2019 Class Notes

JANET FIALA GIFFORD                                                                                             died peacefully at home in New City on Sept. 8, 2019.  She attended Mount Holyoke College and received an MBA degree in finance from New York University. Jan worked as an analyst on Wall St before leaving to raise her family. She returned to work at American Tack & Hardware (AmerTac) in Monsey where she had a 26-year career, retiring as Corporate Treasurer in 2004. Jan was also a past leader of The Rockland County Chapter of TheCompassionate Friends, a worldwide support group for families when a child dies. She became active in this group after the death of her beloved daughter Laurie at the age of 21 in ‘87.

Jan was a voracious reader and her passion for learning continued until the end of her life. She was an avid European traveler who loved exploring new places and experiencing different cultures. Her travels took her everywhere on the continent from Russia to Italy, but her favorite destination was always Paris, the city to which she returned many times.

Jan is survived by her son Jim Gifford, her daughter Carey (Steve) Bryant, 4 grandchildren. and  her special friend, John. 

MARY (EDGY) EDGERTON SLOAT                                                                               In September Mary and her friend, Tedd traveled from Nome to Vancouver on a new Hurtigruten ship.  “We are seeking parts of Alaska most people never get to such as the Aleutian Island and Kodiak Island.”

ANNETTE FOISIE                                                                                                         has been in the art world since MHC, as artist, curator, gallery director, and art dealer. She took Graduate courses in Art Dealership at N.Y.U. and started her own business in 1987 (Annette Foisie / American Paintings).  Her focus was on American Impressionist paintings from 1890-1920 selling both to clients, galleries, and other dealers. “Now I am back to my creating my own Impressionist paintings.  Check out my website: AnnetteFoisie.com, and go to the biographics link of the left.”

EVANGELINE (JILL) SENIOR GATES                                                                     passed away in Clinton, NY, on 9/4/19. After graduating MHC, Jill married Roger Covell Gates on 6/14/58. She taught English at Westmoreland Central School for many years, “touching the lives of countless students with her Shakespeare impersonations,” her service as advisor to many graduating classes and to the WCS Student Council. Jill was active in the community throughout her life, serving as a member and officer of the Jr.League, a 4-H Leader, chairman of the State 4-H Public Speaking Competition, a leader in the Clinton Rotary and Kiwanis Clubs, and a longtime member of the Limestone Creek Hunt. In her spare time, She raised Hampshire sheep, curled with the Utica Curling Club and rode horses. Jill also knit sweaters using wool sheared from her own sheep. She was a voracious reader, belonging to several bk. Clubs. Lynne Jones Osborn writes that “Jill and I were both from Utica and roomed together sophomore year.  She was part of a group of 8 of us who moved together junior and senior year.” Louise Engle DoveEmily Boyce WhiteCarolyn (Clue) Uto Noble-Morrissey, Anne Ensworth Whitney and Elizabeth Phear McMillan were also part of the group. Jill is survived by her husband, 2 daughters, a granddaughter, 2 great-grandsons, and 2  sisters-in-law.

SANDRA (SANDY) JOHNSON MATHER                                                                   West Hartford, CT and Jupiter, FL, “died peacefully after a long illness on 7/21/19. She was raised in Ridgewood, NJ, where she was a close friend of Pat Chilton Bennett  (who was responsible for her decision to transfer to MHC as a sophomore.) Sandy married Linwood Mather, Jr. after MHC graduation, and moved to West Hartford, CT. There she was employed by Aetna before leaving to raise her family. She volunteered her time serving on various boards and committees over the years, including many  positions at the Mt. Holyoke Club of Hartford, CT.  Sandy was very involved in her Christian Science church, and all,  including Pat, attest to the fact that her  family always came first –  “celebrations, trips, holidays, beach days at the cabana in Watch Hill and visits to Ocean Trail In Jupiter were a highlight for all.”

Sadly, Sandy’s husband and one grandchild predeceased her, but she is survived by 2 sons, 2 daughters, their spouses, and 11 grandchildre\n.

CHARLOTTE BARTON SORNBORGER                                                                         is unable to join our Sept. On Campus Mini Reunion since she will be “. . .flying out west just then – visiting one son and family in Albuquerque and another in SW Colorado.” They spent the summer cleaning out the cellar and garage, etc. in preparation for the right size and cost apartment becoming available at he Duncaster,  a 3-layer, life care facility in Bloomfield, CT. “We have good friends who are familiar with the place and are moving there, too. It is a bit scary, as many classmates will understand, but the right time and place, as one of our sons works in Bloomfield and lives nearby. It has taken some time to untangle myself  from all the environmental groups I am involved with, mainly the turtle work, but it seems that a group of people are in place to do it.”

CAROLYN JACOBUS FOWLER                                                                                  Our condolences to Carolyn whose  husband, Ed passed away 5/19/19 of complications following coronary bypass surgery.  They met on a blind date when he was a student at Yale Law School, were married in ‘58, and celebrated their 60th anniversary last year! “We were fortunate to share all these years together.”  Sandra (Sandy) Johnson Mather shared news of classmates, some of whom went to high school together in Westfield and Ridgewood, NJ, coming to his memorial service.  In addition to herself, Di Packard Williams  and Hugh as well as  and Jack came  from VT.  and  Carolyn (Bumpo) Bump Marsh and John came from MA. “Our Sycamore group has gotten smaller but over the years there has usually been a mini reunion in the summer. Ed will be very much missed.”

IRMINA PLASZKIEWICZ-PULC                                                                                         Irmina passed away on March 29, 2019. She was prdeceased by her husband, Witold Plaszkiewicz-Pulc.  She was born in Bialowieza, Poland and  her family lived as wartime refugees in Siberia, Iran, Lebanon and Scotland
before settling in the US in 1952.  She received her BA, Magna Cum Laude, from Mount Holyoke College in 1958, and a PhD in Comparative Literature from Harvard University in 1964. She taught at Mount Holyoke, Perdue University, and the
University of Massachusetts/Amherst. After leaving academia she worked
as a grant writer in Mount Holyoke’s Development Office. Later she
worked for the Daily Hampshire Gazette and The Republican, both in
Massachusetts. She moved to Arizona in 2009.

NINA MATHEWSON BACON                                                                                      Marcia (Muffie) Taylor Seifert and Anne (Anzie) Ensworth Whitney  shared news that Nina’s husband, Jason, passed away.  They had set  out to join us in May for our 60th Reunion but were unable to make it . . . At my request, Nina sent the following obituary to share on our website, as so many of our classmates knew him, visited with them both in London and Vermont, and even had a VT Mini Reunion in the late ‘70’s.  (Unfortunately, the write-up will be greatly edited when printed in the Summer Quarterly.) 

“Jason Bacon II died July 14th, 2018 at the log cabin home in New Haven, Vermont he designed, loved and helped build with a friend. . . . Jason and Nina with their sons Jason III, Mathew and Ben lived in London, where he led the office of Investment Bankers,Kidder, Peabody . . .1960-1990, spending every summer in VT. and visiting family in Westport, Conn. and Pelham Manor, NY.  After moving full-time to VT. with his family, he served as President of the Vermont Historical Society, the VT Folklife Center, and helped found The VT Teddy Bear Company.  Nina developed and led the Bristol Family Center for children ages 4 to 6 and, also,with Jason, worked to restore and reopen the 1897 Vergennes Opera House in Vergennes, VT. “. He is survived by Nina, his wife of 57 years, 3 sons in London, Boston, Wash. D.C. and 7 grandchildren.  Muffie and other classmates who knew him expressed their deep sadness.   We extend our sympathy to Nina and her family, and are grateful that she has been kept busy with “lots of happy, busy grand kids around the log cabin. . . . and . . . visits to them in London, Boston and D.C.”

CYNTHIIA (CINDY) CARPENTER McFADDEN                                                      Cindy’s holiday card describes 2018 travels to VA, NC, MA and FL, to be with family and friends..  Travels also included a birthday mystery trip to Maine and their usual September. excursions “in our antique ‘little house on wheels”’ to VT.

Daughter, Cathy, visited from Ca. en route to Woods Hole for 2 weeks. on an oceanographic research ship where she was part of a team diving in a 2 man research submarine to “previously unexplored locations in order to identify and hopefully protect  sensitive habitats from destruction by proposed oil drilling mandates.”  She discovered  a “previously unknown 85 mile long coral reef (her expertise)” off the coast of Charleston, SC

MARCIA (MUFFIE) TAYLOR SEIFERT;s                                                                           holiday card describes 2018 as a year of life changes.  She and Phyllis moved into an over 55 community in south NJ to be closer to Phyllis’s grandchildren. Shortly after that they left for their 3 week “trip of a lifetime “:  St. Petersburg, Vienna, Austria and Venice!  Besides photography, needlepoint, hoping to get back on the golf course and to find a good bridge group, Muffie has been spending “inordinate amount of time”  researching her roots (“I’m the last of my generation.”).”    

CHARLOTTE (CHAR) BARTON SORNBORGER                                                    shared news of travels including  a spring cruise up the Atlantic coast from Palm Beach, and a  September trip to visit family in Albuquerque and CO.  They’ll be spending Christmas with their  “closer by” family in  CT. Char is still Head of the Terrapin Population Study and summers continue to be busy with nesting turtles.  She’s so pleased that the “State herpatologist has incorporated many of her procedures into regional strategies.”

SALLY DUMPER WISEMAN                                                                                   Sally’s  holiday card talks about “slowing down” but gratitude for only minor aches and pains while being able to continue an active life with golf, bridge, reading and for Sally, ART!  Once again they’re off to Hawaii with 3 kids and their families for holiday vacation.

AMY HERZ JUVILER                                                                                              passed away 12/8/18. A  poli sci major who participated in a Victoria Schuck Summer Internship (5/57) at the U.S. Commerce Dept.,  Amy went on to receive her LLB at Yale Law School.  She had an illustrious career as an attorney, judge, and assistant Attorney General for the State of NY.  She was described as a  brilliant litigator . . . .whose skills were recognized by the US Supreme Court and by the New York Courts, “which long used one of her Court of Appeals arguments as a teaching tool.”   Amy served as a Class Agent and Co-Head Class Agent with  Ann Jones Dolbear. Ann writes that  Amy had an incredible sense of humor, and “. . .was an incredible grandmother who was actively involved  in each of their lives.” Most recently, Amy will be remembered by those of us at our 60th as a thoughtful Panelist at a Group Discussion about Mt Holyoke’s influence on the kind of person you are today. She expressed strong feelings about the importance and influence her professors had on her.  Your Scribe, Joan (Smudge) Heyman Rosen and her husband, visited Amy when she moved to NJ and enjoyed her warmth, active mind and passionate opinions. Virginia (Ginnie) Lueth Keith described Amy as “…a wonderful friend and an outstanding scholar.”  She is survived by 2 children their spouses and 3 grands.

ANN (ANZIE) ENSWORTH WHITNEY                                                                    Anzie’s holiday card shared her pleasures and her pain as she moves through this first year since since Jerry’s passing.  One grandchild graduated from UCLA and is now working for Google in San Francisco. Another started Penn State. Another is a H.S sophomore.. One is taking some gap time after H.S and the youngest is a 4th grader in Nelson, NH.  Anne continues with the church choir and a 54th year with her singing group. “We have a wonderful local Y with classes which help me stay in shape,  and offer fellowship as well. I have been in the community for 56 years, and have no intention of leaving.”