YAM Notes: March/April 2018

By Scott G. Sullivan

As these notes go to press, it is the midsummer lull, with lots of us on vacation but still glowing from the glories of our 60th. Class business is mostly on hold, with two exceptions:

1. Your class council is thinking about more mini-reunions. Nobody wants to wait for 2023 in New Haven. But we need a city and some volunteers to make arrangements. Cleveland? Los Angeles? Philadelphia? Or how about counter-intuitive New York? Easy for scores of us, fun for those coming from the boondocks. Think about it.

2. We discovered at the memorial service that our necrology is in lousy shape. Despite the best efforts of AYA, Tim Hogen, and myself, there are a number, maybe a large number, of our mates whose deaths are not on our records. If you are aware of any departures that may have gone unrecorded, please let me or Tim know about them.

Just a couple of personal notes:

After a brilliant career teaching at the University of Chicago, Marv Zonis and his wife Lucy are enjoying their semi-retirement in Paris, Italy, Chicago, and Saint Barthélemy. “No wonder,” he remarks, “I want to keep on going.”

Stuart Williams writes to announce the publication of his third book on wingshooting, Wingshooting Argentina Past and Present. Like his earlier volumes, it will be a lavishly illustrated coffee-table volume; it chronicles his 45 (or more) bird-shooting adventures below the Southern Cross. Stuart lives in Seattle and enjoys the Seattle opera, but he has spent his life as a globe-trotting hunter of wildfowl and big game.

The rest is sad stuff. We have lost seven beloved classmates since the last non-reunion issue.

Frank Durham died January 25 in Hollis, New Hampshire, his home for 47 years. After a spell in the Navy, Frank worked in the brand-new field of computer typesetting for about ten years. After moving to New Hampshire, he settled into a quiet lifestyle as a part-time officer on the local police force. His passions were rowing and building wooden boats; he was a leading member of the Traditional Small Craft Association.

Joseph Cusano, a lifelong New Haven “townie,” died February 23. After Yale, Joseph worked for the L. G. DeFelice Construction Company in North Haven, where he served as comptroller and treasurer; he also ran his own tax practice for 35 years. He was a devout member of St. Monica’s Church and a winner of the Archbishop’s medal.

Fred Blue, a longtime history professor at Youngstown State University in Ohio, died April 3 in Medford, Oregon. Fred earned his master’s and PhD at the University of Wisconsin and taught at Youngstown for 40 years. After retiring there, he became an adjunct professor at the University of Oregon. Fred’s subject was American pre–Civil War history, mainly the abolitionist movement, on which he wrote four books. Last year, he submitted a strong and well-argued critique of the renaming of Yale’s Calhoun College.

Larry Long died April 27 in Bethesda, Maryland. Though trained as a chemical engineer, with a Yale PhD in that subject and a ten-year stint at DuPont, Larry spent most of his career in financial services. (“Engineering teaches you how to think.”) In 1971, he became a research analyst with Mason & Co. (later Legg Mason) and moved to Newport News, Virginia. In 1989, he cofounded and led until his death the Washington Service, a financial information company. A loving father, he described his family as a “benevolent dictatorship.”

Tom Ovenshine, a distinguished geologist, died June 2, in Palo Alto, California. After Yale, Tom earned his master’s in geology and his doctorate from UCLA. He worked all his life for the US Geological Survey in Menlo Park, California, in Alaska, and in Washington. He was head of the USGS Alaska branch and later of its international division. He retired to Menlo Park, where he followed Stanford sports, enjoyed the Sierra Nevada, and always carried his old geologist’s mallet.

Charley Blatchford died June 8 at his home in Palo Alto, California. After college, Charley taught English for five years at New Asia College in Hong Kong under the auspices of Yale in China. He earned a master’s in linguistics at Georgetown, then a PhD from Columbia in educational psychology and teaching English as a second language. The rest of his life was given over to the latter, starting in Hawaii, where he was a cofounder of the organization Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL). He went on to study and teach in Poland, in the People’s Republic of China, the Netherlands, Spain, Portugal, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Rwanda. The Yale-China Foundation has created a memorial fund in his name.

Peter Frenzel, an emeritus professor of German and former dean of arts and humanities at Wesleyan University, died May 20 in Middletown, Connecticut. Peter earned his master’s at Middlebury and his doctorate at the University of Michigan. He joined the Wesleyan faculty in 1966 and remained there for the rest of his working life. He held numerous posts, including the presidency of the Friends of Davison Art Center and graduation marshal for many years. He was interested in bell-ringing and helped Wesleyan acquire a complete carillon. He was witty, musical (the glockenspiel), a Gilbert and Sullivan fan, and a writer of hilarious light verse.


Requiescant in pace.