NEW HOPE, PENNSYLVANIA
MAY 14, 2005
REUNION OF THE CLASS OF 1960
NEW HOPE-SOLEBURY HIGH SCHOOL
Dale Eisenhut (NHS '64), Irene (Peters) Eisenhut, Lee Eisenhut (NHS '59), and
Judy (Chasan) Moir
in front of the bulletin board outside the New Hope Eagle Fire Station
where putting out fires is probably more important than spelling.
1. PREFACE: AN APOLOGY
Judy's 45th high school reunion was held in New Hope on May 14, 2005. It was the
first reunion she has attended. I went along as an alumnae spouse who had never attended a high school
or college reunion of my own. Both Judy and I are newbies at this with no experience and no frame of
reference for what to expect except from what we've seen in the annual Doonesbury comic strips and from
the experiences, largely positive and encouraging, of our daughter and a good friend from Ohio.
2. NOTES ON THE CLASS OF 1960
New Hope, a village of sixteen hundred inhabitants, is a summer resort and art colony located on the
banks of the Delaware River twelve miles above Trenton and thirty-two miles north of Philadelphia. The
natural beauty of the surrounding county, Bucks, is shown in the following eleven pages of charming
photographs of the graduates.
Yearbook editor Jim Anderson was proud of his town, and he establishes early
and clearly in the yearbook the location of New Hope—its size, its attractive setting, and the locales
for the pictures of each member of the class of 1960. Photographed individually or in small groups, the
members of the class of 1960 purposely avoided the usual "head shots" found in most yearbooks, and graduates
are shown riding motorcycles, sitting in a tree, boating on the Delaware River, with their horse, at work,
in a ballet pose, or in some other familiar and personal area location. The effect is highly individualistic,
but that was the nature of this group. [As a former yearbook editor and the father of a yearbook editor,
I wish Jim had attended so I could compliment him personally and ask about how he arrived at the concept for
A definite group of extroverts, the graduating class has a varied range of scholastic interests including
three officers in the Student council, strong participation in athletics, active representation in the
Junior-Senior play and talented members in the chorus and band.
They were the largest class (47) in the history of the school. The girls had the edge:
there were 25 guys for the 22 girls to choose from (though in the end, none did).
The tallest member, Craig Wagner, removed
himself to Georgia right after high school, married a Georgia beauty queen, and stayed in Georgia because he
was smart enough to know what was good for him. Jane (Bobinac) James was probably the shortest
member of the class. She went to college in Indiana and now lives in Texas, but since she couldn't get away
to attend the reunion, we didn't get a chance to measure her.
Judy (Chasan) Moir was valedictorian and has the medal and the inscribed
dictionary to prove it. She went on to college in Ohio but an early marriage and children (16 months later,
for those who are counting) delayed her graduation (magna cum laude) by 15 years.
Alain Favrod, who was already French and now living in Toronto, and former student
body president George (now Greg) Philip, who lives in France, have retained their mastery of
French. Others who took one or two or three or even four years of French at New Hope-Solebury High School have
would probably have to take a refresher course to keep up a conversation with either of them (although since
neither was able to attend, we'll have to take that on faith).
Greg (once George) would have taken
the little-known $10,000 grand prize for having come the farthest to attend, but he didn't show. Instead, the
prize went to co-hostess Irene (Peters) Eisenhut who lives near Vancouver, Washington, with her
husband Lee (NHS class of 1959). She quietly declined that prize and settled, instead, for her share of the $20
awarded by the reunion committee at the dinner for the person who came the farthest. Next closest was probably
Don Weinberger, who lives in Arizona, which is about 800 miles closer than Washington state.
In all, 17 members of the class live in Pennsylvania, including 11 in Bucks County. Four
moved across the Delaware into New Jersey (I wonder why). After these, the rest of the class, who could be found,
have scattered south, though Craig is the only one in Georgia; others are in North Carolina, Florida,
Alabama (Alabama?!) Tennessee, Maryland (technically a southern state), and Texas (yes, Jane lives in the
south). Peter Beiger lives in a border state (Missouri), and the rest, save for Alain and
Greg/George who live elsewhere, have settled in the west: Colorado, Washington, California, and Arizona.
Oddly, no one moved north to New England. Probably the cold winters.
3. BEFORE THE REUNION DINNER
Pat (Hall) Williamsen, Irene (Peters) Eisenhut, and Judy
(Chasan) Moir were determined to contact each of the 45 surviving members of the class and encourage them to
attend this year's reunion (Ross Pyle and Don Heimbach are deceased). For months the three women
talked with all but six fellow class members: they could never locate the six or find anyone else in the class
who knew where they were: Gail Button, Carol (Kisner) Fitzgerald, Ruth Ann
(Leaman) Bell, Barbara Lundy, Kathryn (Overpeck) Hock, Jim Wilson). The three
women phoned or emailed everyone they could to extend a very strong and personal invitation. At times they were
forced to resort to guilt, or pleading,
or threats, or whining, or twisted arms (tough to do by email)—whatever it took to get the rest of the
class to New Hope on the night of May 14. In addition to a $25 dinner at the "new" fire station—a darn good
inner it should be noted—Pat, Irene, and Judy planned for everyone to meet for cocktails
at the Logan Inn in the afternoon.
Sadly Pat (Hall) Williamsen, after all her hard work, was unable to attend due
to a serious illness. The photos and the stories she'll hear will have to take the place of being there in person.
Any outside observers (spouses, friends or lost folks just wandering through the bar of the
Logan Inn) must have been amused by the sight of a group of "older people" looking at each other, faces scrunched up
with furrowed brows and puzzled eyes, not sure who each other was, even though they had spent the better part of 180
days a year for 4–6 or more years with those people. "Wait. Don't tell me. Let me look real hard......."
Folks do change in 45 years, some more, some less. As one of those outsiders who had spent time
going over the list of names and photos in the 1960 yearbook, some faces were easier to figure out than others:
• Of course my wife, Judy (Chasan) hasn't changed a bit.
• We have visited with Lee and Irene
(Peters) Eisenhut over the past 45 years and she looks just the same. I can also say that about Pat
(Hall) Williamsen, and I know you'll take my word on that.
• Joe Balderston wears glasses now, and he has grown a mustache he didn't have in
high school. Those two additions made it hard to pick him out.
• Craig Wagner, Bob McIlmoyle, Judy Hagan, Don Weinberger,
Paul Beiger, and Donna Eichlin were the easiest for me to pick out. The transition from yearbook photo
to identification was only a moderate challenge.
• Dick Housel's beard made him hard to recognize from his yearbook photo, which was
also true for Tommy James.
• Mary Lou (Kendall) Crush does hair very differently than she did in 1960.
So do Judy (Bowers) Mayer and Fay (La Rossee) Ezzard.
• Lyn (Short) Fox wore a tiara in her yearbook photo which added some
difficulty to identifying her.
• Bill Mack's hair is also different. He's got more than he had in his yearbook
• My dinner table partners Bill Horton and Tom Hasiak were a challenge.
face in his yearbook photo was covered by a bow and arrow, and Tom has added muscle to his physique from
years of construction in Colorado and doesn't look much like the skinny kid in the yearbook.
We promised at least one picture of everyone who attended. Not all spouses are pictured (sorry!)
and there are at least two people pictured who are not members of the class of 1960! See how you do before checking
the answers at the bottom of the page.
[A brief observation from an outsider who hadn't met most of you before: I was very
impressed by the friendliness, consideration, and warmth that each of you showed toward each other throughout the
afternoon and evening. After so many years between visits it can be hard to make the connections with one another
that permit you to truly enjoy each other (even when it's likely you didn't always enjoy each other 45 years or
more ago). But you each made the effort and I appreciated the opportunity to be there with you.]
The group photo taken after dinner was a bit like herding cats to get a clear shot of everyone.
In the end I didn't quite succeed. This was the best of the lot. There were some others taken that evening and if
yours is an improvement over what's here, please send it our way and we'll substitute yours for ours.
4. THE OFFICIAL PHOTO OF (SOME OF) THE CLASS OF 1960
Front: Dick Housel, Bill Horton, Bill Mack, Fay (La Rossee) Ezzard, Judy (Bowers) Mayer, and Don Weinberger.
Middle: Peter Grover, Craig Wagner, Tommy James, Cynthia (Wendte) DeLuca, Irene (Peters) Eisenhut, and Joe Balderston.
Back: Judy (Chasan) Moir, Mary Lou (Kendall) Crush, Paul Beiger, Lyn (Short) Fox, and Tom Hasiak.