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YAM Notes: May/June 2013

By Gregory A. Weiss

Buzz Poverman has been hard at work getting his new novel, Love by Drowning, published. “I’ve been able to get the novel well edited, which has been six months of work. I’ve been able to get a terrific cover designed. I’ve been able to get some great endorsements for the jacket. Along the way, I’ve worked with one of the best editors I’ve ever worked with anywhere. The work of the publisher, Tom Farber at El Leon—an excellent writer in his own right and a teacher at UC–Berkeley—has also been terrific. The book will be distributed by Small Press Distributors and through Amazon. The scheduled publication date is August 20. Two years ago El Leon took and published a novel by Karl Marlantes ’67, Matterhorn (which is amazing), and turned it into a bestseller. Coincidentally, Karl was a year behind us at Yale and a Rhodes Scholar.”

James Elliott, living in Arlington, Virginia, spent his career as a foreign service officer. He sends the following note: “I retired in 2009. Since then I’ve been pursuing old and new economic research interests. My wife Robin received her PhD in history from Georgetown in 2008 after submitting a thesis on collectivization of Polish agriculture under communist rule.” Bruce Murrie, another former federal government employee, writes: “I’ve been happily retired from the US Department of Education for nearly two years now. I spend my time in various distractions—my ADD has completely taken over!—including mathematics and statistics review, study, and professional meetings; harboring various houseguests visiting or working in DC; interviewing hapless Yale applicants assigned to me by the ASC; playing the tuba in a Moravian Church; visiting two young granddaughters and their support personnel in Fairfax, Virginia: and texting my long-distance boyfriend frequently on my iPhone. Looking forward to the second Yale GALA LGBT reunion.”

Haydn Silleck died peacefully at home in Littleton, Colorado, on January 6 after a two-year fight with brain cancer. In 1967 he married his high school sweetheart and love of his life, Mary Daley. Haydn began his working life as a banker, but quit abruptly one day when he realized the bank was not about to make him president at the age of 26. After spending some time flipping houses, he tired of being dirty and began his career as an entrepreneur. He was part of a number of companies, including the Gold C Coupon Company and Colorado Cinemas. Haydn also cofounded the nonprofit Jefferson Foundation and served as the president of the Denver chapter of the Big Brothers organization. He is survived by Mary, their two children, and four grandchildren.

More than 25 members of the class and their spouses gathered at Telluride Mountain in Colorado from January 30 through February 4 for our 14th consecutive annual Winterfest. It was particularly gratifying that, after all these years, the group was augmented by two new couples: Wade and Janet Cole and Larry and Nancy Crocker. Although the snowfall in Colorado had been quite meager through much of January, the group’s timing was perfect. Four days of consecutive snow ended early the morning of their first day on the slopes. One day of powder was followed by two more days of perfect conditions: bright blue skies and warm weather. In a moment of uncharacteristic decisiveness, the group approved plans to hold the Winterfest next year at Park City, Utah, on Super Bowl weekend. Among the participants in the Winterfest were Kent and Nina Willever. Kent was particularly happy to attend, having missed last year’s event as a result of breaking his leg the day before it was to start! He writes: “We became grandparents this year with daughter Narissa and her husband Brian adopting a little boy, Kai, from China then giving birth to a baby girl, Peri, in Vermont. I am delighted that NROTC has returned to campus. Thanks to Yale’s Navy I enjoyed 29 years in the service of our country.”

Breaking news from Clark Abbott in Tanzania: “The Class of 1966 2013 Kilimanjaro Expedition successfully placed four members on the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro at 6:57 a.m. on March 7. Team organizer Josh Jensen, together with Ted R. Elliott and son Ted H. Elliott, made their first ascents, witnessed by Clark, making his second ascent. Abbott, interviewed at a Houston Starbucks several days later while enjoying his first extra-hot mocha in two weeks, noted, ‘Many were cold, but few were frozen’ in the final assault on the summit. Jensen and the Elliotts are recovering on the Serengeti with the help of a selection of South African vintages while they supervise the annual wildebeest migration.”

A final note: My sources tell me that on May 2 Steve Clement will be honored for 25 years as headmaster of the Browning School in NYC. Quite an accomplishment!