Dear Wheatley Wildcats and Other Interested Persons,
Welcome to The Wheatley School Alumni Association Newsletter # 109.
According to Substack, in the first 25 hours after publication Newsletter # 108 was viewed 2,928 times, was “liked” 10 times, and received two (positive) comments. In all, 4.650 email addresses received Newsletter # 108.
All underlined text is a link-to-a-link. Clicking anywhere on underlined text, and then left-clicking on the link that pops up, will get you to your on-line destination.
The Usual Words of Wisdom
Thanks to our fabulous Webmaster, Keith Aufhauser (Class of 1963), you can regale yourself with the first 108 Newsletters (and much other Wheatley data and arcana) at
Also, thanks to Keith is our search engine, prominently displayed on our home page: type in a word or phrase and, mirabile dictu, you’ll find every place it exists in all previous Newsletters and other on-site material. I use it all the time; it works!
I edit all submissions, even material in quotes, for clarity and concision, without any indication thereof. I do not vouch for the accuracy of what people tell me.
We welcome any and all text and photos relevant to The Wheatley School, 11 Bacon Road, Old Westbury, NY 11568, and the people who administered, taught and/or studied there. Art Engoron, Class of 1967
Class of 1973 50th-Year Reunion
Saturday, October 14, 2023 - 1:30 to 5:30 pm
Hendrick’s Tavern - Roslyn
Passed Hors D’oeuvres, Buffet Lunch, Dessert, Beer and Wine
Cost - $125 per person -Plus Ones welcome!
Contact Nancy Dreyer with any questions and/or to arrange payment:
“Don't miss this! It's going to be a terrific event! Gentle reminder - we're not getting any younger.”
Class of 2003 20th-Year Reunion
The event will occur on October 21, 2023, starting at 7:30, at Hendricks Tavern in Roslyn. The cost is $180 per person - spouses welcome. Food and top-shelf liquor included. Please pay no later than June 30, 2023. You can pay Kristen Bonell (Capozzi) or Ari Schnitzer by Venmo: @Kristen-Bonell, @Ari-D-Schnitzer
For more information please email Kristen at KRISTEN.BONELL@GMAIL.COM.
One Wildcat - Three Concerts
Takemi Ueno, 1983, will play with the Litha Symphony Orchestra on Sat. June 24, July 29, and Aug. 26, at 7 pm at the Church of the Holy Apostles, 296 Ninth Ave. at 28th St., in Manhattan. The church is air-conditioned. Please visit lithasymphony.org to buy tickets and find out what pieces are being played.
Writes Jerry Mintz - “‘The Wheatley School’ was not an accident. I was definitively told that it was named that way to fool colleges in the early years into thinking Wheatley was a private school.”
Writes Mark Bagdon (1965) - “I loved reading Seth Bardo's (1967) remembrance of Irwin August. I have a few memories of him which have stayed with me to this day. My terrific high school friend Richard ("Dickie") Strauss was dead set on making the Physical Fitness Team, which, of course, he did. In the summer , I would accompany Richard to Wheatley on Saturday mornings, and we would work out with Mr. August in the small (“auxiliary”) gym. I expect that he came for Dickie's benefit, since I don't remember anyone else being there. I never became as motivated as Dickie and never came close to making the team (my brother Jon, '62, did); however, I did have a pull-up bar at home and got pretty good at that. Anyway, one day at the end of a gym class the next year, Mr. August challenged anyone to a pull up contest against him. Everyone urged me to take him up on it. I did and I actually beat him. I guess that was the high-point of my athletic career at Wheatley, as I spent most of my spare time in the music department.
I have one other memory which is not so fond. I was wrestling Steve Amerikaner in gym class. As I recall, I was doing well and it looked like I would probably win. At that point I heard Mr. August say out loud for everyone to hear, "did you say he plays the violin." I was not sure what his intent was, but it certainly did not help my concentration and about 15 seconds later I was on my back, pinned.”
Writes Paul Riefberg (1968) - “Hi Art, The steep hill adjacent to the Long Island Expressway Service Road to which Scott Frishman referred in Newsletter # 107 was known as “Melville Mountain.” Several times each season Coach August brought us there to build toughness. Dr. August was unique; he made us work hard and still have fun doing it. A great combination of proper motivation and pretty challenging workouts. Thanks, Coach!!”
Writes Annie Clarke-Gerrity (1974) - “In the spirit of gratitude I’d like to acknowledge teachers who made a difference to me.
Mr. Stewart Doig’s enthusiasm and probing teaching style made a lasting impression - question the status quo! He co-conceived School Within A School; SWS was a life raft, its fluid format saved me.
Mr. Herbert Wheeler: I suspect the X in Geometry 10X stood for needs extra help. Mr. Wheeler made sure everyone understood the problem before he proceeded. It turned out I was capable, I just needed a teacher who was willing to give 110%.
Driver Ed teacher ‘73-‘74. Sincere apologies for not remembering his name. I showed up for class one day wreaking of pot. He took us to a quiet suburban road and told me to put the car in reverse. I then had to drive down it backwards four times. When our session ended he said, ‘Don’t ever show up for my class like that again.’ I understood the magnitude of the way he chose to deliver his message; it remained between the two of us.
Ms. Merle Levine introduced me to feminism; she was a wonderful listener.
Aaron Kuriloff insisted on being called ‘Aaron,’ so I refused to do so - fostered a relaxed atmosphere in ‘The Cave of Meditation,’ as The Youngbloods played incessantly and self-directed creativity flowed.
Thank you to these special teachers who recognized a kid who thinks outside the box and did their best to help me flourish.”
1958 - Diana Rosanski McCue - Deceased (date and details unknown)
1961 - Phyllis Elizabeth Rosanski Turco - Deceased
Writes her daughters - “Phyllis Elizabeth Rosanski Turco, aka ‘Phoofie, Foof,’ 79, of Columbia, Pennsylvania, passed away on Sunday, April 23, 2023. She was born in Liberty Corner, NJ, daughter of the late Frank and Mary Siarakowski Rosanski. She was raised in Long Island, NY and moved to Lancaster in the 70's. If anyone could kill you with kindness, it was our mother. She was one of those incredible human lights, shining out and always lending an ear or a heart to all she encountered along her path.
Our mom was an incredible hugger, artist, pillow and flower maker, listener, visionary, lover of Jesus and James Patterson, phenomenal grandmother, hater of milk and vegetables, proficient procrastinator, joy spreader to her daughters and grandchildren, plus the super bonus of hoarder of all kinds of fabulous found treasures.
Those who ever collided with her spirit know the magic of her Polish-gypsy heritage. Even while we tended to her last and final moments at home, all she could think about was the wellness of her children and if we were warm enough, slept enough, ate enough or needed a sweater.
There are no words to satisfy how much of a lasting hole this has left in our hearts. She will always be our mom - willing to defend and empathize with our needs, even when her strong-willed daughters were in the wrong. May the world pause for a moment to reflect upon all the love that surrounds so many and to practice gratefulness, gratitude and kindness - just what our mother would wish for. As she would say, ‘Don't talk with food in your mouth.’
Surviving, devastated and fortunate members of her clan are her three daughters: Heidi M. Kelley and husband Chris of Marietta; Yvette A. Turco, Lancaster; and Noelle A. Turco and partner Sam Wilsker, Lancaster. Grandchildren: Jeremy Stanke, Michael Turco, Mack Deeter, Kayla Geesey, Jason Reynolds, Gavin Morris and Leo Burgoon. Great-grandchildren: Sophia, Kali, Caroline, Kody and Zaylee. Her brother: Ken Rosanski (Wheatley 1964) and his wife Beverly of Amelia Island, FL. Phoofie was also preceded in death by her sister: Diana McCue (Wheatley 1958) and husband James McCue, Maryland.
A special thanks to all of the hospice workers (Red Team), who helped three bumbling novice daughters succeed with their mother's wish to pass away at home.
A Celebration of Life will be held in the near future. Information will be provided at a later time. To send an online condolence, visit: Workmanfuneralhomes.com
1961, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1970 - San Fransisco Bay Area Event - Larry Rosenthal’s Place
L-R - Aldene Gordon (wife of Barry Gordon, 1965); Elizabeth (“Lizzie”) Lynn (1964); Roy Nierenberg (1963); Nancy Kurshan (1961); Barry Gordon (1965); Larry Rosenthal (1965).
L-R - Elizabeth (“Lizzie”) Lynn (1964); Barry Gordon (1965); Roy Nierenberg (1963).
Writes Larry - “We had a great time at TSA(?)USFBAWRP (The Second Annual(?) Unofficial San Francisco Bay Area Wheatley Reunion Potluck).” [Note - Susan Stone, (1970) not pictured, also attended.]
1964 - Michael Owen Liebert - Michael Owen Liebert Obituary
1965 and 1966 - Hudson Valley Wildcats - Mitch Ditkoff, Larry Fox, Debbi Davis
Writes Debbi Davis (1966) - "HI Arthur - I know you're busy, as the Wheatley Alumni Newsletters keep arriving in my inbox at a fairly rapid rate. This photograph was taken Sunday, June 4, 2023 at an annual meeting at Temple Israel of Catskill, here in upstate New York. What are the odds that three Wheatley graduates would become members of the same very small synagogue in upstate Catskill New York? Here we are, L-R, Mitch Ditkoff 1965, Larry Fox 1966 and Debbi Davis 1966."
1967 - Art Engoron - With Summer Interns
Guess which one is the granddaughter of which 1967 classmate. Stay tuned.
1967 - Bruce Orosz - “Congratulations to Amy Pastarnack Hughes. Cheers to the Class of 1967.”
1968 - Kenny Gallard - Writing Coach Gives Grammar Lessons
Writes Kenny - “Hi Art.….You already know how the grammar thing drives me crazy. I see it everywhere I read stuff. I even saw it yesterday on a news report from Yahoo about the smoke and such. So the newsletter is no different (lead vs. led; then vs. than; less vs. few; etc., etc.). NPR? Yup...them, too. Colorado State University printed newsletter? Go figure. It's endless.
1969 - Daniel Ross - Third Career
Dan was recently honored by Catholic Charities USA by being named as one of five finalists for the national organization’s Volunteer of the Year Award. Ross and his fellow finalists were selected from a pool of more than 300,000 volunteers across the country.
1970 - Richard Rosenbloom - Deceased
Writes daughter Zoe Elena Rosenbloom Richard Rosenbloom Remembered
“I am deeply heartbroken and sad to share that my father, Richard Rosenbloom, passed away last Saturday evening, May 20th, at age 70.
He was diagnosed with an aggressive form of Leukemia in the beginning of February. We fought every day in every way he could, hand-in-hand along the way.
I am so grateful for the outpouring of love and support from friends, family, distant relatives and loved ones of my Dad who have reached out during this deeply sorrowful time.
Dad, I will hear you in every Beatles song. Every James Taylor song. Every Grateful Dead song. Every Rolling Stones song. I will miss hearing you sing Sweet Baby James to me and ending it with, ‘goodnight my sweet little, Zoe.’ I will miss you calling me ‘Pumpkin Head’ or ‘Zoink.’ I will see you in all the buildings and architecture you taught me walking around the city and beyond. I promise I will try to measure things with tape measures and not my hands and arms. I will think of you every time I spend too much money and hear ‘Zooo… You need to budget better.’ I will see you in every Frank Lloyd Wright structure. In every Iris flower. Every Star Wars film and anything nerdy and sci-fi-y that I just couldn’t get into but sat through because you liked it. I will miss our late-night phone calls and all the times you came to my rescue. I love you oodles kaboodles chicken noodles, and “to the moon and back”. Forever yours, your “Wild Child”.”
1970 - Mitchel Shapiro - Interviewed on the Rachael Ray Show
As I’ve written before, Mitch is an amazing, inspiring guy, the real deal, and I’m proud to call him my friend. - Art Engoron
1974 - Annie Clarke-Gerrity - “I Remember Mama.”
Writes Annie - “Toni Buckner LaPietra’s words took my breath away. My mom, Joan Clarke, never sought attention or accolades. Her single greatest accomplishment was overcoming the scars of a mother who was unloving and mean spirited. Joan Clarke showered her children - John ‘68, Tim ‘73 and me with love. She was generous with her time, taught us to appreciate nature and encouraged our creativity. I had no idea that my mom’s kindness made a lasting impression on Toni. I am deeply grateful to Toni for sharing her memory.”
1976 - Robert Needle Remembered
Writes Classmate Ted Lipsky - I am shocked and saddened by this news of Robert Needle’s passing. My sincerest condolences to brotherJeffrey (1978) and the entire Needle family. Back in the day Robert was such an amazing person with a good soul, strong character, and a wonderful smile. While we lost touch after High School, I will never forget what a great guy he was. RIP, Robert.”
1989 - Joseph Apicella - Extended Family in the East Williston School District
Writes Joe - “My two sisters, two brothers, three first cousins. four second cousins, five nieces and one nephew were all in the EWSD since the early 1970s.”
1989 - Alex Tisch - With colleague Art Engoron (1967)
Photographed in 60 Centre Street, NYC, on June 7, 2023. Notice the cute little butt in the background
Just For Fun
Wheatley High School School is not in Old Westbury, it is in Houston Texas. I swear.
The Wheatley School is in Old Westbury
Administration (Wheatley Principal Joseph Wiener) - ❤️
1962 (Karen Strumpfler Tucker) - ❤️
1963 (Keith Aufhauser) - ❤️
1963 (Janet Dubin Ruyack) - ❤️
1964 (James Paley) — “Keep up the good work with the newsletter, which I always enjoy reading.”
1965 (Jeffrey Orling) - “Thanks once again... Reading about Wheatley graduates is always interesting. I am sure I would not recognize anyone today.... now that 50 years have passed. Who knows... maybe I walked right past a Wheatleyite???”
1966 (Ken Distler) - “I hope that all's well with Wheatley's dedicated: Archivist. Historian. Event Organizer. Biography Compiler. Viewpoint Forum Coordinator. Electronic Photo ‘Scrapbook’ Organizer. And more.”
1966 (Diana Noble Rubinger) - “Thanks for keeping us all together! Great job!!”
1966 (Bette Spiro Neuman) - ❤️
1967 (Arthur Brown) - “Dear Art, As always, the last issue is great - please keep up the good work.”
1967 (Scott Frishman) - “Art, WOW, what a great Newsletter! We all appreciate everything you do for us. I hope that you understand how much we look forward to receiving the Newsletters. Best, Scott”
1967 (Bruce Orosz) - “Art, I take my hat 🎩 off to you for all the great work you’re doing …… 👏”
1967 (Jill Simon Forte) - “Thanks for reminding me of many people I would never have remembered if it wasn’t for the Newsletter. Really brings me back to Stirrup Lane and memories that were inside of me. I spent more time having fun than learning, but I have no regrets. In these last years I have reconnected with some of my friends and neighbors from way back. I greatly enjoy speaking to them 😊 (and you are included in that).” ❤️
1967 (Barbara Smith Stanisic) - “Great as always, Art. Thank you so much.” ❤️
1968 (Paul Riefberg) - “You are doing nothing short of a Stellar job on the WHS Newsletter!! Many thanks from all your fellow-alumni.”
1969 (Steve Wolfert) - “Thanks, Art. I read every issue ‘cover to cover’ and it brings back many great memories...and some I would like to forget. Keep up the great work.”
1970 (Gregory Fitzpatrick) - “I always wondered the genesis of our High School’s name. Thank You for all of the research and information. Cheers.”
1970 (Maria Giordano Gittleman) - ❤️
1970 (Mitch Shapiro) - “Another great Newsletter.”
1972 (Donnis Gomes Newman) - ❤️
1972 (Jeffrey Kargman) - ❤️
1972 (Marc Starr) - ❤️
1974 (Annie Clarke-Gerrity) - “Arthur, A huge thank you for all you do to foster connections among Wheatley graduates.”
1974 (Laura Herbst) - ❤️
1976 (Mary Costello Willis) - ❤️
1977 (Peter Fitzpatrick) - ❤️
1979 (William Behan) - “Thanks, Art, for manning the presses.”
???? (Denise ????) - “Thanks for the Newsletter.” ❤️
That’s it for The Wheatley School Alumni Association Newsletter # 109. Please send me your autobiography before someone else sends me your obituary.
Arthur Fredericks Engoron, Class of 1967