Class of 1963 Fall 2018 Letter

Fall 2018

Greetings Classmate,

I hope this finds you and yours well and happy. Summer is nearing its end and signs of fall are beginning to appear. The sumac around us are beginning to change to their beautiful deep reds.

I want to begin with a big “shout out” to Luther’s Dorian Summer Music Camp. Not surprisingly, this iconic Luther tradition was started by Weston Noble in 1949, to bring together young students of voice and instruments to learn theory and technique, to perfect performance and to celebrate the joys of music. To date, 90,000 middle school and high school students have experienced Dorian Summer Music Camp. It’s amazing, and bodes well for the future of music in our churches and communities.

For the past six years Dick and I have had the pleasure of being Dorian Grandparents. Our grandsons, Dane and Barrett Edwards of Grinnell, Iowa, and our granddaughter, Madelyn Worthington of Riverside, California, have attended Summer Dorian. Each will attest to the value of all they have learned and the friendships they have created, all around music, and their intent to return year after year. Their end-of-camp concerts – choir, band, orchestra, ensembles – are very impressive.

This summer Dorian offered something new – Dorian for Adults. 200+ adults – some Luther choir alumni, community and church choir members, folks who simply enjoy singing - came to campus for three days to learn theory and technique and, like the younger Dorian, to celebrate the gift of music. Dorian for Adults also culminated in an awesome concert.

Learn more about Dorian Summer Music Camps on their website Encourage youth in your area to attend a camp. Attend yourself. Consider a gift to the student scholarship program to help kids with limited resources experience Dorian. Yes, we are Big Dorian Fans!

Now, to catch-up on other good things happening at Luther…

It’s the start of a new school year at Luther, one that promises to be as wonderfully action-packed as ever. In August, the college welcomed 575 new students to campus. Over the summer, they read a book that many Luther grads will remember from Paideia: The Odyssey. This year’s edition comes with a twist: it’s the first English translation by a woman, Emily Wilson, and by all accounts it’s a vivid, engaging, and sprightly retelling of the classic homecoming story. If you’re up for a return to your Paideia roots, you can join the fun through Luther’s reading guide to the book:

Speaking of homecomings, this year we’ll celebrate two important milestones during Luther’s Homecoming Weekend, October 26–28. First, the Black Student Union (BSU) commemorates its 50th anniversary this fall. There are several events planned during Homecoming and throughout the year to celebrate the founding of the organization—including forums, lectures, a brunch, and a BSU reunion—so mark your calendars. Luther’s Nursing Department also observes a birthday—its 40th—this fall. Homecoming Weekend, Kris Dreifuerst ’85 will lead a workshop for nursing educators and deliver the Ironside Distinguished (Alumni) Lecture in Nursing, which will be followed by an open house at Luther’s simulation lab.

In addition to Homecoming lecturers, Luther will welcome other notable speakers to campus this season. On October 23, social psychologist Jonathan Haidt will deliver the Farwell Distinguished Lecture, “The Coddling of the American Mind: How Good Intentions and Bad Ideas Are Setting Up a Generation for Failure.” His book of the same name, published earlier this month, explores how the cultural climate of “safetyism” on college campuses across the U.S. interferes with the healthy development of students. He argues that recent social and cultural trends are setting children up to fail as healthy, autonomous, adaptable adults. If you don’t have time to read the book, you can get a snapshot through Haidt’s Atlantic article:

Finally, most have heard that President Paula Carlson will retire at the end of the 2018–19 academic year. During her time at Luther, President Carlson added several academic programs to the college, renewed outdoor facilities, expanded Luther’s Career Center services, developed and launched the “Next Steps for Sophomores” program, added a dean of institutional equity and inclusion to Luther’s staff, and achieved Luther’s goal of reducing its carbon footprint by 50 percent by the end of 2015, among other things. Luther’s Board of Regents is taking the necessary steps in the presidential search process with the hope of transitioning leadership over the course of next summer and having a new president in place for the 2019–20 academic year.

Exciting changes are happening at Luther, and that’s a good thing. At the same time, many traditions like Dorian and Homecoming remain. I hope to see you on campus Saturday, October 28, as Luther Homecoming celebrates our 55-year Class Reunion. Come home!

Until then, wishing you a happy fall…Be well. Be kind. Be in touch.

Soli Deo Gloria

Patti McCullough Edwards
1963 Class Agent
N7547 537th Street
Menomonie, WI 54751
[email protected]


Tom Berven retired after 48 years coaching varsity boy’s tennis at Neenah (Wis.) High School.

­Phyllis (Dankers) Yes is professor emerita of art, painting, and drawing at Lewis and Clark College in Portland, Ore. She was recently featured in an article on the school’s website for her boundary-pushing art, particularly Good Morning, Miss America, a play she wrote in 2015 that takes viewers through the realities of aging and the demands of family life. The play debuted at CoHo Theatre in Portland from March 10-31, 2018.


Kirk Edwin Beck of Evanston, Ill., died May 19, 2018, age 77.

Kathryn Christine Bender of Nevada, Iowa, died Sept. 11, 2017, age 76.

Albert G. “Al” Bernatz of Decorah, died Jan. 12, 2018, age 77.

Gene Haugland of Edina, Minn., died Jan. 10, 2018, age 76.

Richard Allan “Dick” Kleppe of La Crescent, Minn., died Sept. 24, 2017, age 76.

Janice M. (Phillips) Notbohm Lehmann of Stoughton, Wis., died Feb. 25, 2018 age 76.

Irene L. (Lohr) Schelman of Muskego, Wis., died July 16, 2018, age 76.

Adelle D. (Jensen) Wills of Plymouth, Minn., died Feb. 27, 2018, age 76.

The full obituaries of classmates listed in this letter can be found on the Luther College website at:

If you would like a printout of the obituaries listed above in their entirety mailed to you, please contact us at: [email protected], or 563-387-1509.