Class of 1967
1967 Class notes
|Attending May Day?|
Louise Clemens Lehman of Fishers, Ind., is married to Terry, they have two sons (Todd and Mark). Todd and his wife Dana are music teachers in Fishers, Ind. Mark is a Spanish teacher in Belgrade, Mont. Louise and Terry have 3 grandchildren: Emily, 20, Ethan, 17, and Nolan, 15. After teaching high school English and Japanese for 25 years in Kokomo, Ind., Louise retired in 2010. The Lehman family moved from Kokomo to Fishers in 2012. Now Louise teaches English to Japanese families who live in this area and is a substitute church organist. Louise and Terry both enjoy camping, hiking and traveling.
Vern Long of Westlake, Ohio, has been married to Jeanne (Waidmann '69) for 46 years. He writes, "We have three grown children: Christopher, David and Susan; three granddaughters: Layla (2 yrs), Kathleen (2 yrs) and Bernice (7 mos). I am retired but busy running several political groups in Westlake. Also involved in state organizations. Jeanne heads several church activities and is a member of the church Consistory. At Bluffton College, the help and guidance of faculty members such as Bob Warren, Ken Mast and the history professors, was tremendous. Also the involvement in campus activities and organizations was great preparation for my professional careers."
Willis Sommer of Bluffton, Ohio, writes, "My wife, Betty, and I have two kids (Jennifer and Matt) and two grandsons (Codey and Barrett). I enjoy reading, geneology and volunteering on several boards. My Bluffton College mentor was Dr. Raid, who lived what he taught."
Helen Nofziger Leu of Shipshewana, Ind., celebrated 50 years of marriage to Ron in August of 2016 with a week in the Smokey Mountains with the whole family. She writes, "We also moved to Shipshewana from Archbold, Ohio, at that time. Our oldest son and family live near Tampa, Fla. One daughter and her family lives close to our son in Florida. The other daughter and family live in Shipshewana. I spent the last 10 years of my education career as an adjunct instructor at Northwest State Community College in Archbold, and retired at the end of 2015. For the past seven years, we have spent our winters in Florida near our son and daughter and their families. We spend much of our time transporting grandchildren to and from school and activities and helping all three families any way we can. My four years as a college student were memorable, and I was positively affected in various ways. I was involved in full-time and part-time teaching for 49 years, and I definitely acknowledge that Bluffton College professors and classes influenced me in my love of teaching."
Susan Krebs Lawless of Fostoria, Ohio, is retired along with husband, Floyd. She writes, "Our three children, Lynda, Kerry and Jon, have blessed us with five wonderful grandchildren. Two of our children have also graduated from Bluffton. Together we spend lots of time with family and especially enjoy babysitting the grandchildren. We love to travel and frequently do so. I am an avid amateur musician and enjoy community band, tuba ensemble and playing in a brass quartet at church. I also enjoy handbell choir at our church and filling in at another church. Additionally, I enjoy Mah Jongg, reading, walking and time spent with friends. My days at Bluffton enabled me to have a career that I enjoyed very much. The friendly campus instilled in me a desire to greet others with a friendly smile, regardless of whether I knew them or not. Today, I still get together annually with a group of my college friends. My relationship with them stands out as a gem in my life."
Jerry and Roberta (Green '67) Kalb of Painesville, Ohio, have been married for 51 years. "We have three married sons and seven grandchildren. We are very fortunate all three sons live in Ohio so we get to enjoy time together frequently. Jerry retired after 50 years as a United Methodist minister. Roberta retired in 2009 after teaching special education for 37 years. We have both been active in many community and church activities. We enjoy spending time attending our grandchildren's concerts and sports events. We have done some traveling both in the United States and abroad. Our most recent was a river cruise on the Danube River. We enjoy our century home and entertaining. Being a faith-based university, Bluffton had the values we wanted and continue to maintain."
Rose Karcher Miller of Dunkirk, Ohio, was married to Roger Miller '68 for 46 years until he died in 2012. Taught elementary school (mostly 3rd grade) for 30 years, while being a farm wife and raising three children: Michael, Julie, Beth. She writes, "I enjoy my seven grandchildren, attend their events, reunions, gatherings. I love to be in the flower gardens and vegetable garden. Have traveled to 46 states, visiting the last four are on my "bucket list." I still do "errands" on our farm. My time at Bluffton was great! Lifelong friendships are cherished. My classes helped prepare me for my teaching career."
Ann Conrad Moore of Fletcher, Ohio, taught first grade at Wooster for five years. Later, subbed for 10 years, then spent 11 years in Troy, Ohio, as a teacher's aide in special ed. Been married to husband, Dave, for 48 years and are both retired teachers. We have four grown children, all of whom received college educations. The children live in Evansville, Ind., Chicago, near Ann Arbor, and Cincinnati area. They have blessed us with 10 grandchildren, which includes two sets of twins. FUN! She writes, "We enjoy traveling to see the kids and grandkids, an annual trip to the NC beach and other group trips. Also enjoy stamping (making cards), sewing, reading, walking, gardening and church activities. There is a group of us who still get together annually, so friendships last. I often think of my professors as I "keep on keeping on!" Robert and Lois Kreider and family and the Gene Caskey family probably had the most influence on my life. I'm glad for the good education, caring professors, friendships and happy memories from Bluffton. I also enjoyed the beauty of the campus."
Shirley Sprunger King of Goshen, Ind., married Vernon King in June 1969. After eight years in the Mennonite Central Committee (Fresno, Calif.; Atlanta, Ga.; Haiti), we settled in Newton, Kan., where I taught at Bethel College for 26 years and Vern was primary parent to our two sons while building lovely homes and then managing retirement communities. We moved to south-central Pennsylvania in 2003 where Vern was CEO/president of a large retirement community and I was dean of advising at Dickinson College. We retired in 2012/2013 and moved to Goshen in 2014. Our two adult sons live with their families in Goshen and Newton and have blessed us with four energetic grandsons (ages 17, 11, 6, 3). We recently moved into Greencroft Retirement Community. As avid bicyclers, we've enjoyed cycling in the US, Canada and several countries in Europe. Last fall we spent two weeks cycling along the Danube River in Germany and Austria as part of a Roads Scholar trip. Most recently we took our tandem to Tucson, Ariz., where we spent 10 weeks volunteering in the Mennonite SOOP program. Other volunteering assignments have taken us to Louisiana and Washington D.C. Beyond a number of memorable courses at Bluffton, three professors were particularly important and I was privileged to maintain contact with them until their deaths. James Bixel and Richard Weaver were wonderful advisors and mentors (qualities I tried to emulate in my own professional career) and helped me find the organ in my music major. Robert Kreider's course on "Contemporary Africa" (taken the fall of my freshman year) forever opened my eyes and mind to a different continent than what I experienced growing up. His thoughtful, insightful and often probing questions continued over the next 40+ years until his death in 2015. These, and many other BC influences of friends continue to enrich my life and world views.
|Karen Sheets Martin Marshall of Van Wert, Ohio, enjoys traveling, walking, gardening, movies, reading, volunteering
and substitute teaching pre-school and kindergarten children. She has two children.
Debbie lives in Findlay, Ohio, and works at a salon. Doug lives in Kentucky and is
a golf coach at University of Cincinnati. Karen remembers Bluffton for her many friends,
Mara Alva, sporting events, chapel, Homecoming weekend and May Day.
|Harriet Bontrager Warren of Lakeland, Fla., is married to Ken, who taught government and economics and was
in the U.S. Navy. Their son, Joe, is an oceanographer and professor at SUNY in Stonybrook,
NY. Daughter, Jenny Quirk (Bluffton Univ class of `97 and Athletics Hall of Fame member)
is compliance officer and assistant AD at Fairleigh Dickinson Univ in NJ. She is married
to Brian, a H.S. educator. Our grandchildren are Brady, 14, and Cammi, 12. Harriet
writes, "I am involved with church activities, community events, musical groups and
I enjoy traveling and playing golf. The 1960s were an easy time compared to now. The
values I grew up with were available and followed and knowledge was a valued commodity.
I forever follow musical direction I learned at Bluffton and practice today. As a
home economics major, I learned in many varied venues and look back at the opportunities
that were available."
|Coletta Lora Wiebe of Henderson, Neb. writes, "My husband, Roger, and I are now retired from farming,
but still reside on the farm. We have three daughters, two of which live here in Nebraska,
and one in Maui. Most of our time is spent here at home where we are both involved
in our local church. Music has always been an important part of my life, so we can
enjoy it by participating in church and community choirs, smaller vocal ensembles,
and by being a choir director and pianist. Bluffton has given me a good music background
and foundation which I have been able to use throughout my life. The choraliers with
Christine Purves, the A Cappella Choir and European choir tour with Earl Lehman and
James W. Bixel, as head of the music department, all helped in developing my appreciation
for the arts and in being able to express them in various capacities. What a wonderful
four years in college with lasting friendships!"
|Thomas J. Reeser of Center Line, Mich., writes, "Carol and I have been married 48 years. Carol is retired
from a banking career. I am working for a plubing and hardware store. The company
is Warren Pipe & Supply of Fraser, Mich. We spend time with three children who are
married, five grandchildren, three step grandchildren and two great grandchildren.
We are active in the United Church of Christ in Clinton Twp, Mich., as choir members
and help in various committees of the church. Bluffton has promoted family values
and community affairs."
|Carolyn Luginbill McDaniel of Pandora, Ohio, married to Rod McDaniel have 2 daughters, Angela and Alison. They
and their husbands are all in the teaching field. Together, Carolyn and Rod have 7
grandchildren, the oldest of which is a freshmen at Bluffton University. Carolyn enjoys
volunteering at the Et Cetera Thrift Shop in Bluffton and the Bluffton Ten Thousand
Villages store. Carolyn also enjoys following her grand children's music and sporting
events along with walking and gardening.
|Sandra K. Christman of Chillicothe, Ohio, says retirement provides opportunities to do many activities.
"I swim at the YMCA, do needlework, read, travel and do volunteer activities with
SSUW, OU-C Giving Circle, Spanish conversation group. Retirement also gives one time
to spend with friends and family and help, if needed."
|Patricia Barnes Burkholder of Bryan, Ohio, spends time with friends, traveling, making trips to Akron and Dublin,
Ohio, to visit sons' families, substitute teaching, volunteering at church and local
hospital and line dancing. Husband, Roger Burkholder `65, died in 2006. She writes,
"One of our sons spent four years in Australia with a job assignment, but he now lives
in Dublin, Ohio, with his wife and two children. Our second son, a minister, lives
in Akron, Ohio, with his wife and three children. Many of my classmates influenced
my values by reinforcing the way I was raised. Due to the strong message of service
at Bluffton, I have always volunteered in my community and on numerous mission trips."
|Bruce Yoder of Wake Forest, N.C., and his wife, Earlina, enjoy visiting their two children, Kyle
and Kerri, and three grandchildren in California and Maryland. Bruce taught mathematics
for 46 years in Philadelphia and North Carolina. Earlina was also a teacher for 50
|Lynn H. Savage from Apache Junction, Ariz., spends time gardening and fishing in the summertime,
and pastoring at Weaver's Needle RV Resort in wintertime. His wife, Ruth, passed away
in October 2016 after 59 years of marriage. Their daughter, Yvonne, lives in Mesa,
Ariz.; son, Matt, lives in Staunton, Va.; son, Luke, lives in Eugene, Ore. A total
of seven grandchildren. Bluffton College gave me a wonderful career in teaching.
|Lee Augustine of Wawarsing, NY writes: After 43 carefree years of fun, I thought I had had enough.
My wife, Renee, and I got married in 1990. Four years later came diaper-changing and
cleaning up. Renee is the impetus behind all that we do and have accomplished. Our
son, Lucas, attended Bluffton and was active in the drama department. He is now the
JV girls' basketball coach at Cory-Rawson H.S. Our daughter, Rebecca, is a junior
at SUNY Potsdam and is studying creative writing. Rebecca does stand-up comedy. Our
daughter Emma is a junior studying physical education at Sage University in Albany,
NY and plays soccer as goal keeper. I work as a volunteer soccer/basketball/softball
coach at Ellenville H.S. I also garden, stack/burn firewood, write angry letters to
the paper and posts on Facebook, yell at the TV (much more than ever before), raise
chickens, attend concerts and attend the Sons of the Desert (a Laurel & Hardy club
Chapter). The girls and I went to Washington for the Women's March. Values: One of
the reasons I became a conscientious objector during the Vietnam war was because of
a talk Professor Lawrence Templeton gave in the dorm one evening. Two years after
graduating from Bluffton, I had a similar experience to attending Bluffton when I
attended the Woodstock Festival. How was it similar? Lots of like-minded people living
in close proximity, a very friendly, peace-oriented atmosphere, wanting to end the
war in Vietnam, and lots of good music. Brotherhood, peace, love and rock-n-roll.
And also, the food was not so good. Professors: I thought a great deal of several
Bluffton professors: Laura Weaver, John Unruh, Arden Slotter, Von Hardesty, Richard
Weaver, Elmer Neufeld and Henry Rempel come to mind. Classes: I especially liked essay
writing with Miss Weaver, Russian history, Physical Chemistry, Philosophy and Economics.
Friends: Too many to mention. I keep in touch with some through Christmas cards and
Facebook. I don't miss guys throwing soda cans at me in the dorm TV room during Giants-Browns
games. General: In the struggle to get the sport of soccer accepted as a varsity sport
at Bluffton, I learned a great deal that helped me in my coaching career and in life
in general. I learned that a two-goal lead is not good enough. I made good friends
with teammates from all over the world. I learned that Johnson Rakama was able to
score goals barefooted. I learned that you can sometimes eventually beat city hall.
Steve Basinger of Loch Lloyd, Missouri, started his career as a teacher and head football coach, then went with State Farm Insurance in 1977 and continues to be an agent in Kansas City, Missouri. "I have been married to my wife, Bonnie, for almost 47 years. We have two married daughters, Becky and Molly, and four grandsons. I look forward to seeing many classmates that I haven't seen in many years!"
Linda Hilty Ewing of Findlay, Ohio, has one daughter, one son in the military reserve who served in Afganistan, and one granddaughter in the Army reserve. I work part time for Home Health, volunteer at the local food pantry and serve on the Board of Trustees for Chopin Hall. Bluffton's institutional values were reinforcement of values as taught by my parents and family.
N. Leslie Rice of Quakertown, Pa., has been married to my wife, Linda, for 50 years. "We have three daughters, five grandsons and three granddaughters. I work part time at Camp Men-o-lan, volunteer at Code Blue Homeless Shelter in Quakertown, and enjoy reading, gardening, fishing and golf. My experience at Bluffton has been one of the greatest and best influences on my life. My love for music and the Mennonite Anabaptist faith was fostered at Bluffton and has added so much richness to my life. I was a biology major and developed a deep love for the natural world and the outdoors. I taught biology for 30 years and still love to camp, canoe, fish and bird-watch. I have such wonderful memories of my college friends, the Chordbusters and the A Capella Choir."
|Barbara Gilliom Lehman of Angola, Ind., has two daughters. "Our oldest, Suzy, is a 4th grade teacher in inner-city
Ft. Wayne. Sandy, our youngest, teaches elementary music in inner-city Muncie. Both
are married and each has one daughter. Bill and I are retired and living on Crooked
Lake by Angola, Ind. In the summer we are on the water a lot playing with our granddaughters.
During winter months we stay home, reading and doing small home improvements. I'm
an active Silver Sneaker at the YMCA and Bill tinkers a lot. I was "finding" myself
at Bluffton and the profs helped in my self-discovery. "
|Shmuel Wahli of New Haven, Ind., spends time with writings pertaining to insights from ancient
Hebrew Torah texts and assisting in the family's business: Aleph Bet Document Centre.
Shmuel is proud of his five smart, professional children and their children. "Dr.
Elmer Nuefeld was one of the best teacher's I had. I am thankful for the Bluffton
College opportunity as an unbiased institution of love."
Alice Anne Heffentrager Newton of Bakerton, W.Va., does contract work for the National Park Service, and enjoys travel, photography, and volunteering. She and her husband James, have a daughter, son-in-law and one granddaughter.
Steve Fretz of Fresno, Calif., retired after 13 years of service with Fresno County Children's Mental Health Outpatient Services, and enjoys volunteering, skiing, hiking and kayaking. He spends much of his free time kayaking the San Joaquin and Kings Rivers year round as well as hiking and skiing, both resort and back-country, in the Sierras. He volunteers as a river guide for a local non-profit group called River Tree Volunteers which takes groups from schools, churches and community organizations down the San Joaquin on environmental outings doing river clean-ups and educational awareness. Steve has two children, as well as six grandchildren and 3 step-grandsons.
Elaine Naas Emans of Olympia, Wash., relocated to Washington state in 1977. Elaine has two sons who
live nearby by, along with her 3 granddaughters. She is happily retired after careers
that include nine years of clinical research, 10 years in computer technology and
13 years as a deputy treasurer for the state of Washington. She is an avid reader,
enjoys hiking, travel and time with her family.
|Cheryl Johnson Slotter of Bluffton, Ohio, has retired after spending employment time with Ohio public schools,
community relations for a retirement community, Bluffton News and Citizens National
Bank. Cheryl spends time working seasonally at Shirley's Gourmet Popcorn Company,
biking, western square dancing, line dancing, volunteering and playing with a mountain
dulcimer group. Cheryl has two children, a son and a daughter with a combined 4 grandchildren.
|Edwin Epp of Winnipeg, Manitoba married Ruth Neufeld in July 1967. Since then the couple has
made a family of four children living around the country with 6 grandchildren. Edwin
became a pastor in a small congregation in North Battleford, Saskatchewan, then Ontario,
and most recently Manitoba. During the winter months Edwin enjoys bowling and curling.
Since retirement in 2010 he enjoys traveling to visit his children with his wife,
bird watching, camping and remaining involved in the life of the church.
|Tom Gross of Washington, Ill., will be celebrating his 50th wedding anniversary this year with
his wife Judy Osborn Gross. Together Judy and Tom have three children, with three
grandchildren. After Bluffton, Tom graduated from medical school, then trained in
obstetrics and gynecology. In 2016, Tom retired from his maternal fetal medicine practice
after 37 years of service. Currently, Tom and Judy try to spend as much time as possible
with their children and grandchildren.
|Carol Bixler of Lakeland, Fla., retired after 21 plus years as a general accounting manager of
a citrus grower/packer/shipper. Previously Carol worked as accounting staff/manager
for several other companies while completing her accounting degree at USF Tampa. Carol
spends time with family, enjoys music, theater, reading and beach vacations. Now that
she is retired she will go back to volunteering in the local adult literacy program.
|Marie Toews Cross of Louisville, Ky., retired after 40 years in the ministry in the PC(USA), having
served as a pastor, a writer, editor on the national staff and as a regional governing
executive. Marie and her husband Steve have two children, David and Marya both married
and adding on to the family with grandsons (4). Marie enjoys the free time to be active
in the church, travel, spend with family, and support the local orchestra and theater.
Marie reflected on her decision on coming to Bluffton saying, "Bluffton provided the
environment for spiritual growth along with higher learning."
|Douglas A. Reichenbach of North Manchester, Ind., is married to Paulette (Luginbill). Together they have
five children with 10 grandchildren ranging in age from 3 to 17. Doug finds continuous
exercise of his spiritual vocation of personal "storylistening," storytelling and
engaging in relationships characterized by mutual warmth and curiosity, very life
giving. He also tries connecting in special ways with Paulette along with his children
and grandchildren. He is a part-time pastor as part of a pastoral team in a local
Church of the Brethren congregation. He also does some occasional substitute teaching
in the local junior-senior high school.
|Rick & Patty (Reeser) Burns of Ashland, Ohio have a son and a daughter with six grandchildren. They both enjoy
watching their grandchildren, boating on Lake Erie and traveling.
|Janet Preheim Lautzenheiser of Indianapolis, Ind., married Richard Lautzenheiser 66' in 1968. The couple has
three children, Stacy, Mark and Jen with four grandchildren. Janet's greatest joy
is grand parenting. She is also very active with tutoring and a member of a women's
ensemble. Dick and Janet both love traveling so they have made numerous trips to Europe,
sailed the Baltic and Black Seas, the Mediterranean and Caribbean. They have visited
South America, Galapagos Islands, Turkey and Jordan and traveled extensively through
Canada, the US and Mexico..They have also participated in rewarding medical mission
trips to Haiti and Honduras. This summer they look forward to discovering Iceland,
Scotland and Norway.
|Jean Purves Lehman and David Lehman '68 of Fort Collins, Colo., will be celebrating their 45th anniversary
this year. The couple moved to a lake in North Colorado to retire. Jean is volunteers
with her community, teaches English as second language to international students associated
with Colorado State University. She loves activities like swimming, canoeing, photography
|Eric Rothlisberger of Mount Blanchard, Ohio celebrated his 50th wedding anniversary with his wife Nancy in 2014 with a trip to Disney World with his son and daughters family. Eric enjoys watching his grandchildren participate in school activities and athletics. After retiring from his IT job in 2000, Eric and Nancy joined a Swiss Mennonite Heritage tour organizes by Delbert Gratz in 2000. Eric enjoys traveling in the U.S. and has had additional trips to Austria, Germany, Italy, Switzerland and Netherlands. During summer months, he spends time at Lake Erie fishing and boating and attending chautaugua programming at Lakeside. In the winter, he enjoys snowmobiling in the upper penninsula of Michigan and in the Snowy Range and continental divide region of Wyoming.||Yes|