Class of 1979 Spring 2017 Letter

Spring 2017

Greetings, Classmates!

So, have you awakened recently and felt that the earth had tilted a bit on its axis? Perhaps this “tilted-ness” is part of turning 60. Perhaps it is connected to extreme weather, the economy, the political world—including marching in the streets and energized town hall meetings. Perhaps it is “all of the above” and more. Ah, change! We are reminded that life is continuously evolving—being reshaped and reformed.

The reality of change is nothing new. When Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany, on October 31, 1517, that event initiated a movement that impacted not just Christianity, but also aspects of society, culture, and history. (And we are wise to remember that not everyone was keen on the idea of this change.) But the point of a reformation is to make changes in order to improve something—to make something better. Stay tuned . . . there’s more of life to come!

Speaking of Martin Luther and the Reformation (pretty slick how I made that transition, eh?), Luther has launched its commemoration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation: The Reformation of Everything, 1517 – 2017: Exploring a Movement that Changed the World. This year-long commemoration will explore the Reformation’s impact, legacy, and continuing relevancy to today. Information on various events, performances, and exhibitions can be found at

The opening convocation for Luther’s 2017 spring semester was held February 2 with Elizabeth Eaton, presiding bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, serving as honored speaker. Eaton shared thoughts connecting the past and present—identifying one of the primary principles of Luther’s Reformation—service to our neighbors. In essence, God does not need our good works, but our neighbors do. There is always something we can do—something we can offer—to benefit others.

We welcome your service to the Luther Community in whatever way you feel able to share: by encouraging prospective students to consider Luther as their place for undergraduate study, by inviting a current Luther student to experience an internship experience with you / your place of business, by providing an annual (or even one-time) financial gift, and by keeping the school in your thoughts and prayers.

As most of you probably already know, Luther’s beloved Weston Noble ’43 died December 21, 2016, at age 94. A visitation and prayer service was held December 29 at First Lutheran Church in Decorah, and a private family graveside service was held December 20 at Riverside Cemetery in Riceville, Iowa, with full military honors. You may want to mark your calendars for the upcoming celebration of life for Weston—to be held on the Luther campus at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 13, at the Center for Faith and Life, Main Hall.

Change is an opportunity to reflect on the past, to consider the present moment, and to ponder the best way to move forward. Here’s wishing you all the very best and hoping that whatever changes come your way will lead to something better.

If you would like to explore the opportunity to serve Luther and our class as class agent, please contact Sue Drilling at [email protected] or 563-387-1100.

Onward we go!

Karen Bergan
[email protected]


Brian Andreas of Decorah had a book signing event for two of his recent books, Bring Your Life Back to Life and Something like Magic, at the Luther College Book Shop last December.

Bonnie (Olson) Johnston is a medical technologist at Kittitas Valley Healthcare in Ellensburg, Wash.

The Annual Fund – make your gift today:
Your gift. Put to work, right away, where it is needed most.

Last year more than 10,000 alumni, family, and friends supported Luther’s Annual Fund with gifts from $5 to $100,000. Your gift makes a difference for each and every student at Luther, and we are grateful for your support.


This list includes all gifts received January 1, 2016, to December 31, 2016. Making a gift each and every year is an investment in the lives of Luther students and a show of support for the Luther College community. Thank you for your support of Luther College through your giving.

Kathleen (Jones) Abrahamson
Neal Albee
Barbara (Berglund) Anderson
Cynthia (Smith) Anson
Sarah Austrheim Orngard
Karen Bergan
Gerald Berkeland
Rebecca (Hanson) Berman
Karen (Bunge) Bingham
Richard Bloxham
Ruth (Pfeil) Bloxham
Judith (DeYoung) Bloyd
Ronald Boettner
Julie (Luse) Brooks
Steven Buck
Mary Bunge Docken
Michelle (Melchert) Cammarata
Leif Carlson
Mary Caspers-Graper
Rodney Christensen
Phyllis (Zylstra) Comstock
Steve Corson
Rebecca Dohrn
Julie (Raney) Duff
Keith Ellingson
Scott Emich
Nancy Engen-Wedin
David Faldet
Julie (Forsman) Farland
Phillip Finanger
Nancy (Barrett) Fisher
Dani Fjelstad
Duane Flak
Steven Froehlich
Kim (Haugen) Gapinski
Mark Gould
Paula (Krull) Grace
Denise Grau Nelson
Vian (Peterson) Gredvig
Dennis Green
Dwight Grotte
Jeffery Gunderson
Mark Hageness
Fredrick Hanewall
Jeffrey Hansen
Andrea (Anderson) Healy
Dayton Henderson
Jeffrey Indrelie
Cheryl (Carstens) Irland
Paul Jentz
Eric Johnson
Verlyn Johnson
Kari (Knudtson) Jones
Kevin Josephson
Kristi (Wahlberg) Josephson
Thomas Juracek
Clara (Phan) Knudson
Douglas Kolpak
Kirsten Koos
Donna Lager
Rebecca (Knutson) Lawrence
Kathryn (Garbrecht) Leland
Martha Lionberger
James Loux
James Lovell
Ronald Meddock
Kenneth Meyer
Barbara (Olson) Moorhead
James Moorhead
Paul Morlock
Patrick Mueller
Paul Mullen
Charles Mulvaney-Kemp
Vickie Nash
Daniel Nelson
Debra (Wild) Olsen
Timothy Olsen
David Olson
Solveig (Storvick) Pollei
Laura (Dahl) Popkes
David Reitz
Mary (Swenson) Rettig
Rebecca Rettmer
Jay Rockwell
Alan Rosendahl
Robyn Sand Anderson
Janet (Bicket) Savre
Mary (Hamilton) Schultz
Dale Shatzer
Sarah (Law) Shatzer
Kent Smith
Carl Stecker
Barbara (Langhus) Tashjian
Alan Thorne
Bruce Tinkoff
Daniel Tjornehoj
Carol Tomer
Mark Tranvik
Susan (Heers) Turnipseed
John Twedt
Lance Vander Linden
Tammy Vine
Cheryl Westrum Bressler
Mary (DeVoe) Wetlaufer
Roger Wetlaufer
Jeffrey Wettach
Perran Wetzel
Robert Wiemerslage
Rebecca (Westerfield) Wilke
Kristin (Fallon) Williams
Joel Zellmer

Every attempt has been made to ensure the accuracy of this list. If an error has been made, please accept our apology and contact the Luther Development Office at 800-225-8664, or email [email protected].