Inside the front cover is a full-color photo of the old Ninth Street bridge with Hogate’s Seafood Restaurant in the background. There is also a photo of the classic double-tower front of the old high school with the stairs leading up. There’s a shot of the small pool inside the building, the old gymnasium and the Headley Library, plus the school’s small, crowded hallways and the popular Youth Center.
A lot has changed in five decades and many members of the Class of 1963 – who are not only living all over this area but all over the world – will return next week to celebrate their 50th reunion. Here is what some of them have done in the meantime.
Dorice Adamson Palumbo: She and her husband Michael have two children and one grandchild. She retired after 23 years as a school principal and now is head teacher at a daycare facility. Dorice also has a small antique business.
Nick Alise: He and his wife Becky will be married 47 years and have a daughter and a son. Nick owns a business – Primerica. They have five grandchildren, all under 7 years old.
Charles Baker: “Charlie” has six children and seven grandchildren. His oldest son is currently serving in Iraq. Charlie has been in the construction business for 40 years. He is a Vietnam veteran.
Jack and Bronnie Bello: Jack and Bronnie married after meeting at the class’ 25th reunion. They are both retired from teaching.
John Burch: He and wife Kathy have three children and four grandchildren. John retired from the Navy in 1988 after 21 years as a fighter pilot. He still flies under Navy contract. They also own a service station, which their son manages for them.
Mark Creighton: Mark and his wife, Georgie, have four children, nine grandchildren and two great grandchildren. He is in the construction business. They travel extensively. He also has co-authored history books and works with the Boy Scouts on aviation merit badges.
Lynne Fickes Rio: Lynne and her husband Carmen have one child and three grandchildren. Lynne is the owner and operator of the Lynne Rio Insurance Agency. She and her husband have resided in Winchester, Va. for the past 35 years and have been happily married for 45 years.
Patricia Gibson Gallagher: “Trish” and her husband, Bill, have been happily married for 47 years. They have five children, all graduates of Ocean City High School, and 15 grandchildren. Trish and Bill run a crib and linen rental service in Sea Isle City and Ocean City.
Dorsey Hostler: “Dutch” and his wife Megan have two children. Dutch is an attorney. He graduated from West Point in 1968 and completed law school in 1975. Their two sons are graduates of West Point and now are both doctors. Dutch produced a fantastic book, “Both Sides of the Wall” – Reflections of the West Point Class of 1968.
Georgia Kinzler Becher: Georgia has three children and five grandchildren. She is still cutting hair after all these years. Georgia operates beauty parlors in nursing homes. She divides her time between South Jersey and her home in Melbourne Beach, Fla.
Kurt Loder: An American film critic, author, columnist and television personality. Kurt served in the 1980s as editor at Rolling Stone. He has contributed to articles in Reason, Esquire, Details, New York and Time. He has also made cameos in several films and television series. Kurt is currently best known for his role at MTV News and for appearing in other MTV-related television specials.
Ginger Lovette Wimberg: Ginger and her husband, Jim, have three children and four grandchildren. Ginger is a retired teacher. They moved to Vermont in 1979 and operate a farm. They love traveling and living in Vermont.
Donna Martino Dye: Donna has two sons and one grandchild. Donna was married to former Ocean City school Superintendent Mike Subotich, who died in 2011.
Nancy Mumford Fontana: Nancy and her husband, Fred, have two children and three grandchildren. Nancy is retired as an administrative director at Shore Memorial Hospital.
William Pontiere: Bill and his wife, Jill, have three children and three grandchildren. Bill is a retired airline pilot after 27 years with U.S. Airways.
Mike Randolph: He travels worldwide as an associate producer for Showtime Championship Boxing and HBO Sports. Mike published a book about his father’s jazz and rock photographic archives called “PoPsie.” His wife, Judith, is a nurse practitioner specializing in gastroenterology.
David Rollins: Dave is an attorney and retired from the IRS after 40 years. He is a Vietnam veteran.
Jack Smith: Jack and his wife Carol have two children. Jack retired in 2004 after 33 years with the IRS.
Lenore Townsend Chadwick: “Letty” and her husband, Tom, raised four brothers who are mentally challenged. She has one grandchild. Letty is a retired special education teacher and was the first teacher in her district to be named teacher of the year. They travel around the USA about seven weeks a year. Tom is a wildflower photographer.
Amy Van Gilder: Amy was president of the senior class. She has two children, a daughter living in London working as a journalist and a son in Los Angeles who is a photographer. She works for Walt Disney Imagineering doing design work. She lives on a hill in Los Angeles.
Edward Williams: “Jake” is a senior officer in risk management for Standard Chartered Bank in Hong Kong. He graduated from Princeton, got his masters from MIT and his MBA from Harvard.
Those are just some members from the Class of 1963 who have, as you can see, accomplished a lot. There are more, but we only have limited space.
Mike Randolph has prepared an outstanding booklet for the reunion that brings the class up to date with all of its members and also includes some of his father’s great photos that spotlight the popular entertainers of the era.
A lot has changed in 50 years. One thing that remains the same is that our high schools are filled with teenagers who, like those from five decades ago, are going to make the world a better place.
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Words of Wisdom: “Don't be dismayed at goodbyes. A farewell is necessary before you can meet again. And meeting again, after moments or lifetimes, is certain for those who are friends.”
– Richard Bach, writer
This At Large column, along with previous editions, can be found online at columns.shorenewstoday.com.
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