of Company E. Although Culver classmates, Eley and Al didn’t date each other until college. They now live in Indianapolis. The family’s Culver reunion is further enhanced by the addition of their daughter, Aubrey, who was a summer school counselor, and their son, Jeff, a 2002 Battery C graduate.
the year, because of their love of Culver and the fact they met and fell in Culver has remained an integral part of their lives ever since.” — Eley Graham Kuchar, ’67 “They absolutely are a perfect couple to be Culver’s first man and woman of the year,” Eley says, “because of their love of Culver and the fact they met and fell in love as students. Those years at Culver were the last time they lived there but Culver has remained an integral part of their lives ever since.”
“While the physical landscape may change some,” Bill says, “It basically stays the same. It’s on the same footprint. It’s always interesting to me to watch cadets and girls walk around the same paths we used 60 years ago. It’s reassuring to see those traditions carry on.” Gerry says, “As students, we just went with the flow and didn’t think about how our lives were evolving, and our character and values being developed in positive ways that would last a lifetime. It wasn’t until we were adults that we realized that never again will we have so many people dedicated to helping us be all we can be. Gerry Gram ’60, second from right, was a member of the co-ed fencing team at CMA.
Al says, “Obviously Bill’s Culver training prepared him for his remarkable military career as a pilot and a leader.” The Kuchars agree that the moral support the Grams demonstrate is a further testament to the importance of a strong base of character they attribute to Culver. “They have been there for us,” Eley says, “and we certainly are there for them.” The Grams also make sure they are there for Culver.
“That’s one of the reasons we are involved in giving.” Gerry continues. “We want to give other kids the opportunity to experience what we did.” While the Grams have supported Horsemanship at Culver (an area near and dear to Gerry’s heart to be sure), they also have taken an interest in several scholarship opportunities as well as supporting the Culver Fund.
“It wasn’t until we were adults that we realized that never again will we have so many people dedicated to helping us be all we can be. That’s one of the reasons we are involved in giving. We want to give other kids the opportunity to experience what we did.” — Gerry Gram “We realize the opportunity our parents gave us, and we’d like to pay that back in some way. In addition to academics, Culver taught us life skills that continue to serve us 60-plus years later,” Bill adds. Holding hands and speaking for both of them, Bill says “Giving back to the school that gave us so much is the best way we know to express our gratitude, not only to our parents, but to Culver itself, the faculty and staff and the alumni who give so much of themselves, their time, talents and financial resources to continue this incredible legacy. We are so blessed to have lived the Culver Experience and would like to help others experience it, too.”
Gerry Gram, second from left, joined some of her fellow coeds passing through the Iron Gate at their 50th class reunion in 2010. From left: Judy Gollnick Council, Gerry Graham Gram, Kay Covington Yendes, Mary “Posey” Curry Neidigh.
Watch: An interview with Culver’s 2021 Graduates of the Year. Scan the code.
— By Mike Petrucelli
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
AS CULVER CELEBRATES 50 YEARS
since the milestone launch of the Culver Academy for Girls (re-named Culver Girls Academy for the 1974-75 school year), we look back, here, at a number of women’s “firsts” at Culver. From the trailblazing women who preceded CGA’s beginnings, to those who broke barriers from 1971 to today, what follows is a look at some notable people, moments,and events on the journey to the strong present and bright future of women at Culver.
FIRST woman elected to honorary membership in the Culver Legion:
FIRST all-female crew of the Culver Summer Schools’ O.W. Fowler ship:
retired Academy nurse (after serving 33 years) Leone Bailey, in 1961.
1966 (written up in a photo story in the nationally syndicated “Look” magazine in 1967).
FIRST girls-only TUXIS Medal in Culver Summer Schools & Camps: 1969.
FIRST female Morehead Scholar at Culver: Besse Jordan, in 1976.
FIRST female trustee of Culver Military Academy: Emily Jane Culver (wife of founder Henry Harrison), starting 1897.
FIRST female to teach at Culver: Ruth Benson, in 1954 (teaching remedial reading, initially).
FIRST program at Culver exclusively for young women: The Summer School for Girls, 1965.
FIRST summer of girls forming up and marching, in military fashion, at Culver: 1966.
FIRST females to enroll (1957) and graduate (1959) from Culver:
FIRST girls’ summer horsemanship “hike”: 1967.
FIRST female cheerleaders in Culver’s history: Jane Lovett, Leigh Linnemeier, and Cathy Mitzell (later Duke), in 1968.
Opening of Woodcraft Camp for Girls under leadership of Janet Stannard (later Kline): 1977.
FIRST female faculty recipient of the Delmar T. Spivey Outstanding Teacher Award: Julie Myers, in 1979.
Jean Curry and Greta Hughes.
FIRST female Vedette newspaper advisor in Culver’s history: former Summer School for Girls student Pamela Phelps, ’68.
FIRST female valedictorian: Camille Calman ’79.
FIRST female Culver graduate to serve as a faculty member: Cathy Mitzell Duke ’70
FIRST iteration of the Culver Summer Schools all-girls Great Race: July 21, 1975.
FIRST participation of girls in Culver Summer retreats: (starting in 1980 instructing Dance).
FIRST female Legion Board president: Jane (Doehrman) Eberly ’73 (starting in 1982).
FIRST female to have a Culver facility named for her: Eilleen Dicke (whose name adorns the theater in the lower level of Eppley Auditorium, as of 1984).
1978 (girls were allowed to march in summer parades in 1981).
FIRST honor organization for CGA students: the Equestriennes, formed in 1978, named an honor organization in 1980.
FIRST Culver Aviation graduate to receive her private pilot’s license:
FIRST female Culver graduates to receive a nomination to one of the Service Academies: Jacqueline Bays ’84 (left) to the US Military Academy at West Point; and Leesa Taylor ’84 (right) to the US Naval
FIRST female regimental commander in Culver Summer Schools: Lyndsey Hillis SS’91 (Emily David attained rank of regimental adjutant at the same time); Kimberly Arbuckle W’91 was the first final make regimental commander.
FIRST female director of Horsemanship: Vicki Keith S’69, 1992-94.
Deanne Falduto-Drozdz, S ’83.
FIRST group of CGA students to walk through the Graduation Arch: 1975.
FIRST female to chair a department at Culver:
FIRST woman elected to membership of the Culver Educational Foundation board of directors: Jane (Doehrman) Eberly ’73, in 1983.
Anne Duff (Fine Arts) in 1992.
FIRST girls marching with the Culver Summer Naval Band and Summer Troop in parade: 1989.
FIRST female interns at Culver: 1994-95 school year.
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
FIRST female hockey goalie at Culver: Katie Mangan ’97 starting in 1995 for CMA Varsity B team.
FIRST Culver Woman of the Year/Graduate of the Year: Dr. Sally Hodder ’72, in 1996.
FIRST female faculty member to reach the 25-year mark (and be awarded the honorary ring by the Culver Legion):
FIRST female state wrestling individual state finalist (and 2021 Olympic contender) at Culver: Kayla Miracle ’14.
Julie Thornburg (2001).
FIRST Upper Camp final make regimental commander in Culver Summer Schools: Maggie (McDowell) Holcombe SS’01.
FIRST CGA graduate to serve as Dean of Girls: Lynn Rasch ’76, beginning in 2015.
FIRST female director of Culver’s Woodcraft Camp: Janet Stannard Kline, 2000–2005.
FIRST year of girls’ membership in the Woodcraft Drum & Bugle Corps: 2011.
FIRST Culver story to go viral: The longest-employed woman in Culver’s history, Elisabeth Davis, who began working as a secretary in 1936, celebrated her 80th “work-a-versary” in 2016, and worked just short of her 100th birthday in 2017. The story of “Mrs. Davis,” as she was known on campus, is also the first Culver story to truly “go viral,” in 2016, when over 1 million people viewed her story online at venues ranging from the New York Times to People Magazine, Inside Edition to media outlets across the world.
Yeager helping coaches find the “Why?” Why do people become sport coaches? Sometimes, the coaches themselves may have trouble answering that question. Especially during these busy days. Since retiring from Culver Academies, former leadership instructor John Yeager has been working with high school and college athletic teams, and businesses on different aspects of leadership. With the publishing of “The Coaching Zone: Next Level Leadership in Sports,” he is helping coaches find the answer to that question with a combination of the book and in-person training. He will be conducting two such training sessions at Culver this fall and winter. Between the juggling act of preparing a team for the next game and/or season, managing individual players’ (and their parents’) expectations, and putting out those small day-to-day fires that come with the job, many coaches have either forgotten or don’t have the time “to think deeply” about the answer to that question. But answering the “Why?” is an important first step for coaches seeking to create the positive environment for themselves, their players, and the team to build on. It is one of the three main principles in the book. Yeager spent five years working on the book and had set it aside at one point. But he revived the project after talking with Brooklyn Wheeler Raney ’03, who visited Culver in mid-February of 2020 to run her “One Trusted Adult” sessions for the Culver faculty and staff. That visit, just before everything shut down because of COVID-19, gave Yeager the jumpstart he needed. Then he used his downtime during the pandemic lockdown to finish it. The book hit store shelves in April of this year and was an Amazon best seller for a period of time.
Assisting with the book was Jon Cunha, who is a licensed mental health counselor and former track and field coach. He now specializes in recovery training programs for athletes, coaches and organizations to strengthen mental fitness and help injured athletes recover. In the book, Yeager talks about coaches taking the time “to think deeply” about why they wanted to be coaches in the beginning and why they are coaching today. Building this self-awareness of their strengths, blind spots, and behavioral styles, lets coaches manage their personal well-being so they can respond to athletes in the moment and over time. This can develop a sense of gratitude within and eventually translates over to the second principle of “Leading and Empowering Athletes.” This principle covers knowing how to connect effectively with athletes, how to direct them to further improvement, when is time to take the lead, and when is the time to let go—all the while building Psychological Capital (PsyCap) in both the coach and his or her players. PsyCap is based on four human outcomes as addressed by the research team of Fred Luthans, Carolyn Youssef-Morgan, and Bruce Avolio, Yeager explained. The acronym they coined was HERO, which stands for hope, confidence (efficacy), resilience and optimism. These four qualities strongly influence the coach’s and team’s attitude and performance. This leads to the third principle of “The Team Dance,” which involves systems thinking, responding effectively to the rhythms and patterns of the team. This includes dealing with the expectations of the individual player while maintaining a healthy team culture of shared values and responsibility. It allows for the players to build their own collaboration skills and hold each other accountable. Part of this, Yeager said, is building the team structure so everyone feels empowered and performs accordingly. Using a business strategy, the tops (coaches)
empower the middles (team captains) and bottoms (players) to provide needed feedback to help make adjustments as needed. Without this feedback loop, the players may rebel and the team captains will feel trapped in the middle. Throughout the book, Yeager cites business articles on management styles. He said it is a reversal of the old standard when business leaders would have great athletes come and speak to the employees about performance. He is using business articles and studies on performance to structure “The Coaching Zone.”
John Yeager leading a class at Culver.
He also emphasizes storytelling as an effective means for coaches to both find their “Why” and to help make connections with their players. Every coach has a story either as a player or team leader that has influenced them, he said, and coaches need to share those to build trust within their teams. He uses both his own stories, stories from past and present Culver coaches, and other high school and college coaches to illustrate these points. He also credits the book’s editor, Kathryn Britton, with making the book easy to follow. Britton does not have any sports coaching experience, Yeager explained, so she emphasized organizing the concepts so it could easily be followed by people outside the profession. The result is a book written to help coaches but that can be used by anyone to improve their leadership skills. — Jan Garrison
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
Kehoe: back to the chaos and loving it! Capt. Mike Kehoe (U.S. Navy-ret.) returned to Culver in 2021 to once again serve as commandant, but with a slight twist. Kehoe served as Commandant of Cadets for Culver Military Academy from 2000 to 2006. His return was as Upper Schools Commandant for Culver Summer Schools & Camps.
And, when it came time to fill the commandant position, Gartner decided to tap the Kehoe family connection. After a few phone calls, she eventually turned his “intrigue” into reality. It came with a little pushing from his daughters. Becky said she and Christie told him “that would be amazing” when he initially made light of returning. The counseling job was “the best job I’ve ever had,” she explained, and the friends she made during that time have endured to this day. She also served as a boarding school intern (now fellow) for a year, teaching British literature. Former Culver instructor Candy Koehn was the head of the intern program. They talked their dad into it, Becky said. So Kehoe and his wife, Nancy, decided to return and the whirlwind that is a Culver Summer officially began.
From left, Capt. Mike Kehoe, his daughter Becky, and Upper Schools Director Jenna Gartner SS‘06.
How he returned in his new role is a classic Culver connection tale. During his first time at Culver, his daughters, Becky and Christie ’02, served as counselors at camp. Becky served as a counselor in Deck 4 for six years, five as the senior counselor. Christie worked as Becky’s junior counselor for one year. “Becky has always said I became commandant just so she could find Culver,” Kehoe said. One of the three-year students in her Deck 4 unit was Jenna (Wright) Gartner SS’06, who is now the Upper Schools director. Gartner stayed in touch with Becky, especially after she became a counselor herself. She continued a Deck 4 tradition of a sisterhood activity at the first unit meeting every summer. It is an activity that continues to this day. “I still remember that activity vividly, and how it forever changed my life,” Gartner said. “I am here today, because of Becky.”
“Like they say, ‘The days are long but the weeks fly by,’ ” he said. “Anyone dealing with students or student life can tell you that.” Since retiring three years ago, the Kehoes have settled in Idaho when not criss-crossing the country to see children and grandchildren. He has visited Culver twice, the last time being to take part in the 100th anniversary celebration of Armistice Day in 2018. His return this summer has also become a family affair of sorts with three grandchildren in Woodcraft Camp. It’s a special opportunity to bring everyone together after the pandemic shut down normal routines. “It was a chance for them to play and be kids again,” Becky said of her two boys and her brother Steve’s son. She added it was a little “bittersweet” to be looking on at a distance. But when she came back to spend the last two weeks of camp with her parents, she quickly found herself pressed into service, working in the Upper Schools “rack shack,” which updates the students’ ranks and accomplishments. So much for relaxing.
Kehoe, who has the unusual designation of being the oldest first-year summer employee, said there are definitely differences between the two commandant positions. The only camp veteran in the Military Activities staff is Deputy Commandant Katie Sewell SS’12 W’08 and, also the current Benson Dormitory counselor, whom Kehoe has relied on when it comes to navigating the differences between the summer and boarding school roles. Personally, he said, the pace is the biggest adjustment. While the boarding school is a distance run, working with the same leaders for months at a time, the summer “has been a sprint. You finish one thing and immediately move on to the next.” And losing the 2020 camp session accelerated that pace. The second classmen who would normally have taken leadership instruction last summer were left in the lurch. To fill that knowledge gap, the staff developed a two-week officer candidate school to bring them up to speed. After finishing the session, the students were promoted to first classmen and eligible to fill leadership positions, which many have. Those students are also being given increased opportunities to assume those roles through weekly leadership changes. That means Kehoe and the Military Activities staff start their days as early as 6:30 a.m. to prepare the new leaders for their roles during retreats and parades. That can lead to 12- to 14-hour days. “You are a lot more hands-on with the kids during the summer,” Kehoe explained. “The upside is I have gotten to meet a lot of really great kids.” “I’ve really enjoyed it,” he added. “Whether it’s winter or summer, I’ve had the opportunity to work with a lot of great kids. Being involved with them has really been invigorating.” Becky confirmed that. “The hours are crazy,” she said, “but he’s never been so happy. It has really lit a spark in him.” — Jan Garrison
Miller: 35 years and holding Capt. Tim Miller taught his last class at Culver Summer Schools & Camps on Thursday, July 29.
inland lake with a sailing team, and Miller has assisted with the program a few times during the fall.
Miller, a 1965 Naval School graduate, has been teaching the leadership classes for the past five to six years. He started teaching the classes at the Naval School while he was still the director. This summer, he taught it outside, sitting with his students on the patio of The Shack overlooking Lake Maxinkuckee.
Along with staying in the fall, Miller has arrived in mid-May to get the Naval School prepared and get the boats in the water. “I like the change in seasons,” he said, “I just don’t like the winters.”
It was symbolic in a way. As a summer student, one of Miller’s favorite places to get away from it all was the old Shack, which was attached to the Culver Inn. With a breeze blowing and the ski boats going by, Miller finished up with his students. The class was Front Line Leadership and he taught it during the third trimester. It provides a hands-on, step-bystep, toolkit of actions that leaders can take for different situations. “These are the hard skills students can use,” Miller said. Each student is given a set of cards covering with different situations and guidelines they can follow. The students then think of real-life cases where these skills would be useful and practice them. What it does is take the leadership theories they have learned in other classes and put them in practice. Miller developed the Upper School leadership program with Col. Warren Foersch, who served as the summer commandant and the assistant commandant of the boarding school. “He was an amazing man,” Miller said of Foersch. When Foresch was unable to return in 2019, Miller stepped in commandant “for my one-and-only summer.” The hours were just too long for him. Then, when camp was closed in 2020, it played a part in his decision to call 2021 his last. At age 71, Miller has been involved with Culver Upper Schools for 38 years. First came three years as a student in Naval School, then returning in 1968 for his first stint as a sailing instructor. During that time, he has worked with Adm. John Bays, Capt. Peter Whitney, Burt Curry, and Bob Stockwell. He credits them, along with Jerry Thomas and Pat Hodgkin, with teaching him the “ins-and-outs” of sailing and how to teach it to others. It was during Stockwell’s tenure, with Miller as assistant director, that the Naval School became a US Sailing certified teaching entity. Culver is still the only secondary school and summer camp that actively works to certify high school age students. “Most programs are geared for adults,” he said. While Miller was director, the Naval Building underwent a major renovation and the entire fleet, except for the interlakes, has been turned over. That also involved bringing five keel boats into the fleet. And he was able to lure now-Naval Director Joe Hanko out of Florida to come onboard. Hanko also serves as the Culver Academies sailing coach. Culver is the only high school on an
That stems from the two years he spent as the Troop A counselor. He was here from 1977 through 1979, which were also the two worst winters in recent history. Now, though, he is looking forward to “moving on to something else.” And by moving, he means on his three-wheeled motorcycle. His bucket list goal is to ride it through all 49 of the continental United States. While he did a ride through the northeast earlier this year, he wants to touch Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont again, along with Halifax, Nova Scotia, because the COVID-19 restrictions limited his sightseeing capabilities. Then he’ll start to check the western states off his list, probably Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona in the spring before the heat. Lately, Miller has been splitting his time between Culver, where he has an apartment; a house in Fort Myers Beach, Florida; and a home in Toledo, Ohio, so he and his wife, Marty, can be near daughter Kara SS’02 and granddaughter, Alexis. But Miller’s 35 years at Culver may best be remembered by the legacy of leadership he is just finishing. While Summer Schools & Camps have long had a Code of Conduct, it is one that has been operated by the adults. But in 2019, work began on a new Honor Code and a system that would follow the Honor Council setup of the boarding school. Miller said the Upper Schools students just approved taking over the system, which will now place an honor code officer in each unit for 2022. Those students will sit on the Honor Council along with the regimental commander for each make. They will make the decisions on student conduct cases. “The only person who will change during the summer will be the REGCOM,” Miller said, who believes this is a big step for students. He also just completed a leadership toolkit for Woodcraft Camp, which will cover three years of leadership exercises for campers. With 13 different exercises/games available, every counselor should be able to run through the series without repeating one. Gold Cs could be doing a self-directed exercise, he explained, while the counselor is leading the younger campers through another. Now, he is mulling over the opportunity to return and teach Front Line Leadership during the third trimester next summer. So, saying that Miller has taught his last Summer Schools & Camps class after 35 years may not be set in stone. After all, there are still 50 more weeks in a year to work on that bucket list. Let’s just say 35 years and holding. — Jan Garrison
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
GRA UATI 2
The 199 members of the Class of 2021 are survivors and thrivers
GRADUATION STUDENT AWARDS
GRADUATES HONORED FOR CONTRIBUTIONS TO CULVER
The most prestigious of student awards were presented at Commencement Convocation to members of the Class of 2021 Saturday. The top six student award winners are nominated and selected by a vote of the faculty and staff. The academic/athletic awards are selected by the coaching staffs from among the 2021 members of the Cum Laude Society. The McDonald Award was presented to Connor Lee (Granger, Indiana). The award, established in 1927 by Edwin C. McDonald, Class of 1915, and first given to Joshua Logan ’27, Pulitzer Prizewinning Broadway playwright and director, is given to the cadet who — by his individual work, example and inspiration — has contributed materially to the betterment of cultural life at Culver. The Arthur G. Hughes Award was presented to Ava Johnson (Culver). The award, established in 1974 by the graduates of CGA honoring Culver’s first chair of Fine Arts, is presented to the graduating senior girl who has revealed the most exceptional concern for cultural life at the Academies. The Van Zandt Key was presented to Michael Kuhl (Elmhurst, Illinois). The key, established in 1954 by Richard R. Van Zandt ’28, is presented to the cadet who, by his effort and example, has increased an awareness among the Corps of Cadets of the importance of moral and spiritual values. The Mary Frances England Humanitarian Award, established in 1973 by the Culver Parents Association, was presented to Taylor Lewandowski (Culver). The award, named for the founding director of Culver Girls Academy, is presented annually to the senior girl who, by her acts, has revealed an exemplary concern for others. Kuhl also received The Chambers Award, which is given in memory of Cal C. Chambers, Class of 1908. The award, established in 1915, recognizes that first-classman who has distinguished himself through a combination of excellence in scholarship and athletics. The Jane Metcalfe Culver Bowl was presented to Minseo Kim (Lincolnwood, Illinois). The award, established in 1988, is presented to the graduating senior of Culver Girls Academy who has distinguished herself in scholastic and athletic achievements. The YMCA Cup was presented to Noah Tan (Stevensville, Michigan). The Cup, established in 1915, is presented to the cadet who, in
the opinion of the faculty and staff, best exemplifies the ideals of Culver. The Superintendent’s Bowl was presented to Yichen (Sherry) Xie (Shanghai, China). The bowl is presented to a graduating senior of Culver Girls Academy for leadership, example, influence, and total record of achievement. The award was established in 1972 by a former cadet. Xie was also recognized as the valedictorian of the Class of 2021 and recipient of the Jonas Weil Award. She will continue her education at Stanford University. Established by Jonas Weil ’54, the Weil Award provides a monetary award to the valedictorian and salutatorian. Evan Lu (San Marino, California) was named the salutatorian and Jonas Weil Valedictorian Yichen (Sherry) Xie and Award winner. Salutatorian Evan Winnie Lu Lu also received The Scholarship Medal, which was established in 1946. The award is presented to the cadet with the highest cumulative grade point average during the second- and first-class years at Culver. Lu will be attending Brown University, where he will be a member of the fencing team. The Alfred J. Donnelly Scholastic Award was presented to Zhuoan (Joanna) Xiang (Beijing). The award is given in memory of Alfred J. Donnelly, Culver’s long esteemed teacher, counselor and dean. It recognizes the graduating senior in CGA who has attained the highest academic average during her junior and senior year. The award was established in 1979. Awards presented during the final academic convocation included the Brian M. Barefoot Social Entrepreneurship Awards. Honored were “Reimagining Fall/Final Ball” by Elle Strogilos (Schererville, Indiana); “Books to China” by Richard Li (Beijing); and “Tone 3
2021 FACULTY AWARDS
SIX FACULTY-STAFF MEMBERS HONORED Culver Academies honored six faculty and staff members for their dedication and service during two events marking the end of the 2020-2021 academic years. Two people were honored during the Commencement Convocation and four were recognized during the final academic convocation a week earlier. Dean of Girls M. Lynn Rasch ’76 and Commandant of Cadets Col. Michael Squires were presented with endowed chairs. Rasch received the Britton L. Gordon Chair and Squires received the Almore H. Teschke Chair.
Foundation: Supporting the Homeless in Nashville, Tennessee” by Dillon Elam (Nolensville, Tennessee). The Barefoot awards are presented to social entrepreneurial or service-leadership endeavors that are creative, unique, visionary, and promise long term benefit to a disadvantaged community. The Mark Todd Berger ’88 Scholarship was presented to Samuel Tullis ’22 (South Bend, Indiana). The merit award goes to a rising first classman who best exemplifies Berger’s qualities of courage, concern, pleasant nature and positive outlook. The scholarship was established by Berger’s parents, Mr. and Mrs. Alfred Berger, and his brother, David Berger ’83, following his death in April of his senior year. Alexis Allen (Canton, Georgia) received the Outstanding Sportswoman of the Year award, which is presented by the CGA Class of 1972 to the senior who is the best all-around athlete in Culver Girls Academy. Timofey Spitserov (Moscow) received the Russ and Myra Oliver Best All-Around Athlete award, which is presented to the CMA first classman who best represents the ideals of Russ and Myra Oliver. Dorm/Unit Awards Ithaka Dorm was awarded The Benson Bowl for Academic Achievement with an overall grade point average of 3.799. The award, established by a former Culver cadet, is dedicated to the memory of Dean Ernest B. Benson and is awarded to the CGA dormitory having the highest academic achievement for the year. Company C won The Silver Bowl with an overall GPA of 3.699. Given by E.R. Culver III, Class of 1918, to the CMA organization having the highest academic achievement for the year. Honors and Concentrations Ninety-one students received diplomas indicating they successfully completed the requirements for Concentrations or Honors in a discipline. Students graduating with a Concentration in a subject completed a series of prerequisite courses, including special seminars focusing intensively on their areas of interest. Those students graduating with Honors will have produced a body of work judged to be of high merit by the corresponding subjectarea faculty committee.
The Gordon Chair was established in 1989 by Britton L. Gordon CMA 1929 to recognize outstanding contributions to Culver and its goals throughout a career by a member of the administrative staff. The criteria includes that the person should live and promote the values and virtues of Culver — duty, honor, service, truth, wisdom, courage, moderation, and justice. The Teschke Chair was established in 1979 by the Almore H. Teschke Family Foundation and the father of Ronald Teschke CMA 1964. The chair was established with the understanding that Dean A. D. Nagy, who had been Ron’s counselor during his formative Culver years would be named the first recipient. The chair now is made available to other competent and dedicated members of the administration and faculty who embody the qualities of Dean Nagy, particularly an unusual dedication to students and student leadership. Latin and Leadership instructor Evan Dutmer received the Maj. Gen. Delmar T. Spivey Award for Teaching. Named for Culver’s sixth superintendent, the Spivey Award recognizes and encourages superior teaching among younger, promising faculty members. The recipient is selected by the Academic Department chairs. Tower Dorm Resident Director Dolores Trobenter was the recipient of the John R. Mars Award. Established by the Board of Trustees to honor Culver’s 10th superintendent, the award goes to the member of the faculty/staff who best exemplifies the ideals of Culver and Dean Mars during his 41-year career. Director of International Student Achievement Catherine Tulungen received the Kaser Scholar Award. The award is presented to the faculty member “whose scholarly interests, enthusiastic teaching, sympathetic understanding and wise counsel combine to inspire students and kindle in them the zest for life and learning.” It is selected by the top 30 percent of the senior class and is named in honor of Mark B. Kaser ’75. The Ralph N. Manuel Award is presented annually to the male and female faculty or staff member who, in the opinion of the student body, best exemplifies the ideals of Culver. Manuel was the superintendent of schools from 1982 to 1999. Student Activities Director Kathy Talbot and humanities instructor and CMA swim & dive coach Josh Brown were the recipients of the honor.
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
GRADUATION THE NEXT CHAPTER
The 199 members of the Class of 2021 are survivors and thrivers, who
are well prepared to chart their future with the confidence and optimism that a Culver education has instilled in them.
Florida Gulf Coast University
Florida State University
Ball State University
George Washington University
High Point University
Illinois State University
Carnegie Mellon University
Johns Hopkins University
Case Western Reserve University
Loyola Marymount University
Miami University, Oxford
Michigan State University
New York University
College of Charleston
College of the Holy Cross
College of William and Mary
Old Dominion University
Pennsylvania State University
Colorado State University
Ramapo College of New Jersey
Rochester Institute of Technology
Santa Clara University
Sewanee, University of the South
Southern Methodist University
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
St. Lawrence University
Seven graduates are seeking international college experiences in England, Mexico, Spain and Wales. Eight have earned acceptance into service academies at the U.S. Military Academy (West Point), the U.S. Naval Academy and the U.S. Coast Guard. The remainder are attending 108 public and private colleges and universities across the United States. Stanford University
University of New Hampshire
University of North Carolina, Greensboro
University of North Carolina, Wilmington
Texas A & M University
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Texas Christian University
University of Notre Dame
Texas Tech University
University of Pennsylvania
The Ohio State University
University of Southern California
University of Tampa
University of Toledo
United States Coast Guard Academy
University of Vermont
United States Military Academy
University of Virginia
United States Naval Academy
University of Wisconsin, Madison
University of California, Berkeley
Utah State University
University of California, Davis
University of California, Irvine
University of California, Riverside
Virginia Military Institute
University of California, San Diego
University of California, Santa Cruz
Wake Forest University
University of Central Oklahoma
Washington University in St. Louis
University of Chicago
Wellesley College (Women’s)
University of Colorado, Boulder
University of Denver
University of Evansville
COLLEGES OUTSIDE THE US:
University of Florida
Cambridge University, England
University of Illinois and Urbana-Champaign 1
Technolagico de Monterrey, Mexico
University of Iowa
Universidad de Guanajuato, Mexico
University of Maryland, Baltimore County
Universidad Iberoamericana, Mexico
University of Massachusetts, Boston
IE University, Spain
University of Miami
Cardiff Metropolitan University, Wales
University of Michigan
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
hen the members of the class of 2020 gathered on campus over Memorial Day weekend, they had some trouble describing the occasion. Was it a reunion? In a way. They hadn’t been together for 15 months. There was a lot of catching up to do. And they marched in the special Saturday parade as alumni. Or was it graduation weekend? In a way. They already had their diplomas in hand, but they had missed out on the traditions of the final bonfire, senior dinner-dance, final ball, and walking through the Graduation Arch and Iron Gate. But they all knew it was a chance to bring closure to a chapter like no other in Culver Academies history. The class of 2020 was the first class to not finish their senior/first-class year on campus after it was closed in mid-March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. “It was like having a whole month compressed into two days,” Michael Gianforcaro said. “Everyone thought of everything, the dinner-dance and the waltz. It was a really great weekend for us. We got to do all the fun things.” Gianforcaro, who finished his first year at Princeton, was one of the 172 graduates to return. For him, and it was a common theme, the best part of the weekend was “seeing all your old classmates. We haven’t seen each other for over a year.”
His time since leaving Culver was mostly spent on his computer. The Ivy League schools conducted classes online. A member of the Princeton men’s lacrosse program, Gianforcaro said he did get to live on campus in the spring, practice and work out. But the season was cancelled. “So I’ll have four years to play,” he explained, “but the Ivy League will only honor three of them.” He will then have the option of taking his fourth year of eligibility at different school as a graduate transfer. Cady Clark said, “It honestly feels like I’m home again. Our class picked up right where we left off. It felt like nothing had changed, though it’s been over a year. “It’s been hard to see what we missed,” she added, “but, at the same time, our class has made memories together that no other class will. So, it’s a pretty special thing.” Ava Dauer added that seeing everyone that she had spent four years with was special. “It was emotional, it really was,” she said. “I felt like there was a lot of unfinished business for our class. To be able to come back and all be together was huge. “The fact that Culver has prioritized this for us, especially with COVID, is so flattering. I know we’re all feeling very, very grateful, appreciative, and lucky.”
Frances Derrick said she was “really grateful to be back on campus. With everything happening during the pandemic, to be back on campus for the first time felt really good. Picking up where we left off and ending this chapter in my life is something I’ve been looking forward to.” Deontae Craig, who is now playing football at the University of Iowa, said he was glad to reunite with “this iconic group of great young men and women. They’re gonna do great things one day.” Oddly, though, he said he was “kind of nervous at first” when he arrived back on campus. “Just seeing everybody so grown up. But it’s been fun.” For Bashir Dahir, coming back gave him the opportunity to see “so many people” that he didn’t get to when campus closed suddenly. “To see old friends, classmates, teachers, mentors and counselors — everybody — it really feels so good. It’s good to be back.” Eric Concannon was taken aback a little when he first arrived on campus. “It’s a little surreal,” he said. “I’m still getting used to seeing everyone else in uniform after not having been here for over a year.” He considered the return to campus “a reunion, effectively.” Having the different ceremonies, though, “makes it feel like it has some closure.” Molly McGrane also used “surreal” to explain how it felt to return. “I was really worried about coming back and seeing everybody again,” she said. “But you don’t remember how beautiful it is here. It’s like you step back on campus and everything comes back.”
And, she said, going to college in Boston “I had lost all of the Midwest politeness, but it just reloaded automatically. I’m smiling at everyone walking past. You know, you come back and your body remembers — even if you don’t. That’s been fun to see.” Sophie Michi said seeing all her friends “in one place” after more than a year was “a great opportunity.” She added that even though you may not have spoken to them on a daily basis while going to school, being able to share time with those “you have grown up with” was special. Paola Martinez agreed. Coming back to spend time with those people you have spent four years with “is amazing. I am so grateful to be able to come back.” Camila Mariscal said being able to come was important, from seeing her friends to just seeing the campus. “I am very thankful to Culver for everything,” she said. From her friends “who helped me grow up, to all the connections I have now, to everything I learned, I am a better person because of Culver. It’s really amazing to see everyone back. “I really don’t want to leave.”
— Jan Garrison
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CGA captures first regional title
The Culver Girls Academy track and field team made history this spring when it captured its first regional title in history. Neither CMA nor CGA had won a regional until this spring. In a lead-up to the regional, CGA won its ninth Bremen sectional crown by 56 points over second place Plymouth. The girls finished with 88 points at the Goshen regional, just 3.5 points ahead of second place Warsaw. A total of 31 teams were represented at the regional tournament. In winning the regional, CGA also qualified a record number of participants for the IHSAA Track & State Finals. Senior Alexis Allen (Canton, Georgia) qualified in the 1600- and 3200-meter runs, junior Cecille Figueroa (Chicago) qualified in the 100 and 200, and senior Maggie Bialek (Metamora, Michigan) earned an appearance in the 400. The 4x800 relay team of senior Elizabeth Strogilos, junior Emily Heim
(Culver), and sophomores Liilian VerMeulen and Margaret VerMeulen (Winnetka, Illinois) and the 4x400 team of Bialek, junior Madison Rivera (Columbus, Indiana), sophomore Lena Spiller (Louisville, Kentucky), and freshman Quinn Bird (Sturgis, Michigan) each took third-place overall in their respective events during the Regional, also earning bids to the Finals. Junior Madison Miller (Indianapolis) was the lone field contestant to appear in the State Finals, besting her own personal record by more than 16 feet in the discus throw during the Regional round. Allen finished her Culver career by reaching the podium twice at the state finals. She finished fifth in the 1600 with a time of 4 minutes, 51.24 seconds. The state record, interestingly enough, is held by CGA’s Waverly Neer ’11 at 4:43.46. Allen also finished sixth in the 3200 with a time of 10:45.74. She is headed to Princeton University to run cross country and track and field.
CMA dominates in sectional victory Culver Military Academy claimed the program’s fifth track and field sectional championship in dominating fashion, placing first in nine of the 16 total events, and second in three. The Eagles, who have not won a sectional title since 2002, finished with 164 points. Runner-up Rochester had 96. Senior Jaxon Mull (Fort Wayne, Indiana) and junior George Bourdier (New Iberia, Louisiana) led much of the scoring. Bourdier and Mull claimed first and second in the 100-meter dash, respectively. Mull also took first in the 110 and 300 hurdles, and Bourdier won the 200 and pole vault.
Both also took part in the winning 4x100 relay team with sophomores Folabomi Fayemi (Lagos, Nigeria) and Andrew Galas (Naperville, Illinois). In longer distance events, seniors Jacob Graham (Granger, Indiana) and Clayton Long (North Liberty, Indiana), junior Samuel Tullis (South Bend, Indiana), and sophomore Hunter Miller (Greencastle, Indiana) each scored significant points in individual events and earned advancement. Long and Tullis took first and second, respectively, in the 1600, while Tullis took first in the 3200 with Miller placing third. Graham took first place in the 800. The 4x800m relay team consisting of Miller, Graham, Tullis, and Long narrowly beat out Rochester’s team by .04 seconds for first, adding to CMA’s overall dominant night. After the regional competition, Mull and Bourdier were the lone CMA representatives at the state finals. Bourdier placed eighth and earned a podium spot in the pole vault. He also finished 13th overall in the 200. Mull would take 18th and 20th overall in the 300 and 110 hurdle events, respectively.
— Kirk Brown
CGA wins 17th sectional title CGA tennis captured its third consecutive and 17th overall sectional championship with wins over Rochester and North Judson. CGA defeated the Zebras, 5-0, in the first round and the Blue Jays, 4-1, in the championship. The team lost, 3-2, to Peru in the first round of the regional.
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
Friends gather to celebrate Autumn Baumgartner’s signing.
26 continue athletic careers Twenty-six more Culver Academies students signed on to continue their athletic careers during two spring signing ceremonies in May and June. That brings the total number of 2021 graduates making athletic commitments to 43, with 17 students committing during the fall signing period. Making spring commitments were:
Alexis Allen, cross country/track & field, Princeton University
Erich Marschall, rugby, U.S. Military Academy West Point
Elena Vona, fencing, Wellesley College
Isabelle Kanach, sailing, Old Dominion University
Connor Lee, fencing, University of North Carolina
Samantha Hazen, soccer, Southwestern University
Luca Xiao, fencing, Johns Hopkins University
Sophia Rotiroti, soccer, Soccer Management Institute in Rome
Evan Lu, fencing, Brown University
Autumn Baumgartner, swim & dive, U.S. Military Academy West Point
Jaxon Mull, football, Marian University
Catherine VerMeulen, volleyball, Williams College
Margaret Groszek, hockey, Amherst College
Deandre Francis, basketball, Glen Oaks Community College
Katie Manning, hockey, Elmira College
Gavin Bailey, lacrosse, The College of the Holy Cross
Mike Melton, lacrosse, Tufts University
Nicholas Gravenites, rowing, Tufts University
Enoch Wood, rowing, Tufts University
Kyle Letke, rowing, Bucknell University
Beatrice Johnson, rowing, Bates College
Tereza Dudzik, rowing, Gonzaga University
Noah Tan, rowing, Stanford University
Mitchell Lafferty, rowing, University of Wisconsin
Justin Ludwig, rugby, Cardiff Metropolitan University
Jack Etheridge, rugby, U.S. Naval Academy
Baseball makes impressive run CMA Baseball finished the regular season with an impressive 13-6 overall record. The Eagles’ run came to an end, though, in Kankakee Valley Class 3A Sectional semifinal, where they lost to eventual Class 3A state-runners-up Hanover Central. Rising junior Connor Schmiedlin (Culver) finished the season with an impressive .603 batting average, earning him the third best average in the state.
Miracle latest in history of Culver Olympians Kayla Miracle ’14 became the latest in the long list of Culver Academies alumni, faculty and staff to participate in the Olympics. Competing at the Tokyo Games this summer, Miracle was a member of the USA women’s wrestling team. Wrestling at 62 kg, this was Miracle’s first Olympics, losing a 3-2 decision in the first round. Two months later, she would win the silver medal at the World Championships in Oslo, Norway. She won three preliminary matches by a total of 29-6 before losing in the championship, 7-0, to Aisuluu Tynybekova of Kyrgyzstan, who won silver in Tokyo. Miracle’s experience includes placing eighth at the 2019 Senior World Championships. She is a three-time champion at the U.S. Senior Nationals. She also has won a silver medal at the 2012 Cadet World Championships, bronze medals at the 2014 and 2016 Junior World Championships and a silver medal at the 2019 U23 World Championships. William H. “Beef” Richardson ’22 became the first Culver Military Academy graduate to score in the 1924 Olympics, finishing fifth in the 800-meter run for the United States. John K. Boles 1906 won gold in the 100-meter single shot target and finished seventh in double shots. Col. Isaac Leonard Kitts, Culver’s director of horsemanship from 1948-53, was a member of the U.S. Equestrian Dressage Team. He helped the team take the bronze medal and finished sixth individually at the 1932 Los Angeles Olympic Games riding American Lady. He was also a member of the U.S. team at the 1936 Berlin Olympics team that finished ninth overall. When Kitts joined the Senior ROTC staff at Culver in 1939, American Lady joined him. Also at Berlin, Richard W. Freeman ’30 and J. Paul Austin ’33 were members of the men’s coxed 4 rowing team. At the 1956 Stockholm Summer Games, Warren W. Wofford ’54 qualified for both the show jumping and eventing. He chose show jumping but went as an alternate. Related to Warren is James C. “Jimmy” Wofford ’62, one of the best known equestrian trainers and coaches in the world. He competed on the 1968 and 1972 Olympic teams and was named to the 1980 team (which boycotted the Moscow games), winning two team silver medals and one individual silver medal during that span.
at Culver from 1956-57, was a judge for the three-day eventing at the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. Former Culver fencing coach Igor Stefanic was on the Yugoslav Olympic team for the 1992 competition in the Barcelona games, though the team didn’t fence since the country wasn’t yet recognized by the Olympic body. Barry Richter ’89, the first of several Culver hockey players to become Olympians, was named to the U.S. Olympic Hockey Team for the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway. Eric Brodnax ’82 represented the Virgin Islands in the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, riding in the equestrian sport of eventing. Lucy Kirkpatrick Tyler ’83, riding as Tyler-Sharman, won a bronze medal in the women’s cycling individual point race for her adopted country Australia at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta. Alejandro Fernandez ’78 represented the Mexican National Team at Atlanta in clay target shooting. R. Stephen Tucker ’87 first represented the United States in the men’s lightweight double sculling at the 2000 Sydney Games. Four years later, he and his teammate Greg Ruckman finished seventh in the 2004 Summer Olympic Games in Athens. National Hockey League star Gary Suter ’82 represented the United States at the 1998 and 2002 Winter Olympics. The 1998 games in Nagano, Japan, was the first time NHL players participated in the tournament. The 2002 games were held in Salt Lake City. Behind the scenes at Salt Lake, Robie Vaughn ’74 served as the team leader for the USA Skeleton team, which included his wife, Fallon. Vaughn, who marched in the opening ceremonies, was instrumental in lobbying to add the sport to the 2002 winter games. Molly Engstrom ’01 was on the women’s hockey team at the 2006 Olympic Winter Games in Turin, Italy, and John Michael Liles ’99 played for the men. Engstrom also played in the 2010 games at Vancouver, winning a silver medal.
During the 1960s, Culver’s canoe instructor Kalman Blatho, a Hungarian Olympic athlete himself, coached the host Italian team in the 1960 Rome Olympics. William Smoke SS’52 was a member of the United States canoe team at the 1964 Tokyo games, as part of the men’s K-4 1000 meters team.
Liles and Ryan Suter ’03 played in the World Championships together but not in the Olympics. Suter served as alternate captain for the U.S. Olympic team at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, earning a silver medal. He also played in the 2014 Olympic games in Sochi, Russia, when the United States finished fourth.
Robert C. Mitchell ’67, who was inspired by Blatho, represented the United States in the K-1 1000-meter event at the 1972 Munich games. Also representing the United States in Munich was retired leadership instructor Maj. Tom Duckett. Duckett was a member of USA cycling team.
And how the United States Olympic Committee operates and athletes train and are compensated today is largely due to George Steinbrenner ’48, who helped revolutionize the USOC while serving as the vice chairman of the organization from 1989 through 1996. He led the Steinbrenner Commission, which urged the USOC to change the way that it trained and paid athletes, who until then received almost no financial support. Afterward, the committee created grants and training programs that aimed to increase American medals.
Raul Nieto del Rio ’78 and Jaime Azcarraga ’78 were members of the Mexican show jumping team at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics. Azcarraga also participated in the 1988, 1992, and 2012 Olympics. Capt. John “Jack” Harold Fritz, who served as director of horsemanship
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ALUMNI CLASS NEWS
E. Lee Skipper Jr., (Company D) N ’47 lives alone in Liberty Hill, South Carolina and is quite healthy and energetic. He joined the U.S. Navy a few months after leaving Culver and was on the USS Coral Sea CVA 43 for four years. After the Navy he graduated from Georgia Tech and went to work at the Springs Cotton Mills in South Carolina, which were owned by Col. Elliott Springs, who was an ace pilot in World War I and his son was a pilot in World War II, both of them Culver graduates.
John F. Popp ’50 (Company B) N ’47 is the current president and third generation to lead Aunt Millie’s Bakeries, founded in 1901 by his grandfather, John B. Franke. In 2021, John Popp was inducted into the Baking Hall of Fame, an honor recognizing inductees for their achievements in organizational growth and development, advancements in ingredient technology and processing or in a service related to the commercial baking industry.
C. Alexander Brassert, Jr. ’51 (Company D) N ’49 and his family have been involved in Culver since his father went to Summer Naval School in 1916. He is proud to have been able to send his daughters to Culver; Celeste and Desiree attended summer and CGA in the 1980s. Alexandra served as a counselor in the 2000s and grandson Oliver was a counselor. He improved his French during early U.S. armed forces intervention in Vietnam. That is when, in 1964, he met his wife, Hong. In the early 2000s, for 10 years, he taught English
in the education systems in Ho Chi Minh City. They spent their summers at their house very near the beach in Hossegor on the Atlantic coast about 40 miles from Spain. Oscar A. P. Raynal Garcia S. J. ’51 (Battery B), a Jesuit priest in Chihuahua, celebrated 50 years in the priestly ministry on June 13, 2019. Harry L. Crisp II ’53 (Company C) N ’49 W’47 was awarded an honorary doctor of public service degree by the Southern Illinois University Board of Trustees. He is chair-
man of the board and CEO of Pepsi Mid America Company, a family-owned soft drink business, that he built into one of the largest privately owned Pepsi Cola and Dr Pepper bottling and distributing operations in the nation. James L. Dunlap ’56 (Troop B) and his wife, Rachel, have been riding out the pandemic in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Their five adult children and twelve grandchildren are scattered across the United States and England. They have had the chance to enjoy outside life, venturing into the mountains and outdoor spaces, hiking and motoring across the prairies. Richard W. Freeman Jr. ’56 (Company D) moved from New Orleans to Folsom, Louisiana in 2008. He began breeding animals after the family Coca-Cola bottling business was sold. At his Oak Hill ranch, he started with Arabian horses and later began breeding sport horses primarily used for dressage. In five years in the mid-2000s, Oak Hill Ranch was either champion or reserve champion breeder of dressage horses in the United States. In 2020 Oak Hill Ranch received a Pegasus award for lifetime excellence from the United States Equestrian Federation. In 2020 they began to liquidate their horse breeding inventory and then moved to a house in New Orleans that was built in the 1850s.
Thomas Shumaker ’56 (Band) NB ’54 retired from practicing law for 40 years in western Pennsylvania and now enjoys the warm weather and ocean view from his Jensen Beach, Florida condo. He is a sevenyear cancer survivor and has shared 48 years of close friendship with his brother. He has been happily remarried for 38 years and has a son, a daughter, three grandsons and three loving stepdaughters. Billy Wann ’56 (Battery B) struggled with reading throughout his years at Culver and college. A tour of duty in the U.S. Army medical corp gave him time to consider how to finish school. He returned to Auburn in 1961 and graduated in 1964. In 2012 in Elberta, Alabama, his pastor challenged the congregation to read the entire Bible in a year. Determined to meet the challenge, he started reading and never stopped. Since that day in his 75th year of life, he has read almost all of the books he had not been able to read until now, from The Odyssey to To Kill a Mockingbird.
1960s Robert H. Kuck II N ’61 W’56 of Sarasota, Florida published a book in May 2021 entitled “Blood and Honor: The Life and Times of Fur Trader Pierre Louis de Lorimier.” Martin J. Oberman ’62 (Company B) W’58 was designated chairman of the Surface
Transportation Board by President Biden on Jan. 21, 2021. He was sworn in as a member of the board on Jan. 22, 2019. He is serving in his first fiveyear term following his confirmation by the U.S. Senate on Jan. 2, 2019. The Surface Transportation Board is an independent federal agency that is charged with the economic regulation of various modes of surface transportation, primarily freight rail. The agency has jurisdiction over railroad rate, practice, and service issues and rail restructuring transactions, including mergers, line sales, line construction, and line abandonments. James C. Wofford T ’62 (Troop B), a three-time Olympian, has written his autobiography entitled Still Horse Crazy After All These Years. Wofford shares his unique perspective on horsemanship and the history of equestrian competition in the United States, as well as his ascendancy from a one room schoolhouse to Culver Military Academy, to the United States Equestrian Team. In 2000, Wofford was listed by the Chronicle of the Horse as one of the “50 Most Influential Horsemen of the 20th Century,” and he is a member of both the U.S. Eventing Association and Culver Horsemanship Halls of Fame. Gary M. Geralds ’64 (Troop B) married Betty Lou Pace on March 6, 2021. He lost his first wife, Joanie, in 2012 after almost 50 years together.
Paul W. Killian ’65 (Company B) was elected to the Phillips Collection Board of Trustees. New members bring a wealth of new perspectives to the Phillips and their range of expertise will provide the museum with additional tools to celebrate its centennial year in 2021. Paul is a litigation attorney in Washington, D.C., specializing in infrastructure projects. His practice involves alternative dispute resolution, as well as litigation before U.S. appellate and trial courts, federal boards of contract appeals, and U.S. and international arbitration panels. Killian has also been recognized by Best Lawyers in America and the Who’s Who Legal 100. John R. Price ’65 (Company C) N ’63 is co-chairman, president, chief executive officer and co-founder of Greffex, Inc. He has over 35 years of experience in operations, management and finance. Price, a decorated Vietnam veteran, was a senior fellow at the Centre for Business and Government at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. Prior to founding Greffex, he was a Partner at Deloitte & Touche, ran his own accounting and investment banking firms, was a managing director at American Express, and was chief operating officer of Goran Capital, a billion dollar public insurance company.
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ALUMNI CLASS NEWS
Noel C. Coulantes ’67 (Company C) SC’63 reports that he has been hunkering down in his condo during the pandemic with Rocky, his “17-year-old sweet kitty.” He regularly texts with John Clark and Tom Story and hears from Tony and Pete Mars as well. “My Mercedes engine shop is quiet on purpose, and I only selectively work on virtually brand new Mercedes AMG engines that are usually damaged in floods.” Noel believes he is “the only dinosaur left in the U.S. that can fix Latest Mercedes AMG engines.” Jerome Daugherty ’67 (Company E) SC’63 retired from the U.S. Department of Agriculture National Resources Conservation Services in January 2014. He and his wife, Florine, liked the mountains so much that they decided to stay in Savery, Wyoming, where they lived for the past 10 years. Recently, they moved to a continuing care retirement community at Uplands Village in Pleasant Hills, Tennessee. Milton D. Frank ’67 (Battery A) marked a milestone in his career in broadcast journalism, completing 40 years of service at the Voice of America, which took him to the former Near East South Asia Division, the African Division, and the Latin America Division. He broadcasted in Spanish to Latin America, in Creole to Haiti, and the Caribbean in television, radio, and Internet. Since 2001 he has been the executive producer of the division. Voice of America
reaches a weekly audience of more than 350 million people in nearly 100 countries, via a network of more than 2,200 radio, television, web and mobile outlets. Dr. Henry (Phil) Williams ’67 (Company E) taught last fall via Zoom at the Institute of World Politics in Washington, D.C. as the head of the regional studies program in Turkey, the Middle East, and North Africa. “During the pandemic, I have marveled at the online musical offerings and humor from America and abroad which have added quality to our lockdown experience. The Culver regimen has served me well in life, not least of all when one is quarantined.” Dave Newill ’68 (Battery B) W’64 was really happy to be one of the early twice vaccinated in Indiana. While his youth flying project, American GEM, remains grounded due to COVID, which impacts his teaching programs for teens, he is keeping more than busy as a director for the Indiana Aviation Hall of Fame, getting ready for an October banquet. Arvel “Rod” Ponton III ’69 (Band), a county attorney in Presidio County, Texas, was involved in a Zoom hearing in Texas’ 394th Judicial District Court in February 2021. He was using his secretary’s computer and his image was portrayed as a cat, not Rod. Apparently, it went viral with 2 billion views globally, #1 on YouTube and over 100 million Twitter followers. It was the
biggest internet story to date this year and was reported in the New York Times and mentioned in the Feb. 13 edition of the Wall Street Journal.
’78, Eric Aschinger ’79, Dan Brooks ’79, Tracy Orr Pickett ’79, Ross Rutledge N ’69 and Ann’s sons, Curtis Fischer N ’10 and Evan Fischer NB’16.
Kriegh Moulton ’70 (Battery A) N’67 W’65 retired from 30 years of practicing cardiology and moved to Calistoga, California.
Thomas O’Neill ’80 (Troop A) N’76 rejoined Jenner & Block LLP as a partner in their Chicago office. He is a member of Jenner & Block’s energy practice and its litigation department. He was formerly senior vice president and general counsel of Exelon Corp. Thomas received a B.A. in English language and literature/ letters from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign and received his doctor of law from the University of Notre Dame Law School.
Keith A. Jarett ’72 (Company A) wrote a piece entitled “A Culver Love Story,” in which he reflects on his life and the impact that Culver has had on him. Peter G. Stipe H’72 published a memoir of his service with the Ann Arbor Police Department in Michigan entitled “Badge112,” which includes a chapter on Culver. Kent Drummond NB ’74 appeared in the PBS American Experience documentary “American Oz” which recently premiered and tells the story of L. Frank Baum. He teaches English at the University of Wyoming and is one of the experts who appears in the film, along with his wife. John Stivers ’75 (Troop A) W’70 is currently working as the assistant director at Region 10 Technical High School in Brunswick, Maine. Ann Rutledge SSG’78 ’79 and Paul Stscherban were married Aug. 15, 2020 in South Haven, Michigan. Culver friends and family in attendance were Annemarie Ahrberg Mahoney
Bruce M. Jones ’81 (Battery C) of Half Moon Bay, California, says he simply followed the Culver Model — being proactive, focusing on the need, building a community to solve the need, then attacking the problem – by creating ventilator splitters from a 3D printer and organizing the Coastside Sewing Collective, a Facebook group of now 145 people with sewing machines. The group sews cloth masks and caps for the region’s health care workers. In the first week, the collective made 2,000 masks. John (Jay) Richards Jr.’81 (Battery C) recently celebrated his 30th anniversary with wife, Marianne. Both Jay and his wife teach in their hometown of San Carlos, California. He has been teaching eighth grade
English for over 25 years. They have three children, daughters Paige and Sarah, also teachers, and son Andrew. Michael Fish N ’84, senior partner in the law firm of Fish, Nelson & Holden, was selected by his peers as Birmingham Business Journal’s “Best of the Bar” in 2021. Out of approximately 3,500 attorneys, only 40 made this prestigious list. Winners were selected based on their status within their practice group, their tangible accomplishments, their impact on their firms and their impact on Birmingham and its legal community. Markham C. Roberts ’85 (Battery B) published a new book in 2020 entitled “Notes on Decorating.” He is also featured in the book “Inspired Design, The 100 Most Important Interior Designers of the Past 100 Years” by Jennifer Boles. He trained with the renowned decorator Mark Hampton before opening his own firm in 1997. Since then, he has earned the reputation as one of the top decorators of his generation. He is known for reviving traditional furnishings and making them new again. He is the author of “Markham Roberts: Decorating the Way I See It” and has been named to the AD100 list of top designers annually since 2014 and to the Elle Decor A list. Sonya Iannone Heilmann ’89 (Tower) SC ’85, a U.S. Air Force veteran, and her therapy dog, Jock, a Pembroke Welsh
corgi, have not been able to visit patients in medical centers during the pandemic. Heilmann, who lives in Marion, Iowa, is a volunteer with Pet Partners, which promotes the health benefits of animal assisted activities and therapies. She and 7-year-old Jock have visited patients in their region several times per month since 2016. Pet Partners partnered with VHA in 2019. The goal of the partnership is to bring the health benefits of the human/animal bond which is the beneficial relationship shared between people and animals to more veterans.
1990s Emilio Rivero ’90 (Troop B) SC’87 worked for the International Olympic Committee at the Tokyo Olympic Games, in charge of their protocol operations and international dignitary services. James Frickey ’91 (Company C) W’86 took a leave of absence and moved to Canada (Peterborough) in 2018 to be near his partner’s family and be home with their two boys Dylan, 11, and Alex, 9, through COVID. This January, he also started a Ph.D. program in interdisciplinary social research. James Gannon ’91 (Battery B) is a respiratory therapist with Lincare, and having tested positive for COVID last spring, has a firsthand understanding of the virus. His 6-year-old son, Cullen, is following in his dad’s footsteps/skates and
now taking to the ice. Jay has dusted off his own skates after seven years and is playing in a men’s hockey league. Juan Bertini ’92 (Troop B) N ’90 and his wife, Johanna, are living and working in Los Angeles, California. He currently serves as the CFO of Larry and Lenny’s, who pioneered the healthy snacking industry by baking protein into snacks. Established in 1993, their mission has been to provide quality baked goods that not only taste great, but also contain protein and fiber. Carolina M. Castro-Espinosa ’92 (Atrium) Deck 2 has three children, Carolina, Jorge Andrés and Diego, two whom are currently studying at Culver. Carolina is a senior in Ciel dorm and is the senior prefect for the second rotation. Jorge is a sophomore in the Black Horse Troop. Lee C. Freeman ’92 (Troop A) was promoted to the rank of colonel in March 2019. Dax T. S. Mitchell ’92 (Company A) is a seasoned commercial real estate investor with a track-record extending over 23 years in commercial real estate brokerage, finance, acquisition and development. He currently oversees all facets of Mitchell Asset Group’s joint ventures and holdings with the guidance of a diverse and talented team, successful mentors, and an intention to learn. Dax resides in Texas with his wife, three children and five horses.
Nathaniel Brown ’94 (Battery C) SC’91 is retiring from active duty in the U.S. Navy after 23 years of service but will continue his service as the next VTCC director of alumni relations. Nate and his wife Whitney, son Joseph, and daughter Kaitlyn will return to Blacksburg where they are excited to engage with our current and future alumni. Nate holds master’s degrees from Troy University and the U.S. Naval War College. Frederic Bancroft Jr ’97 (N’1) spent five years and nearly $140,000 developing an automated pizza kiosk system project, which has been gaining support and funding from prominent Louisiana restaurateurs and businessmen to bring his vision of “Speedy Fresh Pizza” to life. The “smart kiosk” operates using an artificial intelligence system which allows the user to input their order on a touch screen. From there, the pizza is assembled by the automated system and is ready within five to 10 seconds. The first kiosk opened in Tigerland in February. Dr. Tiffany Kyser ’99 (Benson) joined the CEF Board of Trustees in May 2021. Trent Kososki ’99 (Troop) is a managing director with Stonepeak Infrastructure Partners. Before joining Stonepeak, Trent was a partner at ECP, where he worked for nearly 15 years after joining in 2005 at its founding. Prior to ECP, he worked at CSFB in the financial sponsors group.
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
ALUMNI CLASS NEWS
2000s Message from Legion and CSSAA Presidents We are pleased with the number of Class Notes entries in this issue of the Culver magazine. They span eight decades of alumni and we appreciate the willingness of our graduates to enhance this frequently read section. In a separate area, you will see that Culver Club chapter events are happening again, for which we are grateful. In that same spirit, you will see the ads in this section indicating plans are in place to welcome alumni back to campus in May 2022 for Class Reunions and in July 2022 for the Summer School Homecoming Weekend. Finally, we extend congratulations to all Girls Academy alumnae as we celebrate the 50th Anniversary of CGA throughout this school year.
Rajiv Chopra ’89 President The Culver Legion
Emily Barnes Cole SS ’84 President The Culver Summer Schools Alumni Association
Michael E. “Mike” Rudnicki ’92 W’88 President Culver Clubs International
Justin F. H. Otto IV ’00 (Battery A) is general manager of Newport on the Levee, which is owned and operated by North American Properties in Cincinnati, Ohio. The renovated Newport on the Levee will include an incubator of sorts for startup retailers. Called Trade, the space will be inside the overhauled Levee indoor space, now called The Gallery, and will consist of about a dozen stalls where local retailers can set up shop inside one of the region’s largest retail destinations. Shondrea Horton Turnbull ’00 (Tower) is the author of the book Total Health: On How We Can Optimize Our Mental, Physical, Emotional, & Spiritual Wellbeing. Connecting to a higher power is another powerful habit that leads to spiritual well-being through prayer, meditation, attending a worship service, religious celebration, and being in nature. Sodiqa R. Williams Esq. ’01 (Benson) is the general counsel and vice president of external affairs at Safer Foundation, a nonprofit that helps returning residents avoid recidivism. She seeks to break that cycle by helping people with arrest and conviction records find employment. This holistic approach seeks to disrupt the cycle of social injustices in society through a series of building blocks that helps people get back on their feet and ultimately build better lives,
stronger families and safer communities. Sodiqa recently joined the CEF Board of Trustees in July 2021. She and Trevor Borom ’99 (Battery A) welcomed twin sons, Sean and Seth, on May 12, 2021. William J. Corso ’02 (Troop A) is an associate in the New York office of Milbank and a member of the firm’s transportation and space group. Mason T. Jennings ’02 (Company A) and his wife, Nicole, welcomed a baby girl, Parker Michelle, on Dec. 10, 2018. Travis M. Kososki ’02 (Troop B) joined Launch Trampoline Park, a year-round family entertainment and action park franchise. He’ll serve as partner, chief financial officer and head of business development. The business is co-founded by three-time Super Bowl champion Ty Law and entrepreneur Rob Arnold. Launch is a top five trampoline/action park franchise with more than 20 parks operating in 13 states and more than 10 additional locations under construction. Jeffrey R. Kuhns ’02 (Band) recently opened his own law firm in Punta Gorda, southwest Florida. Jeff concentrates his practice in estate planning, wills, trusts, and probate, business law, tax law, and real estate law. Elizabeth “Bess” Lintner Boswell ’02 (Ciel) and her husband, Tim, recently moved to Paradise Valley, Arizona
where they welcomed their third son, Roger Dillon Boswell, on Aug. 24th, who joins his two older brothers, Hampton 8, and Henry 6. Gog A. Murguia T ’02 married Bárbara Ruesga in San Miguel de Allende in March of 2017. He is the vice president of the Xolos soccer club of Tijuana, Mexico. Dorothy Payne-Polk ’02 (Benson) is a certified coach practitioner accredited through the International Coach Federation. She partners with clients to formulate action driven objectives, with goals developed to attain ideal outcomes. Services focus on lifestyle and career coaching, where she offers step by step guidance and encouragement designed for obtaining effective, long-term changes. Anna (Jones) Story ’02 (Court) SC’97 has become a certified life coach, the culmination of a personal goal and dream. She has opened a private life coaching practice, where she utilizes tools and strategies that open up life’s endless possibilities for her clients. Anna and her husband, David Story ’00, and their five children reside in South Bend, Indiana. Steven T. Primiano ’03 (Battery A) is the new director of corporate alliances at USO. John R. F. Douglas ’04 (Battery B) welcomed a daughter, Emma Sophie, on Oct. 19, 2020.
Hameedat “Temi” Adeniji ’05 (Benson) was married Sept. 24, 2021 to Osifo Odili Akhuemonkhan. She is a director in the international strategy and operations department at Warner Music Group, a record label based in New York, where she oversees day-to-day operations of international subsidiaries and evaluates expansion opportunities. She graduated from Princeton and received a master of law from University College, London. The groom is a vice president in the financial advisory group focusing on mergers and acquisitions at Lazard, the investment bank in New York. Kathryn Hassett Downing ’05 (Tower) W’01 SC ’04 and her husband, Sean, welcomed their first son, Knox Bennett, who was born July 3, 2020. The family currently resides in Louisville, Kentucky. Dr. Matthew Gethers III ’05 (Band) is an infectious diseases postdoctoral fellow at Hartford Hospital. Thomas C. Gwin ’05 (Company B) and his wife, Leah, welcomed a son Carl on July 31, 2020. Tom and Leah own and operate a landscaping/ outdoor living space company that focuses on recreational and conservation land management and development. Daniel Sharff ’05 (Company A) was married in Ft. Lauderdale to Arielle Ehrich, an architect. They were married (legally) Nov. 29, 2020 and their wedding is scheduled for October
2021. Daniel is a hotel revenue financial manager. Tiffany Albert Suttles ’05 (Tower) and her husband, Rob, welcomed their third child, Cecilia Edora, in September, who joins her two brothers, Graham and Bennett. Katie Webb ’05 (Benson) and her husband, Rob, welcomed Fitz Robert on July 12, 2020. Travis J. Whittemore ’05 (Company A) welcomed a son, Carson Lee, in January 2020. Katherine Mitzell Fagan ’06 (Ciel) SC’02 W’01, head of a&r at Prescription Songs, in Nashville, was named to Billboard’s 2021 Forty Under Forty Group. A 10-year veteran of the Dr. Luke-founded publishing company, Fagan, 33, opened its Nashville office in 2016 and has enjoyed showcasing both the “melting pot” of noncountry talent in the city — including folkpop stunner and producer Joy Oladokun — as well as Prescription’s growing roster of women behind the boards, such as Lo Lind and Carobae. Ebube Agu ’07 (Battery C) most recently served as product integrity manager for Converse, Inc. While at Converse, he developed a quality management framework that was ultimately adopted by Nike, Inc. He received a double promotion and will be serving as the next head (Sr. Director) of apparel and accessories product integrity (quality). He and his
family relocated to Beaverton, Oregon in the summer of 2021. He is currently attending Harvard Business School’s program for leadership development. Brooke Kilduff Bourgraf ’07 (Atrium) and Chris Bourgraf (Battery A) were married on Oct. 5, 2019. The couple hosted numerous Culver alumni in celebration of their wedding day. They currently reside in Cincinnati, Ohio. Allison McFadden Campbell ’07 (Linden) W’03 married Colin Campbell N ’08, on Oct. 12, 2019. Bridesmaids were Kelly Gordon L’04, ’07, Anna Campbell L’04, Brooke Bourgraf ’07, and Sean Higgins ’07. Groomsmen were Ben Nowalk WC ’02, ’07, and Parker Ballew WC ’17. They reside in South Bend, Indiana and welcomed the birth of their son, Phillip, this past July. Christina Nelson Conlon ’07 (Atrium) SC ’04 W’01 her husband, Sean, and their golden retriever, Nash, are currently traveling the U.S. in an RV to bring awareness about therapy dogs in a time when the country needs them the most due to COVID. After losing their golden retriever, Bean, in 2015, she started Daily Barker instagram.com/dailybarker (an Instagram community of over 540,000 followers) as a way to heal from his loss. In 2019 they certified Nash as a therapy dog and started serving around Nashville, Tennessee in schools, fire stations, police stations, etc. They launched
Nashies (nashies.com), a single ingredient dog treat company that gives 100 percent of its profits to therapy dog nonprofits around the country. But they felt called to do something bigger. So they got an RV and are spending 2021 on the Paws for Love Tour, touring the U.S., serving with Nash and spreading awareness about therapy dogs. Caroline Chocola Flanagan ’07 (Court) and John Flanagan (Battery B) were married in the fall of 2018, in Chicago. They continue to make their home there and welcomed the birth of their son, Thomas Christopher Flanagan, on Oct. 8, 2020. James Garrido (Company A)’07 W’03 is the general manager at Henley, a Midtown Nashville restaurant. He got his start at The Hearty Boys catering company in Chicago, and after seven years there went to work with Sable Kitchen and Bar. More recently he opened the Chicago Athletic Association Hotel as a general manager of the land and sea department before his move to Henley. Evan Hoese ’07 (Ithaka) has been named the vice president of systems integration and innovation at Health RIGHT 360 in San Francisco, California. Megan C. Millard ’07 (Tower) was the featured speaker at Culver Connections weekend in March 2019. Her talk with the group of Culver Academies seniors, first classmen, alumni,
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and parents outlined five key themes that can be the foundation for how a person can build out and live an ethical life: core values, collaboration, curiosity, continual growth, and courage. James Moody ’07 (Company B) is the director of global cyber security at Xylem, Cincinnati, Ohio. Paul Moon ’07 (Band) played Jack in “I Do: The Series,” a television comedy program in production in 2019. Julio Picard ’07 (Troop) W’02 is a managing partner at Inmobiliaria Positano, a real estate developer in Chihuahua, Mexico. Kelly Norton Rogers ’07 (Atrium) and her husband, John, welcomed their first child, Caroline, on Dec. 21, 2019. Cynthia X. Shi ’07 (Tower) was recently studying for her Ph.D. in the epidemiology of microbial diseases at the Yale School of Public Health. Broadly, her research addresses HIV testing coverage and linkage to care for marginalized and hard-to-reach populations. Luis Gustavo C. F. Tosi ’07 (Battery B) has been promoted as head coach of the varsity boys soccer program at Kauai High School. Joshua L. Workman ’07 (Battery A) W’01 and Jenna Albers Workman ’08 (Tower) welcomed Jordanna (Jordy) Pearl Workman on Feb. 7, 2020.
Lujie Zhang ’07 (Court) is head of investor relations at Gsi Capital Advisors in Chicago. Sara Sardina Hamm ’07 (Linden) and Christopher Hamm ’08 (Company B) welcomed the birth of their daughter, Charlie Rose, on Oct. 23, 2020. Dana B. Sharff ’08 (Benson) was married May 26, 2016 in Columbus, Ohio to Andrew Somen. Bridesmaids included Melissa Schwenk ’08 and Roxanne Reiter D.V.M. ’08. Other Culver graduates attending (besides bridesmaids) were: Daniel Sharff ’05, Stephan Grundy ’08, Benjamin Sharff ’14, Mark Sharff ’71, and Sam Sharff W’99. Dana is a Realtor. Daniel Ching ’09 (Company B) N ’08, SC ’05 is currently the assistant computational scientist at Argonne National Laboratory in Lemont, Illinois. As part of the group, Daniel develops and maintains image reconstruction software for tomography beamlines. Presently, his main interests include optimizing trajectories for scanning probe microscopes, computational imaging, and creating a framework for solving the joint ptychotomography problem. Chuan He ’09 (Company C) is currently a software engineer at Microsoft. He previously worked at Amazon Web Services for almost five years as a software development engineer.
Richard J. Lamb ’09 (Company C), a South Bend native, closed out his first major golf championship in grand style Sunday, making an eagle 3 on his closing hole in the 121st U.S. Open at Torrey Pines. The eagle at the par 5, 545-yard 18th hole on the South Course finished off an evenpar round of 71 for Lamb, who finished at seven over 291 after four tours of the 7,676 yard beast by the Pacific Ocean.
2010s Tyler G. Korellis ’10 (Company C) SC ’05 married Jillian Homas on May 26, 2019. Kaye Sitterly ’11 (Tower) is an analytics engineer at Specialized Bicycle Components in Boulder, Colorado. Madison Tallant ’11 (Tower) lives in Boston and serves as evaluation manager, working both with the Voices for Health Justice project and the Center for Consumer Engagement in Health Innovation, where she coordinates internal and external evaluation activities. In addition to her M.S. degree in social work from Boston College, she also holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Rhodes College. Russell J. Johnson ’12 (Battery C) NB ’10, who earned his bachelor’s degree in songwriting from the Berklee College of Music, recently released “Tenth and Canal,” which follows close on the heels of “Put Me Out,” about a rela-
tionship Johnson had while living in Boston. Molly Walker ’12 (Linden) is a Ph.D. student in the department of science at Harvard University. She is interested in studying colonial and postcolonial interactions through the lens of infectious diseases to better understand historical intersections of race, medicine, and power. Her previous research focused on the effects of the Influenza Pandemic of 1918–1919 on the relationship between the Krios of Freetown, Sierra Leone and British colonial administrators. Zachary W. Currier ’13 (Company A) was featured in the July 2020 issue of the U.S. Lacrosse Magazine. Jake (Sully) Kurdziel ’13 (Company A) is a digital thought leader currently working in Brussels for a midsize biopharmaceutical. In his current role, Jake oversees the design and implementation for many of the artificial intelligence and advanced analytics projects. Davis Payne’13 (Company C) and Mikayla Cooper ’13 (Court) were married Aug. 24, 2019 in the Culver Memorial Chapel. A reception followed on the Woodcraft Camp lawn. Almost all of the wedding party included boarding school and summer camp alumni. Yannick Vedel ’13 (Battery A) is playing hockey in Denmark with the Odense Bulldogs.
Sterling Willman ’13 (Battery C) W’06 graduated from West Point and was in Ranger School, followed by Airborne School, then to be deployed to the Middle East. Jun Hong Xu ’13 (Battery B) is a data science associate digital incubator at Fannie May in Plano, Texas. He earned an M.A. in applied economics from Cornell in 2019 and an M.S. in business analytics from the University of Texas in 2020. Sirui Zhang ’13 (Atrium) completed her J.D. in 2020 from Case Western Reserve University School of Law. Angel Bryant ’14 (Benson) SC’14 graduated from the University of Central Florida in May 2020. Abel A. Barrera Duran ’14 (Company B) completed his M.S. in computer science this year at Indiana University- Purdue University Indianapolis and is now working on a data engineering team at KSM Consulting in Indianapolis, a technology, data, and management consulting firm. Karch Bachman’15 (Company A) was featured in an article in the April 2020 issue of the Journal Gazette, when he was selected in the NHL draft by the Florida Panthers. Lucy Battersby ’15 (Ithaka) W’10 moved to Washington D.C. after graduation from Indiana University in 2019 and has been working as a
reproductive rights organizer and health care worker. Audria H. Cameron ’15 (Atrium) just started her second year at University of Texas-Austin Law School. Kaley L. Concannon ’15 (Linden) was evacuated from Kyrgyzstan, along with the rest of the Peace Corps in early 2021, and has since started a new job as a management analyst with the U.S. Forest Service. Leah Crawford ’15 (Ithaka) W’11 is currently working in Los Angeles in the film and television industry as a celebrity personal assistant. Pre-COVID, she was an executive assistant for a manager at the company that produced the Netflix hit “Ozark.” Dominic A. Garcia ’15 (Battery C) was featured in The Hockey Writers article “Arizona State Hockey: Dominic Garcia Talks Canceled Season.” Katherine G. Giacobbe ’15 (Atrium) has finished her first year at Palmer Chiropractic College in Florida and is working toward a doctor of chiropractic degree. She also started a business selling donuts, which is completely unrelated to her degree. Nicolas “Cole” E. Grandel ’15 (Band) and Kiara Reyes (Court) were married on June 29, 2019.
Bailey Harper ’15 (Ciel) has been working on research and website design project for her art history master’s degree capstone at American University. Morgan Hartman ’15 (Court) graduated two years “late” from Washingon University after taking two medical leaves. Erika Lampert Katterheinrich ’15 (Benson) married Cory Katterheinrich on Sept.12, 2020. Maria K. Kinsey ’15 (Atrium) started the first year of her neuroscience Ph.D. at Tulane University. Erin M. Luck ’15 (Tower) is currently serving as an AmeriCorps member at the Robinson Community Learning Center in South Bend, Indiana. Nicholas MacNab ’15 (Company B) W’07 graduated from Yale University and was on the men’s hockey team. He will be in San Francisco next year, working in wealth advisory for Moss Adams.
Erin Thomas ’15 (Ithaka) W’09 earned her master’s degree with first class honors on gender-based violence in Niue at the University of Auckland in New Zealand. Emma Trappe ’15 (Benson) received her bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering technology and a master’s in engineering management from the University of Dayton. Noah R. Treviño ’15 (Battery C) completed his IBM Patterns internship program and accepted an offer to return to IBM as a visual designer based out of Austin, Texas. Nathan Van DeVelde ’15 (Troop B) was featured in a video from House of iKons’ Fashion Week London Digital Show on Sept. 19, 2020. Aaron A. Weitgenant ’15 (Band) and his wife, Jessica, welcomed their son, Silas Andrew, on Oct. 28, 2020. Victoria Xu ’15 (Court) is living in Charlotte, North Carolina and working at Bank of America.
Landrum Neer ’15 (Battery C) graduated from DePauw University and is now living in Denver as a project manager at Westervelt Ecological Services.
Hannah Brumback ’17 (Benson) graduated from the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University with a degree in finance & marketing.
Brennan D. Sweetwood Kapcheck ’15 (Battery C) has signed a two-year contract with The Toronto Marlies out of the American International College of the NCAA.
Nathaniel H. Clurman ’17 (Battery A) signed a two year, NHL entry level contract with the Avalanche. Clurman, a junior defenseman out of Notre Dame, served as team captain this season. He will report
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ALUMNI CLASS NEWS
to the Colorado Eagles and forgo his final year of NCAA eligibility. Wheaton Jackoboice ’17 (Company B), a midfielder from Kansas City, Missouri, scored three goals in the May 16 match against Drexel to beat them 10-8, helping the Notre Dame men’s lacrosse team earn a ticket to the 2021 NCAA DI Men’s Lacrosse Championship quarterfinals. Thomas Maly ’17 (Band) graduated 17th with distinction from the U.S. Naval Academy with a degree in robotics and control engineering with honors. He was also selected as a chief of naval operations distinguished midshipman, and served the brigade of midshipmen as a battalion sergeant major and battalion executive officer. He was commissioned into the U.S. Marine Corps. Maxwell S. Nation ’17 (Company A) W’13 graduated from Furman University/Army ROTC on May 8, 2021 and was commissioned as a U.S. Army officer/medical service corps. Jackson Pierson ’18 (Battery A) is playing hockey at the University of New Hampshire. Declan Carlile ’19 (Band) Merrimack College men’s hockey standouts Declan Carlile and Alex Jefferies were chosen as nominees for the 2021 Hobey Baker Award. Considered the top award
in all of college hockey, the honor is given to someone who “exhibits strength and character, both on and off the ice. Contributes to the integrity of the team; displays outstanding skills in all phases of the game and shows scholastic achievement and sportsmanship.” The pair of Warriors are among just over 50 nominees up for the award. Carlile has developed into one of the top defenders in Hockey East during his second season in North Andover.
2020s Owen J. L. Hiltz ’20 (Battery A), a Syracuse Orange freshman, was proclaimed by ESPN as the Orange’s most talented recruit since Mike Powell in 2002. Hiltz fired 14 goals, 12 assists and 26 points in his first six NCAA Division 1 men’s field lacrosse games. Joel Stevens ’20 (Company A) was recently named to his conference’s academic honor roll in his freshman year at Hobart College in Geneva, New York. He is a member of the Hobart Statesmen men’s lacrosse team, which competes in the Northeast Conference in Division I of the NCAA. Stevens said he plans on declaring as an economics major with a double minor in French and environmental studies.
May 20–22, 2022 For classes ending in 2 and 7 and celebrating the 50th Anniversary Class of 1972 and 25th Anniversary Class of 1997.
! s U n i Jo CGA 50TH CULMINATING CELEBRATION May 20–22, 2022
ALL CGA ALUMNAE ARE INVITED TO ATTEND
C U LV E R C L U B S I N T E R N AT I O N A L
Dear alumni and alumnae, In March of 2020, the Culver Club of LA/OC held what would be the last in-person Culver Club event for the next 16 months. At that time, little did we know just how significant the impact of the pandemic would have on our ability to connect and build relationships with our alumni and constituents. Like many other institutions and organizations around the globe, the situation forced us to pivot and consider new ways to engage with our alumni. Below are the results of some recent efforts: – Under the direction of the Alumni Office Special Events Manager, Culver Legion Board of Directors, and the Legion Board Engagement Committee, we transitioned our annual in-person Culver Connections Weekend in March to a virtual Culver Connections Symposia. Over one month, we hosted a series of virtual events featuring panelist discussions and presentations on a variety of topics — connecting hundreds of students with alumni, parents, faculty, staff, and guests — all sharing their unique perspectives from their respective fields. – The Culver Alumni Office launched a new alumni database and networking site, Culver Connect. Already encompassing more than 2,500 users from around the globe, we are excited to continue developing this unique online platform to broaden the connections within our robust alumni network. The site will enable us to increase alumni communication, foster student and/or professional mentorships, and to stay updated on Culver news. If you have not registered already, please do so at connect.culver.org to leverage the opportunity and discover the value of the Culver alumni network.
– Reunion and Summer Homecoming became an avenue for global connections. Our Virtual Reunion and Virtual Homecoming offerings were attended by more than 1,000 alumni from around the globe. Visitors were provided the opportunity to connect virtually and receive video updates regarding campus life and campus developments. While we are proud of our virtual engagement and the efforts made to embrace the challenges placed in front of us, we acknowledge that in-person events and engagements will always serve as the centerpiece of alumni relations. Going forward, however, we are excited to start offering and will incorporate both inperson events and virtual engagement as a complement to our in-person offerings. To that end, the first Culver Club event of 2021 was ceremoniously hosted by the Culver Club of Culver this past July 1st, and we are looking forward to once again hosting many more events to come. Be sure to watch your inbox, Culver Connect, and follow our social media accounts for updates on where our next events will be. The Culver Alumni Office is looking forward to seeing you at one of our regional events — on campus, or virtually — in the very near future. Regards, Mike Rudnicki ’92 W’88 Legion Board of Directors Culver Clubs International Committee
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Walter Scott Benson Jr. H’36 died on Feb. 14, 2021, in Austin, Texas. He spent three years in England in the U.S. Army Air Corps as a squadron communications officer in the Eighth Air Force, achieving the rank of captain in 1944. After VE day, he married Francis Byrd Bolton. Walter received two degrees from The University of Texas, one in electrical engineering in 1948, after which he spent a short time in Pittsburgh working for Westinghouse. After graduation and lettering on The University of Texas 1938 Southwest Conference champion team, he spent his spare time developing
his well known golf swing and participating in amateur golf tournaments in Austin. He won the 1956 Bill Drake trophy for being the best golfer in Austin. Walter joined the family business as president of W.S. Benson & Company, Inc. Educational Publishers and was active in the business until 2003. He published many great public school textbook programs including: Our Expanding Vision and The Creative Eye with Kelly Fearing; and Handwriting for Communication with Lee Little Soldier. Late in the 1960s, Walter purchased some ranching property, revisiting his love of
horses and starting a thoroughbred racing stable. Walter was preceded in death by his wife Florence on Nov. 21, 2005, and granddaughter Courtney on March 26, 2003. He is survived by his son, Walter Scott Benson III, daughter Barbara Bolton Benson Padgett, and grandson Walter Scott Benson IV. Robert Livingston Weil H’38 W’35 died on March 17, 2021, of natural causes. He graduated from Lincoln High School in Nebraska and attended summer sessions at Culver. He graduated from Yale University with high honors and was elected to
Phi Beta Kappa. With the U.S. entrance into World War II, Bob’s class graduated early, and he completed Officer Candidate School at Fort Sill, Oklahoma. A few months later he was deployed to Morocco and Algeria, then on to Italy, surviving a troop ship sinking en route. After two and a half years of war service, he returned to the States. With his wife, Margaret “Peggy” Seidler, he moved to Seattle in 1947. After several years with Best’s Apparel, Bob was transferred to Portland as co-manager and when Nordstrom assumed ownership, he
The obituary dates are from January 1 – June 30, 2021 became general manager and vice president, managing stores in Portland and Spokane. For his achievments, he was awarded the John W. Nordstrom honor, given each year to the top executive in the company. After retiring in 1978, he consulted for clients in Oregon, Washington, and Montana, including four governors, and served on many civic and social boards of directors. With his deep interest in urban affairs, he audited a record setting number of classes at Portland State University for more than 31 years. Bob was preceded in death by his wife of 70 years, Peggy; and is survived by two sons, John and Richard; and one grandson, Daniel. James Hunt Barker W’38, a longtime resident of Palm Beach, Florida, and art dealer, died Oct. 10, 2021, in Lexington, Kentucky. He graduated from the University of Kentucky in 1950, earning a bachelor’s degree in political science. He then served in the Korean War from 1952 to 1953 in the U.S. Army as a master sergeant. After his military service, he returned to the University of Kentucky for graduate studies in political science and history. He lived a storied, flamboyant life that included careers as an actor, public relations manager, portrait model, race horse owner and avid rider, art gallery proprietor and collector, and dog enthusiast. Barker was also the owner of the historic “Wedding Cake House” in Kennebunk, Maine.
A popular attraction, it is one of the most photographed and painted buildings in Maine. In 2005, he opened his home for public tours to raise funds for Hurricane Katrina relief efforts. But it was in the art business where he found his permanent roost. He showcased over 55 painters and sculptors in his gallery over the years and among his clients were members of the Vanderbilt, Whitney and Mellon families. He is survived by his sister, Joyce; two nephews; a niece; and several grandnephews, grandnieces, great-grandnephews and great-grandnieces. Robert Rinker “Bob” Tresslar ’40 (Company C) W’36 died on Jan. 26, 2021. He attended Wabash College until his ROTC commission was activated shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor. He served in the U.S. Army Air Corps as a fighter pilot, flying P40s and later P47s. He was later assigned duties as a test pilot and flight instructor before serving in the European theater for the balance of the war. He married his wife of 69 years, Maria Teresa Avalos, in 1943. After being discharged, Bob worked with his father operating the Tresslar Company variety stores in Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky. He was a member of multiple civic organizations, including serving as president of Rotary Club of Vincennes and Knox County Chamber of Commerce. He was also a competition sailplane pilot, a member of the U.S. National team who
competed in international events several times. Bob was preceded in death by his wife and a son, Mark. He is survived by one daughter, eight sons, 20 grandchildren and 22 great-grandchildren. All of his children attended either Woodcraft Camp or Summer Camps. Benjamin Whiting Hoge ’42 (Company A) PG’43 W’35 died on Dec. 15, 2020, in Alexandria, Virginia. He grew up on Army posts where his father, Col. Benjamin Hoge, was stationed, as well as Culver. His education at the University of Virginia was interrupted by World War II, in which he served as a captain in Gen. George Patton’s Third Army, seeing heavy front-line service in France and Germany, for which he received the Bronze Star and combat infantry badge. After the war, he resumed his studies at the University of Virginia, graduating in 1951. Subsequently his career was at the Institute for Defense Analyses and the Executive Office of the President. He was a master woodworker and enjoyed sailing. Ben is survived by his wife of 72 years, Wendy; two daughters, Leslie and Hilary; and one grandson, Nicholas. Gorman Jones Roberts N’42 died on April 11, 2021, in Louisville, Kentucky. He graduated from Cumberland Academy at age 15, and attended Cumberland College, spending his summers at Culver. He became an excellent baseball player and was
offered professional contracts by both the Yankees and Reds, playing briefly for the Yankees, backing up Joe DiMaggio. He left baseball to serve in World War II in the U.S. Navy 7th Fleet. Following the war, Gorman graduated with honors from Northwestern University, then received his MBA from Harvard Business School. He began his business career in 1949 as a trust officer at the Louisville Trust Company. In 1965 he joined JJB Hilliard & Son, became a partner in 1967, and chaired the Sales, Marketing, and Branch Administration Committee until his retirement in 1989. Gorman served on the board of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, was a deacon at Crescent Hill Baptist Church; president of the Harvard Club of Kentucky and founding member of Harmony Landing Country Club. Gorman is survived by his wife of 66 years, Madge; their three children, Jeff, Joan, and Gorman J. Roberts Jr. W’81; seven grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren. Julien Jefferson Hohenberg ’43 (Troop II) died Jan. 16, 2021, in Memphis, Tennessee. He graduated from Yale University in 1946 with dual degrees and immediately went to work at the family firm, Hohenberg Brothers Cotton Company, making his own mark working in Central America and Mexico, as well as Europe and Asia. After working in the business for 11 years, he entered the master’s program in international relations at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
IN MEMORIAM with a concentration in Asian studies. As a 21 year-old, he had been in Shanghai on business shortly before the city was overrun by Mao Tse Tung’s forces. Then, 25 years later in 1973, he was one of the first American businessmen allowed into China after President Nixon opened up relations the previous year. Artists, poets, musicians, and others were drawn to him, and he became a patron and important ally of photographers and producers. Poet Allen Ginsberg was a friend, as was President Jimmy Carter. Along with his first wife, Mary, he was an early and ardent supporter of the Civil Rights movement in Memphis starting in 1964. Julien is survived by his three daughters and three sons, as well as nine grandchildren. He also leaves two former wives and was preceded in death by his third wife Elizabeth. John Dunlap Sheaffer T’43 of Memphis, Tennessee, died on Feb. 6, 2021. After graduating from Culver, he served in the U.S. Army, where he was assigned to the 25th Infantry Division in the Southwest Pacific theatre of operations, participating in the Philippine liberation on the island of Luzon and the Allied transition of the island of Honshu from Japanese control. He was awarded the Bronze Star for Valor and received an honorable discharge in January 1946. John graduated from the University of Colorado with a BS in business administration in 1950. He returned to his hometown of Fort Madison, Iowa, to work for the family
business, W.A. Shaeffer Pen Company. He became vice president of international operations, overseeing manufacturing and sales functions in Canada, Australia, Brazil, England, and Argentina. At the time Sheaffer had exclusive dealers in 77 countries. He also served on the Sheaffer Board of Directors until the company’s sale. He married Gertrude Coors in Memphis in 1951, with whom he recently celebrated his 70th wedding anniversary. John was an active member of the Fort Madison community as a Rotarian, Chairman of The Board of the Sheaffer Memorial Golf Course, President of the W. A. Sheaffer Memorial Foundation and a number of other community and civic boards in Iowa. He was a member of several golf and hunting clubs. John was also a member of the Culver Legion Board and served as vice president. John is survived by his wife, two sons, John ’70 (Troop A) and Russell ’81 (Battery A); two daughters, Virginia Kemp and Carolyn Masterson ’75 (New Dorm); nine grandchildren and one great grandchild. He was preceded in death by his parents, one brother and two sisters. William “Bill” Fiege Koeckert N’43 of Cleveland Heights, Ohio, died on Sept. 27, 2021. In the U. S. Army during World War II, he was seriously wounded in the Battle of the Bulge, temporarily leaving him blind and deaf. He was awarded the Combat Infantryman’s Badge and Bronze Star.
Bill continued his military career in the U.S. Army Reserve and went to college, graduating from the University of Omaha and Officer Candidate School at Ft. Benning, Georgia, where he earned his regular Army commission as an armored cavalry officer. From 1946-47 he was assigned to Sugamo Prison in Tokyo, where he oversaw men guarding Japanese military personnel accused of committing war crimes. The final army move was to Ft. Riley, Kansas, from which he retired in 1964 after 22 years of service. Settling down as a civilian in Columbus, Ohio, Bill began a career in education. Initially, he taught civil defense at The Ohio State University and earned his MA in adult education, completing most of the requirements toward a Ph.D. in the field. The family moved to Shaker Heights, Ohio, in 1972 when Bill joined Dyke College in Cleveland as an instructor and Dean of Students, a position he held until the late 1970s. Bill was active in a variety of fraternal organizations during both the military and civilian chapters of his life. He was a Shriner, a member of the Military Order of World Wars and the Masonic order, where he was a Master Mason and 32nd degree Mason. He was preceded in death by his wife, Gara, and is survived by two daughters, Lynn and Mary, and five grandchildren. Andrew “Andy” Rembert Carr ’44 (Company D) died at his home in Clarksdale, Mississippi, on Dec. 28, 2020.
After graduating cum laude on D Day, June 6, 1944, he joined the U.S. Navy as a sailor for one year, then received an appointment to the U.S. Naval Academy, where he was commissioned as an ensign and graduated in 1949 with a degree in mechanical engineering. He served in the U.S. Navy aboard a destroyer for three years and an amphibious flagship for two years in the Atlantic and the Mediterranean, before resigning his commission to return to his family’s farm business, Mascot Planting Company. He managed the business and farming operations at Mascot, continually seeking to improve all manners of farming and ginning. He was among the first to implement irrigation and land forming practices. In 1965, Andy became deeply involved in the Civil Rights movement to promote equal opportunity and the respect and dignity for Mississippi’s marginalized poor in the Delta region. He developed a comprehensive local support system, including services such as Head Start, legal aid, and adult education. Andy was preceded in death by his wife, Susie, and is survived by five children, including son Michael ’71 Sr. (Battery B) N’67, 14 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren. Henry “Mark” Maynard Rees Jr. ’44 (Battery A) died of a sudden heart attack in Quebec on Feb. 22, 2021. He earned a degree in chemical engineering at McGill University and worked for several years
at Dow, DuPont, and Union Carbide. He followed his passion, becoming a stockbroker for Jones Heward and later a financial analyst for H.M. Rees and Associates, where he specialized in Canadian investment for American companies. In 1957 he married Monique Laberge and in 1970 married Joanne Hewson, whom he remained happily married to for more than 50 years. Mark is survived by his wife, Joanne; one son; four daughters; 11 grandchildren; and one greatgrandson. Robert E. “Bob” Lee ’44 (Battery A) N’41 died on May 14, 2021. He graduated from Drury College in 1950 and married his wife, Marguerite, on July 21, 1951. Upon graduation from Drury, Bob entered the family business, Elkins-Swyers, and had a long and distinguished career. He later purchased Inland Printing and served as president and chairman of both companies. Bob sold Elkins-Swyers in 1987 and retired. He and Marguerite spent the next 32 years spending most of the year in their home on Maui. Bob was a past member of the Downtown Rotary Club and a member of Hickory Hills Country Club. He is survived by his wife; a son, Robert, and two daughters, Gail and Lesley. He was preceded in death by one daughter, Peggy. James “Jim” Homer Russell ’45 (Company C) of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, died on April 16, 2021, just two days following the death of his beloved wife, Lahoma, on April 14, 2021.
He grew up in Kansas City, and after graduation from Culver, he enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1946, serving in the Medical Corps until 1948. Later, he attended the University of Kansas; University of Denver; and Western State College of Law. Jim was a self-employed real estate broker and developer in Kansas (1950–1963); a hotel owner/operator in Texas (1963–1984); and a serial entrepreneur in California (1963– 1994). He owned or controlled businesses in the mining, petroleum, motion picture, television, health supplements and cosmetics industries. He enjoyed reading, politics, history, religion, college sports and traveling. He served as president of the Young Republicans, University of Kansas; and football commissioner of Pop Warner Football, Orange County, Calif. He loved his children and took an active interest in their education, sports activities, and careers. In his early years, Jim was a member of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Later, he founded the Covenant Church of Our Redeemer, which he pastored for 40 years. Jim was preceded in death by a son, James Lee, and grandson, Matthew Russell. Survivors include four sons, Thomas, Mark, Walter and Charles; and five daughters Alice, Rita, Kelly, Christine, and Claudia Suzanne; 21 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. Harry L Stern N’46 died on Nov. 14, 2020, at the age of 90. A fifth-generation
Chicagoan, Harry turned his classical training and love of languages into a 55-year career as an antiquarian book and map dealer. He never retired and was working on appraisals until 10 days before his death. He attended Yale University, where he studied classical languages, and at the Interpreters’ School at the University of Geneva. At the age of 61, he earned a master’s degree in American history from the University of Chicago. During his military service in the U.S. Army (1952–1954), Harry was posted to the National Archives in Washington, D.C., where he translated German documents captured during World War II. He remained in Europe and sold books in France and Germany. In 1956 he married Suzanne Denison, and in 1957 they settled in Chicago, where they had three children. Harry worked in the family business at Hillman’s Stop & Shop as a wine merchant until 1965, when his interest in antiquities and books led to a job with a world-renowned dealer in antiquarian books and maps. In 1975, Harry launched his own business, buying and selling rare books and antique maps, and appraising items for universities, private collectors, insurance companies, and estates in the U.S., Canada, and Europe. A resident of Lake Forest, Illinois, since 1979, he is survived by his wife of 41 years, Petrea; three brothers, three children, five grandchildren, two stepchildren, and two step-grandchildren.
Harry Joseph English N’47 died on May 16, 2020, in Munster, Indiana. He earned a degree from Indiana University in 1952 and then served as a corporal in the U.S. Army during the Korean War from 1952 to 1954. He worked for Chicago area banks and retired in 1989, then moved to Rensselaer, Indiana, for 14 years before moving to Hammond, Indiana. Harry was a Blue Lodge Mason Member #125 F & AM, of Chicago and American Legion Post #21 since 1951. He was preceded in death by his parents and only brother, Allen. He is also survived by two nephews. Howard George Pearcy NB’47 of Columbus, Indiana, died on Feb. 18, 2021. He earned a degree in business from Indiana University in 1952, married Joan Rushworth, joined the U.S. Air Force and relocated to Japan. After returning stateside, Howard honed his business skills, love of numbers and storytelling abilities as general manager of a Huntingburg furniture company, a Frankfort radio station and, finally, as an accountant in New York City. Once he earned his CPA, he returned to Indiana and joined the Irwin Management Company of Columbus in 1963, where he remained for 32 years, eventually retiring as vice president of taxes. His involvement in the Columbus community was substantial and diverse. He was involved with the United Way and served as board president for the Bartholomew County
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IN MEMORIAM Hospital Foundation, as well as a board member for the Columbus Enterprise Development Corporation and the Columbus Indiana Philharmonic. Howard was preceded in death by his wife, Joan, and is survived by his daughter, Sharon; son, Jeff; three grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren. David Jackson Macarthy N’47 died on June 10, 2021, in Naples, Florida. After high school he enlisted in the U.S. Army and served four years in the Army Security Agency. He earned a BBA from the University of Cincinnati and joined Cincinnati Bell Telephone Co., retiring 33 years later as a vice president. He also earned an MBA from Xavier University. He was active in the Jaycees, Boy Scouts, Rotary, Masons, Scottish Rite, and the Shrine. In 1989 he relocated to Collier County, Florida, and continued to be active in civic and social organizations. In retirement he traveled to all 50 states and seven continents. He was preceded in death by Jo, his wife of 54 years, and is survived by a son, D. Mark, one daughter, Maureen, one granddaughter Shannon and two great-grandchildren, Isabella and Domenic. Samuel Henegar Campbell III W’47, of Lookout Mountain, Tennessee, died at his home on Oct. 8, 2020. He graduated from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. and returned to Chattanooga to become the third generation leader of the family business, Chattanooga Bakery, where
he served as president and then chairman until his death. He also founded or managed Brownie Special Products, Sportsman’s Dens, Signal Smelting & Refining Co, and Professional Aviation. In 1957, he married Susan Joy Harley, and they moved to Lookout Mountain, where they recently celebrated their 63rd wedding anniversary. As sportsmen who loved to hunt and fish with friends and family members, they traveled the world. Active in community life, Sam served as trustee of The Bright School and McCallie School, where he received the Alumni Achievement Award, the Chambliss Center for Children and a deacon and trustee of First Presbyterian Church. Survivors include his wife, Susan; two sons, Sam III and John, one daughter, Elizabeth; ten grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren. Scott Clark Schurz W’47 former chairman of Hoosier Times Inc. and a leader in the local journalism industry since he started work at The HeraldTimes in 1966, died on Oct. 8, 2020. He became publisher of the Bloomington newspaper soon after his family bought it more than half a century ago, and stayed at the helm until 2002, when he went into semiretirement. Schurz was known for his devotion to journalism and his strong support for Indiana University. He got to know his employees at the paper, and often wandered through the newsroom checking on the stories of the day or in the press room at night.
He received a bachelor’s degree from Denison University in 1957, then worked for Schurz Communications, Inc. in Hagerstown, Maryland, at the Morning Herald and Daily Mail, and at the South Bend Tribune, among other properties. He moved to Bloomington in 1966. In 1997, Schurz received the Denison University Alumni Citation, the highest honor bestowed to alumni. He was also inducted into the Indiana Journalism Hall of Fame in 2003 and was named honorary president for life by the Inter American Press Association in 2005. Schurz also served his local community and was active in the Community Foundation of Bloomington and Monroe County. He also sat on the IU Foundation’s board. He is survived by his wife, Kathryn and son John ’91 (Battery A). Walter Meredith “Tad” Bird Jr. ’48 (Company B) died on Dec. 11, 2020, in Green Valley, Arizona. He followed his father’s footsteps to Harvard University. He earned the rank of lieutenant in the U.S. Army ROTC program, then went to Japan to support the Korean War. Returning from military service, Tad took a job at the United Shoe Machinery Corporation and joined his aunt to run Red Acre Farm, a nonprofit he remained involved with for the rest of his life in various roles. He earned an MBA at Northeastern University, which led to a career in the investment world, first at Arkwright
Boston Insurance and later at Shawmut National Bank, from which he retired in 1993. He was the junior warden of the Church of the Good Shepherd in Acton, Massachusetts, and served on the town of Stow’s Planning Board, Zoning Board of Appeals and School Committee. His true calling, however, was leading his family through outdoor adventures. They climbed the 63 New England 4,000 foot mountains by the early ’70s. But the real joy was in creating a team effort, having his five children learn how to work hard, make things, break things, and finish a job. When Tad retired, Carolyn and he set off to see the world, traveling to Africa, the Middle East, and New Zealand, as well as taking 23 trips across the United States. Tad was preceded in death by his wife, Carolyn, and is survived by four sons, one daughter and 10 grandchildren. Joe Mason Dearmin ’48 (Company A) died on Dec. 14, 2020. After graduating from Culver, he attended Indiana University where he earned a BS in marketing and met and married his wife, Marilyn. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1952 and served for five years, during which he was sent to OCS in Newport, Rhode Island, and was later stationed in Key West, Florida. He retired from the U.S. Navy as a lieutenant and remained active in the reserves from 1956–1959. Joe moved back to Odon, Indiana, in 1956 to raise his family and join the family
business, Dearmin and Co. He later became involved with The First National Bank of Odon, where he earned an ownership position, from 1973 to 2018. He served as chairman of the board there from 1994–2016. He was also affiliated with The American Legion Post #0293. Joe was preceded in death by his parents, W. Fred Dearmin and Cleta Dee, as well as his second wife, Jo. He is survived by his third wife, Barbara; his first wife, Marilyn; his son, John ’73 (Troop B) W’68; and his daughter, Priscilla ’74 (New Dorm). He is also survived by four grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren. James Daniel Bryson, Sr. N’49 of Hopwood, Pennsylvania, died on June 26, 2020, at home. He briefly attended Lafayette College before enlisting in the U.S. Navy and serving on the USS Roanoke during the Korean War. Upon his return, he graduated from the General Motors Institute and joined the family business, Bryson Motors, founded by his father in 1923. Dan went on to run the business, until his retirement in 1994. Dan was an enthusiastic cyclist and could often be found cycling through Hopwood and the Uniontown area. He also took many cycling trips with his brothers and other family members, including the “Bryson Assault on England” in 1985; a cycling trip through England with his two children, Dan and Sarah; brothers Bill and Bob, and their families. Dan was dedicated to his community and served as a
S M I T H HE LP E D T R ANS FOR M HOR S E MANSH IP Veleair Courtlandt “Cort” Smith II ’49 (Troop I) died at age 90 on July 27, 2021, in his Winfield, West Virginia home. A Lancer and Rough Rider during his cadet days, Cort fell in love with the horsemanship program and began his long dedication to the Black Horse Troop and Summer Cavalry. After graduation, he earned a BS degree in geology from Duke University, followed by serving his country in the U.S. Air Force as an agent in the Office of Special Investigations. At the conclusion of his active service, Cort studied at Lehigh University before returning to West Virginia to join the family businesses. He remained active in the U.S. Air Force Reserve as well. Cort learned all aspects of the natural gas business under the Veleair C. Smith Management umbrella. With Teavee Oil & Gas, Inc., and Putnam Natural Gas Company, he was active in drilling gas wells and providing industrial gas service. With Well Service, Inc., he was involved with contract well and cement work for the natural gas industry over a multi-state area. With Union Oil & Gas, Inc, he was involved with providing gas utility service. While visiting relatives in Cali, Colombia, en route to reviewing a mining venture in Bolivia with his father, Cort seized an opportunity to purchase a used drilling rig and begin a well drilling company to provide water irrigation for sugar cane operations. Over the following years, he primarily lived in Colombia, where he was very active in polo. After his marriage in 1963, he and his family divided their time between Cali and the farm in Winfield. Although his business interests were primarily in drilling and natural gas, Cort was also active in either starting or providing venture capital to endeavors ranging from an early chain of ice cream parlors in Colombia to hovercraft capable of being driven on land or water. He was a founder and served on the board of directors of the Teays Valley National Bank from 1973 until it was acquired by Kanawha Banking & Trust in 1984. He also served as president of the Charleston Rotary Club and longtime parliamentarian on its planning committee, as well as an active member of the West Virginia Small Public Utility Association and Cosmos Club.
In his later years, Cort returned to his true passion of horsemanship at Culver. In 1999, while he was a member of the Culver Legion Board, he created and chaired the Committee of the Horse, which, among other things, rapidly increased the number of Troopers, Equestriennes, and Summer riders. The capital campaign he led created an impressive endowment that increased enrollment in every equestrian program and modernized Culver Horsemanship’s equipment and facilities. He served on two Horsemanship Advisory Boards. In recent years, he was a volunteer instructor and popular figure in the horsemanship department for both Summer Campers, as well as Academies students (often staying in his distinctive RV, dubbed The Chateau).
Veleair Courtlandt “Cort” Smith II ’49
In 2007, Cort was inducted into Culver’s Horsemanship Hall of Fame for his achievements and service to Culver and was inducted to Culver’s Cum Laude Society in 2011. Though health issues slowed him down in recent years, Cort still remained actively engaged with his hay farm, land purchases and even some road trips back to Culver. Cort was preceded in death by his son Collett V. Smith and is survived by three children, Courtlandt L. Smith ’85 (Troop A), Christian V. Smith and Caroline K. Smith. He is also survived by four grandchildren Courtlandt L. Smith Jr. ’16 (Troop A), Wilson C. Smith, Lauren Claire Smith and Oliver Classen, as well as his former spouse and mother of his children, Kemp Littlepage McElwee.
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IN MEMORIAM member on many charitable and civic organizations, including the United Way, Salvation Army, and the Uniontown Rotary Club. He was also a member of Laurel Lodge #651 F & AM. In 1996, he was named “Citizen of the Year” by the Chamber of Commerce. He was the co-founder and race director of the Uniontown Triathlon, which benefitted the Salvation Army. He was also an active member of the Asbury United Methodist Church. Dan is survived by one son, James; one daughter, Sarah; and two grandchildren, Rebecca and Christopher. He was preceded in death by Sara, his wife of 58 years; two sisters; and one brother. Dr. Alfred Ellery Darby Jr. ’49 (Battery A), died on April 7, 2021, at the Hattie Ide Chaffee Home in Rhode Island. He graduated from Brown University and then Tufts Medical School in 1957. Dr. Darby was a well known child psychiatrist and in more recent years, practiced privately in Fall River and Taunton, Massachusetts. Over the years he also held various consulting positions and was highly regarded in the areas of child and adolescent psychiatry. He is survived by his wife of 40 years, Edith, four children and one grandson. George Sheldon “Gus” Hoster Jr. ’49 (Company B) N’47 died at home in Columbus, Ohio, on April 10, 2021, five days after his 90th birthday. He attended Northwestern University and The Ohio State
University, where he was a member of the Sigma Chi Fraternity. Throughout his entire life, flying was his favorite activity. At the age of 12, Gus began flight lessons. He obtained his private pilot’s license at the age of 18 and immediately began his military and civil aircraft careers by flying copilot for Anchor Hocking during summer breaks. Gus was a captain and senior pilot, squadron test pilot, wing transport pilot, and wing air staff intelligence officer in the U.S. Air Force, 49th Fighter Bomber Group, and in the 121st Tactical Fighter Wing of the Ohio National Guard. He also served on active duty at the end of the Korean War and was recalled to active duty during the Berlin Crisis. In 1957 he merged his love of banking, business, and airplanes by founding Aircraft Acceptance Corporation He went on to specialize in aircraft leasing and financing as an executive with Huntington National Bank and Park National Bank, then expanded his career to consult mergers and acquisitions, founding the Hoster Group in 1984. He was preceded in death by his first wife, Nancy, and is survived by his second wife of 47 years, Linda. He is also survived by five children — Mark, Laura, Elizabeth ’83 (Linden), George “Jake” Hoster III, and Christopher, as well as three grandchildren, Hannah, Olivia, and Carson. Irvin Emerson Poston NB ’49 W’46 died on May 31, 2021, in Southfield, Michigan. He graduated from Attica High
School in 1950 as the class valedictorian, then attended Purdue University, where he played snare drum in the All-American Marching Band and tympani in the symphony band. Irvin also joined Sigma Nu Fraternity. In 1954 he graduated from Purdue with a degree in mechanical engineering, a master’s in industrial engineering in 1955 and began work as an engineer at the Allison Division of General Motors in Speedway, Indiana. In 1958, Irv was transferred to General Motors’ new technical center in Warren, Michigan, where he became a pioneer in the field of plastics, and over the years earned the reputation of being one of the world’s leading experts on plastics and composites. He was manager of plastics/ composites for GM during most of his professional career and gave speeches throughout the U.S. and Europe regarding the application of plastic in the automobile industry. He received numerous awards from the Society of Plastics Engineers and the Engineering Society of Detroit. Irv retired from GM at the end of 1996. He was preceded in death by his wife of 62 years, Lois. He is survived by four children, Janet, Patricia, Steven and David; 11 grandchildren and one great-granddaughter. Lawrence Edward “Bud” Post H’50, W’46 of Grand Rapids, Michigan, died on Dec. 17, 2020. Bud spent his early summers at his grandmother Woodruff’s farm in Culver, Indiana, and later at Culver Military Academy. He gradu-
ated from Leelanau School in 1950. After a year at Purdue University, Bud joined the U.S. Army and was assigned to a Nike missile battery in New York City. In his spare time, Bud earned his private pilot seaplane rating. After receiving an honorable discharge, Bud took a bus to the Cessna factory in Wichita, Kansas, and flew home his first airplane: a shiny new Skyhawk. Soon afterward, he went to work at his parents’ company, North Star Bus Lines, where he worked his way up to President/CEO. While on an assignment at the company office in Traverse City, Michigan, Bud met Doris Randolph, whom he married on March 10, 1967. After his successful tenure at North Star, Bud sold the business and retired in 1980. Doris died in 2003 after a lengthy illness. In his retirement years, Bud captained the charter boat “Flying Fresian” for several years out of Grand Haven, spent a great deal of time at his deer camp in the Upper Peninsula, shot competitive pistol and skeet, volunteered his time flying trips for Wings of Mercy, and hunted all over the world. He was a member and officer of Safari Club International Michigan Chapter, as well as the Kent County Conservation League. Bud is survived by one daughter, Lori, and two grandchildren. Newell Barker “Wally” Wallace Jr. ’50 (Troop I) N’48 died on Feb. 25, 2021, in Lubbock, Texas. He attended Culver Summer Schools &
Camps in both the horsemanship and naval programs. He earned a BS in Economics at the University of Virginia. He served in the U.S. Army from 1955-1957 as first lieutenant in the 101st Airborne Division. After his military service, Wally joined General Motors in 1958 and spent 15 years in various roles, including district manager for Cadillac in Lubbock. After leaving GM in 1973, he briefly owned Texas Wrecker until he sold the business to enter into McDonald’s restaurant franchises. In 1975, while in training, he met his bride-to-be, Faye Wells, and they married on July 28, 1977. Wally graduated from Hamburger University and opened his first franchise store, spending 1975-1993 as owner/operator of six locations in Fort Worth, Texas. In 1993 they sold their McDonald’s locations and retired to Lubbock, Texas. In service to his community, Wally joined the East Fort Worth Rotary Club in 1980 and continued a nearly 40 year perfect attendance record with Greater Southwest Lubbock Rotary Club until 2019. He is survived by his wife Faye; their three daughters and one son; six grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren. Jerry Lee Wise ’51 (Company B) died on Jan. 15, 2020, at the Brookdale Pinnacle Senior Living in Grove City, Ohio. He graduated from The Ohio State University in 1960 with a BS in electrical engineering. He later obtained his license as a professional electrical engineer. He was a longtime member of
the Grove City Elks Lodge #37 and a member of the OLPH Knights of Columbus. Jerry was preceded in death by his wife of 63 years, Barbara. He is survived by five children, 13 grandchildren, 33 greatgrandchildren and one greatgreat grandchild. Col. Dr. David Gilmore Dibbell Sr. ’51 (Battery A) died on Nov. 19, 2020, in Madison, Wisconsin, at home with his wife, Susan, and daughter Cherie at his side. He graduated from Yale University, where he was a varsity wrestler and graduated Phi Beta Kappa. Dr. Dibbell was headed for flight school with the U.S. Air Force when he was accepted at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, graduating Alpha Omega Alpha. He served in the U.S. Air Force for 15 years from 1959–1974, earning the rank of colonel. He was deployed in the Adriatic and flew cover in both the Cuban Missile Crisis and Berlin Crisis. In 1968, Dr. Dibbell arrived in Vietnam in the wake of the Tet Offensive. He was appointed the sole faculty member of the medical school in Hu, in charge of a 1,000-bed hospital and an 800-bed leprosarium. Despite a lack of resources, he excelled in teaching the Vietnamese medical students and treated patients from both sides of the conflict. He completed residencies in both general and plastic surgery at Yale, Stanford University, and Roswell Park Memorial Institute. Upon returning from Vietnam and discovering the U.S. Air Force did not have
its own reconstructive surgery program, he started one at Wilford Hall Hospital in San Antonio, Texas. Dr. Dibbell received a Bronze Star and Combat Air Medal for his military service and retired as a full colonel. His legacy is building the first program in reconstructive surgery at the University of Wisconsin Department of Surgery, where he created international outreach programs, providing plastic surgery and care in Central and South America. It became one of the top 10 programs in North America within his first five years as its division chief. Dr. Dibbell is survived by his wife, Susan, one daughter, one son, two grandchildren and one great-grandson. Dr. Ernest W. Hetrick W’52, of Marion, Indiana, died on July 4, 2020, in Marion General Hospital from complications of pulmonary blood clots. He graduated from Miami University, Oxford, Ohio, in 1963 and furthered his radiology residency at the University of Cincinnati Medical School, Class of 1967. then served two years in the U.S. Navy at Chelsea Naval Hospital, Boston. He married his wife of 56 years, Barbara, on June 20, 1964. He was a well-respected radiologist at Marion General Hospital for 24 years; Morrow County Hospital for 10 years; and with Aris Teleradiology for three years. After serving in the U.S. Navy, he set a goal to bring state-of-the-art radiology to a small town. He succeeded in securing ultrasound, a CAT
scanner, and MRI equipment for Marion General. Ernie also knew there was a need in the U.S. for more doctors to serve in small towns, so he recruited young doctors to Marion. He was also proud to be a part of HAND, the Home and Neighborhood Development organization. Ernie is survived by his wife, Barbara; one daughter, Jennifer; two sons, Ernest and William; and seven grandchildren. Dr. Larry Alan Huntsinger N’52 died on Nov. 6, 2020, in south Florida. He graduated from Indiana Medical School in 1959 at the age of 24, then served in the U.S. Navy as a commander during the Vietnam War from 1961–70. He entered into a private medical practice in Broward County from 1970 until his retirement in 2001. Larry is survived by his wife, Rebecca, six children, seven grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren. Donald Bruce MacAlpine ’52 (Battery A) died on Nov. 23, 2020. He was raised in Fresno, California, attended Midland School for Boys, and graduated from Culver. He attended Stanford University and then enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps in the Korean War, first as an enlisted man and then as a drill instructor. He was a first lieutenant and one of the first jet fighter pilots of Marine Air, stationed in Hawaii, where his plane caught on fire over the big volcano of the big island and he had to eject, landing on the volcano as the plane exploded all around him.
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
IN MEMORIAM After serving his country in the Marine Corps and war time, he began a career as a police officer for the City of Madera, California, where he retired after 20 years, having served as a patrolman, sergeant watch commander, firearms instructor and training officer. He and his wife and four other couples pioneered the establishment of the Grace Community Church of Madera. He was also a member of both the Madera and Oakhurst Rotary International clubs. Bruce is survived by his wife of 55 years, Candi; two daughters, Stacy Coleen Daly of Oakhurst and Kristina Jayne Lafferty of Kuna, Idaho; a son, Donald Jr. of Fresno, and adopted children Steven and Terry Lynn MacAlpine. William “Bill” Calvin Smith, Jr. N’52 of Montrose, Alabama, died on Dec. 22, 2020. After high school in Memphis, Tennessee, he enrolled at Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) earning a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering and a master’s degree in industrial management. He attended Culver’s Summer Naval School and later enlisted in the U.S. Army. He was the honor graduate of his field communications training course at Fort Jackson, South Carolina. He served four years in the U.S. Army and Tennessee National Guard. Bill began his professional career working for Procter & Gamble in Cincinnati, Ohio, before acting as unit superintendent of the polymer division of Celanese Corporation in Shelby, North Carolina, for
many years. Bill met his future wife, Martha, while she was in nursing school at Emory University. They were later married on June 12, 1959. He served his community as a volunteer at Thomas Hospital in Fairhope; was the leader of a Bible Study at Trinity Presbyterian Church; and enjoyed participating in a weekly gathering of special friends. Bill is survived by his wife Martha, one son, one daughter and three grandsons. Don Maurice Lowenstine ’52 (Company C) W’47 died on Feb. 17, 2021, in Ft. Myers, Florida. Dr. Richard Alexander Wright ’52 (Battery B) W’47 died at his home in West Palm Beach, Florida on March 14, 2021, after a short battle with pneumonia. After Culver, he graduated from the University of Miami School of Medicine in 1976 with a major focus on rehabilitation of serious injuries. He resided in Palm Beach and New York City for most of his adult life. Richard and his family enjoyed many years as the owners of Wright By The Sea in Delray. He is survived by his sister Katherine Willoughby, and her two sons Dr. David and Dr. Brian Willoughby. William John Veach ’52 (Company B) N’50 died in Richmond, Indiana, on April 11, 2021 at Reid Health Hospital. He graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 1956 with a business degree and served in the U.S. Army Reserve. William owned and
managed the family-owned Veach’s Toy Store for more than 50 years. He married Shirley Bensman on Feb. 19, 1966 in Minster, Ohio. She survives, along with daughter Jennie and husband, Tony Truitt, a son John and granddaughter Baleigh. He was a member of St. Andrew Catholic Church in Richmond. Capt. George Dalton Myers II N’53 W’50 died on April 14, 2020. He was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, and graduated from Walnut Hills High School in 1954 before entering the U.S. Naval Academy the same year and earning a bachelor’s degree in engineering in 1958. He was involved in the field and carrier suitability of the A4E auto throttle, which sensed the angle of attack with and without elevator input signal and included the first shipboard landing while aboard the USS Lexington. He was also involved in the first shipboard trials of the T2B, testing the determination of the minimum catapult end speed and maximum sink off the bow permissible at 10,400 pounds and associated shorebased tests. George joined SETP in 1966 while serving as a project test pilot in the Carrier Suitability Branch/ Flight Test Division at the Naval Air Station at Patuxent River, Maryland. Following two deployments flying the A6, he joined General Electric Company in 1969 at Edwards Air Force Base, California, and flew engine development programs in the F4, F5, B47 and B52.
James “Tom” Frank N’53 of Indianapolis, died on Jan. 20, 2021 at home. He graduated from Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business and had a successful career in pharmaceutical sales. Tom had many passions and hobbies: sailing, traveling the world, taking photographs, being a ham radio enthusiast and a choral conductor and member of three different choirs. As a proud member of Sertoma International, Tom fulfilled his desire to make this world a better place by serving others. He was also a longtime active member of St. Luke’s United Methodist Church. Tom is survived by a son, James Jr.; four daughters, Tracy, Deborah, Jennifer and Tiffany; stepdaughter, Terri; stepson, Robert; 20 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his first wife, Marilyn. Donald Clyde Brown ’53 (Company D) W’49 of Greensburg, Pennsylvania, died on May 21, 2021. He earned a bachelor’s degree at Amherst College in Massachusetts, then attended medical school at Western Reserve in Cleveland, Ohio. Prior to retirement, he served on staff at the Jeannette Hospital as a general surgeon. He recently finished two terms as a board member of the Pennsylvania Medical Society. He is survived by his wife of nearly 50 years, Sara “Sally” Brown. George Marvin Walcoff ’54 (Troop B) died on Sept. 18, 2011, in Houston, Texas. He is survived by his wife,
Janis; three sons and two grandchildren. Dr. Lawrence Frank Halpern ’54 (Company A) of Towson, Maryland, died on Dec. 20, 2020. He had a long successful career as a periodontic dentist in Baltimore. He is survived by his wife, Karen; two sons, two daughters, and nine grandchildren. Due to the pandemic, a virtual funeral was held on Dec. 23, 2020. Gary Harmon Baas N’54, died on March 10, 2021, surrounded by his family. He was a graduate of Bexley High School, Class of 1955, and attended Ohio University in Athens, Ohio. He joined the U.S. Army and was an Honor Guard in Washington, D.C., as President Eisenhower’s personal guard and a ceremonial Honor Guard. As an entrepreneur, Gary was president of a third-generation family business, Inland Products, Inc., He also started Pet Cremation Services of Columbus, and multiple other businesses, including real estate developments. He was a member of many civic clubs and organizations including The Aladdin Shrine, Blue Moose Lodge, Scottish Rite, The City Club, The Columbus Club, The Athletic Club of Columbus, and The Scotch and Bourbon Society, which his father co-founded. Gary was preceded in death by his wife of 52 years, Suzanne. He is survived by his four children, four grandchildren and one great-grandson.
Jon Hugh Ryall Sr. ’54 (Company D) N’52 died on March 11, 2021. He attended the University of Michigan and then served in the U.S. Army, where he trained in a forerunner of the Army Rangers program and then as an instructor at the U.S. Military Academy. Jon was an entrepreneur with a widely varied career, which included owning a logging camp in Canada, an import-export business in Michigan, and being president of a furniture rental company in Miami. He found his niche in real estate, where he worked as an agent, broker, developer, and owner of several real estate companies over more than 40 years of his real estate career. He and his business partner, Carol O’Neal, opened Earth Available Realty, Inc. as an exclusive buyers’ agency in early 1991 and then on Dec. 19, 1992, they expanded their partnership to a personal one when they married. They spent almost 30 years together, active in their church, their business, and in local and national associations. He is survived by his wife; one daughter; one stepdaughter, and five grandchildren. Axel Eberhard Strauch ’54 (Battery B) died on April 7, 2021 in Boca Raton, Florida. He grew up in Hazel Green, Wisconsin, and then attended Culver, where he served as Battery commander. He also graduated cum laude. Axel attended the University of Wisconsin for both undergraduate and medical school, then continued his medical training in San Francisco, where he met
his first wife, Birgit. They have three children, Clint, Nicole and Kent. Axel was drafted into the U.S. Air Force and served as chief of urology at Elgin Air Force Base. After serving his country, he moved with his family to Hollywood, Florida, where he joined Urological Associates as a surgeon. He lost his first wife, Birgit, to cancer in 2001, then remarried and lost his second wife to cancer four years later. In 2010 he married his current wife, Julianne. Axel is survived by his wife, his three children Clint, Nicole and Kent, and eight grandchildren. Bruce Emerson Munroe ’54 (Company A) N’53 W’47 and Phyllis Munroe of Culver, Indiana, died on May 19, 2021. Longtime residents, they had formerly lived in Indianapolis and Scottsdale, Ariz. Bruce and Phyllis enjoyed socializing with their friends in Culver and especially enjoyed Wine Time and Yacht Club parties. Born on July 18, 1935, in Agawam, Massachusetts, to Charles and Edna Munroe, Bruce grew up in Indianapolis. After attending Butler University and Indiana University, Bruce worked 40 years in the petroleum industry as a marketing manager. He was an avid sailor and enjoyed working as a sailing instructor at Culver Summer Schools & Camps, where he was affectionately known as Captain Munroe. Phyllis was born Aug. 5, 1936, in Eaton, to the late Lloyd and Dora (Knife) Richardson. She graduated from Ball Memorial Hospital School of
Nursing and completed post graduate studies in operating room management at the graduate hospital of University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. She worked at IU Medical Center and the Indiana Hand Center at St. Vincent Hospital in Indianapolis. They are survived by a son and daughter-in-law, Grant and Ginny Munroe of Culver, and preceded in death by a son, Alex, whose seven children survive. Michel Folsom Thompson H’55 died on Nov. 11, 2020, in Sarasota, Florida. He earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Dyke College, then served in the U.S. Army, stationed in Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and was honorably discharged in 1966. After graduating from Dyke College, Mike worked for Lybrand and Ross Brothers & Montgomery as a public accountant until he took the job as CFO at Lee Wilson Engineering Company in Rocky River, Ohio. He was also the chief financial officer and vice president of Lee Wilson Engineering of Canada. Mike married Nancy Lynn (Luce) on Dec. 20, 1985. He was always proud of his three children, as well as his four grandchildren and his six step-grandchildren. Hugh David White W’55 died on Jan. 4, 2021, of cancer at his Toledo, Ohio, home. Dave, or the “Chief,” as he was known by closest family, was educated at Maumee Valley Country Day School and Culver and then at Denison University in 1959.
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
REM EM BE R I N G T H E FA M I LY
Randi A. Fischer died on Jan. 18, 2021. A Milwaukee native, she married Charles D. Fischer of Jefferson, Wisconsin on August 22, 1964, which lasted for 56 years. They lived in Durand, Illinois until 1986, where she was employed by Durand State Bank, then moved to Culver in 1986 to take positions at Culver Academies. Chuck taught Physics and Randi’s talent with computers was put to good use as a programmer in data processing, a programmer Randi A. Fischer for Technology Services, and assistant registrar and database manager. Randi was a member of Trinity Lutheran Church in Culver, where she served the church in many ways. Randi is survived by her husband, Chuck of Plymouth, Indiana. She will be missed by her children: daughters Kim Kephart (Jim) and Beka Sorg of Culver; David Fischer (Dana) of Fredericksburg, Virginia; and Michael Fischer of Huntersville, North Carolina, as well as 11 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Randi was a woman of great faith who set an example for her family that will guide them throughout their lives. Stephen Craig, a former Woodcraft counselor, died on Jan. 21, 2021 in Davenport, Iowa. He is survived by his wife, Karen, two children, Joseph and Jacqui; and three grandchildren Zoe, Graham, and Marshall. William Holman Hanning Jr., Ph.D. ’56 (Battery A) N’55 W’50 died on Feb. 14, 2021 surrounded by his loving family. At Ohio University he was a member of Army ROTC and earned a bachelor’s degree in 1961 and a master’s in 1967. Upon his 1961 graduation, he was commissioned into the U.S Army, where he served at Fort Benning, Fort Knox, and Fort Lewis. After active duty, Bill began a 32-year career in public education, starting and ending his career with the Xenia City Schools.
He also worked as a school administrator at both Twinsburg Schools and Buckeye Valley Schools. He earned his doctorate degree from The Ohio State University in 1982 and was affectionally known by those closest to him as “Dr. Bill.” He retired in 1996, only to return to his alma mater, Culver, as a staff member in the Summer School Program, where he worked for 10 summers as a Senior Counselor and Director of Operations. His family legacy runs deep — his father was a midshipman in the Naval School nearly 100 years ago. Even after retirement, he was an active and full time volunteer, particularly devoted to his work with Culver, where he served as a member of the Culver Legion Board, as Regional Vice President of Culver Clubs International and William Hanning the longtime Class of 1956 Class Agent. Bill was also dedicated to the work of his church, West Berlin Presbyterian Church, where he served as a deacon and an elder. Bill also served as a board member with Delaware’s Family Promise and Delaware Speech and Hearing. Bill was preceded in death by his parents, his youngest son, James, and his brother, John. He is survived by Ann, his wife of 46 years; their three children, Elizabeth, John and Heather, and seven grandchildren: William, Oliver, Sophie, Ocean, Kingston, Breckon and Matthew. Roy Lee French died at home in North Liberty, Indiana, on Feb. 25, 2021. He was employed as a maintenance worker at Culver for several years. He was married to Cindy Sue Berger, who preceded him in death on April 1, 2008, and is survived by two daughters, Amy Jo and Angy Dee; and three grandchildren: Noah, Elijah, and Beau; and brother, Floyd.
Caroline Renee Boos Johnson of Birmingham, Alabama, died on April 18, 2021. She graduated from Kewanna High School and attended Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana. She worked in the Horsemanship department at Culver from 1967–1980, was an administrative assistant for the American Librarians Association 1980–1984, and as a project accountant at W.E. O’Neil Construction in Chicago from 1984 until her retirement in 1998. She enjoyed traveling with her husband Paul, and together they toured many destinations in the U.S. and Europe. Caroline is survived by two daughters, Renee and Christina; one son, Timothy; four grandchildren: Whitney, Jameson, Allison, and Grant; three great-grandchildren: Madison, Wyatt, and Brielle and five step-children: Deborah, Andrea, Charles, Lori and Matthew. Stephen F. Hatfield died on May 1, 2021 at the Center for Hospice Care in Elkhart, Indiana. He worked at Culver Academies in the Dining Hall and was awarded a Culver ring in 2014 for 25 years of service. In his spare time he loved to work on and tinker with vehicles. He is survived by one brother Mark, as well as several cousins. William “Bill” David Meridith, Sr. of Fairfield, Ohio, died on May 12, 2021. A retired educator and coach from the Cincinnati Public Schools, he did a radio and television broadcasting program called Sportlight for over 30 years. He brought some of the biggest names in sports to the airwaves: baseball icon Jackie Robinson; Hall of Famer pitcher Bob Gibson; 1978 National League MVP and Cincinnati native Dave Parker; and coaches Sam Wyche, Pete Gillen, Jim Anderson and Tony Yates. He also broadcast high school basketball and football games for WCIN AM with a variety of partners, including introducing Xavier University radio announcer Joe Sunderman to radio. He did the first play-by-play of high school basketball on Cincinnati’s new cable TV system, WarnerAmex cable (now Spectrum) in December 1981. Meridith is survived by his wife, Josephine
“Jo,” three sons and three daughters, all of whom attended Culver Summer School or Woodcraft Camp; three grandchildren and one great-grandson. Gerald Robert Planutis of Bridgman, Michigan, died on May 20, 2021 in St. Joseph, Michigan. A talented athlete, in 1948, as a senior, he led the West Hazelton Wildcats into the playoffs with a 92 record and was named as an all-state player. After graduation he enlisted in the U.S. Army and served in Trieste, Italy, from 1949–1952. He played service football and basketball as well as a Postal Specialist. As a soldier, Jerry paid for his mother, Anna, to visit Italy and she saw the pope in Rome. He was recruited by the MSU Spartans as a halfback, defensive back and placekicker. He played in two Rose Bowls 1954 and 1956, which the Spartans won. He received his Master’s in Education from Michigan State and began a remarkable coaching career. He coached at Monroe, Michigan; Indiana University; John Adams, South Bend; and Culver Academies 1970–1972. Jerry retired from coaching and teaching in 1992 and remained active in Bridgman as an elder at Immanuel Lutheran Church, Boy Scout leader and as a Student Driver Instructor. He was inducted into the Michigan High School Football Coaches Hall of Fame in 1989. He was preceded in death by his wife, Joan; and second wife, June. Jerry is survived by his son, John; granddaughter Emily; brother Bill; three nephews; two nieces; and one stepson. John Lee Babcock ’58 (Battery A) of Mishawaka, Indiana, died on May 12, 2021. A 1958 CMA graduate, he earned his B.S. degree in Mathematics Education from Northwestern University in 1962, and two advanced degrees from Indiana University (M.S. 1969 & Ed. S. 1982). He taught mathematics at Proviso West High School (Hillside, Ill.) from 1962 to 1966 and then received a position at Culver in 1966, where he was on the winter school staff for 41 years, retiring in 2007. During college and afterwards, he worked on the Culver Summer Camps staff
for 18 years, including positions as Woodcraft counselor, division commander, and instructor. And, during that time, he was the founding Director of the Culver Specialty Camps and the Family Camps. John taught mathematics every year but one, and from 1978 to 2003, he was an academic dean, guiding juniors and seniors in their choices of high school curriculum and college applications. While serving as dean in the Academic Office, he introduced and mastered computerized course scheduling and used various software products to modernize office work. During his early tenure at Culver, for nine years, he was a highly successful varsity rowing coach, including one undefeated season. In 1975, John won the Spivey Award for outstanding teaching. He became a Master Instructor in 1976, was nominated for honorary membership in the Culver chapter of the Cum Laude Society in 1979 and acted as the Society’s John Lee Babcock president for two terms. In 2003, at Culver, he left academic counseling and returned full time to the classroom, and subsequently served one year as Mathematics Department chairman. John was recognized by The College Board for long service to their national standardized testing program. He was an avid stamp collector and became the school’s first and longtime advisor to its Stamp Club, providing direction for its young philatelists. John was also involved in several local community organizations. He was a member of the Culver Plan Commission, was the founder of the Lake Maxinkuckee Management Committee (a lake environment improvement and protection group in Culver), was, for two terms, President of the Lake Association and was the Executive Director of that organization for 18 years. John and his wife traveled to many parts
of the United States and overseas trips included Europe, Asia, South America, and Antarctica. John enjoyed golfing, boating, swimming, and reading, particularly historical works. For a number of years after his Culver retirement, John continued to teach mathematics as an adjunct instructor at IU-South Bend. Recently, he served two years as President of the Blair Hills Community Association. John is survived by his wife of 51 years, Linda; his children, Patricia (CGA ‘90, WC ‘85), Michael (WC ‘90), and Gregory (WC ’92); and seven grandchildren. Joan Yvonne (Pattee) Heckford of Culver, died on May 31, 2021 at St. Joseph Regional Medical Center, Plymouth, Indiana. After graduating from high school, Joan took some college courses. On May 2, 1970, she married Don Heckford. They moved from Colorado to Culver, and she was employed at the Academies until her retirement. Joan is survived by her husband, Don; two daughters, Lisa and Sharman; one brother, David; one sister, Nancy and four grandchildren. Nancy L. McFarland of Leiters Ford, Indiana, died on July 4, 2021 at Woodlawn Hospital in Rochester, Indiana. She was a lifetime resident of the Culver area and a 1955 graduate of Culver High School. She had a long career as a hostess and receptionist at the Culver Inn and retired from that position. She enjoyed birds, wildlife and the river, but her favorite events were family get-togethers. Nancy is survived by her seven children: Mickey, Jackie, Lori, Glennia, Cindy, Mindy, Phillip; 28 grandchildren, 39 great-grandchildren, and 2 great-great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents, two grandchildren, and her former husband, Francis.
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
IN MEMORIAM He later attended Ohio Northern University Law School. Dave joined his father and three brothers in running their Chevrolet dealership. Their enthusiasm and loyalty to the employees allowed the family business to expand to its current status, which today includes businesses throughout the city, state and country. He met his wife of 47 years, Dana Diemer, in high school, and they married after Dave’s graduation from Denison. Their first child, Stephanie, was born the following year when he was serving in the U.S. Air Force. Son David, Jr. arrived the next year, followed by Tim. Beyond his prowess as a pilot, sailor and flyfisher, Dave was an enthusiastic and skilled duck hunter. As a longtime member of Erie Duck Club in Erie, Michigan, he could be found on opening and successive days of the hunting season. This past 2020 season, despite his cancer status, he hunted and filled his children’s freezers with unlucky ducks. He had an understanding of the role of conservation and was a committed supporter of Ducks Unlimited and the Nature Conservancy. Dave was preceded in death by his wife Dana, and one brother. He is survived by two brothers, one daughter, one son, two granddaughters, as well as his trusted companion of 10 years, Judy DeVilbiss. David Bruce “Pete” Crew III ’55 (Company B) died on Jan. 6, 2021, in Elmira, New York. After graduating from Culver in 1955, he attended Colgate University, earning his
BA in 1959 and his law degree in 1962 from Albany Law School. He started his career as a law clerk in the New York Supreme Court and later worked for two major Elmira law firms before joining the Chemung County District Attorney’s Office in 1968. Pete was elected district attorney in 1973, a position he held for nearly a decade, then to the state Supreme Court for the Sixth Judicial District in 1983, and in 1987, became the district administrative judge for the Sixth Judicial District. In 1991 he was appointed as an associate justice for the Appellate Division of New York State Supreme Court, Third Department, a position he held until his retirement in 2007. Over the years, he helped launch the careers of many other lawyers and judges. Pete loved teaching law almost as much as he loved practicing it. From 1974–1993 he was a faculty member of the Department of Criminal Justice at Elmira College; in 1974 he wrote “Criminal Discovery in New York State — Selected Issues,” which was revised annually and was included as part of his course curriculum. Pete is survived by his wife of 62 years, Fran, three daughters, one son and seven grandchildren. Two children graduated from Culver — David B. Crew IV ’85 (Company A) and Constance Crew Ramsay ’88 (Atrium). James Doyle May Sr. ’55 (Company B) died in Houston, Texas, on Feb. 15, 2021, from a heart attack. He won the coveted Chambers Award
for his leadership, academic performance, and athletic discipline his senior year. He graduated from Rice University in 1959 with a B.A. in mechanical engineering. He is survived by his wife, Judy; three sons, Jim, Jr., Richard, and Mathew; five grandchildren; and two great-grandsons. He is also survived by his first wife and mother of his three sons, Ellen Cartwright May. Hugh Allen Smith Sr. N’55 died unexpectedly in Valencia, California, on March 8, 2021. When he turned eight years old, he eagerly followed the “Smith Tradition” and attended Culver Woodcraft Camp and Naval Upper School, where he served as battalion commander. He also helped his family milk cows and bail hay on the Smith Dairy Farm in Merrillville, Indiana. Additionally, he helped manage The Smith Shooting Range where he, as well as local and federal law enforcement officers, trained. Following graduation from Indiana University and Indiana University Dental School in 1963, Dr. Smith enlisted in the U.S. Army, where he served as a captain in the Vietnam War. Upon returning from his decorated service, he joined his father, “Doc” Smith Sr., and brother, Dr. Marvin Smith Jr., at the Smith Dental practice in Gary, Indiana, providing much needed care to the underserved community. He was also a longstanding member of the Gary Rotary Club. After dedicating 41 years to this dental practice, Dr. Smith retired, following the death of his wife in 2004. For the past
15 years, he volunteered in his daughter, Dr. Kelly Smudde’s, dental practice, Santa Clarita Advanced Dentistry, where he spent countless hours participating in community charity events. Dr. Smith is survived by his two daughters: Dr. Kelly Smudde and Shannon Angelidis, and three granddaughters. Robert Wendel Marek ’56 (Battery B) N’52 died on Aug. 28, 2020, in Holiday, Florida. Robert enjoyed his days working as a nurseryman for the cities of Clearwater and Largo, and he especially enjoyed his days teaching wood carving. He is survived by his wife, Carolyn, and son, Daniel. James Barnes Medland ’56 (Troop A) of Phoenix, Arizona, died of natural causes on April 1, 2021. Jim attended the University of Michigan for a short time before moving with his parents and brother to Scottsdale in 1957. Having worked in the automotive field for several years, and having an affinity for British cars, Jim and four partners opened Delta Motorsports, Inc. in 1977. He and the last remaining partner sold the business to a close friend in 2013. Jim was an avid race car driver and private pilot. He was also an active member of the NRA, the Phoenix Elks, and past President of the Paradise Village Lions. Jim was preceded in death by his wife Kathryn “Kay” and is survived by his three children, Jim, Suzy and Sharon; six grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.
James E. Vernor IV ’58 (Troop B) died on Feb. 29, 2021. He was the great-grandson of James Vernor, the founder of the Vernor’s beverage company. William Courtney Bollinger ’59 (Company B) died on Dec. 20, 2020. He is survived by his wife, Connie, and son W. Courtney Bollinger, Jr. H’81 W’78. Timothy Bartholomew Reilly ’60 (Company C) died on Jan. 12, 2021, in Scottsdale, Arizona. After graduating from Culver, he completed his degree at Washington and Jefferson College in Pennsylvania, then proudly served his country as a first lieutenant in the U.S. Army on a Hawk Missile base in Korea, and then in Detroit. Completing his service, Tim returned to New York City, where he started his career at Ted Bates Advertising agency. Eventually he transitioned his career into the world of finance and retired from Morgan Stanley to enjoy time on the golf course in Vermont and Arizona. He had a great “joie de vivre,”and his passions in life included his wife and best friend of 53 years, June, who survives him, along with daughter Courtney DeHoff, and two grandchildren. David Byrd Gwinn ’61 (Company A) died Feb. 4, 2021, in Pinehurst, North Carolina, of complications from the Covid19 virus. Born and raised in Huntington, West Virginia, he never lost his distinctive accent or his attachment to the Ohio River
Valley. He graduated from Washington and Lee University in 1965, and the Harvard Business School Program for Management Development, in 1986. He was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army in 1965 and served a three-year tour of duty in Mannheim, Germany, retiring as a captain in 1968. He had a long and distinguished career as an executive in the property casualty insurance business. When he retired after 30 years from the Chubb Group of Insurance Companies as deputy chief underwriting officer, senior vice president and managing director, he had managed numerous branch and regional offices for the corporation. Later, he worked for Kemper Insurance Companies as president of the Northeast Region. Byrd and Molly retired to Pinehurst in 2005, following two generations of Molly’s family who had loved the community since the 1920s. Byrd spent many years as a member and president of the board of directors for Penick Village and served a number of terms on the Planning and Zoning Board for the Village of Pinehurst. He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Molly; his son David; two grandchildren; eight nephews; three nieces; and numerous cousins. He was preceded in death by his son, William. Richard James “Doc” Schumann H’61 died on Feb. 5, 2021. He graduated from Wilmington College, where he graduated in 1965. In 1974, he graduated from The
Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine and opened Enon Veterinary Hospital with his wife Patty. Always an entrepreneur, he started a local suntan, video and frozen yogurt shop, Katch-A-Ray. Passionate about the ocean and food, Doc and Patty opened up the Dock Food and Spirits in 1994 in his childhood home. Along with his passion for the beach later in life, Doc was a staple at Sugar Hollow on Norris Lake. Doc dedicated a good portion of his life to his civic duty. He was a member of the Village of Enon Council and served as a Mad River township trustee for many years. Doc was a brother in the Yellow Spring Masonic Lodge 421 and a member of the Antioch Shrine and Royal Order of Jesters Court 10. He is survived by his wife of 48 years, Patricia “Patty;” two sons & daughters-in-law; four grandchildren; and two nephews. Thomas M. Corkill ’61 (Troop A) of Naples, Florida, formerly of Naperville, Illinois, died on May 18, 2021. He was a Lancer in the Black Horse Troop at Culver and excelled at rifle, tennis, and track. He received a B.S. in biochemistry from Cornell University, where he was a Theta Chi member and active in ROTC. Tom earned an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Tom served in active duty in Germany for the U.S. Army from 1967–69. He was an expert marksman in the U.S. Army Reserve and competed internationally. He retired
in 2004 with the rank of lieutenant colonel and began a career in finance that spanned 30 years. He retired at age 55 from Harris Investment Management (Chicago), where he was a partner and portfolio manager. He was named a top five fund manager by Barron’s in 2000 for the Harris Insight Index fund. Tom is survived by his sister, Dulcie (Mack) Elwood, niece Miller Elwood, and longtime companion Rita DiVinere. John Rodger Skinner Jr. ’62 died on Feb. 14, 2021, at home in Parkland, Florida. He attended Lehigh University and Geneva College. He was active in the radio and television industry, working at different radio stations as an “on air” personality and engineer. He ended that phase of his career at WQAM in Miami, then branched out into the sales aspect of the radio business and worked at WMJR and Y100. He founded Tunnel Radio in Ft. Lauderdale, as well as Skinner Broadcasting, Inc. and TRA Communication Consultants. Rodger was instrumental in the development and promotion of low power TV and developed several low power TV stations. He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Gretchen Lehman Skinner, one son, and two grandchildren. Michael Patrick McCullough ’63 (Battery B) W’56 died on Sept. 5, 2020. His grandfather, Robert Shanks, was the head of the math department at Culver until he retired in the 1950s. He and his wife raised Michael, who grew up with
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
IN MEMORIAM wonderful “family” memories of the campus, factory and friends. He graduated from Harvard University in 1967 with an A.B. degree and studied business before living in Europe and then working for a company in Silicon Valley until 2001. Since then, he was semiretired, living off and on in Bangkok and more recently, starting a second career as an ER nurse. He is survived by three children: Robby, Christine, and Jamie. Allen John Wilkins N’63 of Verona, Wisconsin, and formerly of Huntington, West Virginia, died on Jan. 14, 2021, of COVID-19. He was a member of the Naval ROTC cadet corps at the University of Wisconsin Madison, where he received a B.S. in 1969. He taught economics there for many years while pursuing his master’s and Ph.D. degrees, which he received in 1971 and 1984, respectively. He then moved to Huntington, where he was an economics professor at Marshall University from 1985–2015 and also coached the rugby team. In 2016 Al relocated to Verona to be closer to his daughters, Lisa Ashley Wilkins Smith, Jordan Allen and Lauren Reagan Smith, all of whom survive him. In addition to his daughters and grandchildren, he is also survived by two former wives, Susan Drummond Savage of Madison, and Sara Leuchter Wilkins of Mequon, Wisconsin. Frank Anthony Werstein Jr. ’63 (Company C) died on June 23, 2021. He is survived by his wife, Jenni.
Brian Michael Crist T ’64 a longtime resident of Eagle River, Wisconsin, died on July 27, 2020, at Marshfield Medical Center. Brian had owned and operated Alexander’s Family Pizza in Eagle River since 1976. He was very involved in the community and served on the Eagle River Area Fire Department. Brian was also an avid fisherman and hunter and enjoyed sporting clay shooting. He is survived by his wife of 35 years, Susan; one son, and two brothers. James Richard Spiece ‘64 (Company B) N’62 W’60, formerly of Wabash, Indiana, died unexpectedly on Feb. 27, 2021, while wintering in Green Valley, Arizona. Born Sept. 8, 1946, in Wabash, he attended Culver Woodcraft Camp and Naval School. He graduated from Wabash High School in 1964, then Jim attended Indiana University and graduated with a BS in 1969 after serving two years in the U.S. Army stationed in Germany. He married Glenda (Oswalt) in Fort Wayne, Indiana, on Aug. 19, 1978. Jim was a graphic designer and type designer who enjoyed resurrecting old typefaces. Raymond Hays Morrison Jr. ’64 (Troop B) died on March 15, 2021 in Omaha, Nebraska. He attended both Miami of Ohio University and MacMurray College before enrolling in Control Data Institute in St. Louis in 1968. His career was in computers; he worked first for Southwestern Bell in St. Louis, and then for the Union Pacific Railroad until
his retirement in 2017. Ray was a member of The Media Club and served on the board of Gateway Metro Federal Credit Union for 40 years. He was also a Paul Harris Fellow (of the Rotary Foundation). He is survived by five cousins, close childhood friends, and his two godsons, Benjamin and Timothy Schade. Gary Eugene Pond ’66 (Company C) died on Feb. 9, 2021, of cancer. He attended Indiana University in Bloomington for three semesters. In 1968, Gary married Patricia Stillwagon and worked as a regional sales manager for Wheel Horse, a company that started in the garage of his grandfather, Elmer Eugene Pond, in 1946. He later sold hyperbaric oxygen chambers for Curran Medical. In 1990, he and his father started Porter Case, a company that manufactured carryon size luggage that featured a built-in cart, and Gary served as president of the company. He loved sailing and completed many Chicago Mackinac races. He also loved skiing and enjoyed several trips to Courchevel to ski in the French Alps. Gary is survived by his wife, Martha; his two children, Jonathon Pond and Heather Pond; and one stepson, Brett.
He was a pilot for his entire 35-year career, first flying gas pipeline patrol flights in Ohio to build time after he learned to fly in the Cleveland area. He was hired at Class One Aviation at Washington National Airport where he flew charter flights. In 1981 he was hired at Fairways Aviation, a contract carrier for the U.S. Navy, where he flew the Beech 99 and de Havilland Twin Otter in the U.S. and Canada until 1985. On May 5, 1985, he was hired at Piedmont Airlines, in Winston Salem, North Carolina. He upgraded to captain on the B737 in 1991, and later flew the B757/767 and A320 as a captain until his retirement flight on March 26, 2019. Jack also had a lifelong passion for history, ancient and modern, especially military history and politics, as well as local and regional history. He had a second home in Canada on Georgian Bay and spent as much time as he could on his friends’ sailboats. He was known for his quick wit, his supportive generosity, and his ready offer of assistance to all. Jack was preceded in death by his parents and in-laws. He is survived by his wife, Lani, sisters, an uncle, a sister-inlaw, several brothers-in-laws and many nephews and nieces.
John “Jack” Michael M. Broadbent W’67 died on April 7, 2020, in Grasonville, Maryland. He received his BA in history from American University in 1976. He met and then married Lani in 1993 when they both worked for Piedmont Airlines.
Michael Todd Jackson ’67 (Company C) N’64 died on April 6, 2021. A 1971 graduate of Hanover College, Mike went on to work in the family business of commercial banking in the Midwest. After three decades working in the banks, it was the family’s decision to
sell, prompting his move to Fort Lauderdale, Florida to pursue his love of boating. He met his lifelong partner, Marcie, and they were married in 1991. They traveled extensively, landing on St. John in the U.S. Virgin Islands for a year. Upon returning stateside, the two continued their travels in an RV, seeing much of North America. During these years of road tripping, they stumbled into Whitefish. Lifting roots from Florida, the pair moved to Whitefish full time in 1992. Shortly thereafter, their only child, Sage, was born in 1996. Mike is survived by his wife Marcie, daughter Sage, and several nieces and nephews. Blair John Van Zetten N’69 died on Jan. 18, 2021, at Honor Health, Shea Medical Center in Scottsdale, Arizona. He graduated from Oskaloosa High School in Iowa, then earned his B.A. in business at Upper Iowa University in Fayette, Iowa. After the death of his father in 1975, Blair took control of Oskaloosa Food Products, which was his biggest passion. He was dedicated to the egg industry and voluntarily served on many boards to ensure that it expanded and competed globally. Blair married Wendy A. Davis in 1975, and together, they raised three sons, Jason, Brandon, and Travis. Blair served on many related boards during his career, including the American Egg Board and the United Egg Association. A founding member of the Iowa State University Egg Industry Center
Board, Blair acted as its first chair. He was known as “Mr. Egg” and played a pivotal role in enhancing the teaching and research of poultry science. He was also a member of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Dean’s Advisory Council. In 2020, he was given the highest honor through the ISU Alumni Association to individuals who are not graduates of Iowa State University but who have made significant contributions to Iowa State’s reputation and pursuit of excellence. Blair was named Urner Barry’s Egg Person of the Year in 2016 and was inducted into the Iowa Poultry Association Hall of Fame in 2019. He is survived by his wife, Wendy; three sons; and three grandchildren. He is also survived by one sister. Larry Washburn “The Duke” Devaney ’69 (Company C) died on Jan. 24, 2021, in Saratoga Springs, New York. He graduated with honors from Culver in 1969 and then attended Valparaiso University. He had a long-distinguished career that spanned more than 30 years with Met Life Auto & Home. Larry retired in 2012 as a full vice president and executive officer of the firm. He was a mentor to many in the field and remembered and respected for his business intellect and leadership skills. After retiring Larry and his wife, Joan, pursued their love of travel and spent winters in their second home in Las Vegas. After moving to Saratoga Springs in 1991, he found a love of horse racing at the historic Saratoga Flat Track.
Survivors include his wife of 20 years, Joan; three children, Jamie, Heather, and Randall; a stepdaughter Cassandra; four grandchildren; two brothers and his former wife, Bridget. Murray Malcolm Sommer Jr. ’69 (Company A) W’65 died on March 9, 2021. His career was focused on sales of industrial and specialty steel wire, plus wire rod and bar products in the southeastern U.S., in all states east of the Mississippi River including Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas, and Florida. He was also responsible for sales in the U.S, Canada, and Mexico from the wire mill in Whiteville, North Carolina, and the wire mills in eastern France. His father, Murray Sommer ’43 (Company A) W’38 attended both the summer and boarding schools. William Alexander Adair ’69 (Company B) W’64 of Topeka, Kansas, died unexpectedly on May 15, 2021, at the Stormont Vail Hospital. He earned a B.S. in accounting from Southern Methodist University in Texas and was close to earning a master’s degree in accounting. William was self-employed, a member of the Trinity Episcopal Church, and enjoyed baseball and NASCAR racing. Survivors include one brother, three nephews, and one niece. He was preceded in death by his parents, two brothers, stepmother, and stepsister.
Our blog has moved! The Culver News blog is now The Culver Cannon. On The Culver Cannon, you’ll read stories about how members of our community positively impact others. You’ll read about current events on our campus. And finally, you’ll find helpful posts in which experts in our community share their thoughts and advice on a variety of topics.
Check it out at www.culver.org/ cannon.
Robertson Delos Ward N’71 died on Jan. 13, 2021, in Provo, Utah, after a hardfought battle with ALS. He
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
IN MEMORIAM graduated from Glenbard West High School in 1973 and earned a B.S. at Iowa State University in an individualized major, Community Medicine Cultural Perspectives, the focus of which was seeing medicine through an anthropological lens, curious about the cultural connections between community and health. He then attended medical school at the University of Illinois, Chicago, where he completed his medical residency at the University of Cincinnati, College of Medicine, and was awarded the Resident of the Year in 1984. During this time, Rob attended a program called Lend-a-Hand, where he was influenced by a man named Finley Sizemore, who changed the trajectory of his medical career and influenced him to practice rural medicine. Rob set up a solo practice in Butler, Kentucky. In addition to being the town physician, he worked a 27-acre family farm raising chickens, horses, and cattle. Rob’s 38-year career as a physician was packed full of accomplishments. He spent more than a decade serving a rural community as the town’s family physician and started a community-focused addiction practice called Project Reach. He launched several functional medicine clinics that specialized in neurobiology balance, including Utah Bio Balance in Provo, Utah. In his final years he returned to family practice at the Central Valley Medical Center, where he was the beloved physician of many. Rob was baptized into The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day
Saints on Sept. 24, 2011, at the age of 56. He is survived by his wife, Diane; three sons, two daughters; and seven grandchildren. Joseph Victor Swales ’72 (Company A), died on March 29, 2021. Throughout Joe’s childhood, he and his family lived in various countries, ultimately settling in Findlay, Ohio, which he always fondly referred to as home. He attended the Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, where he was on the swim team and a member of Phi Gamma Delta. Upon graduation, Joe worked in the oil and gas industry, spending 17 years in London/Scotland, where he met and married his wife, Wendy. They had two children, James W.E. “Jamie” and Olivia M.E. “Olive.” In 1993 he and the family moved to Sugar Land, Texas where Joe married his second wife, Waukita, in 2008. He loved mentoring young industry professionals, and his expert negotiation skills were respected worldwide. Joe is survived by one son, one daughter, one sister, and one brother.
missions over Iraq in support of Desert Storm. He also served as a tactics instructor at the Naval Strike Warfare Center in Fallon, Nevada, and completed carrier tours in the Mediterranean on the USS Saratoga and the USS Roosevelt. He later transitioned to F/A18 weapons systems officer in El Toro, California. John was a graduate of the Marine Corps Command and Staff College and the School of Advanced Warfighting in Quantico. He served as the commanding officer of the Headquarters and Headquarters Squadron in Cherry Point, North Carolina. His final tour of duty was as the operations officer for Marine Aircraft Group 12 in Iwakuni. He received many awards over his career, including the Marine Flight Officer of the Year award in 1990. “Blackjack” retired from the Marine Corps to Birmingham, Alabama, where he enjoyed spending time with his wife and two sons, as well as pursuing his many interests which included flying vintage airplanes, hobby beekeeping, gardening, boating, and fishing.
John Andrew Blum ’74 (Company A) died on May 22, 2021 near Jasper, Alabama. After Culver, he attended the University of Cincinnati and was commissioned as an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps in 1979. He was assigned to VMA(AW)533 as an A6 Intruder Bombardier/ Navigator, serving primarily in Cherry Point, North Carolina, Iwakuni, Japan, and Bahrain, where he flew 28 combat
Stephen Laurence Gatzke ’75 (Battery C) of Fort Pierce, Florida, died on May 13, 2020, at Indian River Hospital, Vero Beach, Florida. After Culver, he graduated from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, then moved to Vero Beach, where he founded Gatzke Insurance Company. He married Ana L. Arana in 1997. He loved tennis and was ranked No. 2 in the state for his age group. He also enjoyed
golfing, fishing, fly tying, and being with his son. He is survived by his wife Ana, son, Ethan, two brothers and his father. Samuel Thomas Anderson ’77 died March 19, 2021, at his home at Citrus Hills Golf & Country Club in Hernando, Florida. Sam was a graduate of the University of Texas in Austin, majoring in business administration and marketing. He served in the U.S. Army in the Big Red One as an armor specialist and drove the third M1A1 tank into Iraq during the first Gulf War, Desert Storm. The author John Richard Sacks was embedded with his unit and wrote the book “Company C: The Real War in Iraq” that featured Sam and other members of his unit. He was employed at MTD Products Inc. as a sales representative for the Cub Cadet ATVs and then started his own ATV business. After his move to Florida, he took courses in day trading and became a trader for a time. Sam also obtained his real estate license. Sam married Diana Lea Burton in 1994 and they lived in Medina, Ohio; Denton, Texas; Memphis, Tennessee; and Hernando, Florida. Sam is survived by his wife, Diana; two sisters, two nephews, and one great-nephew. Karl Manning Phares T ’78 of Kingston, Tennessee, died at home on May 6, 2020. He was a volunteer firefighter for the East Roane County Fire Department. He also served in Afghanistan and Iraq with the Kentucky National
OTHER PASSINGS Guard. He is survived by his wife, Angela, one sister Patricia, one uncle, two nieces, and five nephews. Karl was preceded in death by his parents and one brother. Alexander Lloyd Munroe ’84 (Troop A) died at his Indianapolis home on Jan. 16, 2021, surrounded by family. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps, attaining the rank of corporal. Alex returned to active duty in 1990 to serve in Operation Desert Storm. He worked for the Stuart Anderson steakhouse chain, that led to him being named the head of operations at the New Orleans House, a legendary seafood buffet establishment. His growing reputation led him to be recruited to craft the menu for John and Nancy Hill’s Broad Ripple Brewpub in 1990, the state’s first brewpub. A year later, he helped Puccini’s Smiling Teeth launch its first store. A stint at Snax/Something Different helped him hone his gourmet cooking skills, which he put to good use at Peter’s in Fountain Square. This pioneering high‑end gourmet restaurant preceded Indy’s foodie scene by two decades. Alex’s life was upended in 1994 when he was involved in a terrible motorcycle accident, sustaining such severe injuries that he was unable to derive nutrition from food and required total parenteral nutrition (TPN) for the rest of his life. He continued to consult in the food service industry, assisting a friend in opening a restaurant in Broad Ripple, the
Village Idiot, that eventually became 3 Sisters Café. Alex is survived by his longtime partner, Moira Sommers; three daughters, four sons, as well as his brother Grant ’87, and sister-in-law, Ginny Bess Munroe ’86. At the time of his passing, he was survived by his parents, Phyllis and Bruce ’54 Munroe, both of whom have died since this TAPS section was created (see earlier entry for Bruce). Ernesto Pablo Uribe ’86 (Troop A) died March 5, 2021 in Bogota, Colombia at the age of 53. He was a two year senior who played varsity tennis for Culver. Ernesto was in the restaurant business in Colombia, and had recently started his home delivery restaurant. He is survived by his two teenage sons, Martin and Daniel, and his three sisters Nani, Patricia and Catalina Uribe, all residing in Bogota, Colombia.
Between January 1 and June 30, 2021, we received notice of death for the following alumni.
Eric Christian Nielsen H’38 May 22, 2020 James Hunt Barker W’38 Oct. 10, 2020 Lucious McCutchen Butts Jr. N’41 May 10, 2019 Frank Wilkison Batsch W’42 Dec. 26, 2020 Otis Wilson Howe Jr. N ’44 Jan. 3, 2019 Jack Charles Luchtman N ’45 May 15, 2019 Robert John Bull N ’46 Sept. 30, 2019 William Howard Cammack NB ’46 Feb. 2, 2020 Frank Zinsmeister Riely N’46 Jan. 5, 2021 Richard Curtis McRoberts T ’47 Jan. 3, 2021 Ronald Norbert Lee ’51 (Company B) March 14, 2019 William Theodore Jefferies T’51 Oct. 5, 2019 Donald Brown French NB’51 March 22, 2020 Russell James Baxter Jr. N ’53 Feb. 2, 2021 Kent McCuskey Weeks N’54 July 30, 2020 George Myers Lewis, Sr. N’54 Jan. 9, 2021 Timothy Jeremiah Crowley N’56 May 11, 2021 Wilfredo Alberto Geigel Rodriguez H’57 March 22, 2017 Michael Butler Snite T’57 March 31, 2019 John Michael Burke W ’57 March 26, 2020 James Louis Small NB’57 Jan. 31, 2021 Ralph Woolling Coble W’58 Dec. 17, 2020 Craig William Hurley N’58 Dec. 27, 2020 Glen Howard Cannon N’59 July 12, 2019 Frank Bailey Rackley Jr. H’60 March 15, 2019 Phillip Alan Tate N’62 Dec. 22, 2019 Gary Alan Graham H ’62 Jan. 10, 2020 John Alan Campbell N ’62 June 3, 2020 James Chester Britt Jr. H’62 July 16, 2020 Isaac Cunningham Van Meter IV W’64 June 5, 2019 Duane Saunders ’64 (Battery C) Aug. 5, 2020 Robert Christian Johnston ’64 (Band) Feb. 5, 2021 Oscar Franklin Forester III ’65 (Company A) Jan. 21, 2019 Christopher Gilbert Chesley T’67 March 9, 2017 Richard Welker Clay ’71 (Battery B) March 19, 2019 Cameron Gene Hach ’81 (Company C) Aug. 4, 2020 Corey Sean Chakeen ’08 (Company C) Feb. 5, 2021
CULVER ALUMNI MAGAZINE
THE F I NAL W O R D
Paying it Forward: Culver’s Band of Brothers L
ong before I attended Culver Academies, my father, Jeffrey J. Johnston ’81, always shared great stories about his experience and the friends he made during his time at Culver. One story, in particular, always resonated with me because it emphasized the importance of giving back to those around me. During his senior year, my father and his family offered to buy a class ring for a classmate of his, Everett Richardson, now deceased, who had opted not to order one. Although I didn’t understand the true value and meaning of the ring at the time, I knew that my father’s noble gesture was rooted in gratitude and friendship. Fast forward to my senior year at Culver in 2016. My roommate and best friend, Steven Muthart, also did not buy a class ring. With the anticipation of graduation, I didn’t think much of it at the time, as I was busy enjoying my final days as a cadet. After graduation, we all dispersed and embarked on our new journeys, matriculating at various colleges scattered across
the nation. Yet, regardless of the distance, we all kept in touch and still met up periodically. The bond I had formed with Steven, however, was one of a kind. During our years at the Academies, we were inseparable, as our homes were within 25 minutes of each other. After graduation, he attended Iowa State and I attended Miami University, so our visits became less frequent. During the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Steven traveled to Oxford so that we could live together during our final month and half of college. We made a lot of great memories during that time, experiencing once again the end of a chapter together — just like when we graduated from Culver. The summer after college, I moved back to Indiana and Steven relocated to Michigan. We both had responsibilities with work and spent less time together, but I would drive up and see him when time allowed. Steven had expressed his interest in serving in the military when he was at Culver, but he now began taking the necessary steps to make this dream a reality, and I fully supported his decision. Shortly before Thanksgiving, Steven reported to basic training at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri. We knew that it would be an extended time before we would see each other again. Since our graduation from Culver, the longest time we had spent without seeing each other was four months. Still at home after college while Steven was in basic training, I had a lot of time to reflect on the friendship that we had developed over the years. I could always rely on Steven for advice and a quick joke to boost my spirits. He was — and still is — the most loyal, honest person I know since first meeting him our freshman year at Culver.
This took me back to my father’s story of Everett and gifting him with a Culver ring. I wanted to do the same for Steven for his graduation from basic training but also wanted to include our Band friends. We were his family in South Barracks and would always be with him in spirit. This gift would not have been possible without seven other Band brothers: Judson Andonov, Charlie Chen, Ethan Carter, Hunter Kephart, Jack Kroger, Brent Raver and Brian Tao. A Culver class ring is more than just a ring — it embodies the hardships, camaraderie, sacrifices, and especially the friendships we forged during those four years. Just as Everett was a close friend with my father, Steven is a true friend to me. I was proud to continue the legacy and pay it forward to someone who is serving his country. On July 4, I traveled to South Carolina to see Steven, who was not aware of the surprise. Before we sat down for dinner, I took the Culver ring from my pocket and presented it to him. His immediate reaction was shock and disbelief. He put the ring on immediately and we had photos taken, which we sent to everyone who had contributed. We were all excited and happy for Steven, our Band brother and friend, and are planning a reunion in Culver soon. Michael Johnston’16 Steven is currently stationed at Fort Bragg in North Carolina and was recently selected for sapper training (Combat Engineers).
ROVIDING A MEMORIALIZED RESTING PLACE FOR OUR CULVER FAMILY
Overlooking the shores of
Lake Maxinkuckee, on the northeast corner of Culver’s verdant campus sits the majestic Memorial Chapel. Within this beautiful Tudor-Gothic chapel is a Columbarium containing 108 niches we respectfully offer for purchase to members of our Culver community who wish to make this honorable setting their final resting place.
For more information or to purchase an inurnment right, please contact Brian Baker at (574) 842-8292 or Brian.Baker@culver.org.
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Culver Alumni Magazine Summer/Fall 2021
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