Chapter Tributes

John (Jack) C. McCormick, 1935–2005

Jack McCormick ’57. Jack died in 2005. He donated funds to update Moakley House and McCormick’s Grille at the Golf Course. The plaque at left was placed at the Grille in his memory in August 2020.

Jack grew up in Binghamton and graduated from Cornell University in 1957. He joined Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity, where he was called “Black Jack” (a term used to describe Irish people with dark hair and eyes thought to be descendants of shipwrecked Spanish Armada sailors of the mid-1500s). Jack played varsity golf. He was editor of The Cornellian yearbook, and a member of Aleph Samach and Quill & Dagger, the junior and senior men’s honorary societies espousing leadership, service, and character. He was elected president of Quill & Dagger.

Jack was commissioned in the US Navy Reserve, serving two years before earning an MBA from Columbia. He joined General Foods, leaving to become president and CEO of Swisher Cigar Company until his retirement. He returned to campus every year at Reunion and/or Homecoming. Jack passed away in 2005, leaving a bequest to modernize Moakley House and McCormick’s Grille.

Douglas Crowe

Douglas Crowe ’61. Captain Crowe died in Vietnam. This bio, Washington Vietnam Wall rubbing, and painting given by his parents is on display in the Army ROTC Cadet Lounge and will remain there until ΣΑΕ returns to campus.

Robert Crosby ’65, 1943–1969

Robert Crosby ’65. LTJG Crosby was killed in Vietnam in an accident. His parents gave us his Swift boat flag. The flag, and tribute with his bio, medals, and Washington Vietnam Wall rubbing, are on display at the Cornell NROTC unit until SAE returns to campus.

LTJG Crosby was the commander of PCF (Patrol Craft Fast) 21 in Vietnam. These Swift boats (as they were called) conducted coastal patrols and provided transport and escorts deep into rivers. Fifty feet long, aluminum hulled, with crews of six sailors and one officer, they carried three .50 caliber Browning machine guns, a mortar, grenades and small arms. The PCFs had little armor, relying on speed (25 knots) and firepower.

Crosby had Swift boat training at the US Navy Amphibious Base in Coronado, California. In October 1968, he went to Vietnam for a one-year tour in a combat zone, initially aboard PCF 21. On April 12, 1969, this was one of thirteen Swifts transporting South Vietnamese marines and their equipment and supplies up the Rach Duong Keo River. After five of the Swifts unloaded their troops, the remaining eight continued upriver. The Vietcong ambushed the convoy, and Crosby’s PCF 21 and another Swift were hit with rockets, mines and other weapons, and engulfed in flames. Nonetheless, Crosby was able to withdraw and return to base, saving his crew.

On September 25, 1969, near the end of his 12-month tour, he was assigned as an instructor for a new crew from Coronado as they prepared for their first Swift mission on PCF 13. Crosby and the new commander were standing in the stern of PCF 13 when Crosby was shot in the stomach by a round accidentally fired from the aft Browning machine gun four feet away. He died the next day at an Army hospital.

Crosby came from South Hamilton on Boston’s North Shore, and attended the Lenox School in western Massachusetts. He then went to Cornell University, where he joined the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity. He graduated in 1966 with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. In the US Navy, Crosby served on the USS Harwood (DD-861), before his Coronado Swift boat training. While in Vietnam, he had been accepted in the Cornell Masters in Engineering program, and he had planned to return to his alma mater after his discharge from the Navy.

Crosby was loved and respected by all who knew him: his teachers and fellow students at Lenox, his ΣΑΕ fraternity brothers at Cornell, and the Swift boat community in Vietnam. He is acknowledged and praised in several books: Tour of Duty, by historian David Brinkley; My Father, My Son, by Admiral Elmo Zumwalt; and Every Day Is Extra, by Senator and Secretary of State John Kerry. The PCF 21 flag was given to his parents, who in turn gave it to Sigma Alpha Epsilon. The above rubbing shows Crosby’s name as it appears on the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington.

Fall 2020 Chapter Eternal
W. Dean Ferres III '50
February 25, 2020

Thomas A. Zimmerman '63
January 22, 2020
William M. Arnold '66
August 5, 2020

A. Stewart Esposito '67
March 8, 2020
John W. Hughes '70
August 18, 2020

Steven Jeffrey Klein '77
November 29, 2019

Spring 2016 Chapter Eternal Complete
John H. Graves '41
May 24, 2015

David S. Ketchum '41
October 10, 2015

Dexter Edge Jr. '43
October 15, 2014

Richardson E. Browne Jr. '44
October 8, 2006

William G. Gibbs '45
March 31, 2008

Herbert W. Given Jr. '45
August 26, 2009

Louis B. MacDonell '45
November 27, 2014

Thomas M. McLaughlin '45
December 18, 2003

William L. Carstensen Jr. '46
January 11, 2013
Robert H. McCoy '46
May 11, 1996

John P. Gould '47
October 7, 2015

Henry S. Jones '47
July 19, 1994

John W. Robinson '47
July 18, 2005

Robert K. Halverstadt '47
May 1, 1984

William G. Pansius '48
July 15, 2005

Robert F. Vance '51
November 25, 2015

Richard P. Starke '52
July 7, 2011

Henry Elliott Turner '52
September 7, 2010
Thomas D. Lewis '53
August 13, 2001

Eugene E. Johnson '53
February 22, 1997

Allen G. Potter Jr. '54
January 1, 2015

Philip H. Ackert Jr. '55
January 23, 2016

Lawrence J. Fanning '55
December 5, 2015

Todd M. Jenkins '59
notified March 2016

Wilson P. Burns Jr. '62
November 23, 2015

James A. Gordon '72
January 28, 2016

Carl M. Sebris '76
October 30, 2015

SAE NY Honors
Lance Peters '89
The Lance E. Peters Chapter Educational Fund Your Memories of Lance Lance Peters Bar Night
It is with a sad heart that I convey the news that on December 26, 2008, we lost Dr. Lance Peters '89, a True Gentleman who was very special to New York Alpha, a past eminent archon who later became a chapter adviser to the brothers of younger generations, and who was a close friend to numerous other alumni. We all express our humble gratitude for what he did and for his significant commitment to New York Alpha over the years. We also express our deepest condolences to his parents, Jeffrey and Mary Ann Peters; brother, Brendan (Jil) Peters; one niece; one nephew; and special friend, Eric VanEvenhoven.

He specialized in joint replacements and practiced in Binghamton, Ithaca and Auburn. While an undergraduate, Lance was an active brother at SAE, serving in numerous leadership roles, including eminent archon and rush chairman. Last spring, he was honored by the Alumni Association as the recipient of the New York Alpha True Gentleman Award.

Membership in a fraternity is about building bonds with other men and developing skills for life. We are guided by John Walter Wayland's words in our daily activities. Lance was more than chapter advisor to the young undergraduates that he mentored in that he exhibited all of the skills and attributes that are necessary to be successful in life. In Lance, one could see that it was possible to not only play an active role in the chapter but also find success outside of the house. Many actives remarked that although Lance was there in a supervisory role, he was more of a brother and friend than anything else. He took the time to get to know each and every brother on an individual basis. Not surprisingly, he took a keen interest in helping those who were pondering the notion of attending medical school after graduation. His calm, reassuring manner instantly put brothers at ease.

It was easy to forget that there was a chapter adviser in the room when the gavel was passed around at the end of chapter and others were boasting of their own possessions and achievements. Former EAs remark that, with Lance, it was always best to give it to him straight. It seemed that no matter the issue, Lance would remain unfazed and knew how to right the course of our action. He established strong relationships and avenues of communication with the staff of the OFSA;relationships that would be tested by the sometimes poor judgment of young men. It seemed that when this happened, Lance was always at his very best. He would put on his best suit and march up the hill with the officers in tow. They would not return to Hillcrest until the matter was resolved.

One of Lance's most important contributions to the chapter was his leading by example, by exuding the notion that membership is for life. He selflessly gave his time and energy to the noble cause of creating the best fraternity on campus. He knew that without officer leadership or organization, the rest—the parties, the All Sports trophies—were for naught. And his leading by example set the tone and foundation for undergraduates to follow as they strived to make the chapter one of the best on campus. Lance inspired a generation of undergraduates to believe that participation in the chapter does not end with graduation. The young members of the alumni board can point to Lance as their inspiration for what it means to be an active alumnus of New York Alpha. He never seemed to want credit, despite the enormous contributions that he made to our house and to the lives of the undergraduate brothers that he mentored. In essence, he was and will always be a True Gentleman.

Lance leaves a void in our hearts with his sudden passing—let us remember that each day brings its joys and sorrows—but let us be inspired by Lance's service to our fraternity. Let us remember that brotherhood is for life and that a fraternity is only as strong as each of its individual members. Brother Peters was an inspiration to us all. Those wishing may contribute to Auburn Hospital Foundation-Memorial Orthopedic Fund, 17 Lansing St., Auburn, NY 13021.

Brother Peters, may you rest in peace in Chapter Eternal.

Sean Mackay '02
and the NYA Alumni Board

Honor Lance's Memory through the Lance E. Peters Chapter Education Fund NY Alpha

In 2009, the NY Alpha Alumni Association renamed SAE’s NY Alpha Chapter Education Fund (CEF) the Lance E. Peters Chapter Education Fund to honor the memory of Lance E. Peters ’89, then alumni board treasurer and chapter adviser. This is an endowment fund managed through the SAE National Fraternity’s Sigma Alpha Epsilon Foundation. Funds generated are used to underwrite the cost of undergraduate attendance at the John O. Mosely Leadership School and for academic scholarships.

Contributions to this fund are tax deductible and can be made in Lance's memory. The board believes this to be a uniquely appropriate tribute to Lance, given his extensive involvement with the chapter over the years, his qualities as a student and alumni leader, and his emphasis on leadership development among the active members. Please consider making a contribution in Lance's name.

Donations can be made online or by mail. Click here to donate online via the SAE Foundation website (or contact the SAE Foundation office at 847-475-1856 or 800-233-1856). If donating online, choose “Other” on the Fund drop-down menu, and type “Lance E. Peters Chapter Education Fund NY Alpha” in the text box. If donating by mail, make your check payable to SAE Foundation, and write "Lance E. Peters Chapter Education Fund" on the check's memo line. Checks should be mailed to the Sigma Alpha Epsilon Foundation, 1856 Sheridan Rd., Evanston, IL 60201-3837.

We Need Your Memories

We're in the process of compiling a tribute page to Lance and would love to hear your stories. If you have any photos or stories of Lance that you'd like to share, please contact us.

You can read Lance's obituary, here.

View our album
of vintage Lance photos
Lance Peters Memorial Bar Night

On March 28, 2009, SAE brothers, Lance's friends, and his family members gathered at the Westchester Country Club to toast to Lance's memory.

View our album
of the event

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SAE NY Honors
Eamon J. McEneaney '77
Eamon McEneaney's ('77) name on panel #57 around the edge of the reflecting pool at the 9/11 Memorial in New York City. In this particular instance, the names are not alphabetical as they are at the museum memorial locations, but rather are grouped with his associates at Cantor Fitzgerald.

May/June 2012 issue of Cornell Magazine

Lax Legend: Former lacrosse star Eamon McEneaney '77 was named the second recipient of the Tewaaraton Legend Award, which is presented annually to a former college lacrosse player who finished his career before the Tewaaraton Award was established in 2001. McEneaney was a three-time All-American and helped lead Cornell to two national titles and back-to-back undefeated seasons in 1976 and 1977. His wife, Bonnie McEneaney, MPS '78, will accept the award on May 31, 2012. McEneaney was killed in the 2001 attack on the World Trade Center.

Eamon McEneaney, hero, father, poet, and athlete, was killed in the September 11 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center. He was one of the world's greatest lacrosse players and an All-Ivy football wide receiver for the Big Red.

In lacrosse, he was first team All-America from 1975 thru 1977. He led Cornell to undefeated seasons and national championships in 1976 and 1977, and represented the United States in the 1978 World Lacrosse Championship. Eamon is in the Cornell Athletic Hall of Fame and the National Lacrosse Hall of Fame, and was named to the NCAA's Silver Anniversary Lacrosse Team.

An attackman, he weighed less than 160 pounds, and was called the toughest athlete, "pound for pound," that ever wore a Cornell jersey. His number 10 was retired by Cornell in April, 2002, at a tribute attended by 27 former teammates and hundreds of family and friends.

The following is an excerpt from The New York Times "Portraits of Grief" series:

Eamon McEneaney: A Man With a Secret.
Sometimes a wife learns things about her husband after he is gone, and this is how it has been with Eamon McEneaney's wife, Bonnie. She knew that Eamon, a senior vice president at Cantor Fitzgerald, had escaped from his office on the 105th floor after the first bombing of the World Trade Center in 1993, but she did not know he had been a hero.

"He saved the lives of 63 people," Ms. McEneaney said from their home in New Canaan, Connecticut. "They were hysterical, and he pulled them together and wet paper towels for them to put over their faces and made them form a human chain and took them down the stairs. All he ever told me was that he came down the stairs with some friends."

Eamon was also a prolific writer and poet, with a special interest in Irish literature. His teammates and friends have endowed The Eamon McEneaney Memorial Reading Series, which brings an Irish or Irish-American literary figure to speak at Cornell each year. He left Bonnie and four children, Brendan, Jennifer, Kevin and Kyle.

On Sept. 11's Anniversary, Lacrosse Hall of Famer Eamon McEneaney is Remembered for his Spirit

The following article, by sports columnist Dave D'Alessandro of the Newark Star-Ledger, was originally posted September 11, 2011, on; courtesy of Bonnie McEneaney.

Someone once remarked that Eamon McEneaney played lacrosse like Magic Johnson played basketball.

He was special, they said, in that he could see things that nobody else could see.

And that included seeing his own death, in the days before that terrible morning 10 years ago.

His qualities were evident from his high school days on Long Island, actually--long before he was credited with helping transform a sport that was purely JV box office into one that lured crowds of 15,000 and ABC Wide World of Sports.

Some say he lived the way he played. On the field, he was unconquerable, gifted with a freakish athleticism, the kind of guy who could do anything better than anyone else you knew. At 5-10, 150, he could dunk a basketball over his head, off a 180-degree spin. He was an all-Ivy League receiver--though he originally made the team as a walk-on. And after college, the Jets offered him a job on their taxi squad as a punt returner. He chose bond trading instead, and rose to senior VP with Cantor Fitzgerald.

Off the field? Put it this way: His wife, Bonnie, first met him at the Nines, a popular bar on College Avenue in Ithaca. He was wearing only a towel and sneakers. He had just come from a streaking rally.

But McEneaney's greatest fame came on the lacrosse field, where he is still regarded as the greatest player of his generation. What he accomplished at Cornell is still celebrated, 10 years after his death and nearly 30 years since his induction into the National Lacrosse Hall of Fame.

"Eamon had a quality that was hard to describe," said his coach, Richie Moran, a Hall of Famer himself. "His quickness was astonishing. I haven't seen anything like it since. But he was just a very dynamic individual, on and off the field."

His position was attackman. He was more of a feeder than a scorer, because in this frenzied and barbaric sport, he could sense where everyone would be--even if it looks like 20 guys running 110-yard wind sprints and trading jabs to the ribs with sticks for 60 minutes. So this is what separated McEneaney from the rest: He was headstrong and high-maintenance as a college kid, but he had an intuitive quality when surrounded by chaos.

We thought of him when the commemorations started up. Typically, we're not fans of 9/11 memorials at sporting events. Sports has nothing to do with what happened in Manhattan, or at the Pentagon, or in Shanksville. Yet as long as they can book the Blue Angels to soar over the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl, sports and valor and patriotism will always share a stage, even when it's contrived and hyperbolized.

But so many of these values seemed to intersect in the life of McEneaney, who was 46 and the father of four when he died.

For starters, he was an authentic hero. During the terrorist bombing of the World Trade Center in '93, he was the fire captain of the 105th floor, the guy who kept them calm and orchestrated the human chain that led his fellow Cantor employees through thick black smoke to safety.

"I found out that he saved the lives of 63 people that day," Bonnie said. "All he told me later was that he ‘took the stairs with some friends.'

"But that experience stayed with him. He really didn't want to be working there. But he loved the guys he worked with on the 105th floor. He couldn't bring himself to leave them."

He often spoke of retiring in 2002 to concentrate on his writing. Poetry, mostly. "A football player who wrote poetry," his brother, Kevin, said with a chuckle. "You ask me how Eamon's unique, there's your answer."

But Bonnie was right: McEneaney was undergoing changes that even he couldn't understand. In the weeks before 9/11, he had premonitions. It was common knowledge among those who knew him. His brother learned about it Sept. 2, during a Labor Day function: "He always thought they would be a target again," Kevin McEneaney said. "But that week before, he was talking in some very macabre ways about how the time was coming."

"The talk increased with intensity, and I started to worry that he was falling into a depression," Bonnie said. "He spoke of where he would lead his people this time--down the stairs, or up to the roof. And the week before he died, he said to me, "I just want you to know that I can handle my death now."

This was not a Marine in Kabul sharing his fear that he might not make it home. This was a guy who worked in an office building, sensing that something unfathomable would happen one week before he became part of the heartbreaking calculus of death.

In the end, he and 657 other Cantor employees were lost because there was no escape from the impact zone near the 105th floor of Tower One. It took five days to find his remains. A decade later, Bonnie said, "You live with it every day. If you lost someone there, that day never leaves you."

Yet Eamon stays with her in other ways, which is a striking epilogue to his story. To this day, she senses his presence--tangibly, she asserts. A timely gust of wind as she calls his name. The emergence of a blue heron in the snow at his gravesite when she visits. Paranormal? She prefers the term "spiritual." It inspired her to interview 200 people from the 9/11 community and turn their stories into a book ("Messages: Signs, Visits and Premonitions from Loved Ones Lost on 9/11") and a documentary that aired last night on the Biography Channel.

As Kevin put it, "Eamon was deeply spiritual. If someone can figure out how to get a message back, it would be Eamon."

Whether you believe these stories hardly matters. It brings comfort to the bereaved. And if you dismiss these experiences as coincidences, we'll toss this one into the discussion: The number of Jersey men we lost that day who had a connection to the sport of lacrosse is both curious and unsettling. There were at least 12, from navy Capt. Bob Dolan, an East Hanover native who died at the Pentagon, to John Schroeder, who won an NCAA title with Princeton.

This list stretches quickly, like a trail of tears, if you look throughout the region. It only starts with Eamon McEneaney.

"I still see him on the team bus, scribbling his poems on the back of a brown paper bag," said Moran, who won back-to-back NCAA titles with McEneaney in '76 and '77. "And what a player. He had that incredible vision, but a bigger heart. That's what stays with you, if you were lucky enough to know him."

McEneaney shares stories of 9/11 victims' loved ones
By Daniel Aloi
From the
Cornell Chronicle, September 21, 2010

Bonnie McEneaney, MPS '78, whose husband, Eamon McEneaney '77, died Sept. 11, 2001, in the attack on the World Trade Center, shared her paranormal experiences and those of others who lost friends and family that day, in a reading from her book, "Messages: Signs, Visits, and Premonitions From Loved Ones Lost on 9/11," Sept. 16 in Hollis E. Cornell Auditorium.

Her husband was a member of the two-time NCAA Championship-winning Big Red lacrosse team, a father of four, a poet "and a prankster," his widow said. They met at The Nines in Collegetown when she commented on his outfit, a towel, after he had participated in a streaking rally on campus.

"He loved Cornell. Not as much as he loved Ireland, but he did love Cornell," she said.

Eamon worked in an investment firm on the 105th floor of the North Tower, and had helped 66 people to safety in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. In the weeks before the 2001 attack, he had spoken more than once of something about to happen to him, Bonnie McEneaney said.

These portents of foreboding on her husband's part, and hearing of many other instances of spiritual, paranormal and other signs among surviving friends and family members of 9/11 victims, prompted her to write the book, she said.

"Love is the central, common denominator of these stories, and it's what connects us," she said, adding that the project took five years, in which she conducted more than 200 interviews. She also edited a posthumous volume of Eamon's poetry, "A Bend in the Road."

"This book ['Messages'] is, in truth, a paean to love and connection, and the great commitment that love begets us," said Ken McClane, professor of English, in his introduction of Bonnie McEneaney.

The event was sponsored by the Department of English and the Creative Writing Program Fall Reading Series. Upcoming fiction writers and poets in the series include Lydia Davis, Sept. 30; Carl Phillips, Oct. 14; and John Murillo, Nov. 4. Information:

Hillcrest Tributes to Eamon McEneaney
The following two items are photos of framed plaques on our tribute wall at Hillcrest. Click on the images to zoom in and view the full size.

A Tribute to Brother Eamon McEneaney '77
By Kathleen Bolton
The Cornell Spirit, March 2005

In 1972, Eamon McEneaney was the most sought-after collegiate lacrosse recruit in the country, but head coach Richie Moran was not daunted. He would use all his considerable powers of Irish persuasion to convince McEneaney to play lacrosse for the Big Red.

McEneaney, a hotshot high school athlete from Elmont, New York, was entertaining offers from Big Ten colleges and universities, all willing to give the talented prospect full scholarships -- offers that an Ivy League university, with its emphasis on academics over athletics, could not match.

But Moran was not without some weapons in his arsenal. Already a highly regarded coach in the collegiate lacrosse world, Moran also happened to know McEneaney's high school lacrosse coach, Bill Ritch, who fostered McEneaney's talents in football, basketball, and lacrosse at Sewanhaka High School. And he intended to utilize that connection to its fullest.

"Eamon was a curly-haired leprechaun in those days," Moran said. "I had some doubts that he could come to Cornell; academically and financially there were concerns." But Ritch praised Cornell to McEneaney, causing him to listen more attentively to Moran when he came on recruiting trips to the high school. Moran suggested coursework that could beef up McEneaney's academic record. He also persuaded McEneaney to work in a visit to Cornell among his long list of visits to other universities. To Moran's delight, McEneaney agreed.

They worked out the details by phone. Moran put together an exhaustive itinerary for the highly sought after recruit, with a carefully planned schedule that would show the university and the lacrosse program in its best light: visits to prestigious professors, meals at the Statler Hotel, supervised fun in Collegetown, hard-to-get tickets to men's ice hockey. McEneaney was to be given the redcarpet treatment.

So it was with great surprise that Moran received a phone call at home from campus the weekend before McEneaney was scheduled to visit. "I had just sat down to dinner," Moran recalls, "when I got a call from Eamon saying he was at the lacrosse office, and asking where everyone was." Horrified, Moran listened to McEneaney tell him that he traveled to Ithaca alone by bus, arriving at the downtown bus station where he proceeded to walk up the steep incline to the university, asking for directions at the top of each hill.

Panicked, Moran quickly called players Jay Gallagher '74 and Bruce Arena '73 with orders to find McEneaney, take him to dinner at the Statler, and then to a hockey game. Meanwhile Moran made a few phone calls to cobble together some sort of last-minute itinerary that would impress the recruit. He managed to set up a meeting with Dr. Leonard Feddema, then dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, a meeting that would change the course of McEneaney's future.

For McEneaney, despite his impetuous nature, had made it a point to bring his writing portfolio with him, which he shared with Dr. Feddema. At the end of the meeting, Feddema was convinced that McEneaney was special, a blue-collar student-athlete whose force of personality would overcome any lack of academic skills, and told Moran so. Moran began to think that he now had a real chance to bring McEneaney to Cornell.

Moran took the young recruit to all the Cornell highlights: Sage Chapel, the libraries, the scenic overlooks. McEneaney seemed suitably impressed. Moran then handed him back to Gallagher and Arena to enjoy an evening's social event at the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity, after which they were to put the 17-year-old back on the bus to Long Island.

One week later, Moran received a call from McEneaney's high school guidance counselor, commending Moran on the great visit he had arranged for Eamon, who had arrived back at Sewanhaka High School full of enthusiasm for Cornell. However, the counselor told Moran, it was a pity that the pickup basketball game he had arranged for the players ended in seven stitches to McEneaney's eyebrow from an errant elbow.

Moran, astonished, immediately called Gallagher and Arena to get the details. What emerged was troubling. The "social event" at the SAE fraternity was a party with a live band. McEneaney, who loved to dance, was grooving with the girlfriend of one of the frat brothers who took exception and landed a vicious blow to the teenager's brow, causing a melee in the frat house. Concerned, Moran called McEneaney, certain that his hard work wooing the talented athlete was for naught.

"All he kept telling me was that he wanted to come to Cornell," Moran said. "It was the greatest place in the world to him."

"Then you'll have to improve on your boxing technique," Moran told him, finally leaving the loquacious Irish kid at a loss for words.

Addendum to "Coach Moran remembers Eamon":

Eamon joined SAE and worked at the house in exchange for free room and board. After his tragic death, it was learned that SAE National had no record of his membership. However, his pledge brothers confirmed that he had been initiated, and the Fraternity sent an SAE pin and certificate of membership to his widow in 2002. An accompanying letter said: "His name will be enshrined at the Levere Memorial Temple in Evanston, Illinois, erected in 1930 to remember those members of Sigma Alpha Epsilon who gave the ultimate sacrifice so that others may live."

Coach Moran believes that his SAE membership was not recorded and no pin issued in 1974 because he was unable to pay the initiation fee.

Remembering Eamon McEneaney: Cornell Lacrosse Legend With a Heart of Gold
By Barbara O'Neil Mingle
The Cornell Spirit, March 2005

Special tribute was paid to Cornell lacrosse legend Eamon McEneaney '77 following the men's lacrosse team's final home game of the season on April 27. Eamon, a former vice president at Cantor Fitzgerald, was killed in the September 11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center.

His death brought heartache to innumerable people, most especially his wife, Bonnie, his children, Brendan, Jennifer, Kevin and Kyle, and his father, Ed.

Celebration trumped grief, however, as the prevailing sentiment of the day, as 250 family and friends, some having traveled from as far away as London and Hawaii, gathered in Ithaca to pay homage to the lacrosse warrior with the heart of a poet.

Twenty-seven former teammates, many of whom brought their families, wore red T-shirts imprinted with Eamon's number 10, supplied by former lacrosse player Joe Taylor '80. They listened with rapt attention to their former coach Richie Moran, as he related anecdotes of their beloved teammate's competitive spirit and generous heart before formally announcing the retirement of Eamon's number 10.

Cornell Hall of Famer Mike French '76, whose pairing with Eamon constituted what many believe was the best attacking duo ever to play lacrosse, recalled happier days on Schoellkopf Field in the mid-'70s. "We laughed. We didn't have a care in the world. We were invincible and Eamon was the heart and soul of our team-our spirit," said French, who spearheaded the effort to organize the memorial event" His devotion to family, friends, teammates was unconditional and unparalleled. It is what I will remember most about him."

"A superstar of lacrosse," is how Director of Athletics Andy Noel described the former three-time All-American who led-his team to national championships and undefeated seasons in 1976 and 1977. "He was an electrifying athlete who elevated all those around him," said Noel. "In my first year coaching wrestling at Cornell I experienced the magic that was Eamon. I realized excellence could be achieved at Cornell and I raised my goals."

Exhibiting uncommon strength and grace, Bonnie McEneaney spoke movingly of her husband and suggested that he sacrifice of his life and all the other victims of September 11 may have, in the long run, saved millions of lives by having roused our country to lead a global campaign against terrorism.

Bonnie also stressed the importance of making the most of every day. "Every hour, every minute, every second is a precious gift. Don't put off too long those things you want to do. Make sure your priorities are correct. Every single day, celebrate life."

Daughter Jennifer, age 9, and son Kevin, age 6, gave tangible proof that the spirit of their father, who enjoyed writing poetry, lives on. Tender words about their father were woven into poetry by Jennifer and into a prayer by Kevin and recited before the misty-eyed audience.

"Love is the strongest force that lives," said Bonnie. To witness the outpouring of emotion elicited by her husband's untimely death, was to conclude that Eamon's tremendous capacity for love rendered him invincible after all.

McEneaney's poems now available
Lacrosse great and 9/11 victim has work published posthumously

Cornell University Library press announced the publication of A Bend in the Road, poems by Eamon J. McEneaney '77, in December 2004.

McEneaney, legendary lacrosse player for the Big Red, died when the World Trade Center collapsed on September 11, 2001. The poems are a collection of McEneaney's work, written over his lifetime, and found after his death by his widow, Bonnie McEneaney.

Anyone who met McEneaney would be treated to a jovial man who loved life. But there was a dark side to McEneaney as well, one that manifested in his poetry and fiction. This was also coupled with an eerie belief that his life would be a short one. "Eamon's poetry illustrates the incredible contrasts in his personality," Bonnie McEneaney said. "He didn't hesitate to explore that darkness."

Premonitions of death suffuse his work, and in his poems McEneaney examines the connections between life, death and the spiritual web that binds them. Bonnie is finding that the elderly and terminally ill are drawing comfort in the poems, because they do not shy away from uncomfortable topics, such as speculating on the afterlife and preparing one's self for death.

"What Eamon's poems suggest is that one can be one of the greatest lacrosse players in the history of the game and also write poems of supreme invention, lyricism, and trenchancy," says Professor Kenneth McClane, W.E.B. DuBois Professor of Literature. "Cornell is a magnificent school because one can be a great athlete and a wonderful poet, the two passions complementing each other, like fire and air. Eamon proves, and oh so powerfully, that the human heart blesses and celebrates."

"I'm still amazed by this whole experience," Bonnie says of the thread that McEneaney's book of poems has woven around her in the aftermath his death. "Touch points connecting Eamon's life to others are being revealed to me on a daily basis."

Cornell NCAA Champ In Lacrosse; Upsets Maryland 16-13
By Steve Klein '77
From the
NY Alpha News, July 1976

The Big Red lacrosse team brought an NCAA championship back to Cornell as it upset defending champion Maryland 16-13 in two overtime periods on May 29. The triumph in the tournament final at Brown University, gave Coach Richie Moran's squad a final slate of 16-0 along with the national title, the second for the Red since the post season tourney was started in 1971.

Approximately 12,000 spectators were on hand in Providence for the thrilling encounter, which marked the first time the game of lacrosse drew national television. Included in the crowd were a number of SAE actives and graduates. Among the alumni were former Cornell goalie Joe D'Amelio. '75 and recent Eminent Archon Kenny "Runt" Steele. As with many other activities at Cornell, members at Hillcrest played a significant role in the accomplishments on the field.

EAMON McENEANEY, an all-American selection for the second straight year, broke an all time university career assist record midway through the season as he went on to register 61. The junior attackman now has 126 with a year of eligibility remaining. Voted the outstanding attackman of the country as a sophomore, Eamon's ability as a feeder paved the way for teammate Mike French to break all NCAA scoring marks.

Although not on the field very often, BRIAN LASDA played a crucial role in the Red success story as a face-off specialist. The stocky midfielder from Tully, N.Y., had his best outing in the important mid-season clash with perennially tough Johns Hopkins. Frequently referred to as "Moose," the former football star muscled his way to over two-thirds of the face-offs against the Blue Jays and received recognition in Sports Illustrated.

Perhaps Brian had his most memorable moment of the season when he scored his first career goal in the quarterfinal 14-0 win over Washington & Lee. During the last few minutes Lasda had the rare opportunity to play offense while Moran was pressing for an extremely rare shut-out. When he got near the goal Brian explained, "I saw the goalie and aimed the ball right at him, because I knew I couldn't hit him."

DAVE BRAY, a member of the second midfield unit, played consistently tough throughout the campaign and was a solid defensive player. Dave provided the fans with a few eye openers with his wind-up shots from the outside. The Animal Science major scored four goals and added the same number of assists.

Another brother at Hillcrest, VINCENT SHANLEY, was a defenseman on the undefeated squad. Vince saw limited action as a sophomore this spring but was superb when called on in man-down situations. Shanley came to Cornell two years ago and was a standout on the freshman team. After taking a year off, it took Vince a while to catch up on the field, but by his progress he is sure to play a big role in next season's march.

Bonnie McEneaney, MPS '78, whose husband, Eamon McEneaney '77, died Sept. 11, 2001, in the attack on the World Trade Center, shared her paranormal experiences and those of others who lost friends and family that day, in a reading from her book, "Messages: Signs, Visits, and Premonitions From Loved Ones Lost on 9/11," Sept. 16 in Hollis E. Cornell Auditorium.

View the full story at the Cornell Chronicle site, or on Eamon's tribute page. Also, next time you visit Cornell, there is a memorial to Eamon in the library that all should see when at Hillcrest.

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SAE NY Honors
Bruce Teague '71

Obituary from
GENEVA - Bruce R. Teague, 63, of Orchard Park Drive, passed away on Sunday (May 12, 2013) in his home surrounded by his family. Friends may call at the DeVaney-Bennett Funeral Home, 181 N. Main St., on Wednesday (May 15, 2013) from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. Funeral Services will be at 9 a.m. on Thursday (May 16, 2013) in the funeral home and at 9:30 a.m. in St. Stephen's Church. Burial will be in St. Mary's Cemetery.

Memorial contributions, in his memory, may be made to Ontario Yates Hospice, Our Lady of Peace Parish or the Roswell Cancer Institute Elm and Carlton Sts. Buffalo, N.Y. 14203 for Childhood Can cer Research, Buffalo, N.Y.
Bruce was born in Geneva and was a lifelong resident. He was the son of the late Robert N. and Julanne Reed Teague. He graduated from Geneva High School in 1967 and Cornell University where he was on the first National Lacrosse Cham pionship Team in 1971. He received the most improved player of the year in his junior year and received the Phillips Award in 1971 and was selected to play in the North South Game in 1971. He continued his love for Lacrosse by being a referee for over 35 years in both High Schools in Section-Five and on the Collegiate level refereeing the NCAA Division 3 Finals and the semi Finals in Division 1. He was a founding member of the Inter Collegiate Lacrosse Official Association. He was inducted in the Geneva Sports Hall of Fame in 1996, where he served on the committee for several years and in the Rochester Chapter of US Lacrosse in 2006. He started his career in the insurance business in 1973 when he joined Henry and Shepherd Insurance Co. and became President of Henry Shepherd Smith Inc. until he became the Managing Partner of Finger Lakes Partners when they began in 2007. Bruce was extremely active in the Community where he served on the Board of Directors of the National Bank of Geneva for over thirty years; was the Chairman of the United Way Campaign in 1981; was a founding member and treasurer of the Finger Lake Chapter of Ducks Unlimited; former member of the Board of Trustees of Finger Lakes Health; a member of the Board of Directors of Ontario ARC; longtime member of Seneca Yacht Club; a member of the Geneva Kiwanis Club; former member of the Geneva Scholar Associates of Hobart and William Smith College; past Presi dent of Geneva Chamber of Commerce; former member of Geneva Growth; a member of SAE Fraternity of Cornell Uni versity. Bruce was a lifelong member of Geneva Country Club where he was an avid golfer, former Senior Champion and Past Presi dent. He was an avid Penn State Fan in all sports. He was a member of Our Lady of Peace Parish.

He is survived by his wife, Beryl Mulvey Teague; his son, Bruce R. (Sandy) Teague Jr. of Stanley; his daughters, Tiffany (Tim) Cohrs of Geneva and Beth (Brian) Mabry of Orchard Park; two brothers, R. Neilan Teague of Seneca Falls, and Gary (Ruth) Teague of Staten Island, N.Y.; a sister, Leslie Harter of Rochester; his brother-in-law, David G. Mulvey of Geneva; nine grandchildren, Kacie Harris, Hay den and Gavin Teague; Beth, Leo and Teagan Cohrs; Reed, Pierce and Isla Mabry; several nieces and nephews.
He was predeceased by his loving in-laws, Beryl and Leo Mulvey. For those wishing to write a note of condolence, please visit www.devaney

Bruce Teague '71 inducted into Rochester Chapter of US Lacrosse Hall of Fame

Brother Bruce Teague '71 was inducted into the Rochester Chapter of US Lacrosse Hall of Fame as a player and official.

"The player portion had been documented previously, and the official piece recognized 18 years of selection in the NCAA tournament and an equal number in the NYS tournament, with seven times doing the NYS Finals. In the NCAA, I have done the D-3 and junior college finals, as well as the D-1 semi finals. Also, the north/south senior game once in each of the last four decades. There is something to be said about longevity! I have retired from the high school game but still carry a full college schedule that will include Penn vs. Cornell in March."

On a personal level, Bruce notes that he carries a six handicap in golf and that he sees Tony Treadwell as a role model for golf. "He was at the house when I was after his tour in the military, and I followed his senior career with great interest."

Laxmen Win NCAA Crown
From Cornell Reports, June 1971

A Canadian attackman who set records in another country and a Long Island goalie who gave his finest performance just a few miles from his home were instrumental in leading Cornell to the NCAA lacrosse championship over Maryland, 12-6, on June 5.

When the final whistle sounded and the Big Red--had copped the first official NCAA title in lacrosse, it was Al Rimmer, the record-setting senior attackman from Toronto, and Bob Buhmann, the reserve goalie from Seaford, N.Y., who were the heroes at Hofstra Stadium in Hempstead, N.Y.

Rimmer, from whom the sensational is expected, fired in six of Cornell's 12 goals. He concluded his collegiate career with the all time Cornell record for total points on 80 goals and 82 assists for 162 points.

Cornell never trailed in the game. Rimmer fired in a goal after only 59 seconds had been played and though Maryland was able to tie the score at 1-1 and 2-2, the Terps posed no real threat after the first period.

The goal that put Cornell ahead for good was produced by Coach Richie Moran's third midfield. With 7:47 to go in the first period, Bob Wagner, a senior from Newton, Pa., scored off an assist by Craig Bollinger, a junior from Rochester, N.Y.

Rimmer then took command and racked up three straight goals. Frank Davis, a junior from Sanborn, N.Y., and Bucky Gunts, a junior from Baltimore, Md., finished up Cornell's string of six goals.

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SAE NY Honors
Anthony C. Treadwell '65
A True Gentleman - June 11, 2005

On December 1, 2006, we lost a True Gentleman who was very special to NY Alpha, was a chapter adviser to many of you, and was a close friend to many alumni board members, with whom he served, as well as numerous other alumni over several generations.

After several years of illness, but never giving up the fight or lacking hope, Tony Treadwell '65 left us forever.

We all express our humble gratitude for what he did and for his significant commitment over a great number of years. We also express our deepest condolences to his family and especially his wife and partner, Nancy.

"Celebrate life" is how Tony wanted to be remembered, and on April 7, during the Masters Tournament, please pause and remember our brother Tony Treadwell and Nancy.

Kevin Merriman '88 and Nancy Treadwell show the memorial plaque at the dedication of Hillcrest's library to Tony Treadwell '65 at Reunion 2010.

Tony Treadwell, BA '69, MBA '71
By Kevin Merriman '88 and Jasper Schaible '89

To understand Tony Treadwell's contribution to the chapter, it is critical to reflect not only on the activities he conducted, but also on the times in which he accomplished them. The late seventies and early eighties were a tough era for the Greek system. Several houses were failing and it seemed that few cared.

During this period, Hillcrest's financial status was grave. In a desperate attempt to save the chapter, several brothers, led by Brother Bob Dean (True Gentleman Award recipient 2004), negotiated the 1985 Agreement, which governs our relationship with the university to this day. The agreement provided a reprieve from pending insolvency, but did not ensure Hillcrest's future. Indeed, the agreement required involvement by both the active brotherhood and alumni association-and the extent to which we were to meet our obligations and begin to re-build was as yet unknown.

Copperplate plaque presented to Tony Treadwell on June 11, 2005, at a Reunion ceremony.

It was at this point, in 1984, that Tony began his service as chapter adviser.

By way of background, Tony is known by his friends and classmates as a guy who worked hard and played harder. "A solid guy" who got along well with everyone in what has been described as "a close but diverse house."

Peter Heylin '65 remembers Tony as "studious--at least when they weren't playing Photoelectric Football." Tony was also active in house politics, rising to the office of Eminent Archon in the spring of '65.

Nearing graduation, Tony paused for a period of personal reflection in what he calls his "Travels with Charlie," a reference to a similar trip taken by author John Steinbeck. At the time, his absence from Hillcrest was no small mystery to the brothers. To all, it seemed he just vanished. Tony traveled and took a series of odd jobs working his way across the Midwest.

Tony Treadwell golfing in 1987.

But with the conflict heating up in Vietnam, and now no longer enrolled in a degree program, Uncle Sam offered to assist Tony in finding himself. Drafted into the Army, but his volunteer offer to serve in Vietnam turned down, he served stateside until he received an early discharge to return to Cornell to finish his BA and get his MBA. It seems that this personal reflection worked-in 1971 Tony graduated summa cum laude from Cornell's Johnson School of Business.

After graduation, Tony took a series of jobs--in Ohio working in the energy industry, and then in Illinois with Belson Steel. But it was in 1984 that he had a chance to return to Ithaca working for Wallace Industries in the $20 billion metal recycling industry. It was about that time the he met his wife Nancy -- on a blind date -- and realized they shared many interests. They were both avid golfers and lovers of classical music. And Nancy claims she had one skill that really won him over - "I laughed at all his jokes-even the ones I've heard more than once."

It was about this time that the VP of Campus Affairs, Bill Gurovitz conspired with the actives to enlist Tony as the chapter adviser. And in this role he served with distinction from 1984 to 1993. Tony is particularly remembered for his consultative, mentoring style. Jake Schaible '89 attests that Tony was always available, ready to offer calm and thoughtful advice but never overbearing. He comments, "It was obvious that Tony derived a great deal of satisfaction from his mentoring role. He saw himself as there to guide and support - not to force his opinions on others, and that made quite an impression on me." Lance Peters ('89) recalls long visits to Tony's Ithaca office at Wallace Industries to discuss house issues.

His most important contribution was his insistence that actives understand their obligations for future service, which he himself established by example. The best evidence of his profound influence is the current make-up of the board-most of whom were actives during his tenure, and whose example we all follow. Take a look around Tony-we're here because of you.

Tony served with distinction until he was lured away by another love -- golf. As he was turning 50, he followed his dream to be a pro golfer and moved to Florida to qualify for the Senior PGA Tour. A scratch golfer before, he improved over the qualifying rounds to a handicap of 2 to 6 under par. Though he never qualified, as they say in golf, "never up, never in."

Tony returned to the metal recycling industry without any regrets. Nancy says the experience taught them a lot about golf, business, and life. Tony is currently the VP of Finance & Administration and CFO of Consolidated Scrap Resources. Tony and his wife Nancy live in York, Pennsylvania. Tony is indeed a True Gentleman.

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SAE NY Honors
Robert L. Crosby '65
By Peter Heylin '65
Dear Brothers:

A few months ago, I received an email from Terry Boone. Terry runs the Virtual Wall website, which is dedicated to the memory of Swift Boat and other Americans who died in Vietnam.

Our 40th Reunion in 2005 was dedicated to Bob Crosby, and Terry's website enabled us to find several Vietnam and high school friends of Bob's.

Together, we put together both the very meaningful dedication exhibit in the dining hall at Hillcrest. Bob's Swift Boat flag is flanked by an SAE flag and a Cornell flag with his plaque is below. We also raised more than $50,000 for the Crosby Memorial Fund to help kick off the rebuilding project at Hillcrest.

Back to recent history: Terry called me. He is placing special permanent medallions on the graves of Swift Boat guys who were killed in Vietman and was having trouble finding graves. He asked for our help. I asked class of '65 brothers and although John Sharpe and Bob Matthews both answered that they had attended the ceremony 40 years ago, they could only recall that it was near Bob's home in South Hamilton.

I checked the old obituary and found Bob's old address which I "reverse directory" searched and got a phone number. I called, and Marylou Groessbeck answered. She didn't know the Crosbys, but she did know Bob's story and wanted to help. Long story short: We found the grave and Terry affixed the medallion during a celebration on Memorial Day 2009. The celebration included several of Bob's friends from elementary school, Lenox School, and NYA SAE (Nick Wilder, Tony Anderson, and Frank McGuire from '65).

Phi Alpha!
Peter (or as you guys seem to say, "Pete") Heylin

Brothers celebrate Robert Crosby Memorial Day
NY Alpha brothers gather in Hamilton, Massachusetts, to celebrate Bob Crosby.

Click here to view a gallery from the ceremony, which took place in 2009.

A Letter To Brother Robert L. Crosby '65
From the New York Alpha News, Spring 2005

Bob Crosby '65

Robert Crosby (top row, third from left) with his unit.

Sorry, Bob. We all know this story should have been written 35 years ago. That was when most of your SAE brothers heard that you had been killed in 'Nam. Something about getting shot by accident during a routine Swift Boat training mission.

We all felt the tragedy. You were one of our favorites. It might be said that you were the only one of our pledge brothers to absolutely get along with everyone at all times, to be liked and loved by all. You were smart, you were loyal, you were patient, you were funny. I can still picture you at the infamous square dance party on Spring Weekend 1964, the one that the House wanted to back out of because word got out on campus that SAE was doing a ding-a-ling thing like a square dance. The one where the Kopff brothers, led by Papa Milo Kopff playing a six-foot-tall, coffin-like wooden box by brushing it with steel wool, made some real knee-slappin' music. The one where Sharpie stirred his screwdriver with a cigar. And there you were, regaled in a flowing white sheet, either as a Roman or Jesus we guessed, and you flew around the dining hall dance floor like a spinning orchid bird. What fun!

Your class of 1965 will be having its 40th reunion in a few months. The five-gallon tins may be dragged out for the milk punch. We'll try to get Germy to chug the "Pais Is Nice" trophy again. Or maybe Tones will recite us some real hip Blake. Or Jim Staid could tell one of his soap opera-like Montana tales like the fishing story: one hour and fifteen minutes, minimum, and all it amounted to was that a fish he caught got maggots. We'll remember things, like when we all went out to Cunningham's on the Lake and heard that new "She Loves You, Yeah, Yeah, Yeah" British group for the first time; bare-handedly moving the gravel around in the driveway; B.M.O.R.'s; our green Ale Man jackets; driving up Triphammer and hearing that President Kennedy had been shot; hustler Tony T as the master of the half-inch jump that made playing pool on the house's cracked slate more like a game of chance or an exercise in trigonometry.

But that pool table served us well. Can you recall 260-pound Mickey Trimberger lying on it dead under a sheet during the solemn chapter eternal part of the initiation ceremony? You could see his stomach jiggling and hear his tiny squeals of repressed laughter. We knew credit was due to every EA who kept a straight face through that! Do you remember when my Dad--an SAE brother--put the pin on me? The best of times was made even better because we all had a brother like you.

And now, in June, we're going to return to revisit a few of those memories and reattach some bonds. And Croser, you will be there in more than spirit. The flag from your boat, PCF 21, bullet-holed and frayed from the patrols you made in An Thoi Province, will be framed and presented to the chapter along with a generous gift in your name. With this gift, our class of 1965 will kick off the most ambitious rebuilding project in Hillcrest's history-a total and necessary renovation to be completed by our 50th reunion in 2015. And we'll sing "Violets and Her Loveliness" and maybe "A Horse's Ass." We'll check out our old rooms. We'll laugh and cry and make promises to stay closely in touch that we'll hope to keep. And if we're lucky, maybe we'll see that orchid bird whirling around us.

Phi Alpha, brother,
Peter Heylin '65

Bob Crosby '65 with Swift Boat crew members. Note Senator John Kerry at right.

A plaque honoring Bob. Click here to view the full size.

The above plaque, positioned below the American flag from Crosby's boat.

Honoring Bob Crosby at the Vietnam Unit Monument Memorial

Click here to download the winter 2009 "Reflections" newsletter about the Vietnam Unit Monument Memorial. For more information, visit their website at

Peter Heylin '65 goes on a fact finding tour of the VN Navy Memorial at NAB Coronado where he discovers Bob Crosby's name on the memorial and sees the memorial to him inside the Swift Boat similar to the one Bob served on in Vietnam.
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SAE NY Honors
Peter G. Heylin '65
Peter Griscom Heylin ’65 was the first and only unsolicited addition to the original board formed after Hillcrest was turned over to Cornell University in the 1980s.

Our primary responsibilities at the time were raising money to pay off the debt and communicating with alumni about what was going on through the NY Alpha News to encourage donations. Bob Dean ’49 had resigned as chapter advisor and had no intention of staying on in any capacity after the transfer of Hillcrest was completed.

In his longtime service to NY Alpha, Peter has focused primarily on specific projects. He's a man who gets things done, so it's best to get out of his way. Through it all, Peter's ideas and his ambition are fueled by his enduring passion for NY Alpha.

Peter is responsible for the Robert Crosby '65 memorial that graces the wall in the dining room when the chapter is in residence. He geared up for that because he felt it was long overdue. Bob was killed during the Vietnam war, and Peter felt that the story of his classmate and brother deserved to be told. Peter continues to work on this project and has other ideas about enhancing its presentation.

At the time of Peter's 40th reunion, he raised nearly $50K for the Development Fund, primarily from his classmates. No class had ever raised that much for a single reunion year. He also helped pay for and then arranged to move a new piano to the house because of his love of music and the tradition of brothers singing, a tradition he wants to rekindle.

A few years later, in 2010, Peter and his wife, Linda, purchased new lion statues (which he affectionately named "Harris" and "Hal") to replace the ones that had been destroyed by vandals a few years earlier. Not wanting that to happen again, he had these built with aluminum and filled solid with cement. Growing frustrated waiting for a formalized purchase that was going nowhere fast, Peter simply bought them outright and had them shipped to Ithaca and installed at Hillcrest's front door.

After the lions were installed, his daughter, Tera, went to Ithaca while on an East Coast trip and made sure to have her picture taken sitting on one. You might have seen this in the NY Alpha News or on the website.

As a board member, Peter Heylin served on the Strategic Plan team, working closely with Gus Noojin '69 and others planning for reinstatement. He has every intention to work on the campaign team when the time comes for our major fundraising effort to finish renovating Hillcrest. Be prepared to step up when Peter asks for your participation!

Peter has also been active on both the facilities and fundraising committees. He is deeply committed to both.

Our 2015 True Gentleman, Peter Heylin set an excellent example for NY Alpha brothers by investing in NY Alpha through his many gifts, decades of service, and lifelong commitment. It is as simple as that!

If you look through the website, you will see lots written about Peter’s efforts over the years. We would love to have him come back to Ithaca for his 50th reunion in June 2015. Of course, he has been helping organizing the event for his class, so count on a good group for the occasion—and related funds to be raised!

One simply cannot have a better friend and a more devoted brother than Peter Heylin.

Peter G. Heylin '65, a True Gentleman of New York Alpha.

Peter G. Heylin

Monument Little Known But Will Be Long Remembered
Bill Heard, Special to the U-T, October 2012

San Diego has many memorials honoring the men, women, ships, and aircraft that have served our nation. One of the most inspiring, but least known, is a memorial to the 2,564 members of the Navy and Coast Guard who lost their lives while serving in Vietnam from 1960 to 1975.

The Vietnam Unit Memorial Monument stands in a peaceful, grassy area of the Naval Amphibious Base on Coronado's Silver Strand, less than a mile south of the Hotel del Coronado. Because it is located on a secure military base, members of the public seldom visit. Even many veterans and active-duty service members who would have access to the base aren't aware of it.

And that's a shame, because the monument is impressive and well-maintained by the VUMM Foundation and its member organizations, the Swift Boat Sailors Association, the Gamewardens of Vietnam, and the Mobile Riverine Force Association.

Approaching the memorial, situated at Rendova and Tulagi roads on the south side of the amphibious base, the visitor sees a curved, 10-foot-high, 66-foot-long wall inscribed with the name of the memorial and topped by an American flag and the flags of the 50 states.

Affixed to the memorial's interior wall are 26 stainless steel plaques listing in alphabetical order the names and ranks, commands, hometowns, and dates of death of each of the 2,564 deceased. Among the names are those of shipboard sailors and officers, Coast Guardsmen, air crewmen and pilots, and Nacy personnel who served with Air Force and Army units. About a third of those listed were Navy hospital corpsmen who served with the Marines.

Four other plaques list the names of those posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor and the Navy Cross.

The information was compiled during an exhaustive two-year study by retired Navy Captain Ken McGhee of San Diego, a former swift boat division commander and the foundation's first president.

The names have an impact on visitors. Recently a four-member team of SeaBees was helping erect a shelter on the memorial grounds. One of the young men of told foundation president and retired Navy Captain Paul Murphy that his grandfather had been one of 134 crewmen killed in 1967 when fire broke out aboard the aircraft carrier Forrestal in the Gulf of Tonkin.

Murphy walked the young man over to the wall and showed him his grandfather's name. "He was very moved to see it. All four of the SeaBees were moved to be doing a building project at the memorial."

Arrayed across from the memorial wall are three examples of river craft used in Vietnam: A 31-foot river patrol boat (PBR), a 50-foot swift boat (PCF) and a 61-foot command communications boat (CCB). Although none of the vessels on display saw service in Vietnam, similar boats served in the "Brown Water Navy," operating in the treacherous inland waterways of Vietnam.

PBR crews often searched local craft suspected of smuggling arms to the Viet Cong. They frequently engaged in firefights and transported SEALs and small Army units. The swift boats of Operation Market Time patrolled the VIetnam coast and often operated in the rivers, interdicting weapons shipments and supporting SEALs.

The heavily armed CCBs—sometimes called "Monitors" because of their resemblance to Civil War ships—were the command ships of the Mobile Riverine Force and were equipped with communications gear that allowed mission commanders to direct combat operations.

BEtween the boats and the wall stands a 12-foot obelisk erected by the Gamewardens of Vietnam. Among other information, it lists the members of Task Force 116 who were killed during Operation Gamewarden in the Mekong Delta, 1966 to 1968.

The Vietnam Unit Memorial Monument—dedicated on Armed Forces Day in May 2005—was constructed entirely with private funds and with contributions from member organizations. Foundation members and a working party of veterans contributed their labor during the five-year construction period. The foundation signed a long-term agreement with the Navy in 1999 to manage the memorial site.

The three Brown Water veterans groups are responsible for the maintenance of the boats they provided for the memorial. And foundation members, including Murphy and other veterans, come out every week to cut the grass, fertilizr and trim the bushes, and wash down the wall.

Information about the foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation, can be found at The website includes a brief history of the memorial, photos, and videos of memorial events, a description of the boats on display, a calendar of events, and links to veterans' organizations.

To visit the VIetnam Unit Memorial Monument, veterans, active-duty personnel, and others with access to military bases can ask for directions at the main gate on the bay side of SIlver Strand Boulevard. Civilians who wish to arrange an individual or group tour of the memorial may lick on the "Visiting the Memorial" link on the foundation website home page for a map and a list of contacts and phone numbers.

Last month, as he comtemplated the memorial and recalled the years of effort by the many organizations and veterans involved, Murphy said, "It's become something we never conceived it would. Every single week, we have ceremonies—retirements, graduations, changes of commands. It's become a real focal point here at the amphibious base."

Original Levere Challenge Donor
(from The New York Alpha News, Fall 2005)

Peter Heylin ’65 and his Airstream; wife, Linda; and dog recently visited Hal Sieling ’62 in California.

Peter's daughter Tera has also been traveling; she stopped at Hillcrest during a cross-country trip to visit the lions in front of the house that her parents donated (see photo).

As an alumni board member, Peter Heylin '65 has been active for a few years, but when what he considered to be a big opportunity and obligation arose, did he step up to the plate!

Peter was in the College of Arts & Sciences at Cornell but is probably best known for putting himself through school with his band that played at various fraternity events. Not as famous as Bobby and the Counts or the Ratchets, his band, the Celestial Dooright Bombers, made lots of Cornellians really rock at those Saturday night do-whops. If one looks back at party pictures of his era, you are bound to find Peter right in the thick of it.

After Cornell, Peter went to the University of Chicago with another brother, Nick Wilder '65, to get an MBA and stay away from the war zone. Upon graduating, he joined E & J Gallo Winery as a brand marketing trainee and was immediately put into sales training to see how the other half lived. Unfortunately, he did such a good job that he got shipped back to Modesto early.

If any of you have ever been there, you will know what that means. Like so many other Gallo employees, Peter thinks that if Gallo were headquartered in San Francisco, he would still be working for them. It was at this point that he first joined the environmental movement as chairman of The Ecology Center in Berkeley.

He then took this talent to General Brewing in a marketing capacity, where he started a corporate ecology program that resulted in nearly all containers being recycled and only one 50-gallon trash can of garbage per week leaving the plant.

Sometime later Peter moved to Canyon, a redwood forest full of hippies just east of the Oakland-Berkeley Hills. He built his own house (a Steve Bear-style rhombic dodecahedron zome complex) out of recycled materials and started a new life with current wife of 28 years, Linda. His wedding present to her was running water, although that came much later.

Peter and Linda now live in Brookdale, California, near Santa Cruz. Of their three daughters, Jodi practices therapy in San Francisco, Maya is a web designer in Rome, and Tera is in Canyon. Their son, John, just graduated from the University of Washington this past June. Peter is an environmentalist and it clearly shows as he drives up the street in his '66 Pontiac Bonneville convertible pulling a 35-year-old restored Airstream trailer with an anatomically correct mermaid statue mounted on the front. When Peter sends you a letter, it as likely as not is printed on the back of another document. It makes interesting reading at times. He makes full use out of everything.

As his 40th reunion approached, Peter felt that it was long, long overdue to honor his classmate, friend, and brother Robert Crosby '65 who was killed while serving in Vietnam. For some reason unknown to all of us, no one had been able to deal with it, even in the manner used to honor another brother, Doug Crowe '61. Peter felt compelled to right this wrong.

It was troubling to Peter, and the trek to get it done was both painful and rewarding at the same time. It was painful because such a wonderful guy had his life snuffed out by a horrible accident just days before he was scheduled to come home. It was rewarding because the effort brought many brothers back together from the class of '65 and others who fondly remember Bob as well.

Peter set out on this journey with grand goals and a heart equally large. By any measure, near the journey's end, it was clear that his goals would be realized and his class was one band of brothers again.

Take a look at your website,, in the "Spotlight on Alumni"area, and you will see the rewards of the efforts by Peter, his committee, and the class of '65. Better yet, visit Hillcrest soon and see the Robert L. Crosby Memorial face to face. It is impressive! But the quest and story do not end there. The class of '65 raised a significant amount of funds that is to be the seed money for the restoration of Hillcrest, a daunting task to say the least, but one that all the members of his class feel is essential.

Peter and Linda have lots of fun, lots of friends, and lots of time to do both silly stuff and meaningful projects, and they would welcome new and old friends anytime to visit and help out. You can contact Peter at

Hal Sieling '62

Here is a slideshow in tribute of Peter Heylin's life that was shown at his celebration.

Peter's Obituary

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SAE NY Honors
Harris H. Palmer Jr. '62
An icon is gone, but his legacy endures!

2012 University Memorial Service

Speech by Alex Vollmer, President of the class of 1962

Very few days go by that I don’t think, at least briefly, of Harris and the times we shared here at Cornell and the connection we had for all the years thereafter, often from far away. Sometimes, those thoughts make me sad, however, of late, my thoughts about Harris and my connection with him have evolved.

It is in this sense that I’d like to share with you some thoughts, not so much about the memories that I have of Harris and our comradeship, but rather what I have been able to take from his legacy and what you might take and gain from those whom you remember here today.

Of course, I remember the smaller and amusing things about Harris – his never ending smile, his love of classic British sports cars, his insistence on playing Beatles music very loudly, very early Sunday mornings following a late night party at the house we shared on State St. here in Ithaca.

But, more importantly, I have begun to remember and focus on the more important characteristics that Harris evidenced – his legacy to me, if you will – of his uncompromising personal and professional integrity, his dogged determination to complete projects, his unquestioned fiscal responsibility, including performing as our Class Treasurer for quite a few years dealing with the arcane aspects of the Cornell accounting system, and his willingness to listen to anyone with a difficulty.

Each of you who are remembering and honoring someone here today can, I’m certain, list a number of qualities of that person that stick in your mind and which you can take and benefit from, as their legacy to you, as you move forward in your life.

If you do that, you will not only be honoring but remembering that person positively and, much as it has occurred with my thoughts about Harris, your sadnesses will be lessened and replaced with the legacy of positive attributes that that person is able to give to you.

Thank you very much.

For more than 25 years, Harris Palmer '62, a True Gentleman and a stalwart of New York Alpha, has been on the front lines in saving and then building SAE at Cornell University into what it has become today. There is no better evidence of this than the New York Alpha Alumni Association winning the coveted first place as the Outstanding Chapter Alumni Association at the National Convention this past summer.

When Hillcrest ownership was taken over by Cornell, Harris was the first volunteer to step to the challenges that were ahead. We were faced with dwindling membership, financial issues, and weak alumni support. Together we assembled a team to communicate with alumni for the purpose of fund-raising to eliminate a huge debt generated during the prior decade or more. Fundraising among alumni had been unsuccessful to date. It was a slow start, but after just a couple of years the program was bearing fruit and generating $30-50k per year quite consistently. This money was being used to fund maintenance and repair of the tired 75-year-old Hillcrest, which had seen better days and larger membership. The situation was dire, to say the least.

Harris was the man on the scene dealing with and negotiating terms with Cornell to ensure that our active chapter would continue to occupy Hillcrest as its home while at Cornell in good standing.

For many years until 2001, Harris was one of just three alumni keeping the New York Alpha board responsibilities under control. He was a steady hand for the group, but most important he was our financial face or guru among the actives, the Cornell administration, and the alumni body.

His skill at tracking down the dollar is legendary. Harris was always in touch with our most generous donors, and he was unbelievable in finding money lost in the cracks of the Cornell Fund bureaucracy. He was equally persistent dividing up a dinner check at a function of friends so every person paid exactly his share and not a penny less. You always knew whom to pass the bill to when Harris was around.

It is fair to say that Harris was as generous to Cornell as a class officer as he was to New York Alpha, both in terms of his time spent and money contributed. Harris was as generous to SAE and Cornell as his time and personal fortune allowed. Serving SAE and Cornell was an honor, a rewarding experience, and fun for Harris as he said to us recently upon stepping down from the New Millennium Alumni Board on which he served.

A message about Harris Palmer would be incomplete without mention of his character. He was very social and known fondly as "High School Harris" during his undergrad years, when he excelled with beautiful dates, a classy Chevy convertible, and high honors on the scholastic front. He was also treasurer of the house, a leader, and very popular with all.

Harris was also very giving and caring, and several brothers and friends mentioned that upon his passing. He will be deeply missed both as a personal friend and a leader. He has left a great legacy of service for younger and future board members, and we can only hope they follow in his footsteps.

He was never the center of attention, but throughout his life Harris was the glue that held everything together. He brought out the best of all of us and was someone we all admired. Although not a contrarian, he would always raise the not-so-obvious but essential issues to consider in any dilemma. In the end, however, he was always a team player--and someone we all wanted on our team.

At the end, Harris encouraged the alumni board "to keep up the good work through the relentless recurring disappointments the beloved actives put you through."

Yes, Harris, we will do that because of the example you showed and because "Brotherhood is for Life!" Thanks for all you did for the brotherhood, New York Alpha, Hillcrest, Cornell, and especially your many friends. Your legacy will be fulfilled with the 2015 Initiative you helped establish.

I am reminded as I write this of one of Harris's favorite songs, which happens to be one of the Kinks' greatest hits, "A Well Respected Man." Every time I hear it, I will think of him. He touched so many of us who were friends, classmates, and fraternity brothers in ways that will be everlasting.

We will all miss him so--for all he added to our lives and work, for the friendships that endured to the end. I had just emailed him about what a wonderful run we had all had together. It has been grand.

And now I am sure he is at peace.

-- Hal Sieling '62

Harry received the True Gentleman Award in 2007. Read more about it here.


I had the opportunity to attend the funeral service for Harris on Saturday at Westhampton Presbyterian Church. It was cold on Eastern Long Island, but bright and sunny, and the pretty church framed against the snow was like a Christmas card... Harris would have appreciated that. The church was filled by family and by his many friends, many from Westhampton Beach, his adopted new hometown.

At the service, his sister Mary Grace Terry and brother-in-law Cecil Terry remembered Harris as a brother and friend, and Alex Vollmer, Harris' lifelong friend since their days at Cornell as grad school roommates, gave a wonderful tribute to Harris recounting his commitment and dedication to the cause he loved most--SAE and Cornell.

At the reception after the ceremony, they all spoke of Harris' smile, his wit and dry sense of humor, and his caring and contribution to the many causes he cared about, and especially Cornell and SAE. I'm sure Harris is smiling down at all of us.

Phi Alpha, Harris...

-- Dave Nisbet '62

The gate at Alder Creek Cemetery.
Harold "Spike" Kunz '61, Dave Ryan '62, Ron Demer '59, and Neil Schilke '62 at the cemetery where Harris lies. Note that Dave is holding a pot of violets, which were planted at the grave site.

Harris Palmer with longtime friends and '62 classmates Alex Vollmer (from FIJI) and Hal Sieling at their 45th Reunion.

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SAE NY Honors
Douglas D. Crowe '61

by Hal Sieling '62

Long before Cornell owned Hillcrest, there was a small alumni board that worked on various facilities issues associated primarily with operating Hillcrest on at least a break-even basis—much like any landlord would do. The group essentially represented the general alumni body, which owned the house at that time.

The first issue, I recall, was how to add revenue to house operations. That was coupled with the desire to have a dining room that was big enough for all the brothers to eat together for lunch and dinner, as well as for big party occasions.

More revenue was essential because of rising costs. Taxes had more than doubled in the past two decades. Those costs, among others, were affecting our ability to maintain the property properly.

The dining room seated just 48 brothers—a serious challenge. For years 80 to 100 were being served for some meals, so people were spread all through the Great Hall. It was logistically difficult, to say the least.

The living situation was even more acute. Capacity was just 38, and an average sophomore class had 30 brothers. This situation was forcing most juniors and many seniors to live out, which had an impact on chapter unity and leadership—a problem fraternities still struggle with today.

SAE was not unique. Fraternities as a whole were growing as the student body expanded. Fraternity membership was in full bloom.

At the time, one young alumnus and new board member, Doug Crowe ’61, was at the forefront of working with longtime Chapter Adviser Fairbairn “Gilk” Gilkeson to solve these problems. Doug was determined. His first love was SAE, and his second was Cornell. He would do anything for either. He was not a particularly good student, so he was hanging around Hillcrest for a couple of years after his normal graduation date picking up needed credits. He also faced an Army obligation upon graduation.

The solution to these problems was the new wing: new rooms for more actives to live in and a new dining room that seated 125. With a mortgage from a local bank in hand, Doug and Gilk struck a deal with the alumni board. All seemed pleased, and no one objected to their plan.

Both panned and praised over the years, the wing became a reality. The addition was a necessity, although the timing could not have been worse for reasons not unique to SAE.

Alumni contributions to pay off the debt did not materialize for a number of obvious—and some not-so-obvious—reasons. The first campaign itself was a total bust; it never really got off the ground.

As the Vietnam War dragged on, fraternity life was taking a hit. Even in the aftermath of the war in the late ’70s, fraternity membership continued to decline. Worse still, some actives were not paying their house bills. Again, SAE was no exception. The debt continued to grow, and until the very late ’70s, there was no solution in view.

What all of this shows is that Doug Crowe and the other board members at the time had very good intentions, but those backfired on them through circumstances that they could neither anticipate nor prevent. It was not long into this horrible span of time that all of the board members from this era resigned and no replacements stepped forward. Reminds me of the old saying ”No good deed deserves to go unpunished”!

As fate would have it, Doug decided to continue his Army career past the normal tour and was shipped to Vietnam, where he lost his life. We don’t know much about his life after Hillcrest beyond this piece here on our website.

Captain Douglas D. Crowe’s name—and those of more than 58,000 other young American soldiers—can be found on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall in Washington. A copy of his rubbing is on display in our library at Hillcrest, along with a nice painting of Doug in his uniform and the small piece about his Army career.

A portrait of Crowe

Harold "Spike" Kunz at the rededication of the Crowe Memorial at Hillcrest during reunion.

Spike was the only member of his class to make reunion, but others in his class visited earlier in the year.

Plaque honoring Doug Crowe at Hillcrest.

Doug Crowe studies at the chapter house.

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SAE NY Honors
Eugene "Gene" Case '59

Gene Case, Who Marketed After-Shave and Politicians, Dies at 72
By Bruce Weber
The New York Times, September 13, 2010

Advertising portfolios are grab bags, collections of products and services and ideas connected only by the person who was hired to sell them. But certainly Gene Case, who helped peddle Lyndon B. Johnson for the presidency and Tums for the tummy, had a wider sales range than most.

Mr. Case, who worked in advertising from the age of "Mad Men" to the age of Obama, founded the half-billion-dollar agency Jordan McGrath Case & Partners, created the "Thanks.

I needed that" campaign for Mennen Skin Bracer and spent his last years creating campaigns on behalf of liberal causes, died Thursday in Manhattan. He was 72.

The cause of death was a heart attack, the family said.

Mr. Case was a copywriter at Doyle Dane Bernbach, the agency that created the "Think small" campaign for the Volkswagen Beetle, when he was assigned to Lyndon B. Johnson's 1964 campaign against Senator Barry Goldwater. He worked with the team that created the famous antinuclear "Daisy ad," in which the image of a little girl counting down the petals of a daisy melds into the image of a nuclear explosion.

In another signature ad from the campaign, a young man who says he has always been a Republican talks to the camera for an astonishing four minutes about his fear of Goldwater, his party's candidate, as a nuclear hawk. According to Stephen Kling, senior art director of Mr. Case's last agency, Avenging Angels, Mr. Case wrote the copy for that ad.

In 1966, Mr. Case's ads, focusing on issues like pollution control, helped Nelson A. Rockefeller win a third term as governor of New York. He also wrote the ads for Rockefeller's failed attempt to win the 1968 Republican presidential nomination. Later, after he and others formed the agency that became Jordan McGrath Case & Partners, Mr. Case wrote ads for the New York mayoral campaigns of Robert F. Wagner and Bella Abzug.

Jordan McGrath was largely a commercial agency, however; at its peak, in the 1990s, it booked $500 million a year. One of Mr. Case's more memorable creations there was the Skin Bracer campaign in which different men (including a young John Goodman), applying the "chin chiller" after shaving, would be slapped across the face (or would slap themselves) and utter the catchphrase: "Thanks. I needed that."

Mr. Case also worked on ads for Tums, the antacid, and came up with the idea for a musical tag, "tum-ta-tum-tum," chanted to the rhythm of the theme from the television show "Dragnet."

"Which we paid for through the nose for the next 15 years," Patrick J. McGrath, one of Mr. Case's former partners, said with a laugh in an interview.

In 2002, Mr. Case returned to the political arena when he helped found Avenging Angels, an advocacy ad agency that creates campaigns for liberal causes. His ads there opposed the war in Iraq and nuclear proliferation and supported the Democratic National Committee, the environmental group Riverkeeper, bans on assault weapons and the magazine The Nation.

"I've been in this business for 42 years," Mr. Case said in an interview in The New York Times in 2003 about his decision to return to advocacy advertising. "And I've never been so productive, so happy--and so poor."

Eugene Lawrence Case was born on Dec. 6, 1937, in Knoxville, Tenn., where his father, Harry, was personnel director for the Tennessee Valley Authority, the New Deal program under President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Like his father, Mr. Case graduated from Cornell, where he studied architecture. He took his first copywriter job in 1961, at the J. Walter Thompson agency.

Mr. Case's first two marriages, to Mary Jane Austin and Ilon Specht, ended in divorce. He is survived by three children from his marriage to Ms. Austin: Christopher, of Mamaroneck, New York; Alison, of Williamstown, Massachusetts; and Timothy, of the Bronx, New York. He is survived by a son, Brady, of Manhattan, from his marriage to Ms. Specht. He is also survived by a sister, Marcia Schlaff, of Manhattan; his wife, Sylvia Rodriguez Case, whom he married in 1994; their daughter, Billie, of Manhattan; and nine grandchildren.

Mr. McGrath, his former partner, said that Mr. Case had been an especially skilled writer but that even that gift had paled in comparison to his creativity as a pitchman.

"He was without a doubt the best presenter of advertising who ever lived," Mr. McGrath said. "Clients were sometimes unhappy because the ads weren't as good as the presentation."

A Tribute to Gene Case '59
By Ron Demer '59

Gene died of heart disease on September 9 in New York City. He had a long and highly successful career in the advertising business with brands like VW ("think small"), Tums (with the "tum-ta-tum-tum" soundtrack), and the anti-nuclear "daisy ad" with the little girl's petal countdown to a nuclear explosion. In 2002, he helped found Avenging Angels, an advocacy ad agency that creates campaigns for liberal causes. His ads there opposed the war in Iraq and nuclear proliferation and supported the Democratic National Committee, the environmental group Riverkeeper, bans on assault weapons, and the magazine The Nation.

At Cornell, he was at the top of his class in the College of Architecture when he decided that he did not like the way it was run, and transferred to arts. He followed Jack Bierhorst, SAE '58, as editor of the campus humor magazine, The Widow, which ended its run in 1962--although its motto was "Men may come and men may go, but I go on forever." The Widow incessantly needled the Cornell Daily Sun, and produced the first full-scale parody of the Sun, titled the "Cornell Deadly Sin", for Spring Day 1906.

Click to view full size.

Additional notable Widow parodies include the November 1949 "unofficial football program," for the Syracuse-Cornell football game. The photo above is a Widow spoof of a Time Magazine cover of 1958 at Ithaca's Obie's Diner, the "in" place for burgers and greasy apple turnovers (they were grilled right next to each other). One's stature was enhanced if Obie greeted you by name as you entered. Jack and Gene are in the background at the rifle game.

Gene was elected to Quill & Dagger and lived in the Tower in his senior year with Todd Jenkins '59. He married a Cornell Theta, Mary Jane "Midge" Austin. They took a trip around the world--with extended stays in Greece and Vienna--where he wrote a novel, which was lost at a transfer point on the way home. Gene was unable to reconstruct it. He was a character right out of an F. Scott Fitzgerald novel--handsome, with platinum blonde hair, suave, Browning King clothes, and taciturn (he did not say much, but almost everything he said was memorable). He was one of the few creative types in advertising that had great talent and skill in both copywriting and art, almost a one-man agency.

From left: Jim Hobson '59, Hugh Zimmers '59, and Ron Demer '59 with Gene's cousin, Marshal Case '63, gathering at Lincoln Center before attending Gene's remembrance gathering at the Vivian Beaumont Theatre on October 18, 2010. The photographer is Hugh's adopted daughter, Liz, who practices architecture with Hugh, and donated a kidney to him two years ago for a successful transplant.
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Robert Evans Browning '56

Robert E. Browning '56
Original Levere Challenge Donor

New York Alpha is pleased to honor Robert Evans Browning '56, B. Mch. Eng. '57, as one of the first Levere Challenge Donors of SAE for his ongoing gifts to SAE over the last several years.

Bob was the youngest of three Browning brothers who attended Phillips Exeter Academy and were Cornell SAEs in the '50s. He won varsity letters in swimming and lacrosse.

The Browning family's Maysville, Kentucky, power transmission business, Browning Manufacturing, was sold to Emerson Electric (NYSE) in the late 1960s. Bob remained with Emerson, running two divisions until his retirement.

Bob Browning on the swim team.

He lived in Milford, Connecticut, until he died on January 10, 2010. He has two sons and a daughter. His youngest son, Peter, owns Viva Taqueria, an outstanding Mexican restaurant on the Commons, and he is a part owner of Ithaca Beer, a microbrewery.

Bob Browning has also been a strong supporter of Cornell and has endowed the director of physical education position in the Athletic Department with a gift of $1 million. His name is engraved on the terrace at the base of McGraw Tower as a major benefactor of the university, along with the names of other SAEs Curt Reis '56 and David Hugle '57.

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SAE NY Honors
Curtis Reis '56

Curtis Sanford Reis ’56 died on February 25 in Los Angeles, California. He had been battling a number of illnesses over the years.

A Cornell leader as a student and an alumnus, Curt was SAE Eminent Archon, chair of the Willard Straight Hall Board of Managers, head of Freshman Orientation, and a member of Quill & Dagger. From a handful of Yemeni sand he created fictional Q&D member Narby Krimsnatch, a royal sheik who became a campus legend (see YouTube: Curtis Reis and Narby Krimsnatch Finally Meet).

The Reis family legacy, with substantial contributions from Curt and his wife, Pamela, his late father and mother (Sanford and Josephine ’29), and his sister and brother-in-law (Dale ’58, Dick ’57), includes the Reis Tennis Center, Reis Family Lectureships to strengthen Arabic studies, the Jo Mills and L. Sanford Reis Scholarship Fund, the stage in the Schwartz Center’s Kiplinger Theatre, and renovation of the Fall Creek hydroelectric plant. A recipient of the Rhodes Exemplary Alumni Service Award, Curt also co-founded Cornell Adult University (CAU) and served on the Athletics and Arts & Sciences advisory councils. Curt was a Cornell trustee and the class of ’56 president for many years. He and Pamela are listed on the Library Terrace Wall along with other Cornell Foremost Benefactors. Even in success, Curtis throughout his life remained concerned for the unemployed, uninsured, homeless, and undocumented in America.

He leaves his wonderful wife, Pamela, a son, two daughters, and six grandchildren. I hosted Curt and his family when they visited Ithaca many times, and I was his guest in Rolling Hills twice as well. My oldest memory of Curt was dinner at SAE when I was pledging in 1956. It was customary for the EA to call on one of the pledge tables to stand and sing an SAE song. Someone had told Curt that I could not carry a tune, and he tapped his glass and called on my table to stand and sing “Marching Without Demer.” He will be missed.

Ron Demer '59

Curtis Reis '56 was recently featured in Ezra magazine.

Click here to read the full story: "The bogus Mr. Krimsnatch '56."

UPDATE: Mr. Krimsnatch paid a visit to Cornell! Click here to view "Curtis and Narby Krimsnatch finally meet" on Youtube.

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SAE NY Honors
Robert T. Dean '49
By Hal Sieling '62

"On this day when the sun shines bright and the hills are beautiful with their autumn foliage," we regret to inform you of the loss of our friend, brother, and leader, Bob Dean. To Cornell, Sigma Alpha Epsilon, and his friends, there was no finer man. When he was a young man, he excelled in football and brought many a cheer from the home crowd with his play. In business, he excelled by building a strong team. For those of us who knew him as a chapter adviser, he was a leader and a True Gentleman of his fraternity. He established the foundation for success of our beloved NY Alpha at a time when few thought it was possible to survive. No one did more to build the future of SAE at Cornell than Bob did, and his influence will never be forgotten.

In the late '70s and early '80s, Bob bailed out the house more than one time with financial help. He also developed a plan that would ensure continued success for SAE at Cornell. More importantly, he sold that plan to the CU administration at a time when they had little interest. Out of these negotiations came an unprecedented agreement: a three-way relationship between the active brotherhood, the alumni association, and Cornell that set the framework for a partnership that has endured to this day.

Bob was a gentle and gracious man, but also a determined one. He knew that his plan would work and would not give up, no matter the obstacles, until he got buy-ins from everyone. When he finished his job, he walked away and left a far better place for others to manage. That was how Bob operated.

It is fitting that Bob passed away on the very day he must have enjoyed the most: Homecoming at Cornell University.

"Bob was an extremely important person in the history of SAE and Hillcrest. I am glad we honored him when we did with the first True Gentleman award. He was truly touched by the award and expressed a strong emotional connection to SAE that day. There would be no NY Alpha chapter today without Bob Dean."
-- Mike Slusar '86

CFA will salute MacLeod, Dean, Thoren, Vanneman
By Jim Hanchett '53,†Cornell Football Association Historian (exerpted)

The Cornell Football Association, now in its 17th season, will honor four of its foremost friends on CFA Awards Day at Schoellkopf on the day of the Harvard game, October 8, [2011]. [...]

The late Bob Dean '48, Ted Thoren, and Bill Vanneman '31 are to receive CFA's Joe King '36 Memorial Award, named for the former trustee and kingpin of alumni activities in Rochester.

Dean, who died [in fall 2010], was born in Indiana but lived most of his full life in Ithaca. He began a freshman year at Indiana University, but when World War II began, he went into Army Air Force bombardier training. After the war, he found his way to Cornell, where he earned football letters in 1946-'48. Sometimes he was a starting fullback and sometimes a T quarterback. His 88-punt against Colgate in 1948 established a long-long standing record and so did a 98-yard pass connection to Norm Dawson against Navy.

Cornell went into the fourth quarter†26-14 behind Dartmouth at Schoellkopf in '48. With 2:40 left, Dean plunged over from the one-foot-line to tie the score, then kicked the PAT that gave the Red a 27-26 win en route to an 8-1 season and mythical Ivy laurels.

After earning an electrical engineering degree, he latched on with an Ithaca electronic dealership and in due course founded Bob Dean, Inc., also an electronics firm. Deanco and its employee-shared ownership followed.

Throughout his alumni years, Dean could be seen on fall Saturdays seated in front of the press box at about midfield to experience both bitter and better days. He was active with football friends, a Cayuga Heights trusteeship, and significant contributions of time and treasure to his fraternity, Sigma Alpha Epsilon. He was survived by Maxine, who had been at his side since their youth together back home in Indiana; four adult children; and nine grandchildren.

[...] On Saturday, October 8, honorees, family and friends will meet at a 10 a.m. reception on the Tanner Terrace at Schoellkopf and,†at 11:30, repair†to the Football Tradition Room for the presentation ceremonies. At 12:30, the honorees--co-captains for the day--will go onto the field for the pre-Harvard game coin toss. After that, they'll return†to the terrace to see Coach Kent Austin's guys hammer Harvard.

Obituary for Robert T. Dean

From the Ithaca Journal, October 5, 2010

Robert (Bob) T. Dean died peacefully Saturday evening, September 25, 2010, comforted by the presence of family. Born April 10, 1923 in Rensselaer, Indiana, Bob's early childhood was graced with the academic values of his father, a high-school principal, and the religious convictions of his mother, the daughter of a Presbyterian minister. Family values of individual responsibility, honesty, hard work, and community service blended naturally with Bob's outgoing and optimistic nature. The glass was always half full in his eyes. A love of physical activity and the outdoors propelled him into the family sport of golf, adding football and basketball during his teen years and skiing as a young adult. Bob graduated from high school in Bloomington, Indiana and went on to start his freshman year at Indiana University where he met his future wife, Maxine, in freshman English. World War II redirected Bob after that first year. He enlisted in the Air Force, spending time with bombardier training and continuing to play football with the military league. This led to his decision after the war to enroll at Cornell University. There he studied electrical engineering and played football with the Big Red during the winning years when the crescent was full, establishing records for kicking and the longest play from scrimmage. He was the Sun's athlete of the year in 1949 and admitted into the CU Hall of Fame in September 1986. It took very little to convince Bob to stay in the Ithaca area after graduating from Cornell in 1949. There were employment opportunities, many good friends and a quality of life in Ithaca that was perfect for a young family. Bob joined a local electronic distributorship before founding Bob Dean lnc., an electronic manufacturer's rep business and then Deanco, an electronics distributor which ultimately expanded to Boston, Maryland, Florida, and Chicago. Bob's optimistic view of people and their potential, along with his willingness to set up Deanco with an employee-shared ownership program, enabled this amazing growth. Community involvement was a natural extension of Bob's business and personal life. He was actively involved as an alumni with SAE, Village of Cayuga Heights trustee, trustee and past board chairman at First Presbyterian, active in Cornell Council, on the boards of Country Club and TCTC, and director and member of several trade groups. Bob's later years continued to be active; skiing and playing golf into his eighties, nurturing a large circle of friends, engaging his grandchildren on the lake and slopes while optimistically embracing new opportunities and supporting local business efforts. He was a loving and generous man who will be greatly missed. Bob is survived by his wife, Maxine, together since 1945; children, Jeff (Barbara Claas) Dean, Diane (Don) Carpenter, Debra (Alan) Ledet, Doug (Sue) Dean; grandchildren, Ryan, Dustin, Kelly, Kasey, Marissa, Kendal, Karen, Kali, and Jenna; sister-in-law, Betty; nephews, Ross, Richard, Robert, and Randal Dean and their families; and many friends. Preceded in death by his only sibling and mentor, Ross H. Dean. A memorial and celebration of a life well lived will be held Sunday, October 10, 2010, at 3 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Church in Ithaca. The family invites you to join them for a reception immediately following in the church fellowship hall. In lieu of flowers, please remember Bob in a way of your choosing.

From the 2010 Cornell football program: Bob Dean '49 scores from one foot out and kicks the PAT with 2:40 left, giving the Big Red a 27-26 come-from-behind victory over Dartmouth in front of 30,000 fans at Schoellkopf field. The Big Red takes the mythical Ivy League Championship with a perfect record behind the feats of Hillary Chollet '50 and Pete Dorset '50.

A True Gentleman of New York Alpha

At Reunion 2004, SAE presented Robert T. Dean '49 with the True Gentleman Award.

The following is the text of the speech honoring Bob Dean, given by Alumni Association President Kevin T. Merriman '88:

A year ago we, as a board, decided it was important to honor alumni who have made important contributions to industry, the professions, or in service the fraternity; those whose lives exemplify the values and ideals of SAE, and it was decided that officers of the alumni assoc. would, from time-to-time, honor a brother in this fashion.

But, having agreed that this was important, we struggled with the question of what to name the award, and what criteria should be used in determining who should be selected to receive such an honor.

The answer soon became obvious; the criteria could only be our creed, The True Gentleman by John Walter Wayland, as that is the truest statement of what each of us as brothers of SAE strives to be in our own lives. It is worth reciting now, both as a reminder to us of the ideals it pronounces, and, for those who are not members of the fraternity, to provide a better understanding of what we are recognizing today.

The true gentleman is the man whose conduct proceeds from good will and an acute sense of propriety, and whose self-control is equal to all emergencies; who does not make the poor man conscious of his poverty, the obscure man of his obscurity, or any man of his inferiority or deformity; who is himself humbled if necessity compels him to humble another; who does not flatter wealth, cringe before power, or boast of his own possessions or achievements; who speaks with frankness but always with sincerity and sympathy; whose deed follows his word; who thinks of the rights and feelings of others, rather than his own; and who appears well in any company, a man with whom honor is sacred and virtue safe.
- John Walter Wayland

Thus, the True Gentleman Award. With these words in mind, it is befitting that our very first recipient of the True Gentleman Award is Bob Dean.

Bob could receive this award for many reasons, among them being:

  • He graduated from Cornell's College of Engineering in '49
  • He was a star football player, having lettered in '46, '47, and '48 as a back, punter, and kicker.
  • Bob set Cornell's all-time record for long plays, passing for a TD in a game with a 98-yard TD pass against Navy in '47.
  • For these achievements, he was inducted into Cornell's Athletic Hall of Fame in 1986.
  • Bob has also been involved in many civic organizations, including as a trustee of the Village of Cayuga Heights, and as chairman of the Presbyterian Church.
  • In addition, he is an accomplished businessman.

But while all of these accomplishments are certainly noteworthy, we honor Bob today as a True Gentleman because of his dedicated service to the fraternity.

At our lowest point in NY Alpha's long history at Cornell, fraternities were unpopular and membership was down considerably; so much so that it could not keep pace with its operating costs. This, in turn, led to borrowing, which led to substantial debt. By the late 1970s, the house was essentially bankrupt.

Bob Dean entered the picture, and spent many thankless years negotiating with CU to assume ownership and financial stewardship of the house and, at the same time, to preserve Hillcrest for generations of students to come.

Out of these negotiations came an unprecedented agreement; it resulted in a three-way relationship among the active brotherhood, the alumni assoc. and CU that set the framework for a partnership that has lasted two decades. It remains at the very heart of our organization. Indeed, we still operate today in accordance with its terms, which can be viewed on our website. Bob's tireless efforts built the foundation for a new beginning, a beginning that attracted new leadership and inspired new generations of actives, and continues to endure today.

Bob Dean '49 receiving True Gentleman award, with Charlie Kunken '05 looking on, at the awards ceremony during Reunion Weekend 2004.

A Profile on Bob Dean
From the New York Alpha News, Spring 2004

Robert T. Dean graduated from the College of Engineering with a degree in electrical engineering in '49. He was also an outstanding football player and was inducted into the Cornell Athletic Hall of Fame in 1986. Bob is also a successful businessman and established Deanco, a limited line technical distributor in 1964. This June, he will celebrate his 55th reunion.

Bob has also been involved in various civic activities including being a trustee of the Village of Cayuga Heights and past board chairman of the Presbyterian Church.

He has also worked with the United Fund, was a board member of the Country Club of Ithaca, and has been involved in various local, state, and national organizations related to his business. By virtue of being a past chapter adviser, he is also a member of the New York Alpha alumni board.

Bob and his wife, Maxine (Indiana '45), live on the east shore of Cayuga Lake. They have four children, two of whom received degrees from Cornell University.

In football Bob excelled. He lettered in '46, '47, and '48 as a back, punter, and kicker. He won many games for the Big Red with his last-minute heroics. He set Cornell's all-time record for long plays, passing for a TD in a game with a 98-yard TD pass versus Navy in '47. That record still stands. He was named Cornell Sun Athlete of the Year for 1948-49.

What every New York Alpha brother should remember brother Dean for, however, was not played out on the football field. His unparalleled dedication and commitment to SAE in the late '70s and early '80s as chapter adviser were critical to our survival as a fraternity. Others gave up, but not Bob. The house was a mess both physically and financially and without help was sure to go under.

Bob personally shelled out money for repairs and operating capital. He worked tirelessly with the university on a plan to transfer ownership of Hillcrest to Cornell as a means of saving SAE and our rights to occupy Hillcrest. The result of his focused effort was the '85 agreement, which, to this day, serves as the operating platform between Cornell University, the active brothers in the chapter, and your alumni board.

Thank you, Bob, for all you did. You are a very special brother, The True Gentleman.

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SAE NY Honors
Fairbairn "Gilk" Gilkeson '14

Remembering Gilkeson '14, A True SAE

Click on the photo to read dedicated issue of The Hillcrest 1965-1966 to Fairbairn Gilkeson '14.

With the possible exception of the 1891 founders of New York Alpha, the young alumni who purchased the original "Hillcrest" in 1902, and those who led the effort to rebuild after the 1911 fire, no other person has been as important to the success of the chapter as Fairbairn "Gilk" Gilkeson '14. He was chapter adviser from 1941 to 1967 and held key NY Alpha, Province Beta, and Province Nu offices from 1938 until the 1960s. In 1961, Gilk was awarded the Distinguished Service Award, the highest honor bestowed by Sigma Alpha Epsilon national on any individual member.

Many brothers fondly recall his frequent weekend visits to the house--driving from Philadelphia in a series of VW Beetles, wearing a tweed sports coat (usually brown) with a pipe in hand. He was loved and respected by all and knew the names of all of the actives. His strong hand on the tiller and exemplary financial management were vital to the success of the fraternity. Besides serving the house as advisor, he was liaison between the actives and the alumni as secretary and treasurer of the New York Alpha Alumni Association. Moreover, he assisted the brothers of SAE in maintaining orderly records by using his accounting skills.

Some comments from two of the many eminent treasurers with whom he worked: "Gilk was a rock. When, as ET, I took umbrage at paying money every month to something called the NY Alpha Association (an entity I thought must be a front for the Mafia), he patiently and competently explained where the money went and how necessary it was. He could relate to an ever-changing band of brothers and the real world." (Brian Elmer '58)

"I was ET for a year. Gilk, great accountant that he was, always paid a lot of attention and was a great tutor. When my books were not up to date for a review, he would very politely urge me to get on the stick. All was done on great ledgers, of course. No QuickBooks to help. It must have been a good start, as I have been treasurer of many extracurricular and work-related entities. In his quiet way, Gilk always seemed to enjoy his visits with us." (Harris Palmer '62)

Gilk graduated in 1914 and greatly enjoyed his fraternity experience at SAE. After returning to his hometown of Philadelphia to start his accounting career and his family, he continued his interest in fraternity work helping the University of Pennsylvania SAE chapter and being elected to the Province Council in 1938. A year later, the older of his two sons, Robert, graduated from Cornell after becoming a second-generation SAE. His other son, Jack, a Bucknell SAE, was lost when his US Navy submarine was sunk in the waters off Japan early in the war.

In 1941, Gilk became chapter adviser to New York Alpha, and, along with several dedicated war veterans, supervised the rebuilding of the chapter after WWII.

In 1942, Gilk became province archon, conducting extensive visitation and leadership seminar programs, and counseling the chapters in the Province. He retired from his post as chapter adviser in 1967 when his grandson, Dick, also an SAE, graduated from Cornell.

His tenure as chapter adviser spanned over 25 years between his older son's graduation and that of his grandson. His two other grandsons, Tom and Dave, also graduated from Cornell as SAE brothers. A fourth generation of Cornell SAE "Gilks" is still a possibility, as Dave has a 2-year-old son and is already saving for the youngster's Cornell education.

Gilk also worked with an enthusiastic group of brothers to formulate the plans that resulted in the wing added to the house in the 1960s.

photos of
Gilkeson '14

Throughout his term of service to the chapter, Gilk maintained his basic philosophy regarding his advisory position and always attempted to live up to that belief. He felt that his position was that of a counselor to whom the brothers could go for suggestions and ideas when needed, but who would not try to run the house himself. He stressed the importance of the brothers working out their own problems with as little interference as possible. This was the only way, he believed, that the fraternity could prepare the members for later life. The successful careers of so many Hillcrest leaders--EAs, EDAs, ETs, and rush and social chairs--have proven him correct.

In 1984, at 93, Gilk answered a holiday greeting from a brother as follows: "It was swell to get your note and always a pleasure to hear from alumni since I no longer get to Hillcrest. I look back at many weekends I spent there with fond memories. I put my last VW to rest last spring, as it was no longer a pleasure to drive. I am in pretty good shape for an old codger. Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and a happy and prosperous New Year. Fraternally yours, Gilk."

Loyalty, service, and zeal defined this humble servant who remembered and loved to put aside his ever-present pipe and sing Violets and the other fraternity and Cornell songs until his death at the age of 95.

Gilk inspired many to service for SAE. He was certainly a True Gentleman.

Dick Gilkeson '67 and Ron Demer '59

See more pictures of Fairbairn Gilkeson and other brothers from the early 1900s here.

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SAE NY Honors
Furman South III '43

NY Alpha Mourns the Passing of Furman South III ’43

Furman South III ’43, to some people Mr. SAE or Mr. True Gentleman, to others father, brother, or friend, passed away on January 18, 2014, at the age of 92.

He was a legend at Hillcrest, making his first trip to Ithaca at the ripe old age of 7 with his father. Furman graduated from Cornell in 1943, long before most of us were born, but he did make a lasting impact on many of us. His dad, Furman ’12, and brother, Richard ’46, were also SAEs, as are his sons, Hank ’69 and the late Cawood ’71, and grandson, Cawood ’95.

Furman was always active in SAE and Cornell affairs, including crew, and was for a long time head of the house corporation before Hillcrest was owned by the university. He never lost faith in NY Alpha, but he did recognize when it was time for him to yield responsibility to a younger team.

Last June was Furman South’s 70th reunion. Can you imagine the stories he had to tell from age seven until his 70th reunion???

Furman will certainly be missed and remembered by those who knew and loved him for his long-time support and dedication to Hillcrest, NY Alpha, and Cornell University.

Hal Sieling ’62

A remembrance from Todd Kennett '91, Spirit of '57 Director of Rowing and head coach of heavyweight rowing at Cornell…

“I want to share a short memory. Two old friends of Cornell Rowing left us. First Philip Rosen and second Furman South III ’43, who passed last week. Both were identical in their writeups. Veterans of WWII (Philip was part of the Manhattan Project, and Furman was part of the invasion at Okinawa, Japan, where he was wounded). Both men were survived by loyal families, had a ton to do with their communities, and were huge supporters of the crew. I personally can remember Furman South’s receptions after the Head of the Ohio races. Many years of Cornell Rowers will never forget the support from these wonderful alums. May flat, calm waters be part of their journey.”

Read Furman South’s obituary from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette here.

Furman South III '43
By Hal Sieling '62

Furman South III '43 has been involved with New York Alpha for more than 50 years, but his connections go back much further. While at Cornell, Furman was an active player at SAE. He was part of an undefeated crew team and was a house officer as well. In the late '50s and '60s, he was president of the New York Alpha Alumni Association, and he has been a generous contributor of time and money ever since. He was a member of the last alumni board before the house was given over to Cornell. Other association members during his era were Robert Laughlin '49, Thomas Fennell '26, James Tate '52, and of course, Fairbairn Gilkeson '14.

His father, Furman South Jr. '12, was also an SAE in the same era as Fairbairn Gilkeson '14, our longtime chapter advisor and the 2005 recipient of the True Gentleman of New York Alpha Award. Furman Jr. was also a longtime alumni board president, and he drove to Ithaca in his Model A with Furman III by his side more than 70 years ago. Two of Furman's sons, Hank '69 and Cawood '71, were also NY Alpha brothers, as was Cawood's son, R.L Cawood South '95. Furman's sister was a member of the class of '48. His brother, Richard '46, was also an SAE.

After graduating in 1943, Furman spent three tough years in the Pacific (Okinawa and Korea) during World War II. He then returned home to Pennsylvania in 1947, where he and another SAE went to work for Furman Jr. Eventually, he ran LAVA Crucible-Refractories Company near Pittsburgh, a company specializing in refractories for the steel industry. He also ran Saxonburg Ceramics, which manufactures ceramics for the electronics, heater, and appliance industries. He still is chairman of Saxonburg, but Lava was sold. He has also been involved with American Paper Products, a church mailing service, Zircoa Corp., and a few other manufacturing companies over the years. His civic activities include being on the board of Pittsburgh History and Landmarks. He still comes in to work several days a week.

Furman South Jr. '12 playing Cornell football in 1912. This photo was found in an SAE scrapbook during an archival project.

One positive memory of his was the addition built during the time he was president of the alumni association. Not so positive was the debt incurred to build the addition and the actives then failing to pay the bills--which eventually led to Hillcrest's being turned over to Cornell. "It is not always easy keeping things going in a positive direction but eventually, if you work hard and pull together, they will turn for the better."

His favorite memories of Ithaca are rowing on Lake Cayuga, plenty of beer, and lots of longtime friends from Cornell, the crew, and of course, SAE. Another great memory was the cross-country train ride in a private car in 1983 to attend his 40th reunion with several other classmates and wives. Furman served Cornell as a council member and trustee of the rowing association. He also recruited students from the Pittsburgh area and was active in the Cornell clubs there. His involvement with Cornell and the crew continues. After a recent regatta at the Head of Ohio races in Pittsburgh, he hosted a party for the men's crew at his house with a dinner and live music. He has held similar events for both men's and women's crew teams for a number of years.

Furman never misses a Cornell reunion, and we hope to see him for his 65th in 2008. In 2004, he married a lovely lady, Frances, a Canadian from Montreal. His previous wife of 50 years, Kay, mother of his children, passed away in 2001. You can write to Furman South at Windward Farm, Backbone Rd., Sewickley, PA 15143.

A Speech Recognizing the Efforts of Furman South III

After spending so many years involved with Hillcrest, it is hard to believe we could have been outdone.

But, there is one brother here today who has been involved with Hillcrest for longer than most of us have been alive.

That brother is none other than Furman South III who has been coming to Hillcrest for more than 70 years and has been active in the chapter for more than 50 years. Yes, I am serious that Furman came here as a passenger in his dad's car when he was just a boy.

He grew up in this place, was active as an officer and crew member while attending Cornell in the early 1940s and led the alumni board into the early '60s. Furthermore, he has never missed a key reunion.

Furman remains a significant contributor of funds and time to Cornell and SAE up to this very day.

Two of Furman's sons, his father, and his brother were SAEs as was one grandson who I hope will join the board one day soon.

Furman was a crew member of an undefeated team at CU and continues to host crew members when they are in the Pittsburgh area.

Furman led the alumni board from shortly after WW II up to the point that Bob Dean took over and negotiated the transfer of Hillcrest to Cornell University.

As he once said, "It is not always easy keeping things going in a positive direction but eventually, if you work hard and pull together, they will turn for the better."

We hope Furman will join us again for his 65th reunion celebration next year. (Editor's Note: Furman did attend his 65th reunion in 2008.)

In the meantime, we thank you, Furman, for your numerous contributions, and are pleased you were our 2006 True Gentleman of NY Alpha recipient.

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SAE NY Honors
Robert F. Gilkeson '39

Fairbairn Gilkeson, who was honored with The True Gentleman award on June 11, 2005, left a legacy beyond his personal contributions to New York Alpha. One of his two sons, Bob, had a very distinguished career while sending three sons and his daughter through Cornell. His other son, Jack, a Bucknell SAE brother, gave his life for his country when his submarine, the Albacore was lost in the Sea of Japan during WWII.

Bob Gilkeson, born to Fairbairn and his wife Helen in 1917, was a product of the Depression, and held several jobs from shining shoes on the boardwalk in Atlantic City to playing trumpet in a jazz band to finance his education at Cornell. He had several lifelong friends who were brothers, most notably Carson Cornbrooks, with whom he communicated and visited regularly over the years after graduation in 1939, and until Bob died in 1993 at the age of 75.

He loved taking things apart to find out how they worked and used to reminisce about the days he converted Indian motorcycle engines for use in light airplanes. He was particularly proud of having kept his wedding toaster alive and well for over 40 years.

Bob often talked about how much he enjoyed being the house manager at Hillcrest, and credited the experience with motivating him to do much of the construction himself on the house in Wayne, Pennsylvania, where he raised his family.

This interest extended to radios and other early electrical devices, and no one was surprised when he chose to study electrical engineering. After Cornell, he was hired as a cadet by the Philadelphia Electric Company (PECO). When Uncle Sam intervened, he served as a U.S. Army officer in WWII, spending most of his time, as he explained it, eating powdered eggs and watching the sea turtles lay eggs of their own on a top secret mission on remote Ascension Island in the Atlantic.

After returning to PECO, Bob moved beyond climbing utility poles and started his ascent through the ranks. In 1951 he packed up the family and was granted a leave of absence to work for Westinghouse near Idaho Falls, Idaho, where he was interviewed and cleared by Admiral Hyman Rickover to help with the development of the prototype propulsion system for the world’s first nuclear naval vessel, the submarine Nautilus. PECO was about to enter the nuclear power plant age, and the guy who liked to know all about how things worked was chosen to learn as much as he could.

When he returned to PECO in 1953, he was given increasingly greater responsibilities. His curiosity and inventiveness resulted in a few patents and several contributions to the use of very high steam conditions in Electric generation when he served as the superintendent of Eddystone, one of the nation’s earliest supercritical steam electric generating stations, in the late 1950’s. Elected a Vice President in 1961, he was promoted and made a member of the Board of Directors in 1962, President in 1965, CEO in 1970 and CEO and Chairman of the Board in 1971. He served as Chairman until his retirement in 1982 but continued on as chairman of the executive committee until 1988.

Along the way, his Idaho experience allowed him to contribute significantly in the development of a very early nuclear reactor prototype plant and then several commercial nuclear plants for PECO. He founded Radiation Management Corporation in 1968. This medical service, which prepared and trained nuclear plant personnel and local hospitals to deal with radiation injuries, continues to serve utility companies throughout the United States.

His leadership was recognized with his election to chairman of the Edison Electric Institute in 1977, the National Academy of Engineering in 1978, and his nomination by President Reagan and confirmation by the U.S. Senate to serve on the National Science Foundation Board in 1982. He also served on several boards that influenced the development of Philadelphia and its regional economic interests. Along the way, he served as general chairman for the greater Philadelphia United Fund Torch Drive and was presented the Poor Richard Club’s gold medal for his contributions to both industry and civic leadership.

Like his father, Gilk, Bob Gilkeson served as a trustee for the Williamson Free School of Mechanical Trades and the Northern Home for Children in an effort to give back to the community. He also regularly traveled to Ithaca to help advise the Cornell engineering school regarding their development plans. He was active with the Cornell Club of Philadelphia and would often speak to prospective students.

Also, like Gilk, he was a very modest man. He much preferred just getting the job done, and hated the regular trips he was forced to make to Washington D.C. to defend the nuclear industry. When he was forced to modify his home phone to keep the opponents of nuclear power from screaming at him at home at all hours of the night, he often wished he had just been able to be an engineer and devote his career to the nuts and bolts of power generation. At the height of his career he refused to give himself a raise for several years in order to let his attackers know that his motivation for guiding his company into the nuclear age was not to line his pockets. When he was named an executive and given his choice of cars for travel to and from the office, he passed up the black Caddies and Lincolns on the lot and chose instead to be driven in a non-descript gray Rambler American. Gilk, who always drove VW bugs, must have enjoyed that!

Bob remarked at one time that the reason he pursued a management track rather than just sticking to engineering, his true love, was that he just hated working for people who knew less about what was going on than he did, and the best way to deal with this was to become their boss. He was his own man, and delighted in not simply following the latest management fads. Despite advice to have his secretary screen all his calls to save him time, he insisted on answering his office phone personally even when he was the CEO.

Bob Gilkeson as a young man

Bob absolutely hated dealing with employees who hadn’t done their homework. When PECO became computerized in the 1980’s, an Information Systems manager insisted there was no way he could format a computer report in the way Bob wanted to see it. Rather than spend a lot of time arguing, Bob simply bought a prototype Sinclair computer and produced a report formatted the way he had requested it and called the man back into his office. Along the way he took the machine apart to see how it had been built and constructed a new one from parts he found at Radio Shack. And the software program he used? Well, it was fortran – self taught, of course.

He hated not knowing what was going on, and grew increasingly upset when the early I. S. Managers, in particular, wanted large budgets but couldn’t explain to him in detail how all the money was to be spent. He suggested that the I.S. department put together classes to educate the employees and managers about the capabilities of the machines, and of course, was the first to sign up and attend, even though he was the top executive.

As his sons Dick, Tom, and Dave were considering college and fraternity choices, their dad made their decisions fairly simple. He would say, “You can go to any school you want, and pledge any fraternity you want, but I’ll pay the bills at Cornell and SAE.” None of the boys ever tried to find out if he was serious.

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SAE NY Honors
George R. Pfann '24

When George R. Pfann Sr., class of '24, died on December 17, 1996, at the age of 94, he was the oldest living member of the College Football Foundation and Hall of Fame.

During his undergraduate days, Pfann was a true "student-athlete" before the term came into being. He was a quarterback who led the team to 24 straight wins from 1921 to 1923, earning All-America honors as the captain in 1923. He also won three letters in lacrosse and was on the basketball squad for three years.

After graduating with honors, he continued his education at Cornell Law School for two years before accepting a Rhodes Scholarship to complete his legal education at Brasenose College of Oxford University. During his law school days on the Hill, he was an assistant football coach and was the freshman basketball mentor.

When WWII came, Pfann served in the European Theatre through the worst of the fighting. As secretary of the general staff of the United States Seventh and Third Armies under General George Patton, our George figured in the electrifying tank warfare that changed the attack from a slow, grinding "first-down" offensive to "carry-the-ball all the way" through the defenses of the opposition. He was decorated with the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star, Defender of the Fatherland, seven battle stars, and one Arrowhead (amphibious landing).

As a civilian, Pfann was general counsel for the Cooperative Grange League Federation, now called Agway, until his retirment. He was a professor at Cornell Law School and a member of the University Board of Trustees and then seved as Trustee Emeritus.

Pfann was named to the College Football Foundation and Hall of Fame in 1957 and was a charter member of the Cornell Athletic Hall of Fame. In the 1980s, Pfann could still be seen going to the Teagle Pool for his exercise. An All-American quarterback at Cornell in 1923, Pfann was short and chunky at 5-foot-9 and 172 pounds. In the single wing of his era, the quarterback was often called the blocking back, but he also had to carry the ball on plunges into the line and was sometimes used as a pass receiver.

In Pfann's three years as a starter, Cornell won all 24 of its games and scored 1,051 points against 81 for its opponents. The school's most important games were against Pennsylvania. In 1921, Pfann was featured as a blocker in front of Edgar Kaw, who scored 5 touchdowns in a 41-0 victory.

Pennsylvania was watching for Kaw in 1922 and Pfann did most of the ground gaining as Cornell won, 9-0. Kaw graduated in 1923. Pfann, captaining the team that fall, caught a 30-yard pass for one touchdown and ran 5 yards for the other as Cornell again beat Penn, 14-7.

George Trevor of the New York Sun put Pfann on the all-time All-American team he selected in 1938.

Pfann studied law after graduating and then spent a year as a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford. He became U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York and, during World War II, was on Gen. George S. Patton's staff. He coached football at Swarthmore from 1931 through 1935.

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SAE NY Honors
Frank Haucke 1917

Review of the 1916 Football Season

The Cornell football team of 1916, though making a creditable showing, failed to keep up the championship pace set by its illustrious predecessor, the unbeaten team of 1915. However, it must be said that the 11 was of the same powerful, finished type which has characterized the efforts of Dr. Sharpe since the firm establishment of his regime in Ithaca. Eight games were played, of which, Cornell won all but two, defeating Gettysburg, Williams, Bucknell, Michigan, the Massachusetts Aggies, and Carnegie Tech., and losing to Harvard and Pennsylvania. Cornell scored 165 points to her opponents' 73. In four of the games, the opposing team was shut out; in two, there were close scores; and in two Cornell was decisively beaten.

Unfortunately, for the development of the team, an outbreak of infantile paralysis in the East caused the university authorities to postpone the opening of college for two weeks. As a result, the first game, which had been scheduled with Oberlin, was canceled and practice was delayed for a week. It was not until Monday, September 25, that Coaches Sharpe, Reed, and Van Orman began work with a squad of about 55 men. The outlook was not unfavorable despite the late beginning. It must be admitted that the coaches faced the rather discouraging task of replacing three of the greatest stars in Cornell's gridiron history, Barrett, Cook, and Shelton, quarterback, center, and left end on the 1915 championship team. Collins, the brilliant halfback and Jameson, one of the most dependable forwards that Dan Reed has turned out in years, were also lost through graduation. Yet there remained much promising material among the veterans of the past season and among the substitutes who played on the second team. THere were Captain Mueller, fullback; Shiverick, right half; Eckley, right end; Miller, left guard; Anderson, right guard; Gillies, left tackle; all of whom had played on the 1915 varsity team, and Tilley, a guard of several years' varsity experience.

The season opened with the Gettysburg game on Monday, October 9, which resulted in a Cornell victory with the score of 26 to 0. Naturally the team was rather crude at this early stage; it was lacking in speed and efficient team play, but it showed considerable evidence of possessing latent power. The line showed up well, but although the line bucks were stopped almost without exception, the ends proved to be vulnerable. Shiverick was seen for the first time at quarterback while Hoffman and Benedict were the halfbacks. In the last period, Speed was sent in to give the signals and Shiverick took Benedict's place.

On the following Saturday, October 14, the weak Williams team was overwhelmed by the score of 42 to 0. The victory may be attributed chiefly to superior physical strength, for although the line showed up well and the backfield seemed to work in harmony, the ends proved once more to be exceedingly weak. Eckley and Zander were both out of the game, and so the choice for ends fell on Ryerson and Eilenberger. Pennington and Ensworth were also tried out in this position. In the backfield, Bretz appeared to have the making of a brilliant player, and Haucke and Speed also showed up well as substitute backs. Among the line substitutes, Dixon and Fischer were conspicuous for good playing. The team had not yet received a real test, for the Purple's opposition was very ineffective.

Then followed on October 21, the game with Bucknell. Cornell was victorious, but the showing of the team was not so encouraging as on the previous Saturday. Serious weaknesses in team and individual play were revealed. Perhaps on account of its late start, the 11 was still slow; it lacked ginger, its end play had not materially improved and its backfield, while powerful, failed to show speed and punch.

The playing of the team in the Harvard game at Cambridge where it was defeated 23 to 0, was a great disappointment to the thousands of Cornellians who had gathered from many places to see the game. Harvard's superlative skill which showed itself in effective punting, aggressive line work, and persistent ability to follow the ball, was the reason for defeat. The Cornell backs were unable to hold the ball and were lacking skill in picking their openings. Eckley broke into the game for the first time of the season but both he and Zander were tricked and boxed by the Harvard interference. Fumbling and weak defensive line work which forced Shiverick to hurry many of his kicks, were other characteristics of Cornell play at Cambridge.

Two of Harvard's touchdowns came as a direct result of fumbling. Shiverick's fumble of a punt near the end of the first period gave the ball to Harvard on the Cornell 35-yard line. A forward pass, unmolested by Cornell, took the ball to the 17-yard line where on the first play of the second quarter Casey shook off the whole Cornell 11 and scored the first touchdown. The last Harvard touchdown was even more of a gift. Cornell had stopped the Harvard rushes and gained the ball on her own seven-yard line when Haucke, who had been substituted for Hoffman, juggled the ball right into the arms of Sweetser, the Harvard left tackle, enabling him to cross the goal line for the final score.

On their return to Ithaca the players set their teeth and went quietly to work. By the time of the game with Carnegie Tech., which Cornell won by the score of 15 to 7, the team already showed an improvement in individual play, yet it was plain that it had not regained its stride. Loose tackling and slow thinking coupled with poor work on the part of the ends allowed Carnegie to make many long gains which were discouraging to those who believed that the team could come back after its defeat at the hands of Harvard. Speed started the game instead of Shiverick until the final period when the latter took his place and the former displaced Hoffman. At this point in the game the team seemed to awaken a bit from its lethargy and it advanced the ball with comparative ease.

But the Cornell football team of 1916 "found itself" on the following Saturday, November 11. With the stand on Schoellkopf Field packed with 12,000 spectators, Cornell defeated Michigan in what was perhaps the most thrilling game seen in Ithaca in many years. At first, Cornell led but then Michigan came up from behind and at the end of the first half, the score was 20 to 6 in her favor. A long forward pass thrown by Peach and caught by Dunne repeated several times led to two touchdowns, and Michigan's end runs and off tackle rushes found little resistence. At this point, it seemed that Michigan was in every respect the superior team. The Michigan men were fast and in every play, whereas the Cornell interference was utterly ineffective. But in the last 20 minutes of the game it was a different story. The Cornell team began to think and play a brand of football that was irrestible. It could not be driven out of Michigan territory. If Shiverick was forced to kick, the team stopped Maulbetsch and Smith in their vain attempts to gain. The line broke through time and again and hurried the Michigan punter so that his kicks soared high into the air. And so, with the aid of Shiverick's wonderful kicks, the Cornell offense crossed Michigan's goal line twice, making the score 20 to 20. Though there was not much longer to play both teams fought bitterly to break the tie which seemed inevitable. Sparks, who was now playing quarterback for Michigan, rushed the ball to Cornell's 10-yard line, but Cornell held for downs and brought the ball back to the 28-yard line. Here Shiverick executed a remarkable punt which sailed over the heads of the Michigan backs and came to rest on the three-yard line. Michigan punted to her own 30-yard line and after three scrimmages had gained seven yards, Shiverick stepped back and kicked his third field goal.

Still the seemingly interminable second half was not ended. Cornell kicked off and Michigan tried pass after pass without success until the final whistle blew.

The team closed the local season on the following Saturday by defeating the Massachusetts Agricultural College 37 to 0. The field was completely watersoaked, and the ground was so slippery that neither team played good football. Shiverick didn't play, and his place was taken by Speed who punted well, and ran the team with good judgment. The halfbacks were Hoffman and Van Horn. Captain Mueller played throughout the first half and Fischer substituted for him at fullback for the rest of the game. Cornell's real defensive strength was not tested, for the visitors made only three first downs in the whole game and Cornell had the ball most of the time. The condition of the field was such that in spite of little opposition, the backs usually took four downs to gain the ten yards.

Nine days later 24 members of the squad left for Atlantic City, there to remain until the morning of Thanksgiving Day. They were Captain Mueller, Anderson, Eckley, Jewett, Shiverick, Gillies, Miller, Carry, Speed, Hoffman, Ryerson, Eilenberger, Sutton, McCormick, Brown, Bard, Taylor, Zander, Fischer, Haucke, Benedict, Tilley, Dixon, and Van Horn. Before the men were the three successive victories of preceding years, 21 to 0, 24 to 12, 24 to 9.

In the final game, Pennsylvania with an excellent team, coached to take advantage of the weaknesses which Cornell had been displaying all season, was victorious by the score of 23 to 3. Cornell's fatal weakness was in the line, and it is difficult to understand why five men who had played against Penn in the previous year should fail to stop their lighter opponents. As a consequence, the backfield was unable to make substantial gains, and Shiverick was hurried in his punting. Two of his kicks were blocked and one of these blocked kicks was directly converted into a touchdown. Again, forward passing was made difficult by the fact that Pennsylvania players continually sifted through the line.

Pennsylvania had a varied attack in which a deadly and well executed forward pass was especially effective. In ability to gain ground by rushing, Pennsylvania had much the better of Cornell. Penn gained about 200 yards from scrimmage—about twice as much as Cornell. The victory was won not by overwhelming strength, but by better maneuvering, greater resourcefulness, and more readiness to seize opportunities.

The only bright spot in the game for the large Cornell representation at Franklin Field was the first few minutes of play. Matthews made a poor kick-off, and Cornell got the ball near mid-field. After gaining by an exchange of punts, Shiverick kicked a field goal. The Cornell stock fell almost at once, however, when Penn scored her first touchdown, yet hope did not die out for a victory until the second half when the longed-for Cornell rally which had made itself famous in the Michigan game failed to materialize. Thus ended the season of 1916.

The 1917 squad should find many veterans eligible to play as well as a large number substitutes with considerable experience. There will be Shiverick, Speed, Benedict, and Bretz in the backfield, Ryerson, Eilenberger, and Ensworth at the ends, and Gillies, Miller, and Carry in the line. The team loses by graduation Captain Mueller, Eckley, Zander, Brown, Anderson, Tilley, Bard, Haucke, and Fischer.

Click here to read more about Haucke.

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