As the class of 1966 prepares to celebrate its 50th reunion on April 30th, many of its classmates are also preparing to celebrate 50th wedding anniversaries. In honor of Valentine’s Day, we sat down with four couples from the class of 1966 to learn how their love stories began at Seattle University.
Lynn Teplicky Hennagin,’66, and Roger Hennagin, ’66
Lynn found her way to Seattle U—and Roger—after attending Forrest Ridge High School. “I knew it to be a good Catholic school. We were always partial to the Jesuits. They seemed the most level-headed of the priests and were known for being an intelligent group.”
Roger was also fond of the Jesuits. After growing up attending Jesuit schools, he decided on Seattle U and then attended law school at Georgetown.
Lynn and Roger met during their senior year at Seattle U. Both Lynn and Roger were student body officers and were introduced by mutual friends on a leadership retreat. They dated for one year and then got married shortly after graduation. The couple then moved to Washington, D.C. so Roger could continue his education.
“I think in a way, Seattle University prepared us to interview our partners. We were able discover our mutual values which is very important in a relationship,” Lynn shared. “To this day I still feel like I married my best friend.”
But finding the perfect partner was not the only thing Seattle U prepared Lynn and Roger for. “Seattle University also taught both of us to be community leaders. I’ve served on the Chamber of Commerce and we have both served on community boards, Roger served on the Lake Oswego city council for four years and we credit that with the skills Seattle University taught us.”
Many of Lynn and Roger’s friend from Seattle University were also student leaders and those friendships remain strong today even though they all live in different parts of the country. Lynn and Roger now live in Portland, Oregon and hope to return to Seattle this spring for their 50thclass reunion.
“I think it sounds like a lot of fun to see our friends again,” Lynn said. Roger and Lynn will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary on July 9th.
Pat Cobelens Vivolo ’65, and Tony Vivolo, ‘66
It was Seattle University’s reputation as a good Catholic school and its respected nursing program that attracted Pat from Bellingham. She was looking for a school not too far from home. Tony joked that he was the opposite. Tony grew up in an immigrant Italian neighborhood in New York. When Tony was awarded a scholarship by a community organization he set his sights on Seattle U. “I was the first one in my family to go to college. I chose Seattle U because it was the farthest I could get away from New York City and I felt I needed that distance to complete my education.”
When Tony arrived in Seattle he didn’t know anyone and says that he came with a chip on his shoulder. “Seattle University was a far cry from lower Manhattan. It was thanks to the community and in large part the Dean of Students, Fr. Robert Rebhahn that I made it through college and graduated,” Tony said.
For Pat, it was the faculty, her classmates and her superb education in the Nursing school that she most appreciates about her time at Seattle U.
Pat met Tony on her last day at Seattle University. It was 1965 and she was a graduating senior when she met Tony, The Chambers Tavern where SU students frequently gathered. “I had just finished my last day of clinical practice at Providence Hospital,” she shared. The two ended up at the same table, celebrating the end of the term with mutual friends and hit it off. Fifty years later they are still together and still connected to Seattle University.
Both Pat and Tony have maintained friendships they made at SU. Pat and her nursing cohort formed a strong bond during their time at SU and hold reunions every few years.
Tony shared that after he spent time in Vietnam and entered the business world as a professional engineer, he saw the impact Seattle University had on him, instilling in him a sense of morals and ethics. “My motto is do the right thing,” Tony said, a philosophy he attributes to his time at Seattle University. Pat shared that they recently attended a retirement party for the person who had replaced Tony and the millennials at the company crowded around Tony at the party. “His philosophy and ethics had made him a legend to the younger generation and it’s something they really resonated with,” she said beaming with pride.
Last year Tony and Pat returned to Seattle University for Pat’s 50th Reunion and this year they will return for Tony’s.
Pam Carlson Walker, ’67, and Bruce Walker, ‘66
Pam decided on Seattle University after driving up to visit the campus with a friend. “It was one of the Catholic schools I was interested in and it was a beautiful campus on a beautiful day and everyone was very friendly,” she remembered fondly. Bruce was living in Idaho and wanted to go to good Catholic school out of state. “Call it a sign from God,” Bruce said, “but when Seattle University’s basketball team visited Pocatello I was their ball boy. I did it for two years and then when I was looking for a college Seattle U seemed the right place.”
The couple met on campus during Bruce’s sophomore year. “I first saw Pam when she was a freshman registering for freshman orientation.” Seattle U was a small school and the couple got to know each other. Their friends ate dinner together in the dorm dining room. A year after he first laid eyes on her, Pam and Bruce went on their first date to a James Bond movie and the rest was history.
While Seattle U holds an important place in their hearts because they met here, it’s also special for fostering another relationship. Both Pam and Bruce became close with the then Academic Vice President, Fr. Frank Costello. “He would invite the guys on his floor in Bellarmine Hall to his room to eat popcorn and watch The Fugitive.” That weekly gathering was the start of a life-long friendship.
“He is a member of our family,” Pam said. “He has been at all three of our children’s weddings and on a few family trips.”
Both Pam and Bruce agree that their time as students at Seattle University helped strengthen their faith, but it also brought an awareness to the fact that there’s a much bigger community and started them on the path of getting involved. Both have held leadership positions with the United the Way as well as other non-profit organizations. The Walkers have watched Seattle U’s growth over the years and followed its success and in 2005 they returned to Seattle U for their 40th reunion. Also in attendance was their dear friend, Fr. Costello. Now 10 years later the Walkers are excited for their 50th Reunion. They are excited to connect with friends they have not seen for 50 years and see the improvements that have been made to campus.
Jane Cunningham McClure and Andrew McClure, ‘66
Andrew “Andy” McClure was running for the Student Body office of Publicity Director at Seattle University when he asked Jane Cunningham, a class officer, to give his introduction for a talk on campus. Little did Jane know she was introducing her future husband.
Andy asked Jane out on her 19th birthday. The couple attended a campus party as their first date. “When we were in school the women had curfews and the men didn’t,” Jane recalled.” I got home an hour late after our first date and got in trouble and couldn’t go out the next weekend. I hope that rule has changed,” Jane teased.
The two were married after Andy’s senior year and spent two years in Europe. Though they now live in California, they still feel the impact of their Jesuit education. “The Jesuits are such a well-educated order of priests. Seattle University really emphasized the academics. We had a good time, but felt we got a really good education and really appreciate that.” Andy went on to say that “commitment to social justice and helping other people is something that has been important to us.” Jane serves on the board of the Hanna Boys Center, providing underprivileged boys a place to go for school and counseling.
Though no longer in the Seattle area, Andy and Jane have stayed close to friends from college. “We are active in the alumni association activities in the Bay Area,” Andy said, “We attend alumni dinners, basketball games and gatherings. It’s really great to stay connected.”
Andy is now helping connect his classmates as part of the 1966 reunion planning committee. “We are excited to go back to campus and see what has changed, rejoin old friends and relive old memories. It will be great to get the crew together again.”
Andy and the rest of the 1966 Reunion Committee invite all their classmates to join them at their reunion.
Class of 1966 50th Reunion
Saturday, April 30, 2016
We hope you’ll come back to rediscover Seattle University, reconnect with old friends and share your own stories with us on April 30th.