Wheatley Alumni Newsletter:  Number 25:  November 25, 2018

Dear Wildcats and Other Interested Persons,

Thanks to our fabulous Webmaster, Keith Aufhauser (1963), you can regale yourself with the first twenty-four newsletters (and other Wheatley data and arcana) at http://www.wheatleyalumni.org/  Conversely, if you are completely uninterested in Wheatley matters, please don't hesitate to ask me to remove you from my general distribution list. 

Once again, I have allowed myself the liberty of editing all submissions, even material in quotes, for clarity and concision, without any indication thereof.  I do not censor ideas, which may not be my own.


1964 - Roberta (“Bobbi”) Wallace Silverman - Happy Transplant

I moved to Delray Beach 3 years ago and love it here.  If anyone reads this and lives in the area I'd love to get together and catch up!  My number is still a Jersey  # - 609-313-1505.  Bobbi Wallace Silverman. 

1967 – Linda Caterino Kulhavy (R) and Martha Moretti Shane (L) – Still Friends Across Many Years and Miles 


Writes Art – “Both are instantly recognizable, as I’m sure my classmates would agree!”  

1968 – Kenny Gallard – Life in the Wild, Wild West

It has been a wild ride since leaving Wheatley; amazing the stuff that has happened.  I spent a lot of time day-dreaming, looking out the window during many of our classes and nearly failed math in Mr. Liemer's class because of that.  Nevertheless, many of those day-dreams ultimately became my reality.  As many of you may remember, I worked for many years during the '60s at the Carvel near the corner of Jericho Turnpike and Glen Cove Road.  Great to work there, as periodically the Rascals would stop by (I was a big fan) and I'd give them free ice cream.  Anyway...Carvel didn't pan out as a career, and later in college I worked as an editorial assistant at SKI Magazine, when their HQ was in Manhattan.  It was there that the editor-in-chief encouraged me to pursue my imagination and see where it took me.  Indeed… 

That imagination took me to Taos, NM where I started off as a ski-bum (classmate Joel Blumenthal joined me for a year).  Doors of opportunity in the world of adventure opened to me from there.  Ultimately I've been involved in all kinds of skiing (resort-based, backcountry, heli-skiing, pro-racing, etc.), big-peak expedition mountaineering, big-wall rock climbing, whitewater rafting, hot air balloons and hang gliders, pro rodeo, backpacking, and on and on.  Though early on I worked in some ski and mountaineering shops, I soon took on the advice of that editor at SKI Magazine and began documenting things photographically.  That led to working for a broad range of clients around the world, from Outside Magazine, to SKI, GEO (Europe), The NY Times, various ski resorts, the Smithsonian, and scores of others.  Mixed in has been music in which I've played in bands performing in clubs, bars, resorts and large outdoor concerts.  I've also been a working cowboy, tending the herds, checking fences and participating in numerous large cattle drives on my great work pal, Blue.  The family ranch is the dream of my wife, the "boss-lady!"  Two adult kids, one of whom has multiple disabilities (both intellectual and physical; but she lives a very full life around us).  Our son has recently moved back to Taos to begin building his own house.  With the career having wound down considerably (for a number of reasons) in recent years, retirement is only a concept.  We don't have much free time, but live a lifestyle that seems extraordinary.  Lots of ranch work, tending horses, skiing 80 to 100 days a year, playing music, keeping the winter house in shape (built it 30 years ago), and just life in general put lots of demands on time.  But it's good.  We don't travel much, for business or pleasure at this point; we like it here.  Have had some great ski rendezvous over the last 10 years with some of my Wheatley classmate pals; George Gettinger, David Hechler, Todd Strasser, Tom Glaser, Joel Blumenthal, Jed Berman .  Those have been great "keepers of the connection."  Phone calls with Howard Suss, Janet Paley (Sapir), David Pinter, Steve Cohen and others have been an important touchstone.  Hugs and kisses to all our Wheatley-mates, all of whom are part of the fabric of who and what we are.  The experience at Wheatley’s 50th Anniversary Celebration underscored that in huge terms.

[Editor’s Note – For more on Kenny’s amazing existence, check out http://www.wheatleyalumni.org/BlogPost/Blogpost-20180910-22.html  And here’s a photo of the aforementioned “Blue”]


 1969 - Susan Roth – Cross-Country Mover


I've moved to Kennebunkport Maine after a lifetime in LA. 

 Dana Tressler – 1969 – Deceased 



Bottom photo – Dana Tressler, second from right, with (non-Wildcat) motorcycle buddies.

Writes brother Drew Tressler (1970) – “Dana passed away earlier this year due to complications from liver cancer.  He was a devoted father, great musician, and enjoyed taking trips on his one-of-a-kind Harley.  He will be deeply missed by his adoring children, family and friends.  Dana was the life of the party and happy to share his creative wit and humor with all. 

A highlight of Dana’s time at Wheatley and beyond included playing first trumpet in the Wheatley band and orchestra.  He felt passionate about music and was also in a Rock & Roll band called Five of a Kind, which played at a number of high school dances, including Wheatley’s.  He attended the Woodstock Festival with five co-ed Wheatley classmates in the summer of 1969, and rumor has it he helped keep the Summer of Love Moving and Grooving.  He continued his passion for music and attended the Hart College of Music.  Dana was an honorary Choppess team member (and played on their undefeated softball team).


He lived most of his life in eastern Long Island, with several years in Pennsylvania, but all the while was a New York Islander fan; he was in the Nassau Coliseum when Bobby Nystrom scored the winning goal for the Islanders in 1979.  Dana worked at Global Exhibition Services Inc. for 32 years and finished up his career as the VP of Logistics.  He is survived by his brother Drew, 1970; three daughters, Jennifer, Brittani and Chelsea; son Jack; and two grandchildren.  As Dana has a daughter in Florida and a son going to college in Virginia, the date and location of his memorial service have not yet been determined.”  Drew can be reached at drew.tressler@yahoo.com .

 Early-Mid 1970s Grads in the Sunny Southwest


Writes Elizabeth Welles (Known as Wendy Shapiro at Wheatley):

A Wheatley West Smorgasbord at Nick's Italian Restaurant in Scottsdale, Arizona ~ 
With a Spread from the Classes of ~ 

1971 Mitch Mudick (middle)

1973 Denise Paine Radow (left)

1975 Wendy Shapiro (aka Elizabeth Welles) (right)

(1971 Rick Shapiro, Wendy’s brother, was at a conference that day ~) 

1973 - Leonore Gordon – Deceased

 Writes Miriam (“Mimi”) Gordon (1965) – “A few words in memory of Leonore Gordon, 12-20-55 to 10-13-18.  I am Mimi Gordon, the oldest of the three “Gordon Girls,” all of us Wheatley graduates.  It’s still hard to even say Leonore’s name without tears in my eyes.  Leonore was only 62, much too young to lose her.  She was my baby sister, exactly 8 years younger than I am.  She was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease in her late 40’s.  Same tragic disease my father had; but he died to age 87.  So many words have been used to characterize Leonore: intelligent, creative, progressive, activist, poet, writer, organizer, teacher, mother, wife, and the list goes on and on.  Most of all, to me she will always be my baby sister.”

Writes JoJo Gordon (Sampson) (1967) – “Still in Disbelief & with great Sadness, I share the passing of my little sister, Leonore Gordon, on October 13, 2018, in Brooklyn, New York.  From the moment my parents brought “Lee” home from the hospital,

my big sister, Mimi, and I, fell in love with this brand new baby!

Lee was always precocious - a force to be reckoned with. 

She followed her Beliefs, & did Everything her own way! 

She was a natural Leader & Inspired those around her.

Leonore was extremely funny.  Her Laughter was Infectious & I Loved to Laugh with her!

Lee loved Adventure & Nature and Beaches & always had a new Idea in mind. 

People wanted to join her, as she was a Fun Person!

She Loved taking Photos and posted Endless Albums for all to Enjoy.

Leonore's Mind was Brilliant!  She brought this Intelligence & Curiosity to

All aspects of her Life.  She Researched Parkinson's Disease & was a Mentor/Consultant to many.

She Participated & Presented in yearly Parkinson's Conferences all over the World. 

She Researched Cell Towers & fought Endless battles for good causes.

Lee's Talents and Credentials were many and Large.

She shared Information about Living with Parkinson’s:  leonoregordonpdspeak.com

Lee wrote poems; many were published; and she was proud of teaching poetry to children in NYC Public Schools.

She graduated from Oberlin College; had a

Master’s Degree in Education from Bank Street; studied

Social Work at NYU; studied

Family Therapy Post-Masters at Hunter College; and studied

Dance and Song at The Brooklyn Parkinson's Dance Group (and facilitated a support group).

She was the Brooklyn Captain for the Parkinson's Yearly Central Park Charity Walk

Who knows what will Happen in the Spring of 2019, without Lee?

 Leonore was a True Friend, unlike anyone I've ever Seen.

If you were her Friend in Elementary School, you were 

her Life-Long Friend!  The same with all her friends.

 Lee was very devoted to her son Joshua, 25, who is doing well in Life.

 Leonore fought bravely against Parkinson's Disease for 20 years.

Approximately eight years ago, Lee found a New Love in her Life that filled her with Incredible Joy & Renewed her Spirit.

Mimi and I are thankful to Myra Kooy, Lee's lifetime partner, for her unwavering support of Leonore & her Advocating for Lee non-stop for those last difficult months.

 Her downward spiral & death were Sudden & Shocked Everyone.

I considered Leonore Gordon INDOMITABLE!

I will miss my little sister for the rest of my life,

I will always Admire Lee’s courage & joyful spirit (despite her disability).

I will carry her memory with me for as long as I live.”

Writes Eddie Ryder – “A passionate advocate for social justice and finding a cure for Parkinson's Disease, with an unfailing spirit of determination and passion, her presence among us all will be assuredly missed by those among us who were the beneficiaries of her kindness and perspectives.  She had a beautiful soul. May her memory serve as a blessing.”

Writes - Anne Canadeo (1973) – “So very sorry to hear about Leonore.  She and I were in touch just a bit over Facebook.  She was so talented, courageous and inspiring, a truly one-of-kind a person. Always so supportive of my writing.  I am so sad to hear this.”

Writes Randi Korn (1973) – On October 13th, 2018, the world lost Leonore Gordon, an activist; caring, loyal friend; fighter for those who did not have the wherewithal to fight for themselves; emotionally brilliant therapist; and poet; and I lost a dear, long-time friend.  There are many layers to grief, and it will take considerable time for those layers to expose themselves.  Over time, I suppose, all of us who loved Lee will continue to explore those layers, as she would gently push us to do.  I will miss her positive outlook, even as adversity stared down at her.  I always wondered how she was able to maintain her positive attitude, and for now, I have concluded that the fighter in her gave her momentum, always forward, always with hope, and always with the belief that something good will emerge, if we push and continue pushing.  In these hard times for our country, I will push for change on her behalf, always thinking of her as I venture into territories that I typically avoid.  Lee deserves my efforts.

The one thing that keeps emerging in my mind is the children in NYC who will not have the opportunity to experience one of Lee’s poetry workshops.  When Lee worked with kids, her emotional intelligence morphed into a magician-like soul.  Immediately, upon entering a classroom, Lee became their trusted friend; she helped them find their inner passions and the words to express them. I can see her asking them questions that no one ever bothered to ask, and those questions helped the students carefully craft lovely and meaningful prose.  After the workshops ended, Lee would create a book of their poems and share it as widely as she could.  Imagine how important the students felt upon seeing a book of their poems.  Leonore also shared the books with her friends, and I was fortunate to be a regular recipient.  While Leonore was always so proud of her students, I was always so proud of her. To all those children who will not experience the magic of Leonore Gordon, I am so sorry for your loss.  I am also sorry for Myra, her wife; Josh, her son; and her two sisters, Mimi and Jojo.  

I tried really hard to remember Leonore calling me by my given name, Randi. Maybe one of you, my classmates, can recall.  I sign this by the name Leonore called me for as long as I can recall; Lee, I will miss you forever.


Photo Gallery


JoJo reading to Leonore, who is either singing or yawning.


(L TO R) Mimi, JoJo, Addy, Abbe Ablane (mom’s caretaker), and Leonore; in the background is Leonore’s son Josh


Leonore and her wife and forever-partner, Myra.

1973 – Lauren Karasyk-Oakley and John Oakley – Near Naples (FL)

Writes Lauren – “John Oakley, 336-210-6732, and I, 314-374-4797,  moved to Bonita Springs, Florida ( near Naples) on the West Coast. If any Wheatley grads are in the area....please get in touch with us! 

1978 – 40th-Year Reunion Photo


1978 - Corinne Cassely Cutrone – Alumni T-Shirts for Sale


Writes Corinne – “We had made up these shirts for our reunion and everybody liked them.  I can make more if other classes want them.  Corinne – 516-448-1722

1995 - Neil Jacobson – Long Island goes (to) Hollywood


Neil is President of Geffen Records.  He writes – “It’s a dream job.  I’m just another Long Island boy trying to make it in Hollywood.  There’s a bunch of press out there on my story which is all pretty accurate.”  Here’s one titled “Neil Jacobson: How to Go From Golf Caddy to Geffen Records President.”  https://www.billboard.com/articles/business/7736470/neil-jacobson-interview-geffen-records-president

Fan Mail:

Faculty (Karen Bartscherer) - Hi Arthur.  Even though most of your contributors attended Wheatley before I began there as a student teacher in 1977, many of the family names are familiar.  This is not surprising as our district really is, as the cliché goes, “one big family.”  As a family member, Art, you are surely one of the most devoted, clearly keen on maintaining bonds, restoring lapsed links, and paying tribute to memorable classmates and esteemed teachers.  I enjoy the newsletters so much and recognize the significant thought and time you invest in creating such a rich and entertaining column.  Thanks for your labor of love.

1958 (Chris Abernethy) - You do a good job with the alumni association.  The newsletter is very informative.

1960 (Michael (“Moon”) Mondshein) - Thanks again for your continuing great work.

1964 (Roberta (“Bobbi”) Wallace Silverman) - Thanks, Art.  I enjoy your newsletters and hearing what everyone is doing.  I look forward to seeing info from more members of the Class of 1964.

1965 – (Penny Asbell) - Thanks for sending the newsletter and all the work to put it together!  Enjoy!

1966 (Linda Rignel Bertani) - Thanks for the great job you do.  I don' t know what we Wheatley alumni would do without you and Keith.

1966 (Suzanne Stone) - ALWAYS AMAZING!!!!! 

1967 (JoJo Gordon) - Newsletter # 24 is excellent. 

1967 (Dan Silver) - Thanks as always for the WSAAN (Wassup?!? WSAAN!!!).  

1968 (Martha Cornfield Fea) - What a terrific job you do on these updates!  You give so much of your time!  Very much appreciated. 

1969 – Craig Backel - I enjoy the newsletters you put out, thanks.  You provide a wonderful service. 

1969 (Daniel Ross) - Hey Artie, great newsletter, as always! 

1969 (Susan Roth) – I love getting your very thoughtful newsletters.  Keep up the good work! 

1970 (Drew Tressler) - Thank you very much for providing a newsletter to keep us all connected!  Wheatley is a special place. 

1971 (Laura Soll-Broxterman) – Another great read, Art. 

1972 (Susan French Congero) -  What you do with research, etc. is just great.  It brings back so many good memories that my mind seems to forget as we age.  Keep up the wonderful work.  Your readings are great.  Happy Thanksgiving to All Wheatley Graduates. 

1972 (Linda (“Lydia”) Kaufman Schroeder) - I have been wanting to thank you for a while now for your informative Wheatley newsletters, Art!  It is so nice of you to take the time to catch us alumni up on our student compatriots 👍🏽 I have been living and loving Southern California these past 40+ years ... can’t get enough of its mountains, beaches, wineries and year-round warm weather!  I recently visited Ally Acker (1972) in Roslyn, childhood Wheatley friend, and it was such a joy to visit Wheatley together after all these years.  Art, thank you again for keeping this West-Coast girl updated on the latest news. 

Warm regards to all, Linda Kaufman Schroeder ( aka “Lydia”) 

1975 (Steve Nathan) – Thanks, Art, I didn't realize you also maintained a full Alumni website, that's awesome that you devote so much time/effort to this!  Newsletter #24 looks great! 

1975 (Wendy Zacharkow Herbel) – Thanks for all you do! 

1977 (Amy Brumer) -  I appreciate your efforts with the newsletter. 

1978 (Julie King) - Thanks, Art.  Your persistence is admirable! 

1979 (Caryl Paisner) - Thanks for all your work on the newsletters. 

1981 (Robert Freier) - Thank you, Art.  This is wonderful to read.  Always brings a smile to my face. 

1993 (Romina Tenembaum) – Thank you!!! 

1995 (Neil Jacobson) - I have to say Arthur, it’s such a selfless and wonderful thing you are doing.  Please keep it up. 

2004 (Jessica Lee-Hansen) - Thanks for sending out the newsletter.  It's great to hear updates on all the Wheatley Alums and faculty. 

2005 (Sarah Bancone) – Thanks for the newsletters! 

2009 (Amanda Hartman) - Hi Art!!  Another great newsletter.  

Interesting Factoid:

Wheatley has had three graduates surnamed “Tanenbaum,” three named “Tanenbaum,” three named “Tenenbaum, and three named "Tenembaum.”   “Tannenbaum,” is German for "fir tree" or "Christmas Tree." 


That’s it for the Wheatley School Alumni Association Newsletter # 25.  Please send me your autobiography before someone else sends me your obituary.

Art Engoron,  '67, 646-872-4833,  WWW.WHEATLEYALUMNI.ORG

Keep in touch!

Contact Art:      artengoron@gmail.com Tel: 646-872-4833            © Wheatley Alumni Association 2018