The Wheatley School Alumni Association Newsletter # 123


Dear Wheatley Wildcats and Other Interested Persons,

Welcome to The Wheatley School Alumni Association Newsletter # 123.

According to Substack, in the first 24 hours after publication, Newsletter # 122 was viewed 3,789 times, was “liked” 26 times, and received eight comments (all positive). In all, 4,667 email addresses received Issue # 122.

All underlined text is a link-to-a-link. Left-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 122 Newsletters (and much other Wheatley data and arcana) at

Wheatley School Alumni Association Website

Also, thanks to Keith is our search engine, prominently displayed on our home page: type in a word or phrase and, wow!, 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

‘Hood Politics And History

Writes Judith Oppenheim Darrah (1972) - “All the memories of Roosevelt Field have catapulted me back to a time I didn’t realize I had forgotten. Thanks to all for sharing.”

Writes Gary Matthesen (1968) - “On Sunday, October 15, my family and I did our traditional pumpkin-picking at Hicks Nursery, followed by lunch at Hildebrandt's. I asked if the owner was in; I was told, ‘No.’ Before we left, a guy comes in and comfortably greets people as he walked from the back of the restaurant. At our table I asked, ‘Are you an owner?’ He says, ‘Yes.’ ‘What year did you graduate from Wheatley, I was 1968.’ He said, ‘No, I'm from Sea Cliff.’ Am I missing something here?”

Administration & Faculty Appreciation

Rhoda Kalkin Schneider (1961); Gene Razetti (1961); and Daniel Silver (1967) recognized Science/Chemistry teacher (and summer recreation supervisor) Melvin Rosenstein. They have all been awarded a free, lifetime subscription to The Wheatley School Alumni Association Newsletter.

Writes Rhoda Kalkin Schneider (1961) - “The education we received at Wheatley was fantastic, from a dedicated staff that truly had our best interests at heart.”

Writes Gene Razzetti (1961) - Art: I am sure that I'm only one of a legion of your more ‘mature’ readers to recognize the irrepressible Mr. Melvin Rosenstein, who taught General Science and (later) Chemistry.  He was always available to provide, not only explosive demonstrations, but special help - well into the afternoon. He even ran an impromptu class on use of the slide rule.  (Dude, what's a slide rule?)”

Mr. Rosenstein came to the Class of 1961's 50th-year Reunion, along with the amazing Mrs. Erma Bogert.  Mr. Rosenstein and I spoke for some time, each of us recalling our experiences in the U.S. Navy. Every time that my Navy career involved engineering (sometimes forensic) analysis of water, lube oil, or some form of damaged metal, I thought of him. 

In my junior year, Mr. Rosenstein bragged about his first child; at the Reunion, he bragged about his third wife.

Time marches on. Mr. Rosenstein passed away about four or five years ago at the age of 90. RIP.”

Writes Craig Artim (1969) - “In the Pantheon of Wheatley teachers we must include Joseph Fradkin, Latin master summa cum laude. He ran a very great class, all grades represented, as it wasn’t the most popular language. It was neat as a freshman to be in a class with upperclassmen. Declensions, sentence structure, vocabulary, ancient history, mythology…..we covered it all. He loved to tell us how he was able to see Mount Vesuvius during the World War II. As our numbers dwindled through graduation, Mr. Fradkin said at the start of my junior year that this would be his last class teaching Latin. But not to worry, he’s going to jam Latin 4 in with Latin 3. A great teacher. We learned so much good stuff. And every Friday towards end of class he would turn to the inimitable Larry Nitzky (1969), who would ask the eternal question: “Nulla Pensa?” (No homework?). A wonderful experience.   And, of course, if we’re speaking language, we cannot forget the loquacious, bodacious, nay, audacious DKI!! (a/k/a David Israel), who taught us that the spaghetti-eating tiger ate the spaghetti the spaghetti-eating tiger way. Now diagram that, bad boy. Who would rail at his class if we could not provide the expected answer: ‘Ye blocks, ye stones, ye worse than senseless things!’ In the nicest way possible. Truly a superb teacher, lover and practitioner of language. Who spent 23 minutes of his first class trying to keep his pipe lit! Simply marvelous. Ya gotta love the guy. And we do. Ciao!

Writes Judith Oppenheim Darrah (1972) - “Reading Matt Haig and Wes Berkowitz’s writing on the current state of Wheatley makes me so sad. While in high school I assumed all high schools were the same. It wasn’t until Carnegie-Mellon University and beyond that I realized how privileged we were.


1960 - Another Mini-Reunion

Writes Ken Martin - “The Class of 1960 once again held what we call our ‘Annual Mini Reunion.’ The tradition started after our 50th, when the late Jack Langlois, our class president, bequeathed a sum of money to have other reunions before our 60th. We ran with it and have held 9 such events! The latest was held once more in Sag Harbor at the lovely Baron’s Cove Resort.

It began with a gathering at Mary Jane Johnson’s charming summer cottage in East Hampton.

The next morning began with a round of world-famous John Moncure Bloody Marys. Upon finishing, we walked to the resort’s lobby, where we sat for a lecture by Amanda Fairbanks, the author of “Lost Boys of Montauk,” a historical account of a fishing boat tragedy off Montauk's coast. For those unfamiliar with the book, it is an excellent read by a skilled writer, and there is a significant relationship to The Wheatley School and our community. If you have not read it, we highly recommend it. BTW, Ms. Fairbanks is working on her next book which is about Gardiner’s Island, also located Out East. The lecture was professional and stimulating and the audience carried on the Wheatley tradition, taught to us so many years ago, of searching for the truth.

After the book lecture, we boarded a bus for a tour of the North Fork. Our first stop was Shelter Island where we debarked on Sunset Beach: 

Oh, our bus? Psychedelic decor notwithstanding, it enabled many opportunities to achieve the major objectives of our minis-reminiscing and reconnecting with our beloved classmates and spouses.

Lunch was held in one of the many beautiful wineries doting the eastern end of Long Island. The evening dinner culminated the weekend.

After dinner there was a surprise for the gathering. Charlie Zimmerman and Mary Jane Johnson were presented a gift from Peter and Linda Sue Beattie Koole. Because Linda and Peter could not attend, Peter, a wood carver specializing in birds, created two sculptures for our mini leaders.

The gesture from Pete and Linda was a fitting ending to our mini offering further proof  the glue which binds our class together is love.

1962, 1964, and 1966 - Writes Bob Gipp (1962) - “Art, my mom had three sets of twins in 4 1/2 years. We all graduated from Wheatley: Bob and Barbara, 1962; Fred and George, 1964; Pat and Pam, 1966. No other family has ever graduated three sets of twins from Wheatley.

1965 Jeffrey Orling - “Art, I don't know how others are... but I find myself trying to recall my past, my youth, high school experiences, college experiences, and so forth.  What once was vital and prescient now can be barely recalled.  That bothers me, but I suspect that is simply how it is.  Memories fade.  So it's great that people are recording ‘things’ about the present.….which become the recent and then the distant past.  And that's why your reports are so wonderful and vital.  I know at times I try to go back in time and remember people and events.….little things.  For example, I remember playing hookie from Hebrew school with David Golub (1965), who lived behind Temple Sinai.  I often try to take memory trips to the Country Club, East Williston, and so on, trying to recall friends' homes and so forth.  I drove through the old neighborhood fairly recently, and I couldn't recognise anything.  Have you been back?  Do you want to go back?  How much can you remember? I remember “SuperDrug,’ near the Albertson train station.….going to their soda fountain for egg creams and shakes.  I remember that a burger, shake, and french fries were less than $2 back then.  The future lay ahead.….and there was optimism.

The view from this side of the journey is very different.

I feel fortunate to have lived where I did, to have gone to the schools I did, and to have had the friends, teachers and experiences I had.  Why do some memories…..even insignificant ones…..remain and others disappear?

I would like to attend a reunion.  Are any planned? Best, Jeffrey”

1965 - More From Jeff Orling - “It would be nice if more people would comment and of course appreciate your reports.  To not, seems almost rude.  I look forward to reading them and will contribute what I can.

I remember climbing ropes up to the gym ceiling.  Of course there were mats.  But yikes... imagine a child falling to the mat from gym ceiling height?  I suppose that just didn't happen.….

Do you have memories of the Friday night basketball games?  Did they have a dance afterwards, or am I imagining that?

I remember when the Marine Corps Physical Fitness Program was introduced in gym class.  George Glasser (1965) was king of that.  I hated that whole thing.

I did like ‘assemblies,’ but I can't recall many of the programs.

Keep ‘em coming Art! Best, Jeffrey”

1967 - Jack Wolf and Scott Geery

L-R - Jack Wolf and Scott Geery - Recognizable even without the nametags.

1967 - Art Engoron - With Soccer Buddies

L-R - Charlie, Art, Mark, and Gerry

1968 - Reunion in 2016

L-R - Patti Garin Abelson, Joan Edelstein, Joan Filler-Varty, Susan Goldfeder Weiss (?), Arlene Rappaport, Kathy Kram, Ilene “Cookie” Levine. 

1970 - Sixth Grade Graduation Photo - 1964

TOP ROW:  Hillary Elgart, Joanne Horowitz, Susan Stone, Ellen David, Joan Shacter, Craig Moss, Jeffrey Blumenthal, Arnold Katz, Lance Stein, Robert Abramowitz, Laurie Winnick, Philip Smerling, Andy Goetz, Amy Jacoby, Peter Howard, Jeff Bordiga, & David Rotholtz.   

2ND ROW DOWN: Wendy Strickman, Sindy Levitt, Mindy Spier, Allison Walsh, Robin Smerling, Peggy Zuckerman, Lynn Sadowsky, Willa Kozupsky, Peter Hecht, David Berwald, Margi Miller, Cindy Horowitz, Jill Gross, Robyn Goldberg, Richard Rosenbloom, Barry Lipsky, Amy Levenson, & Debbie Silverman

MIDDLE ROW: Miss Hyman, Mr. Morris, Kathy Mazlish, Gail Yarnell, Jane Roeder, Robert Gladstone, Marc Senter, Hal Buckner, Jill Ostrower, Halli Lehrer, Stephanie Polansky, Lisa Berley, Ellen Karasyk, Mr. Gabriel Reuben (Principal), Rhoda Schneider, Janet Oppenheim, Joan Schnelwar, Ronnie Schindler, Andrea Seaton, Bobby Bush, George Nierenberg, Kenny Levine, Mark Gordon, Jack Riefberg, Mr. Visco, & Mrs. Smith.

4TH ROW DOWN: Carol Breitbart, Lisa Donneson, Charles Rosenzweig, Jacki FInger, Steve Tureff, Andrea Chock, Nancy Reuben, Julie Kramer, Robert Zazula, Laura Nathanson, David Goldberg, Dana Seaman, Ernie Holzman, Karen Hurvitz, Diane Berg, Andrew Krakauer, Ronnie Seltzer, Roberta Sheckman, & Janet Goldberg.

BOTTOM ROW:  Jonnie Gold, Michael Coan, Albee Messing, Matthew Delson, Ricky Summers, Ricky Lowenthal, Bruce Optner, Stephen Rosengarten, Fred Gordon, Paul Stanton, Cameron Kane, Richard Oppenheim, Steven Shukow, Ron Duberstein, & Sandy Stoltz.  

1973 - Class Reunion - Writes Nancy Dreyer - “I forgot to mention that Lauren Karasyk, Cathy Knoller, and Vera Kaltinick came up with Hendrick's as the venue, and they got the ball rolling with them.”

1973 + 2007 + 2016 - Four Engoron Wheatley Graduates in Porto, Portugal

L-R - Stacey Engoron (2007), Sara Weiss Engoron (1973), Jack Engoron (2016), Daniel Engoron (1973)

1983 - 40th-Year Reunion - Organized by Bernadette McCrave Quinn (516-297-8147).

2009 - Matt Koos - Congressional Chief of Staff

Writes Former Wheatley Principal Rick Simon - “Wonderful visit with Matt Koos, Wheatley Class 2009, now Chief of Staff to Congressman Chris Deluzio, 17th District, Pennsylvania. I was in DC for a family event. Wheatley is never far. Rick Simon”

The Wheatley School Alumni Association Forum/Soapbox

Writes Matt Sanzone (1959) - “Were their opinionated opinions? I didn’t notice.”

Writes James Turco (1960) - “I am glad that ‘Forum/Soap Box’ was moved to the bottom of the newsletter and the important stuff about our school stays at the top! The political diatribe is so easy to avoid now!”

Writes Gene Razzetti (1961) “‘Well Done’ to Jay Cummings.”

Writes Rhoda Kalkin Schneider (1961) - “Kudos to Jay Cummings on his wonderful essay!”

Writes Jim Russek (1964) - “The ‘Forum/Soapbox’ needs some rules, starting perhaps with a note from a psychiatrist attesting to the writer's sound mind. And maybe footnotes…..

Writes Jeffrey Orling (1965) - Art, I don't know Jay Cummings (1960), but I don't think political rants are appropriate for these newsletters.  I don't know many of the people mentioned from other graduating classes, but I enjoy reading about them.  Please leave the politics out.  Yes I do recall being ‘political’ in high school.….against the Vietnam War and all, but I don't see what such rants accomplish. Thank you!”

Writes Steve Hanft (1966) - I don't know  Jay Cummings (1960), but I just read his contribution to The Forum/Soapbox in Newsletter #122, and it strikes a deep chord. I feel compelled to respond: WOWIE ZOWIE!”

Writes Richard Jalonack (1966) - “Art, I believe that Jay Cummings is real. He must have two right arms.”

Writes Henry Pullman (1967) - “Art, Jay Cummings’s essay is just offensive and illogical spewing.  Are we being tested to see how many Wildcats object to his baseless and nasty diatribe?  Also, since when has the Newsletter turned into a political forum? I regularly and avidly read it.”

Writes Jill Simon Forte (1967) - “I’m sad to see that Jay Cummings (1960) is still misinformed. But as I have learned, there is no changing the minds of those who will not see truth.” 

Writes David Packer (1970) - “I was listening to Beethoven's Piano Sonata No. 30 when I came upon Jay Cummings' latest rant. Talk about cognitive dissonance!”

Writes Judith Oppenheim Darrah (1972) - “I read the essay by Jay Cummings (1960) regarding Trump’s America vs. President Biden’s America. All I can say is not everyone learned how to fact check, especially with disinformation and fake news. It’s a dangerous rabbit hole with no exit. Critical thinking was also instilled at Wheatley. Some people must have missed those lessons.”

Writes Amy Gould (1979) - “The vitriol by Mr Cummings forced me to skip to the end of the Newsletter. I wish we could keep this non-political.”

Writes Wayne Josel (1981) - “Jay Cummings’ fact-free missive makes obvious that critical thinking skills were not a part of Mr Cummings’s experience at Wheatley.”

Writes Leah Tchack (Parent) - “Arthur, you have inspired me by your faithful honoring of the First Amendment when you published Jay Cummings’s screed at the close of the most recent newsletter.  Thank you for showing us that our Constitution is alive and well.”

Writes Jay Cummings (1960) - “My simple response to all who disagree with my essay is that every poll, including liberal ones, says that 78% of the country thinks we are going in the wrong direction, so I wear my patriotic America First views of truth and common sense with a badge of honor.”

Fan Mail

Faculty (Karen Bartscherer) - ❤️

Faculty (Robert Kaye) - ❤️

1959 (Paula Horowitz Carr) - ❤️

1960 (Joanne Festa) - ❤️

1960 (Dale Weinstein) - ❤️

1962 (Richard Glassman) - ❤️

1962 (Madeline Moret) - ❤️

1962 (Karen Strumpfler Tucker) - ❤️

1963 (Marcia Friedman Mayer) - ❤️

1964 (Elvira (“Vivi”) Cilmi Kunz - “Thanks again for keeping us connected.”

1964 (Susan Obrant) - “Thank you!” ❤️

1964 (John Sullivan) - “Thanks for all your Wheatley focus.”

1964 (Malcolm McNeill) - “Great job, Art. Where do you find the time, given your day job?”

1964 (Jim Russek) - “The Alumni Newsletter is a sublime look at how our classmates have progressed through life.”

1965 (Clifford Montgomery) - ❤️

1965 (Jeffrey Orling) - “I love reading your fabulous ‘reports!’ Staying connected to our Wheatley past is next to impossible. But you are doing the next to impossible!  If I knew who lived near me, I might try to contact them.  How about including everyone's town/state in your reports? Jeffrey Orling, Mount Vernon, NY”

1966 (Steve Hanft) - “Artie, Thanks for all you do to keep us informed about each other. I know how busy you must be these days, and I'm grateful that you are able to find the time to produce our Newsletter in the middle of all your work. You can put that in the newsletter also, if you like, at the end, with all the other expressions of appreciation for your efforts.”

1966 (Richard Jalonack) - ❤️

1966 (Marjorie Schuh Silver) - “Where does Art find the time to do this, given that his day job has gotten even more intense recently!” ❤️

1967 (Barbara Smith Stanisic) - “Great as Always” ❤️

1968 (Carol Nassau) - “Thanks for your updates.”

1969 (Robin Brinn) - “Thanks for the great Newsletters.”

1969 (Alan Cole) - "Art, thanks for doing a great job on the Wheatley Newsletter.  While you have other distractions, I appreciate that our newsletter remains a high priority."

1969 (Richard Frankfort) - “Thank you for all your work.” ❤️

1970 (Jill Ostrower Trovillion) - “Keep up the great work.”

1970 (Pamela Panzarino Hyde) - “I thoroughly enjoy and look forward to the Newsletters.”

1971 (Larry Koenigsberg) - ❤️

1970 (Mitchel Shapiro) - “The Newsletters are always great.”

1972 (Jeffrey Kargman) - ❤️

1972 (Judith Oppenheim Darrah) - “Thanks for all you do.”

1975 (Glen Lazar) - ❤️

1975 (Patrice Maller) - “Always a great read.  Much appreciation, Art, for your time and attention to keeping the Wheatley Community in touch.” ❤️

1976 (Mary Costello Willis) - ❤️

1977 (Peter Fitzpatrick) - ❤️

1977 (Nancy Meyer) - ❤️

1979 (Amy Gould) - “I enjoyed the latest Newsletter. Especially the Class of 1973 photographs!  The vitriol by Mr Cummings forced me to skip to the end. Wish we could keep this non-political.”

1981 (Marie DeRosa Grieco) - ❤️

1982 (Glenn Duffy) - ❤️

1974 (James Elefonte) - “Thank you for keeping the entire Wheatley family informed of the news.”

1984 (Peter Saridakis) - “I always enjoy what Art has done to keep us Wildcats plugged in :).”

1988 (Gregory Arrese) - ❤️

1988 (Jean-Rene Zetrenne) - ❤️

1997 (Kristina Fiorillo Saxena) - “I very much appreciate the time and effort you put into every issue of the Newsletter. Thank you.”

???? (MDWEIZ8@GMAIL.COM) - ❤️

???? (PGS2005@STERN.NYU.EDU) - ❤️


That’s it for The Wheatley School Alumni Association Newsletter # 123.  Please send me your autobiography before someone else sends me your obituary.


Arthur Fredericks Engoron, Class of 1967