September 2013 Class Note

Col. William B. DeGraf

The leaves are turning outside our window and the air is getting cooler. Fun listening to Army football, even if the scores are not what we want.

The format for Class Notes has been changed by AOG. I can only put two pictures in the notes themselves. All the others will be put in a separate photo gallery. Since I do not want to have to choose between which ones go with the notes, I will be putting ALL pictures back in the photo gallery. Also only the first time a classmate, wife or widow's name is mentioned will it be in BOLD.

In a recent summary of those giving money to West Point there was a listing of all classes from '33 on. '50 shows an overall total of just under $9 million. Many of the class have given to various funds, but only about $3 million of that has ended up in the Class Chair of Advanced Technology, so please continue to support our efforts there. By the way 77% of the class has given funds to the Academy.

Corinne Detherow Sucsy sent a picture of her with her two dogs taken in the lambing season. She says that life on a farm is always wonderful, changing with the seasons. Her home is on a two mile long lake, which adds to the beauty of the area. She has two daughters: one in St. Louis MO and one in Longmont, CO.

In August Phil Bolte finished eighteen months of "exercising my brain" by successfully completing the requirements for a Master of Military History degree from Norwich University, all but one week using the internet. Phil has long had an interest in the Civil War. Some of you may remember the time he took a busload of us to tour the battlefields around Fredericksburg, VA.

Dick Slay celebrated his 90th in July. His wife Doy gathered in the classmates, wives, and widows to enjoy the party. Dick reported on a number of the class there:

Pete Todsen works out regularly with Dick. Hooper Adams heads up a 9-hole golf group every Saturday, which includes Pete and Joy ViskochilDave Pettit joins in playing bridge when not in South America. Bev Mackmull is another of the bridge players there.

Woodie Aman has moved back to IRCC from Kissimmee, FL to be near her daughter Mary. Also floating around the area are Andy & Millie ByersBill Ward, and Tom Strider.

Nearby on Marco Island Phil Nicolay's widow Marion has taken up acting, including a one hour show about an Episcopal Deaconess who helped settle Southwest Florida long ago. Marion recently played Nancy Reagan in a show about presidents' wives. After retiring from teaching she has been busy with the Lions Club museum and her church.

Got a card from Fran Pick Dillard sent from Norway. She and her husband Bill had a great trip learning about the Baltic area. Stops included Bruges, Copenhagen, Stockholm, Helsinki, Tallinn, Gdansk, St. Petersburg (her favorite), Oslo, and back to London. She reported great weather and calm seas.

Reminiscent of our Class mini in 1994 Po & Patty Cornay took a long cruise up to Alaska in June. Had beautiful weather and a chance to see the wildlife of the area, including whales, bald eagles, and huge Kodiak bears.

Following in the footsteps of our 1996 Korean Mini, Clyde Spencewas an honored guest in Korea. He was part of a group of Korean War veterans celebrating the 60th anniversary of the end of the war. While there he visited the memorial the Class dedicated at the Korean Military Academy to our forty one classmates who died there during the war. Clyde got some pictures of the memorial, which I will put in the gallery. Clyde talked to one of the professors at the academy who said he leads his cadets to the memorial at the end of his class on Gen.Mac Arthur. The memorial states that 365 members of the Class fought in the war with 110 being casualties, including the forty one deaths.

Rita Laccetti had an interesting encounter with the nephew ofChuck Farabaugh. The young man Tim Brennon saw Rita's USMA JNL 50 license plate and introduced himself. Chuck was one of those killed in Korea, while Tim's father Herbert Brennon '47 is among those MIA.

Recently one of our class rings turned up for sale on EBay in perfect condition. There were several pictures including the inside but not enough to read the name. After considerable email traffic it was determined to be the ring of Pete Bonfoey, who was killed in Korea in October 1951. No one seems to know where it has been all these years.

Mary Ann Read reported that her third great grandchild had arrived – Matthew Gerard Hopkins. The father Gerry Hopkins was Jim Kelly's aide when Jim was CG at Fort Belvoir.

John Wickham flew to Seattle to pin the gold bars on his granddaughter, who graduated from ROTC. Her brother, a West Point grad, is now a doctor in Hawaii, having graduated from the Armed Forces Medical School in Bethesda, MD.

The Tampa Bay Yacht Club in June was the site for the 63rd anniversary celebration for both Dick & Ruth Newton (the 25th) and Emmett & Rowland Lee (the 26th). Picture is in the gallery.


Bill Curry died on 12 July in Williamsburg, VA after a long illness. He is survived by his wife Bettie, son William III, and daughter Linda. Bettie lives at 1808 Patriots Colony Dr., Williamsburg, VA 23188-1343.

Carl Stone died on 9 August in Rock Island, IL and is buried at West Point. He is survived by his wife Jackie and son Carl, Jr. Jackie lives in Rock Island, IL.

Pete Navarro also died on 9 August in Pittsburgh. He is survived by four children, including his son Pete, Jr.

Bill Howe died at home in Fairfax, VA on 28 August. He is survived by a son Bill and two daughters: Jackie and Nancy.

Karl "Otto" Kuckhahn died in Cocoa Beach, FL on 20 Sept. He is survived by his wife Trudy, a son Karl, Jr, and a daughter Karen. Trudy lives in Cocoa Beach, FL.

With Otto's death we passed a milestone. We now have 299 living classmates.

Our sympathies go out to all these families.

Enjoy the Fall colors and crisp days, and do send me the news of you and your family.


Corinne Detherow-Sucsy '50


Class of 1950 Memorial in Korea

63rd Anniversary Celebration for Both Dick & Ruth Newton and Emmett & Rowland Lee