Dear Wheatley Wildcats and Other Interested Persons,

Welcome to The Wheatley School Alumni Association Newsletter # 42.

Thanks to our fabulous Webmaster, Keith Aufhauser (Class of 1963), you can regale yourself with the first 41 Newsletters (and other Wheatley data and arcana) at  Also thanks to Keith is our handy-dandy, super-duper search feature, prominently displayed on our home page:  type in a term or phrase and, voila, you'll find it in all previous Newsletters and other on-site material.  Amazing!

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I edit all submissions, even material in quotes, for clarity and concision, without any indication thereof.  I am a card-carrying member of the American Civil Liberties Union, and I do not censor ideas, which often are not the same as mine.  Particularly given the current political climate, with its deep divides, please remember that I am not taking sides or advocating for or against any thing or any one, I am only forwarding what people send me.

The 8th Annual Wheatley School Alumni Association NYC Luncheon

Call me crazy, but I really do want all 4,779 of you receiving this Newsletter to RSVP (if you haven't already) for the Luncheon, notice and a description of which you should already have received, but the basics are: Tuesday, April 7, 1:00-3:00 PM, Kyma Flatiron Restaurant, 15 West 18th Street, between 5th and 6th Avenues, New York City.  WWW.KYMARESTAURANTS.COM  $60 or whatever you feel like paying (really!).

Responses to the Holocaust Letter of Viktor Glaser (Father of George, 1965, and Tom, 1968), Newsletter # 41

Faculty Stephen Ehre It's all stated so matter-of-factly¦..amazing what the mind can do.  Thanks!  Steve

Faculty Robert Nolte Thank you so much for sharing this astounding letter.  It is without peer among all the communications I have received since leaving Wheatley (in 1967, I think!).  The letter is a poignant reminder of what autocracy and corrupt power, unfettered, can accomplish”let's do all we can to get things properly re-fettered in this country in 2020.

It is also a thrilling testimony to families and friendships that survived the Holocaust, and re-connected afterward, without the benefits of our slick technology.  We now make it so easy that the exceptional effort and persistence that was required then has pretty much vanished from our lives”superseded by all sorts of daily urgencies that, in the long run, don't amount to much.  Best, Bob¯

1958 Edward Brown All I can say is WOW!!!  We visited Auschwitz and Birkenau a few years ago and saw some of the remains of this story, but hearing it like this is !  Thanks, Arthur.  Ed

1960 Alice Horowitz Lainer All Holocaust museums should have a copy of this.

1960 Wilma Krauss Royall Art, An enormous masterpiece on many people's part.  The Glasers lived across the street from us on Percheron Lane.  George and Tommy were friendly.   We knew only in a general way the story of Viktor and Daisy's time in Europe.  Devastating to read this accounting of the horror and misery.  I could not finish reading this letter; the tears were so thick, I could not read the words after a while.  Much worse than we ever knew from them.  It was good to learn that Tommy is still alive and well and that Viktor lived to a ripe old age.

Thanks for your work on this historic letter.  I'm sure various societies would love to post it with their documents from this most terrible time in our planet's history.  As ever, Willi

1960 Ken Martin Hello Arthur, I just finished reading Viktor Glaser's letter.  I'm upset, but I have been reading many like accounts for a number of years now.  The Shoah is inexplicable yet real, and we must insure, as my good friends in Israel and the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) vow: NEVER AGAIN!

Two years ago you published my essay on the first trip I ever took to Israel.  That elicited a number of comments from Wheatley alumni from many classes.  Oddly enough, earlier this week I posted to our class website my essay on the recent trip I took to Israel.  See  Ken

1961 Peter Calderon Art, the incredible letter you circulated shook out of me some old memories and inspired me to share them with my children and some friends who care a lot about history.  Our kids never know enough about their parents' formative years, which in some measure tells them something about themselves.  Thanks for being the historian, librarian and conscience of our high school.  And, of course, thanks to Tom Glaser for circulating this moving piece of history.

1961 Rhoda Kalkin Schneider Extremely interesting, heartbreaking and yet heartwarming ... how Viktor and Daisy survived and what they had to endure.¯

1961 Patricia Kirk Hefferan Yet again when I read about the German atrocities I am brought to  tears.  I am crying as I write this.  What incredible strength Viktor and Daisy brought to each other in clinging to family and friends.  They clung to their love for each other and the incredible strength that each person had.  They accepted the tiniest of crumbs in order to survive. 

I agree that the Germans were not human.  They had to be animals.  One would wish that a race like them would not exist again, but here we are with the Iraqis and the entire Middle East.  Let's add on the Chinese.  Not all were heinous, but an overwhelming number of them were and are. 

God bless the United States of America, the land of the free and the home of the brave.  We were dragged into World War II, but without Churchill and the dogged determination of our young boys and men I might never have read this extraordinary letter.  May all those who suffered at the hands of the Germans now be found over the years and over the centuries to be living for all eternity in the splendid love and grace of our Savior Lord Jesus Christ.  May they know nothing but softness and warmth and beauty and endless, endless love. 

I remember when I was a teenager reading in the Long Island Press about Treblinka.  I went, sobbing, to my mother to see if this could possibly be true.  She confirmed that, yes, this was true.  Since that time I have always had an extraordinary affinity for the nation of Israel and the Jewish people. 

Thank you, Arthur, for helping me to never, ever forget.  I will pray that God's grace covers all those gone and all those present.  My gift to you cannot be given away.¯

1961 Jeanne Messing Sommer Thanks for sharing this amazing letter, which I have read several times.  It's so important that these stories be told!  Viktor and Daisy were such strong and resourceful people.  They not only managed to take care of themselves to survive but also to help so many others.  I wish I had known them!

1961 Camille Napoli Cannizzo Thank You, Tom and Art, for opening the past in this most emotionally charged letter from George and Tom's Dad.  Viktor's ability to recall dates, times, cities, prices of items, detail after detail.......and so on, and so on, for this document........amazed unbelievable account of Viktor and the history of himself and his family and friends.  I wish I had known Daisy.

You are so right, Art, the goal of the edited version (I found both sets of brackets helpful) worked for me.........totally riveting, memorable and most meaningful.  My heart skipped a little beat when Viktor told of April 24th, was my First Birthday when, according to Viktor, they started their last journey, by foot, back to Dachau and then on to Allach.  PS..........I also wonder who 'The Snitch' was!!!!!

1962 - Jon Bagdon I knew all the Glasers, especially George and Viktor.  We spent many summer afternoons water skiing and picnicking on their boat.  George and Viktor had dinner at my first restaurant in NYC several times.  I had only a sketchy and mistaken understanding of their lives during the war.  I had no idea of the horrors they actually survived.  The family was always warm and generous to me, as well as my brother Mark (1965).  This story only increases the incredible sense of affection and respect I have for them.  It is one of true bravery and heroism.  To Tom, I send my fondest regards.  You have/had an amazing family. 

1962 Philip Christensen Thank you, Art, for editing, and Tom Glaser, for sharing, your father's testimony with your Wheatley family.  I moved from a neighboring district in 1959 and knew, immediately, that my Wheatley classmates were driven in a way I had not witnessed in my previous district.  Viktor Glaser's testimony is an enlightening gloss on what most of us experienced: an intellectual brilliance set off by the shadow of the Holocaust many of our grandparents and parents experienced firsthand.  At the end of the War, many Americans appeared eager to forgive Germany's guilt by arguing that they had been duped, "victims" of their own ignorance; but I can't help but think that many in this country, after "four more years," might similarly lament: "We were duped; we just didn't know."  Unfortunately, much of the damage might never be undone.  Gratefully, Philip Christensen, Class of '62

1962 Susan Fox Lehman Thank you so much for sharing this amazing story of love, hardship, and survival!  I wish everyone would read this.  We all need be aware of the onset of such horror and not allow hate and discrimination to blossom in our lifetime.

1963 Mary Lee Holley Cerillo Thank you for publishing this letter Art.  Amazing what some people go through in order to survive.  What a horrible, horrible time that was.  NEVER AGAIN!

1963 Elizabeth Stone Matho Dear Tom (and Art), I've just finished reading your father's riveting letter describing so many details about the torturous years he and your mom endured during the Holocaust.  His description was so immediate, so fresh, vivid and heart-wrenching that it was as though he carried me along with him throughout this horrific journey.  Easily transported back to my visit to Auschwitz of a few years ago, those buildings, chimney, and barbed wire were once again populated in my mind with starving, terrified people, our kith and kin.

Tom, I thank you for sharing his testimony.  I wonder how much he and your mom told you and your brother about their story during their lifetimes.  I hope that you and your family are well. 

And to you, Art, as always, a great big heartfelt thanks!  Your editorial project here has been a great gift to all of us.  Reclaiming the Wheatley story - or back story - helps make more sense of where we came from and the lives we have lived.  Warm regards, Liz Stone¯

1964 James (Jim¯) Lerner Written to Tom Glaser Hi Tom, I hope you and your family are well.  Thanks for publishing your dad's letter.  I wish that I had known more about these things when we lived on Percheron Lane.  Being just a selfish kid, I was more concerned with competing with George in one sport or another, and I thought of your dad just as a man who loved his family and took us to ball games and bridge tournaments.  (By the way, getting caught sneaking out money was definitely due to a bridge opponent, 99.9% of whom couldn't beat your father - believe me, I know).

I don't think any of us could understand what that experience could have been like.  I don't know if Victor and my dad ever talked about those days.  I'm guessing that they did since my father spent 16 months in Stalag 1 after being shot down over Berlin.

1964 Steven Morris Hi Arthur -- Phenomenal job in getting this heart-rending document out to us -- and many, many thanks to Tom Glaser for sharing it.  Necessary to combat Holocaust-deniers!  Never Again!

1964 Davida Tunis Philips Thanks for sharing this.  All these histories are harrowing, but the world needs to know and NEVER FORGET.

1965 Suzette Gershenson Gray Hi Art.  As the daughter of a Holocaust survivor (my mother was in the French resistance), I appreciate you publishing it now.  It is truly timely, around the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz.   We must never forget!

1965 Andy Maslow Tom, Thanks for sharing your dad's moving letter.  I always had the upmost respect for him apart from knowing that he was a survivor.  Of course he never spoke about the Holocaust, so the letter filled in a blank story for me.  Your parents were the only survivors that I had known.

In the mid 60's I used to work at the Old Westbury Country Club, caddying and parking cars among many other things.  They were mostly American-born Jews and they all refused to buy a German car and were vocal about it.  I always thought of Viktor and his Mercedes (he later drove BMWs), and then said to myself if he insists on driving one then this attitude makes no sense.\

1965 Jeffrey Rothstein I had occasional contact with Viktor Glaser for many years because we are (were) both lifers at tournament bridge.  He was a high level competitor.  We always greeted each other warmly.  His incredible saga is one of many during that era in Eastern Europe that we should all never forget.

1965 Jane Wild Carrel Dear Tom,  I just read the amazing letter your father wrote describing in detail his horrendous experiences during WWII.  Thank you for sharing that.  It is so important that we read and reread what happened during that extremely disturbing period. 

Reading about your family reminded me of your brother George.  I was his 1965 classmate, and I had a crush on him beginning in 6th grade.  I always thought he was so handsome, so smart; I loved his smile.  I have never forgotten him and just spoke about him to my friends last week.  I told them how I used to call his house just to hear his voice for a second, and hang up when he answered the phone.  

I hope you are well.  I still think of you as George's little brother!

1966 Amy Gruskin Gerstein Thank you for sharing this important, personal. and harrowing account from a holocaust survivor.  It serves to remind us all, NEVER AGAIN, NEVER FORGET!¯

1966 Suzanne Stone What a powerful, heart wrenching story....I had to read it slowly to digest it all.  Thanks so much for sharing.

1967 Stephen Asquith Art - thanks!  Very difficult to read.  Mila Eisenstein was mentioned as a friend.  One of my family names was Eisenstein.  I hope she wasn't killed in Auschwitz!  Steve

1967 Philip Celella Tom and Arthur, thank you for sharing this letter.  I have a grandson that is only three; when he's older I will make sure he understands what happened back them.  Brought tears to my eyes; how people can be so cruel?  Cruel doesn't begin to describe what this man and many others when through.  To this day many say, It never happened.  How can people be so blind?  Thanks again.

1967 Lorraine Eisner Fitelson Having just read Viktor Glaser's letter, I am astonished, as always, at the cruelty.  How he survived is an inspiration.  It is important that we continue to remind people what happened.

1967 Robert (Bob¯) Jacobs Hi Tom (I recall you as Tommy Glaser!).  I'm sure you'll remember that I, Bob Jacobs, lived on Hummock Lane, just around the corner from you.

I just read your Dad's post-WWII letter, and I wanted to reach out to you.  I recall frequent good times on Percheron Lane with you and George and whoever was available for whatever the activity was that day.  I also recall that both of your parents were always welcoming and hospitable to me, and I recall being fond of them

I understood that they were both survivors of the war and had been separated and reunited after the war, but Viktor's letter was a powerful and sobering reminder of those dark times.  Thank you for sharing; it has significantly more impact when it literally hits home.

It is ironic that I just returned from Israel for the first time, and I visited Yad Vashem on the day before the world leaders met for the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz.  It was a very emotional experience, that was heightened and personalized when I read the letter only two weeks after returning home.

Through the letter, in spite of the atrocities and difficult circumstances, to say the least, your Dad always seemed to have an optimistic tone in his writing, with hope that it will get better.  It is unimaginable the horrors they endured.

Thank you for having the letter both published for the world and shared with the Wheatley Community.  I see your Dad lived to a very long life, but sad to see your Mom and brother died all too young.

I'm glad that your life has turned out well, building on the promise and hopes your parents had after their terrible struggles to survive and seek a better life.  Thanks again for sharing.  Bob Jacobs

1967 Lauren Jacoby Wonderful that you allowed us to see this letter!  Thank you!

1967 Howard Senft   Thanks to the Glaser family for this most interesting and emotionally packed account of the horror many Jewish, as well as non-Jewish, people suffered during WWII.  George, who graduated with my sister Ellen, and Tom were and are a credit to the Wheatley School.  I'm sure there are other graduates from Wheatley with similar tales of the sad happenings that occurred during those times.  I conclude with the simple plea...NEVER AGAIN!  SINCERELY,  H. LEE SENFT

1968 Ellen Alpert Aronow Dear Tom, Writing to you has taken me a while because I couldn't find any words that felt adequate.  I can only say 'thank you' for sharing such a moving, powerful letter.  Sending love and all my best to you and Jill,  Ellen

1968 Cheryl Goldberg Siegel Thank you so much for posting this¦¦.totally riveting !!

1968 Gerald (Jerry) Lieberman Viktor Glaser's letter was one of the most moving accounts of the holocaust I have read, due to the fact it is an unpolished personal account in his own words and in the form of a letter to a loved one.  It deserves to be showcased in the Holocaust Museum.  It is a testament to human perseverance that both Viktor and Daisy survived.  It is hard to read the letter and remain dry eyed.  I thank Tom Glaser for sharing it with us.

1968 David Pinter Tom, Thank you so very much for sharing your father's letter.  As he wrote at the end, if he didn't live it you would not believe it.  How much of his story did he share while you were growing up?

My paternal grandmother was able to emigrate prior to the Holocaust.  Her twin sister was not as fortunate.  When her family came from Germany for a visit in the late 1930s, the political winds of Nazism were already in the air.  My grandmother implored them to stay in America.  But they felt that having served under Bismarck and having been awarded an Iron Cross protected them.  They returned home and perished in the Holocaust.  My dad's 1/2 brother Bondi was on the way from Hungary to join the family but when he reached Yugoslavia he was detained in a concentration camp & exterminated.  My father would never purchase a product made in Germany. 

Thank you for sharing this gift with us.  All my best wishes to Jill (Tom's wife and also Wheatley 1968) & yourself.  David

Tom Glaser responded as follows:  Hi David,  Thanks for writing.  It means a lot to me.  

Most of what I heard about my parents' Holocaust experiences were from over hearing conversations my parents, mostly my Father, would have when friends or relatives would come to our house.  I'd be the little kid in the next room playing and listening.  As you know I was born in 1950.  So I'm in the next room as a 3, 4, 5, 6 etc. year old.  My father would share his story if anyone would ask, but as a little kid, I never got the whole story.  I'm not sure I could have taken it.  There was another couple who went through the war with my parents who also survived.

Out of the 5000 taken from Prague only 149 survived and only 19 couples, so it did not compute in my brain that these 4 people survived this horrible time.  They were best of friends in the US.  They lived in Queens and have a daughter 4 years younger than me.  She's like a little sister to me.  After my mom died in 1969, her mom was like a second mom to me.  Amazing people.  

My father obviously could never forget what the Germans did to him and so many more.  However, he did move on.  He did business with them.  He also had many very good friends that were German.  He also bought BMW's, although it took him a long time before he did.  A funny story about his cousin and his wife.  When I had the letter translated, I hesitated to send it to my Father's cousin's daughter, because he married a German girl.  He would tell the story that he started dating a girl he was working with.  He says he fell in love with her and then found out she was German.  He says he never would have started dating her in the first place if he knew, but by the time he knew it was too late.  Be well, and please share my father's letter with whomever you see fit.  Tom

1968 Arlene Spiro Levine There is little that one can say after reading Viktor Glaser's letter.  There are many lessons to be learned; but the one that resonates most with me is that the bad things inch up little-by-little; and just when one thinks that they have plateaued, that they can be tolerated, instead, they accelerate.

1968 Hilary (Lori) Wallach Marshak This letter was a gift, perhaps made even more meaningful in this time of hate crimes.  Thank you.

1969 Jack Lipsky What a story?!  Viktor was an incredible man living through the hell of the Shoah.  He showed unbelievable fortitude in just surviving.  His story should be publicized as much as possible since so few survivors are left.

1970 Jane A. Madison Thank you for sharing this.  Words cannot describe what I am feeling right now.  Never forget!

1970 Candice Maller Sherman Wow!  That was quite a read.  I sure hope this document is archived and preserved for many generations to come.  Hard to imagine how all of the experiences were salvaged, translated and documented with such detail and clarity.   I wept while reading of the separation of women from their children and felt the anxiety and fear that must have been a constant while being shuffled from camp to camp, always searching for a familiar face and hoping for word of a family member, co-worker or friend.  My heart ached for Viktor, given all the unspeakable, unthinkable experiences he endured.  I so admire the ability of the brave souls that endured the daily dehumanization and persevered until, finally, liberation.  So thankful for the remarkable way he was reunited with family, given shelter, a job and hope for the future.  Hope for the future............

It may not be the typical Newsletter content filled with the wonders of our lives and all that we enjoy.  It certainly puts things in perspective and hopefully causes us to pause and acknowledge how very fortunate we are and not to take things for granted.  Thank you for sharing and keeping it real.¯

1970 Joel Parker Sobering, sobering piece, Art, lest we ever forget.¯

1971 Mitch Mudick Viktor Glaser's letter really moved me.  It made the Holocaust more real for me than anything else I have run across.  Thanks for sending it!¯

1972 Patricia Bennett Millerioux Thank you so much for sharing this.  There are no words, just tears.

1973 Edward B. Ryder, IV Gut wrenching, riveting, and, yes, memorable.  Many lessons to be reminded about, as the current presidential regime has infant Latino and Latina children in camps, as they await sending armored ICE agents into sanctuary cities to enforce the demented dictates of their orange-haired, tonsorially-and-mentally-challenged Germanic heritage cult leader from Jamaica Estates.

1974 Donna Cave Arthur and Tom, Thank you for sharing this remarkable letter.   I have read many stories and books about the Holocaust, and although the brutality is what strikes you most, it is the perseverance of the survivors that I find most amazing.  To face such horrors, and yet find some good in the situation (when the family was living in one room in the ghetto, Viktor notes it was nice to spend so much time with family), and having the will to survive in the face of such horror, astounds me.  I have led such an easy life:  hungry? food in the fridge; need something? jump in the car; earn money? mine to keep.  What a courageous and brave couple Viktor and Daisy were.

1974 Debra Schaefer - Art, Thank you for posting this!

1974 David Zazula -Heart wrenching, riveting, shocking, angering¦..tears.  We've all read or heard of Holocaust atrocities, albeit not in as great a detail.  However, every account is shocking and important to share.  Viktor Glaser's letter begs the question: How low will mankind go in its treatment of his fellow man?

1975 Robert Vincze Thank you for sharing this most powerful letter.

1976 Spouse of Meryl Fine Berliner Tom/Arthur, my dear friend and frequent doubles partner, Adam Rosen, 1976, was kind enough to send me Viktor Glaser's amazing letter.  Thank you for sharing same.  My wife, Meryl Fine Berliner, graduated from Wheatley, so although I went to Jamaica HS in Queens, it feels like we're all family.

My mother and her parents were Hungarian and were sent to a ghetto in April 1944 and then Auschwitz two months later.  My grandfather perished the first day.  My mother and grandmother were able to be transferred to a Labor Camp, Bremen, after 3 months, and then 3 months later they were part of the death march to Bergen-Belsen, where they were liberated by the British in April of 1945.

At Meryl's urging and with her help, my mother, Lillian Berliner, published a memoir entitled And the Month Was May.  My grandmother lived until 91 and my mother is now 93 and living in assisted living in Queens, where we see her frequently.  She and Meryl are best friends and have been since they met in early 1979 when Meryl and I started dating at Penn.  Meryl's love and kindness to her has been crucial, especially after my Dad passed away in 1989.  My parents met in Frankfurt after the war when my mother was in medical school and my Dad was in charge of displaced persons in Frankfurt.  He was from Vienna. They were the first Jewish wedding in Frankfurt after WW II and came to the US in 1947, settling in Queens. 

Tom, may your lost family members memory always be a blessing.  Best, Steve Berliner¯

1981 Tracey Winn Pruzan Viktor Glaser's letter is something so special.  Thank you for sending that incredible story to all of us.

1988 David Mahaffey Thanks for sharing this.

1988 Laura Miller Hi Tom! I wanted to just thank you for sharing your late father's letter with our alumni association.  I graduated in '88 from Wheatley so our paths didn't cross but I wanted to reach out to just let you know how touched and moved I was by your father's letter and moreover his amazingly triumphant and positive spirit in the face of such unspeakable adversity. 

May his memory be a blessing to you and your family always.



Tom and Jill Silvering Glaser (both Class of 1968) Reply to the Responses to the Viktor Glaser Letter

We are deeply moved, indeed overwhelmed, by all the incredible responses from our Wheatley family.  You have touched our hearts in so many ways  bringing Viktor, Daisy and George back to life for us.  We thank everyone, especially Art for his timeless work in first editing the translated letter and then compiling all of the responses.  If we missed including anyone's response, we are very sorry and apologize.

We feel incredibly blessed that Viktor and Daisy survived the Holocaust and moved forward with their lives, without which we would not be celebrating our 50th wedding anniversary this coming summer. 

Thanks again to Art and our Wheatley family for taking the time to read Viktor's letter.  All the best, Tom & Jill Glaser


Robert Brandt Man of Many Schools

Bob wrote that The Wheatley School Alumni Association is the most active and informed alumni group I am a part of.  When I asked him of what other groups he is part, he sent me the following list:

New York Military Academy Cornwall on Hudson NY

Hofstra University

University of Vermont

St. John's University

SUNY Stony Brook

Mercer School of Theolog Moscow State University

Eberhard Karls University , Tübingen Deutschland 

College Universitaire d'Etudes Federalistes, Aosta Italia


Steven Ehre School Within a School

Writes Steve Well, Art, after so many requests on Facebook and Instagram I will try to give a brief history of the beginning of School-Within-A School (SWS).  I think I may be the only person still around to be able to answer this.  It began with the Social Studies Department Cahir, Warren Loring, having a sabbatical for 6 months in England.  Among many things, he visited a school called Summerhill¯ (read the book;  I used it in class).  When he came back, Ted Tchack was now being supervised by Warren because he and Ed Ouchi did not get along.  So after school Warren and Stew Doig got to talking and Ted joined in, just general stuff.  I was often there but had to skip out as I was coaching football.  Ted was looking to do something radical, which was NOT Warren's concept, and Stew was lukewarm.  Eventually a partial plan was arrived at, but a big argument occurred.  Stew, Warren and I wanted the SWS to affect the whole school.  Ted wanted to go off campus (like at Great Neck), and he looked into buying the unused building by the Old Westbury Police Station (now gone, and it was not fit to be used anyway).  Warren won that by just saying no, and then a two-year plan was written over a period of 1/2 year.  I was part of those discussions but always left by 3:15PM; Warren caught me up the next day. Then a CRUCIAL Board of Education member was approached and became in many ways the most important piece: Dr. Jane Ann Smith.  Without her, nothing could have gone forward.  It also should be noted that this was the time right after the initial Parent -Teacher-Youth groups led by Bill Schultz (Wheatley is mentioned in his book JOY), and started by Dr. James Erviti, then Superintendent of the East Williston School District.

This was a catalyst for thinking differently about the teaching-learning process.  The basic premise was that the SWS was to be a democratic school, with students having a great deal of power over a major part of their own education.  Professional teachers were to have a somewhat diminished role.  Anyone wishing to teach a course could do so and that included teachers, students, parents ,and other members of the Wheatley community.  There was an elected student court that was meant to adjudicate issues that included grades that were in dispute, as well as adherence to SWS rules that the whole body agreed to, and that were spelled out in the SWS Constitution.  The plan was put into effect in 1972,  with the first class comprised of 12 seniors chosen by the seniors who applied and then finally by Stew and Ted¦.and two classes, one of Ted's English and one of Stew's History; students were given a choice to join or not.  Most did; hence the first class of about 50 including 12 seniors. They met in the morning for 3 periods and then gym with Irwin August.

The second year I officially joined, as Warren felt a need for someone he trusted to oversee the day-to day operations, for which he did not have the time.  Stew and I were assigned as 3/5ths teachers in SWS and Ted was full time (then 4 English classes).  That second year we had trouble recruiting until I approached two girl friends that had gone to summer camp for years and were at the center of their grade.  We got enough students to fill our program!  The third year it went crazy, with about 72 sophomores joining. We had about 40% of the whole high school...homeroom was in the auditorium ...and even with a guidance counselor assigned it was difficult.  We also tried including Science and Math and Foreign Languages.  Dr. Feindler eventually mentioned that with a small school we had many singletons (one class at a level like Spanish III or Calculus l) and they were all being pushed to the afternoon, and teachers were complaining.  So, we agreed to move SWS to the afternoon periods 5 (gym), 6, 7, and 8 (later 9th period was added, and we shifted to 6-9.

We did not use the other disciplines again- too complicated.  There were a few required courses and activities ... I'm OK, You're OK (great book by Harris), Group Dynamics (both taken in 10th grade), and every Wednesday was for a required general  meeting, committee meetings, family groups, and group exercises.  In addition, to meet state law, students had to take one 10th Grade World History class, Basic Economics, and a Basic US Government class in 11th grade.  Now, here's how we started the Meeting for Sharing.  The program had some student issues and they needed to be talked about and addressed.  We all met by the huge tree near the then baseball field.  We started with an idea I had read about; but that was proving totally unworkable¦..LOL. Doug Smith (Jane Ann's son) got up and said this is what they do at their Quaker meetings: if you wish to say something stand quietly until it is your turn and make your comment and then sit.  Nobody was to comment directly on what was said, especially critically.  It sounded great and it was used that day and from then on.

I hope I didn't bore many of you. This was just SOME of the basic early stuff¦Lots more, like what kinds of students did the SWS attract, who succeeded (and how was that defined and determined), the major school divide, and later, the new administration restrictions... but enough for now.  Steve

Earl Ewing A Long Teaching Career

A group of people posing for the camera

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Earl Ewing flanked by Ken Martin, 1960, and his wife Cheryle Martin

I am a happily-single retired snow bird who splits his time between the rolling hills and changing seasons of spring, summer and autumn of central New York and the warmth of Florida sunshine in the winter.  I had a very good 33-year teaching career in the classroom, 26 years of it at Garden City High School, but it all started in East Williston, at Wheatley.  I was hired to teach at Wheatley at the age of 22, and I could not have asked for a better start to my career.  The students, the administrators, the community, and the head of my department (Math), Jack Devlin, could not have been better.

I also had family and friend connections, as some of you might know; Ken Martin, 1960, and Doug Martin, 1967, were my cousins.

As I enter my 80s, I look back at my 20s, which took place in the 60s.  (I always loved numbers.)  I have some remembrances of that time that I will share with you in different Newsletters (starting with this one).  Please be kind, as some of the recollections of an 80-year-old brain may be a little foggy.

November 22, 1963 As we entered the school auditorium for a Friday afternoon assembly to listen to a speaker from the Nassau County Police Department we all knew that President Kennedy had been shot.  Approximately 10 minutes into the presentation the back door of the auditorium opened, and Dr. Wells, the head of the English Department, walked down the aisle and said in a strong and loud voice, Mr. Speaker, our president is dead.

After the chorus of emotional outcries from the audience, we were instructed to return to homeroom.  Because of the Cold War and the recent Cuban Missile Crisis, each school had to have a plan to send the students home early.  At Wheatley, part of that plan was for me to drive one of the busses.  On my journey back to homeroom I entertained the thought that the students would have been safer in a nuclear attack than being passengers in a school bus driven by me.  Fortunately, the school day was almost over, and the students returned home on the regular bus schedule.

It was a day that everybody in that auditorium would, and will, always remember.

The Varsity Revue What fun!  What joy!  What laughter!  Of all the extra-curricular activities with which I was involved during my 33-year teaching career, from coaching sports to class sponsorship to the math team, I enjoyed the production of the Varsity Revue the most.  I hope just mentioning it brings a little smile to anyone who participated in a skit or performed in a band.

I was Phil Ardell's (1966) assistant.  He was the creative one.  I was the adult that the law required.  My favorite show was when the D.S.'s, Dan Silver and Dave Shapiro, were the M.C.'s.  My favorite skit, a little family bias here, was when my cousin, Doug Martin, and his gang performed These Boots Were Made for Walking,with Doug stomping over his gang.  The trip to Kennedy Airport to meet a facetious celebrity getting off a plane; motorcycles coming down the aisle in a Marlon Brando take-off of The Wild One, were other favorite skits.

One final anecdote: Mr. Colin Bentley (who had been my teacher at Mineola High School a few years earlier!) and I were the only members of the audience for the purpose of censoring any unsavory items.  Occasionally we cracked a smile; but generally the silence was deafening.

Silver Lining I left teaching at Wheatley after 4 years (1963-1967) due to The Reconfiguration, in which the two elementary school populations were combined into one (to promote what today we would call diversity¯), and Seventh grade was conducted at I. U. Willets.  I lacked seniority, and after the Junior High teachers turned down being transferred, I had no choice and would have to move over/down to that school.  That was not the level at which I wanted to teach.  I was very happy at Wheatley and could have become the Mr. Chips of the East Williston School District.  However, every cloud has a silver lining.

It put no obstacle in my way to follow Keith and Phyllis Johnson (Wheatley Teachers married to each other) ( and Mr. Norman Guthrie to England and teach in the school where Mr. Herbert Wheeler exchanged the previous year.  It was the right move for my career, and I established friendships that still exist today.

It also gave me the opportunity to be a second-semester senior with a case of senioritis with the Class of 1967.  Some of my antics were going to Jones Beach with my cousin during a school day to convince him to join the Air Force, and being a little less censorious of the Varsity Revue.  Others remain under seal and will not be released until 20 years after my death.

Sheldon Maskin Appreciation by Ken Yagoda (1965)

Writes Ken Art, I cared deeply for Mr. Maskin.  We started corresponding in 2015 and I wish it had started sooner.  We spoke on the phone a few times and we got through the discomfort of my asking, 'So, how do I address you? Mr. Maskin?  Seems a little strange but I can 

deal with it.'  He said, 'Why don't you just call me Shel.'  We had some very nice talks.  He was funny as hell.

I wrote to Sheldon about my granddaughters:

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He wrote back, 'Thank you - what a great picture - and what an age to enjoy - I think I played a thousand games of hide and seek when my grandkids were that age - lots of excitement - plus the fact that they think that you are the greatest person on the planet.  My second wife is quite a bit younger than I, so I am getting a another set of grand-kids - how lucky can you get?  We were visiting them in GA last week when the 7 year old girl came in the house and asked me if I knew how to play basketball.  Being an experienced grandpa [I assume you're taking notes], I told her that I had never heard of the game - so we went outside, and I learned how to play from an expert; whenever I missed a shot, it was, That's okay, Grampa. Stay well, S' 

There was more, but he'll always be part of me and whatever learning I hope to embrace, forever.  RIP Shel!  Kenny.

Dan Walsh Coach Appreciations by Sarah Tirgary, 1985, David Sakhai, 1991, Gregg Brochin, 1994, and Jacob Kuriakose, 1995

Writes Sarah Coach Walsh was my track coach back in the day as one of the few female runners on the team back in the early- to mid-80's.  He was inspirational, fair and encouraging.  I can't tell you how excited I was when upon my daughter signing up for track at Wheatley, Dan Walsh became her coach, too.  Thanks to coaches like Mr. Walsh and her current coach, Mr. Paulson, my daughter eats, drinks and sleeps track.  She was encouraged from day one and never told to sit it out.  I'm so happy that Mr. Walsh stayed in the game and continued to spread his talents as a coach.  He will be truly missed but we will look for him at meets to show our support.

Wheatley has been a very important stepping stone for me personally and career-wise.  I'm so grateful for all that I learned from this special place.  Nice to hear others have had a similar experience.  Thanks, Sarah

Writes David Coach Walsh was a mentor to me, and I'm sad to hear him move on after all these years.  I'm sure he's had a tremendous positive impact on many Wildcats that walked through Wheatley's doors.

Writes Gregg - I ran track for Coach Walsh (I was one of the captains my senior year), and I congratulate him on his retirement.  I still run (or use an elliptical - my knees can't quite handle the pounding like they used to) a few days a week, and I credit him and LR (the cross-country coach) for instilling in me a strong sense of the value of hard work, a great lesson that has served me well in life.

Writes Jacob Art, Coach Walsh did not mention something that was a part of our lives.  Not only was he our physical education teacher, he created an unbelievable game called 'Walsh Ball,' a hybrid of a lot of sports, including soccer, football, team handball, and basketball, all rolled into one game.  There were many ways to score, and different modalities of play, which allowed those who were not so athletic a chance to participate.  Those mixed emotions towards gym class seemed not to exist anymore.  Everyone enjoyed this game, which was so much fun to play.  Jacob Kuriakose, 1995


1958 Roberta (Bobbie) Kaufman Classic Photo (submitted by classmate Howard Cohen)

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(Bobbie passed away last year but is still generating talk among her classmates.)

1958 Steve Nelson Letter to the Editor Published in the NY Times

To the Editor:

The privileged status of Iowa's caucuses leading off the presidential campaign season has long been criticized as unrepresentative of the Democratic electorate: too rural, too white, too old. But they are also inherently discriminatory against working parents, the elderly, the poor, the disabled and others who may be unable to spend a winter night at a caucus. And now we have the counting fiasco.  The Democratic Party should require primaries and do away with caucuses in Iowa and elsewhere.  Steve Nelson, Washington, Mass.

1960 - Norman Coffey Appreciates Dominic Foresto and his Clothing

Writes Norman I always look forward to your Newsletters, but # 40 was especially meaningful for me.  I left N.Y. 20 years ago for Florida.  In my closet are a top coat, two suits, and several sport jackets, all with the name Foresto¯ inside the left lapel of each.  I would love to walk into the store on Willis Avenue tomorrow and be greeted by Dominic with his smiling face and firm handshake.  You would have to go far to find a finer gentleman. God bless him and his beautiful family.

1960 Ken Martin + Art Engoron (1967) Bosom Buddies We Are Wheatley

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Presidents Week in Florida, February 23, 2020

1960 Paul Hennessy and Wendy Strickman Hoffman (1970) We Are Everywhere!

Writes Wendy Back in the 1990s, when Paul Hennessy was leading communications at Santa Clara University, I was doing the same for Medecins Sans Frontieres/Doctors Without Borders.  In preparing for a talk at the university by an MSF physician, Paul and I spoke frequently by phone ” at least a dozen times over a few weeks.  On the day of the event, Paul graciously picked up me and MSF's U.S. Executive Director, a French woman whose last name was 'Martell,' at the San Jose airport.  In the car on route to the campus, Paul and I were talking and discovered that we were both from Long Island "a small town called East Williston," he said.  You went to Wheatley? I asked,  incredulously.  Then to top that off, both he and my colleague . . . again, last name 'Martell' . . . realized that they were both related to the two great French Cognac families - Hennessy and Martell.  What are the chances?!

Writes Paul Here's a short, humorous side-bar to Wendy Strickman Hoffman's recollection of our coincidental meeting in California more than two decades ago.

The Martell-Hennessy connection she mentioned is a significant aspect of my family's Irish heritage--and the reason why I'm continually asked if the name Hennessy is French, like the famed cognac.

The history dates back to a James Hennessy, who hailed from the same "Rebel Cork" region as my IRA ancestors.  We always claim him in spirit, if not certified by (I'm still working on that🍀).  In the 1500s he volunteered for what became known as the "Wild Geese" Irishmen who fled their native land to partner with the French (or anyone fighting the detested Brits). 

In the course of those conflicts, James married into the Martell Family and began sending casks of his own special brandy from his new home in Cognac, France to his comrades in the Auld Sod.  The brew was savored and achieved its own brand, aside the Martell cognac name. (Now Hennessy has many markets and is a favorite all the way from the streets of NYC to Asia and Europe; now merged, oddly enough, with Louis Vuitton and Moet Champagne on the U.S. stock market as "LVMH".

But back to founder James Hennessy--aside from making cognac, he also achieved  fame by being elected to the French parliament and becoming an influential soldier/politician in his era . . . Another reason that many think 'Hennessy' is a French name.

So, you can imagine my enjoyment back in Silicon Valley circa 1994, while coordinating a Medicins sans Frontiers presentation at Santa Clara University, where I was communications director, to coincidentally meet both a lovely Wheatley fellow alum (Wendy) AND a historic cognac relation.  And, as you can imagine, direct relation or not, the Hennessy name got me and my companions seated in some crowded Moet-Chandon-owned restaurants.

Sacre bleu!  Saludos!  Cheers!  L'Chaim!  Paul

1961 Joan Bressman Sister-In-Law of Hippie Prankster Abbie Hoffman.

Writes Joan Wow!  I and my family and friends had many wonderful adventures with Abbie.  My husband, Jack, was very involved with Abbie and wrote a book about him after he died.  Jerry Rubin and Abbie had many speaking engagements titled Yippie vs Yuppie.  Of course Jerry was the yuppie, and they began to loathe one another. Unfortunately, while Abbie was a fugitive, he became a full blown Bi-Polar 1 personality.  He suffered more of the manic side, but the depressive side really did him in.

BTW, Marcia Podell Stern, Class of 1961, recently died after a number of years of suffering.  Her husband, Gunter, called me with the news. Marcia was a very creative woman who had a true sense of outrage over numerous injustices that exist in our society.  She also possessed a unique sense of humor that kept us entertained over many years.

1961 Robert (Bob¯) Nissenfeld

Writes Bob - Hi Art, I've been reading your wonderful Wheatley Newsletters for a long, long time, and this is my first correspondence.

During my Wheatley years, I joined the History & Politics Club (in 1958). Mr. Doig, who was also one of my teachers, provided me with a foundation and insights that would help shape my future perspectives of the world.  That same year, I joined the wrestling team, as my parents would not let me play football.  Looking back to my three years on the team, I now realize the profound positive influence that Coach Stevenson had on my life.  I was a terrible wrestler, but I enjoyed every minute of being something Wheatley.

In 1959, I joined the mixed choir headed by Dr. Wills.  Anyone who has had the opportunity to work with this truly inspiring educator will understand its lasting benefits.

I also want to say Hi¯ to Ruth Rennert, my Old Westbury neighbor and my 1959 classmate in Mr. Saunder's homeroom.

All the rest of my time at Wheatley was spent totally academic in nature¦studying and learning.  Little did I know at that time how being educated by such highly trained, dedicated, and demanding teachers would so greatly help me through college and in my future life.

After graduating from Adelphi University, I began a 53-year accounting career and married my late wife of 51 years, Cathy (Roslyn High '66). Now I am retired in sunny Florida (except for that occasional wipe-everything-out hurricane!).  Best regards, Bob¯

1962 + 1963 (L-R) Marilyn Nadel Fox (1963), Frannie Kraman Freedman (1963) and Louise Sobin Hersh (1962) Celebrating Frannie's Birthday

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1965 George Glaser Remembered by Andy Maslow (1965)

Writes Andy I have personally known only two Holocaust survivors, Viktor and Daisy Glaser, who were the parents of my high school friend George Glaser.  George introduced me to alpine ski racing.  Viktor was the force behind George's ski racing and his excelling in school.  In the 1960s Viktor did a lot of driving, usually at very high speeds, and always drove a Mercedes-Benz (before switching to BMWs), which he rightfully felt were the best cars at the time for high speed driving, especially in the snow.  To me, this was remarkable, as so many American-born Jews at that time still refused to drive German-made cars.

George attended the Northwood School in Lake Placid, NY, which emphasized skiing, for one year, but the ski coach, who was also a teacher, felt that Northwood was not sufficiently academic for George, who was an exceptional student as well as athlete.  The coach thus insisted that George return to Wheatley, where I met him.  George and I had most of the same classes (since I was put in all the advanced placement classes because I was in them in Hicksville and Levittown before we moved to Roslyn Heights), played on the same line in soccer (our team won the county championships, largely because of George, a major upset because we were the smallest public school), trained for skiing together (George would win and I would not even make the top 100), and pole vaulted on the track team together in the spring.  George continued to a place on the podium in Eastern races and in 1965 went to Dartmouth to ski.  During an Olympic training camp in Vail in December 1965 George told me that he was skiing faster than Billy Kidd and Jimmy Heuga in training, both having just won medals in the 1964 Olympics.  During that camp, George had a horrible crash and suffered a devastating shoulder injury in the downhill race.

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He never fully recovered.  Worse than the physical injury was the mental health consequences.   He had achieved his long held dream to be the best ski racer in the US, but his nagging shoulder injury took that away.  He was never the same.  After years of treatment for his mental problems, including therapy in Switzerland, he committed suicide in 1977.  His mother, Daisy, survived the Holocaust, but she was a casualty of it and was never the same person; apparently the sudden and enduring mental change in George was more than she could handle, and she predeceased him.

I will always remember George fondly.  He was such a humble guy, and always so nice to me.  His loss was a terrible blow to me and all of his other skiing buddies.

Writes Art Engoron- Here's a letter that George wrote (transcription immediately below) demonstrating his innate goodness.

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The letter reads:  Dear Mike, I cannot forgive myself for not taking the opportunity to thank you publicly for being such a good sport by lending me your skis.  I was so surprised when Mr. Nebel announced that I had won the race.  I didn't know whether to feel happy for myself or sorry for Hank.  When I was called to the microphone my mind became a total blank, if you know what I mean.  If the snow holds, I am looking forward to see[ing] you at the race at Belleayre in two weeks, and if not, maybe I will meet you at the New York State racing camp next Christmas.

As for George's academic prowess, I received the following from a Northwood graduate:  ļ»æMike [a classmate] thought the world of George ... he told me that back in the days no one had ever gotten a 90 average at Northwood . . . until George got a 92 . . . we were all in awe of him . . . a gentle giant of a guy . . . he was the real talent amongst us . . .

1967 The North Side School Ms. Doxie Kindergarten The Other Session (from the NL 38 photo)

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First Row: James Byrnes, Gina Harman, ???, Corinne Zebrowski, Toby Cohn, Janice Giarracco, ???, Susan Vogt

Second Row: Lauren Jacoby, ???, ???, ???, ???, ???

Third Row:  Tim Boland, ???, ???, ???, ???

On Shelf:  George or Charles Short, Henry Decsi, Steven Leicht.

1967 The North Side School Ms. Doran First Grade

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First Row Howard Kirchick?, George Short?, Henry Decsi, William O'Connell, Scott Somebody  (moved), Arthur Engoron, Charles Bell?

Second Row Toby Cohn, Sue Gerson, Susan Altman, Lesley Bond, Mary Ann Somebody?, Dana Keillor, Judy Berkan, Judy Orgel

Third Row Larry Weiss, Frank Vedder, Robert Scandurra, Marcy Buzen, Corinne Zebrowski, Geoffrey Rossano (moved), Dennis Pensa, Doug Martin

1967 Junior Prom Six Growing Up

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L to R Marion Standish, Mike Cave, Billy Cave (Mike's older brother), Lorraine Eisner Fitelson, Robert Silverstein, Merrill Stanton All Class of 1967 except Billy (who did not attend Wheatley).

1967 Five in a Row

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Marion Standish, Peter Kaplan, Merrill Stanton, Patti Polansky Koss, Lee Fein

Writes Merrill We stayed for four hours over lunch & drinks in Santa Monica.  Laughing over all the memories we had together.  A great time was had by all!!

1967 Ginny Bindman Westerfeld and Lorraine Eisner Fitelson Gettin' Together

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Writes Lorraine - Hi Art: Larry and Ginny Bindman Westerfeld, and Barry and I (Lorraine Eisner Fitelson) recently met up in Stuart, Florida.  We have gotten together in California, Cincinnati, annually in New York, and now Florida!  Ginny and I have been friends since meeting in chorus in seventh grade!  There's something about lifetime friends.  It's like going home again!

1967 Ben Ross Transportation Gadfly

This stinks to high heaven, said Benjamin Ross, chairman of the Maryland Transit Opportunities Coalition. It's clearer and clearer that this project is about generating toll revenue for private contractors and not about better transportation.

You can read all about it at

1967 Art Engoron Decision

1968 David Pinter An Author in the Family

Writes David My son Jason is a best-selling crime fiction writer.  As his newest work is getting fabulous reviews (over 1000 on Goodreads alone & mostly 5-star reviews on Amazon as well), his publisher is sending him on a book tour which begins in NYC & finishes in Seattle, which is where our daughter, who is an executive at Amazon, lives.

1969 Donald Cohen - Author

The new book by Donald Cohen and his dad, Max Cohen, The Inside Ride: A Journey to Manhood, Letters between Father and Son, will be published June 1, 2020, in time for Father's Day.  You can pre-order it on Amazon.                      

Writes Amazon 'The Inside Ride' is an extended and fearless exploration on the meaning of 'Manhood' in contemporary Western culture at a moment in time in which both 'Fatherhood' and 'Manhood' have become endangered concepts.  Pointing out the need for strong male relationships and guidance, this book offers an essential prescription for the psychological health of modern Western societies, which have lost the thread of traditional cultures and their time-honored rites of passage.  The extensive letter exchange between father and son demonstrates intimacy and honesty in analyzing and exploring the often tumultuous events of their lives.  Trained in two different psychological disciplines, their interaction provides the reader with a look at the complexity of growing up in America's fast-changing culture, offering invaluable insights for both children and parents.¯

Writes Donald To all my Wheatley classmates, I would appreciate your support and hope the correspondence between my father and me could inspire you.  Perhaps it will evoke some meaningful memories.  We are all on a journey, and we all share a time that in some ways is familiar and in some ways unfamiliar.  We all graduated from The Wheatley School, a place where we were all just starting to try to figure it all out.  If you have questions or just want to share something, I can be reached at  I look forward to sharing with all of you.¯

1969 + 1970 Jack Riefberg, 1970 (L) and Andy Wilkins, 1969 (R) Two Guys in Florida

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1970 Arnold Katz - Deceased

Arnold passed away in 2019.  He attended Wheatley through 10th grade, then went to private school.  He leaves behind sister Fern Katz Medwin, 1967.  An older brother, Steven, predeceased.

1972 Jacqueline Obrant Millstein A Survivor

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Writes Jackie On September 30, 2019, I earned the title of Breast Cancer Survivor.

In early May, I was asked to come back to Hackensack Radiology for a redo of my annual mammogram.  They saw something.  They weren't sure what it was, but they didn't like it.  And just like that, I was in an operating room having a needle biopsy.

I went on to have three more needle biopsies and pre-op procedures to place permanent markers that they gave cute names to like Top Hat (I felt like a cross between a pin cushion and a Monopoly board).  Then, the day before surgery, I had a radioactive seed implanted with a radioactive injection to serve as a GPS for the surgeon.  I wasn't allowed to hold small children or dogs until it was removed.  So that was interesting.

My first surgery (yup, not a misprint) went really well.  Lumpectomy and removal of several lymph nodes.  Recovery was much better than expected and by day two I was working from home.  The biggest jaw dropper was that the mass wound up being more than twice the anticipated size, elevating me from Stage 1 to Stage 2 cancer.  The second surgery two weeks later removed the margins.¯  That's where they go back in to remove tissue all around the excised mass to be certain there were no lingering cancer cells.  That surgery was even easier to recover from and I went to the office the next morning.  I'm not a martyr I had no pain and it was boring to stay home.  I also found RITTA to be so supportive that I looked forward to working.

The waiting for results was the worst of all; 5-7 days of watching the phone not ring.  I then met with my oncologist to find out if I needed additional surgery and/or chemo.  The results showed that the margins and lymph nodes were clear, so I was officially no longer a patient of the incomparable Dr. Deborah Capko my rock star Sloan Kettering oncology surgeon.  My FU to chemo was to have my hair colored and cut hours before meeting my oncologist.  If I were going to lose my hair, it would not fall out with ugly roots.  Fortunately, my Onco score indicated I was not a candidate for chemo.

On September 3rd, I began 4 weeks of daily radiation.  The pre-radiation process was fascinating from a scientific perspective.  I lay on an MRI table atop of a spongy material with my arms over my head.  They then molded the material to my body and within 10 minutes it was a hardened cast.  They then aimed 3 lasers to pinpoint my exact position and marked them with permanent tattoos, ensuring that they could focus the radiation with pinpoint accuracy so as to minimize damage to healthy tissue.

I was one of the lucky ones.  I kept my breast, my hair and my sense of humor.  Throughout the months of treatments and procedures I threw parties, traveled, played with my grandchildren, and went to the office practically every single day.

To celebrate being cancer-free, my incredibly supportive husband took me to Paris.  St. Chapelle is a tiny 13th- century church completely made of stained glass that survived the bombings of Paris in WWII. When the sun shines, you feel like you're inside of a kaleidoscope.  There I stood amongst total strangers and for the very first time, I openly wept. And just like that, I closed the book on a difficult chapter in my life.

So, in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I am imploring every woman reading this blog to GET A MAMMOGRAM.  And get your friends, sisters, mothers and daughters to get theirs.  If you are a man reading this blog, implore every woman in your life who you cherish to GET A MAMMOGRAM.  And don't forget that men can get breast cancer too.

1972 Jean T. Walsh Newly Minted Judge

Judge Jean T. Walsh spent most of her 37 year legal career in public service.  She started at the Bronx County District Attorney's Office,  where she served in various bureaus for fourteen years before joining the United States Attorney's Office of the Southern District of New York and then the New York State Office of the Inspector General.  Most recently she returned to serve as the Executive Assistant District Attorney and Chief of the Investigations Division in the Bronx County District Attorney's Office.  She received her undergraduate degree from Mount Holyoke College and her J.D. from SUNY Buffalo Law School.  Judge Walsh is appointed to Civil Court and will be assigned to Criminal Court.

1973 Daniel Engoron Host with the Most

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Dan (L) hosted a Super Bowl party that brothers Frank, 1970 (C), and Art, 1967 (R), attended.  Writes Art Why am I the only brother who cannot grow a mustache, try as I might?

1975 Beth Sara Greenapple Deceased

Writes Edward B. Ryder IV (1973) Last night in the Wolverine State, as the word spread, it was not only that animal which silently howled at the news of the passing of Beth Sara Greenapple; an alumnae of the Wheatley School and a contemporary of mine, who was educated at a school located on a street which shared a name with a food many are forbidden to consume.

As a cancer survivor myself, I cringe whenever somebody loses his or her battle with this horrific disease, but I realize simultaneously that enormous progress has been made by oncologists, surgeons, and medical researchers since the day when we were born, during the Eisenhower Administration.

While John McCain and Edward M Kennedy were better known, they too shared not only citizenship with Beth but ultimately a similar form of disease. And like McCain, Greenapple was a fighter; and like Teddy Kennedy, she too believed that "the dream will never die."

A wordsmith of impeccable acumen, Beth could use the written word to elicit the full gamut of human emotions; but it was in the verbalization of conversation that she truly shined - just as does a ray of sunshine, as she would always say something which would brighten one's day.

She loved her wife, and she too adored her son, Nadav, as well, to the depths of her soul, so much so that it made the depth of Lake Superior appear inferior.  Her glee in sharing news of Nadav's scholastic endeavors was infectious and shined through the phone like a comet alight.

Beth was unique, in all the ways that are positive.  She not only knew how, rhetorically, to take lemons and make lemonade; she did so at times of challenge with a talent that would have Dom Perignon and Martha Stewart inquiring as to how she did that. 

Beth Greenapple treated her friends with a care that would make Rachel and Sarah of biblical note appear as amateurs.  She loved her faith with every sinew of her being, and while Hanukkah may have us receive gifts over days - knowing Beth was a precious gift over not days but decades.

I mourn the loss of my friend of decades, Beth, but I choose as well to celebrate a life well lived, a life that was dedicated to improving the lot of all she encountered, consoled, or befriended.  Her life was a mitzvah of which G-d himself would be proud.

May her memory be a blessing and may all who were blessed by G-d to know
Beth Sara Greenapple be comforted among the mourners of Jerusalem and Zion....for the likes of a person of such infinite worth is a rarity among humankind.

1978 Pamela Hirschhorn Songstress

Writes Pam Hi, everyone, Just letting you know I have a YouTube channel for my music.  Search 'Pam Hirschhorn' and subscribe!  Best, Pam

1978 Joanne Strano Miller Seeing my family restaurant, Hildebrandt's, in the movie 'The Irishman was incredible, very special.  I remember Val Gomes being a very nice person.


This Newsletter goes out (as of 2/12/2020) to 4,603 Wheatley School graduates and students and 176 administrators, faculty, staff, spouses, significant others, parents, widows, widowers, neighbors, etc.

Fan Mail:

Faculty (Bob Brandt) Thank you for all the work you put into the Newsletters; we all appreciate it so much.  Out of all those schools I attended (see above) I have not heard from an alumni association or been kept in touch the way YOU have.  You are such a mensch for doing this job.  I not only look forward to the Newsletters, I feel closer to all of the people who write even if I have never known them as students, and it is yours and Keith's work that is really creating a community of the folks who spent time at Wheatley.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart.  Bob

1958 (Howard L. Cohen) Art Engoron (Class of 1967) has worked tirelessly and unselfishly sending out Wheatley School Alumni Association Newsletters.

1958 (Carol Gettleman Berkowitz) Thanks, Arthur, for your well-edited monthly Newsletter.  I look forward to receiving the news about my fellow Wheatley graduates on a regular basis.  A Happy Healthy New Year to all.

1960 (Joanne Festa) Hey Art,  A packed Newsletter # 40!   Thanks for your dedication.  It's so appreciated.

1960 (Paul Hennessy) To Art, I -- and all of Jack Langlois' friends and admirers -- greatly appreciated Newsletter # 40, including yearbook and adult photos of Jack.  Kudos once again for building continuing connections among our exceptionally accomplished and interesting Wildcat alums.

1960 (Paul Keister) I applaud you for all you do for Wheatley grads.

1960 (Kenneth Martin) Art - good stuff - keep up the fire both in your approach¦and also in your home.¯

1960 (Eileen Murphy Solomon) I enjoyed your latest Newsletter as always.  Thanks so much for what you do for the graduates of The Wheatley School.

1961 (Bob Nissenfeld) Art, thank you so much for your phenomenal work; I can't wait for the next Newsletter.

1963 (Barbara Knudsen Metzler) I moved from East Williston to Wantagh in 1959, but I still keep in touch with a couple of gals from Wheatley, and I appreciate you keeping me informed of what's going on.  I love seeing pictures from past reunions!  👍ā'ŗļø

1964 (James Lerner) Thank you for your work on the Newsletters and for publishing Victor Glaser's letter.  It meant a lot to me.

1964 (Davida Tunis Philips) Thanks for the Newsletters.

1965 (Barbara Nassau Perlmutter) Thank you for all you do to keep all us Wheatleyites informed.

1966 (Lorraine Gallard) As always, Art, thank you for what you are doing for our Wheatley community; it's important on so many levels.

1966 (Gretchen Gersh Whitman) Thanks for the fabulous Newsletters!

1966 (Rick Jalonack) Art, in reading the 'Fan Mail' I was pleasantly reminded of good times by the names of the contributors.  Keep on, keepin' on.

1966 (Suzanne Stone) Dear Art, Always a good read.  Thanks again for your dedication to keeping the Wildcats a family!

1967 (Anita Green) Thanks for all the Newsletters.

1967 (Bob Jacobs) Thanks for all that you do to tie together the Wheatley Community.

1967 (Frank Lawkins) I always enjoy the Newsletters and appreciate the effort you put into it.

1967 (Merrill Stanton) Thank you for keeping us all connected through your great Newsletters!!

1968 (Ellen Alpert Aronow) Great Newsletter, many thanks!!

1968 (Cheryl Goldberg Siegel) Great Newsletter!  Thank you again for your time doing this; I greatly appreciate it!

1969 (Donald Cohen) Thank you!  I always enjoy embracing a moment in time, 1969.  I love how you are keeping people connected.  I can't imagine many other high schools having a person like you doing this.

1969 (Judy Glasser) Thanks for all your contributions all these years!

1969 (Amy Wiesenfeld Kinon) I do so enjoy receiving your Newsletters and hearing about other Wheatley alumni.  Thank you for all the effort you put in.¯

1970 (Cathy Gerson) Thanks for keeping everyone together.

1971 (David Byer) The Newsletter continues to be fantastic.

1971 (Mitch Mudick) I very much enjoy the Wheatley Newsletters.

1972 (Debra Soffer Beilin) Thank you again for your dedication to these welcome & well done Newsletters.  They are so meaningful.

1972 (Jacqueline Obrant Millstein) I love reading each issue and thank you for taking the reins on this huge endeavor.

1972 (Jean Walsh) Thank you for being such an excellent reporter and historian of the Wheatley community.

1973 (Gary Simel)  THANK YOU for the wonderful work you do on the Newsletters.  Much appreciated and valued!

1975 (Michael Silber) Wish you all the best and greatly appreciate your efforts.

1976 (Jennifer Karp Colbert) Thanks Art!

1978 (Jeff Glickman) My sincere thanks for all of the work that you do on behalf of our Wheatley community.¯

1978 (Valerie Gomes) Thanks, Art, for this labor of love.¯

1978 (Joanne Strano Miller) I read all of your Newsletters and appreciate all you do to keep people up to date.

1981 Tracey Winn Pruzan Arthur, I must admit I always read all the stories/updates in the Newsletters, even though usually I don't know or remember anyone.  I guess you would call me a lurker this were Facebook.  Thank you for keeping the Newsletter going!  Best, Tracey Winn '81.¯

1981 (Debbie Zimmerman) Thank you for all you do.

1983 (Claudia Reinhardt Johnson) I look forward to the Wheatley Newsletters!  Thank you for keeping it going.

1985 (Sarah Tirgary) Dear Art;  Thank you so much for the blood, sweat, and tears that clearly go into maintaining such a Newsletter.  It's so valuable, and I personally want to thank you for your efforts.

1990 (Anne-Marie Peetz Oliphant) I very much appreciate all your efforts with the Luncheon and the Newsletters that you send periodically.

1991 (David Sakhai) Writes David Hey Art, thanks for the newsletters.

1994 (Gregg Brochin) Thanks so much for doing the Newsletters.  They are a lot of fun to read.


That's it for The Wheatley School Alumni Association Newsletter # 42.  Please send me your autobiography before someone else sends me your obituary.