Deborah Kayser-Strauss

Debbie Kayser Strauss

Please note:  Sunday Morning, June 14, 2020, Remembrance Service at 50th Reunion.

We will honor departed members of the Class of 1970 at a Remembrance Service on Sunday morning, June 14, 2020, during our 50th Reunion. The service will be led by led by our classmate Rev. Chris Bryan. We hope you will plan to attend.

Debbie (Kayser) Strauss of Birmingham, AL, passed away on Sunday, May 12, 2019, at age 71, following a brave battle with cancer. Debbie attended The Bunny Hole School and Mountain Brook Elementary School, and graduated from Brook Hill High School, all in Birmingham, Alabama. Debbie received a Bachelor of Arts in English at Wheaton College, Mass., and a Master’s Degree in English Literature at the University of Virginia with a dissertation on the works of Chaucer. She also attended Williams as an exchange student.  After graduate school, she worked as a speech writer both at the White House for Julie and Tricia Nixon and on Capitol Hill for Representative Jim Jeffords of Vermont. Debbie married Gordon McGregor Strauss of Cincinnati in 1976. Their marriage ended in divorce. Debbie spent most summers of her youth and early adulthood on Martha’s Vineyard, where she earned the nickname “Alabama,” and continued to enjoy summers on the Vineyard with her son, parents, brother, cousins, and a plethora of friends. Debbie was an avid equestrian since her early childhood. In her later years, she enjoyed riding her horse, Pink Floyd (“Pink”), with a group of riding friends at Pink’s stable in Leeds. She also doted on several cats over the years, who appeared keenly aware that they had the most fantastic and loving owner imaginable. Debbie was predeceased by her beloved parents, Leo Kayser, Jr. and Simmie Goldberg Kayser. She is survived by her son, Gordon Kayser Strauss (Williams ’00) and his wife, Keiko Fujimoto Strauss, her grandchildren, Ayleen Kayser Strauss and Oren Simmie Strauss, her brother, Leo Kayser, III, all of New York, NY, her cousins Sandy (David) Berler and Emmy (Bruce) Davidson, and their respective children and grandchildren. (The Birmingham News, May 26, 2019 and Legacy.com)

Willison, Frank

Frank Willison

Frank Willison 2001

Frank Armstrong Willison (July 30, 2001)

Please note:  Sunday Morning, June 14, 2020, Remembrance Service at 50th Reunion.

We will honor departed members of the Class of 1970 at a Remembrance Service on Sunday morning, June 14, 2020, during our 50th Reunion. The service will be led by led by our classmate Rev. Chris Bryan. We hope you will plan to attend.

Frank passed away suddenly of a heart attack in Jamaica Plain, MA . Beloved husband of Margaret (Shaner) Willison. Father of Robert B. & Margaret H. Willison both of Jamaica Plain. Brother of Candace Johnston of Pittsburgh, PA & Beata Willison of Santa Cruz, CA. Son of Willa Lee Willison and the late Robert A. Willison. (Boston Globe, date unknown)

The following tribute came from the O’Reilly Media, Inc. website, where Frank served as Editor in Chief at the time of his death:

Dear Customers and Friends,

O’Reilly editor in chief Frank Willison suffered a heart attack and died the morning of July 30th. This is a tragedy.

Of all of us at O’Reilly, Frank is the one we’d most have imagined growing old and grandfatherly, dispensing to successive generations the wisdom, humor and caring that he shared with all of us. He is (I use the present tense deliberately) one of those people who is an inspiration to us all, someone who demonstrates convincingly how to be a wonderful human being.

In times like these, I find comfort in a passage from Wallace Stevens:

The shadows of his fellows ring him round
In the high night, the summer breathes for them
Its fragrance, a heavy somnolence, and for him,
For the soldier of time, it breathes a summer sleep,
In which his wound is good because life was.
No part of him was ever part of death.

The passing of our heroes (and Frank was one of my heroes and mentors, as I’m sure he was for so many of you as well) reinforces in us the knowledge that what matters is not the time or manner of our passing, but the way we lived. Frank lived in a way we would all be proud to live; I’m sure he continues on to his next adventure with the same light and curious touch.

We will all miss Frank very painfully in the days, weeks, months, and years to come. But what he gave to each of us will remain as part of the treasure each of us stores up in our life, and hopefully passes on to those around us, as Frank was so ready to do.

In parting, I’d like to share two things with you. The first is a collection of fragments from Frank’s emails and columns. His writing was anticipated and collected by O’Reilly employees because of the wit, wisdom, humor, and humanity he wrote with. O’Reilly PR director Lisa Mann kept the file these come from. Around the company the file was known as “The Best of Frank.”

Secondly, O’Reilly CTO Jon Orwant put together a memorial web site where people can share their favorite memories of Frank. I encourage you to do so if you’ve got something to share.

Go well, Frank. –Tim

Anderson, Jim

James W. Anderson (July 8, 2016)

Jim Amderson

Jim Anderson 2016

Please note:  Sunday Morning, June 14, 2020, Remembrance Service at 50th Reunion.

We will honor departed members of the Class of 1970 at a Remembrance Service on Sunday morning, June 14, 2020, during our 50th Reunion. The service will be led by led by our classmate Rev. Chris Bryan. We hope you will plan to attend.

Jim “WJ” Anderson passed away July 8, 2016, after a valiant battle with his tragic affliction. Long time cowboy and guest ranch owner, Jim was born in Connecticut, raised on a farm in Middlebury, Vermont, and educated at Holderness School and Williams College where he excelled in football, alpine and Nordic skiing and lacrosse.  He was an American Civilization major at Williams.

Introduced to the west by his grandmother who took his brother, Hank, and him to the Elkhorn Ranch outside West Yellowstone every summer, Jim drove to his first job at the Elkhorn shortly after graduation and his marriage to Cheryl Payne, mother of his daughter, Lacey Dawn, and never looked back. He was the first easterner ever hired to the position of wrangler by then managers, Ron and Barb Hymas. He was an astute and quick study, learning to train mules to pack, pull and ride, a combination achieved by few mule trainers. He was seen for several years perched on a buck wagon driving an eight-mule team in the Ennis 4th of July Parade. (Bozeman Daily Chronicle, July 13, 2016)

Robinson, Win

Nelson Winthrop Robinson (November 29, 2015)

Win Robinson

Win Robinson 2015

Please note:  Sunday Morning, June 14, 2020, Remembrance Service at 50th Reunion.

We will honor departed members of the Class of 1970 at a Remembrance Service on Sunday morning, June 14, 2020, during our 50th Reunion. The service will be led by led by our classmate Rev. Chris Bryan. We hope you will plan to attend.

Nelson Winthrop Robinson, better known as Win, died at home in Charlotte, NC. Thus ended two difficult, courageous years of efforts to hold multiple myeloma at bay. The son of the late Nelson Robinson and Mary Bolling Washington Holley, Win was born December 29, 1947 in Nashville, TN. He was a proud graduate of St. John’s School (Houston, TX), Williams College, BA, 1970, and the University of Wisconsin, Madison, MA, 1973.

Win’s fruitful career as teacher, mentor, and coach began at St. John’s School and continued after graduate school at Charlotte Country Day School, where he served as Department Head of Upper School Modern and Classical Languages. During his 40-year tenure, he taught and mentored countless students with steady patience, thoughtfulness and congeniality. Thanks to his mentor John Rassias, Win believed that if one can’t speak a modern language, one doesn’t know it. As department head he compellingly promoted the importance of developing and measuring oral proficiency in ways that transformed foreign language instruction at CCDS. In the sports arena, he transitioned the boys’ soccer club into a varsity sport, and coached girls track and junior varsity boys’ golf. He also elevated football season’s Chain Gang into a reliably entertaining costumed affair, and engineered and supported myriad service projects.

In addition to teaching and sports, Win loved good food, good wine, and good times spent outdoors in the company of family and friends. An avid Panthers fan, he also delighted in fishing, enjoyed white water rafting on the New and Gauley Rivers, and hiking–particularly in the High Peaks region of the Adirondacks. And then there was his passion for scuba which began in 1965. Win became PADI and DAN instructor certified, and enthusiastically spoke of scuba instruction as his “non-day” job, relishing the introduction of the wonders of diving to students of all ages.

A lifelong Episcopalian, Win cheerfully served at St. John’s Episcopal Church as vestry member, usher, verger, and point person for the holiday angel tree for over 25 years. His faith and sense of adventure inspired a trip to Spain with Toni, his wife of 40 years, for a Camino de Santiago pilgrimage in June 2012. As Win averred to the end: “It’s about the journey” and “Have fun.” His life’s trajectory reflected those values until his last breath.

Win is survived by his wife, Toni; son, Ted; daughter Helen Robinson Ambrose and her husband, John, and grandsons, Liam and Jack Ambrose of Philadelphia, PA; sister, Robin Pinckard and her husband, Art Johnson of La Honda, CA; nieces, nephews, cousins, friends, colleagues, and thousands of former students, all of whose lives he touched in unique ways. (Robertson Funeral Home Obituary, undated)

Nelson, Jeff

 

Jeffrey Bernard Nelson (November 14, 2015)

Please note:  Sunday Morning, June 14, 2020, Remembrance Service at 50th Reunion.

We will honor departed members of the Class of 1970 at a Remembrance Service on Sunday morning, June 14, 2020, during our 50th Reunion. The service will be led by led by our classmate Rev. Chris Bryan. We hope you will plan to attend.

From Matt Wikander, March, 2018:

Matt Wikander (L) and Jeff Nelson (R) in “Waiting for Godot”-Williams Theater, 1970

I am attaching a photo of Jeff Nelson and me in “Waiting for Godot”, Spring 1970. We are gazing—I proprietorially, Jeff in amazement— at Pozzo’s (my) manservant, Lucky, played by Dave Strathairn,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jeff Nelson

Jeff Nelson 2015

Jeffrey Nelson-editor, writer, producer, director, actor, husband, father-died in Summit, NJ, on November 14, 2015, after a long illness. Nelson was the producer of the film The Return of the Secaucus Seven, written and directed by John Sayles, who said it was Nelson who suggested he shoot his first movie in North Conway, NH, where they were both members of a summer theater company. Nelson made a cameo appearance as “The Man” in that film. He also produced John Sayles’s second feature film, Lianna.

Nelson spent over a decade at Sesame Workshop, in creative development and as producer of numerous Children’s Television Workshop programs, including the multiple Emmy-winning Square One TV. For the Bank Street College of Education, he produced the first season of The Voyage of the Mimi, a science-adventure series on PBS featuring a very young Ben Affleck. He would go on to produce 13 accompanying documentaries and write the book adaptation of the series’ second season.

For the past six years, Nelson was a writer and producer of educational media at the Center for Children and Technology, which investigates how technology can influence and enhance teaching and learning.

Born in 1949 in Wilmington, DE, Nelson attended schools in England and Switzerland prior to attending Williams College (French), where he earned his B.A. Maybe it was his polished demeanor and glimmer of European panache that drew some of Williams’s most creative and talented fellow theater students to Nelson. These included David Strathairn, Gordon Clapp, Adam LeFevre, and John Sayles. He became their natural leader, a position he maintained to some extent, in one way or another, for the rest of his life.

Nelson eventually took over as producer of the company, while continuing to act and direct, running the company for four seasons. In life as in film, Nelson in some ways always remained “The Man,” tolerating obstreperous or truly nutty behavior from his decades-long friends, though with wry humor and rarely with true irritation. He also had a great capacity for inspired lunacy.

As well as great love. In 1986, “looped in the loops of her hair,” to borrow a phrase by Keats that Nelson recited at their wedding, Nelson married Irene Kelly. They had two children, Derek, 25, and Lucy, 22, whom Jeffrey adored and admired in equal measure.

Nelson will be remembered for his humor, his kind heart, his gentle charm, his intellect, his erudition, his wit, his humility, his commitment to work, his precision, his gift for organization, his talent as toastmaster and raconteur, his love of books, his elegant tastes, his dedication to his friends, and his devotion to his family. (New York Times.com, December 2, 2015)

 

Matt Wikander (L) and Jeff Nelson (R) in “Waiting for Godot”-Williams Theater, 1970

Kramer, Kieron

Kieron Kramer (August 20, 2015)

Kieron Kramer

Kieron Kramer 2015

Please note:  Sunday Morning, June 14, 2020, Remembrance Service at 50th Reunion.

We will honor departed members of the Class of 1970 at a Remembrance Service  on Sunday morning, June 14, 2020, during our 50th Reunion. The service will be led by led by our classmate Rev. Chris Bryan. We hope you will plan to attend.

Kieron Kramer, devoted brother and uncle, and dearest friend to so many, died from a complication of illnesses on August 20th. He was 67 years old. He was born April 22, 1948, to Sam and Carol Kramer – jewelry artists in Greenwich Village, NY. A positive life force who, with his quick wit and sharp intellect, influenced the lives of all who were fortunate enough to know him. He was the “greatest teacher” and mentor to so many of his students. As the long-time editor of The Eastwick Press, Petersburg, NY,  he was dedicated to the craft of journalism and invested much of his time to his already considerable skill as a master of the English language. As a life-time soccer fanatic, player, coach, referee, he was known for fairness, and for love of the physical and artistic aspects of the game. 

He was the proverbial scholar and gentleman, and keen observer of this unfathomable world. He was a kind man and we are left shaking our heads at his loss. He is survived by his brother, John Kramer of Williamstown, MA; niece, Carol Jane Kramer of Brooklyn, NY and nephew, John “Chico” Kramer of Greenwich Village, NY as well as his kith and kin, the educators, artists, soccer nuts and gadabouts of western Massachusetts. (The Berkshire Eagle on Sept. 5, 2015)

Therrien, John

John Carl Therrien (June 29, 2015)

John Therrien, 1970

John Therrien

Please note:  Sunday Morning, June 14, 2020, Remembrance Service at 50th Reunion.

We will honor departed members of the Class of 1970 at a Remembrance Service on Sunday morning, June 14, 2020, during our 50th Reunion. The service will be led by led by our classmate Rev. Chris Bryan. We hope you will plan to attend.

John passed away in Greenbank, WA from bladder cancer, after retiring as a tax manager at Warner-Brothers in Burbank, CA.  He and his family previously lived in LaCanada-Flintridge, CA.  (Williams College archives) He graduated from Williams as a history major.  He also received a Master’s degree in taxation from Golden State University.  John is remembered with great affection for his quick wit, deep-throated laugh, kind eyes, extraordinary singing voice and devastating bridge-playing skills.  John is survived by his wife, Faye, and his three sons:  Eduardo in Whidbey Island, WA, Clay in Eagle Rock, CA, and Jordan at Willamette University.  (Williams College Class Notes, January 2016).

Montgomery, Kim

Kim R. Montgomery (April 23, 2015)

KIm Montgomery

Kim Montgomery 2015

Please note:  Sunday Morning, June 14, 2020, Remembrance Service at 50th Reunion.

We will honor departed members of the Class of 1970 at a Remembrance Service on Sunday morning, June 14, 2020, during our 50th Reunion. The service will be led by led by our classmate Rev. Chris Bryan. We hope you will plan to attend.

Kim R. Montgomery, 66, died in Middlebury, after having suffered from Alzheimer’s disease over several years. That morning his room was filled with family and friends, including his granddaughter and a dog. Kim was a graduate of Williams College (1970), and the University of Pennsylvania Dental School (1974). It was while in dental school that he met Susan Church, whom he lovingly dubbed  Q, his wife of 40 years. Together they moved to the hills of West Virginia working for the National Health Service Corps, where he began his practice, providing care for those in need. In 1977, they moved to the Northeast Kingdom; then Bristol, where he opened his private practice; and Cornwall where they lived, and raised a family. He balanced his work as a dentist with his many passions: golf, bird hunting, dogs, his family and friends. His essence was charm and a quick wit that would range from a quip to a story that would result in hilarity. That sense of humor was always present at the dinner parties hosted by him and Q, be it a holiday or a Saturday night. Those evenings inevitably ending in the “duckhouse” for a nightcap and music by James Brown. Golf season took him to many places, while fall would begin the season to bird hunt with his beloved Brittanys and Labradors. All of that was fit in-between traveling to watch his sons play whatever sport was in season. His creative humor and sense of fun are what will be remembered by all. He is survived by his wife; sons, Peter, Ross and Carr; daughter-in-law, Annie; and three grandchildren, Brewster, Mason and Beatrix. (The Burlington Free Press on Apr. 28, 2015)

Webb, Tom

Tom Webb

Thomas Webb

Thomas I. Webb (April 22, 2015)

Please note:  Sunday Morning, June 14, 2020, Remembrance Service at 50th Reunion.

We will honor departed members of the Class of 1970 at a Remembrance Service on Sunday morning, June 14, 2020, during our 50th Reunion. The service will be led by led by our classmate Rev. Chris Bryan. We hope you will plan to attend.

Thomas Irwin Webb Jr. passed away in his home surrounded by his family on April 22, 2015, at the age of 66.

Thomas was preceded in death by his father, Thomas I Webb and his mother, Marcia Winters Webb. He is survived by his wife, Polly; children, Elisabeth Webb, Amy Oathout, Katie (Jim) Williams, Becky (Brian) Kloepfer and grandchildren, Chloe, Wesley, Quinn, Caroline, James, Jack, Daniel, Owen, and Cameron and brothers, Robert Webb, Tim Webb and sister Leslie (Tim) Janiak.  Thomas Irwin Webb Jr. passed away in his home surrounded by his family on April 22, 2015, at the age of 66.

Thomas was preceded in death by his father, Thomas I Webb and his mother, Marcia Winters Webb. He is survived by his wife, Polly; children, Elisabeth Webb, Amy Oathout, Katie (Jim) Williams, Becky (Brian) Kloepfer and grandchildren, Chloe, Wesley, Quinn, Caroline, James, Jack, Daniel, Owen, and Cameron and brothers, Robert Webb, Tim Webb and sister Leslie (Tim) Janiak.

Thomas was born on September 16, 1948, and grew up in Toledo, Ohio, attending Ottawa Hills Elementary and High Schools. He graduated from Williams College (English) and graduated from Case Western Reserve University College of Law 1973, as a member of the Order of Coif. Thomas spent his entire career practicing law at Shumaker, Loop, and Kendrick. Throughout his distinguished career, he earned many accolades including being named: one of the Best Lawyers in America for Corporate Law, Securities Regulation, and Securities/Capital Market’s Law from 2008-2015; Toledo Corporate Lawyer of the Year 2011; and Acquisition International Legal Awards; Best US Lawyer in Banking and Finance 2014. Thomas was very active in the community (both in Toledo and Frankfort, Michigan) and had many affiliations including: Toledo Bar Association, Ohio Bar Association, Michigan Bar Association, American Bar Association, AAA of Northwest Ohio, Crystal Downs Country Club, Toledo Club, Toledo Area Chamber of Commerce, Village of Ottawa Hills, Toledo Symphony, Lourdes University, Maumee Valley Country Day School, the Toledo Club, and Arts Commission of Greater Toledo.

“Tommy”, as he was affectionately known, enjoyed many activities including traveling, golf, tennis, squash, skiing, rowing and card games. But his favorite way to spend his leisure time was with family and friends up at the family cottage on Crystal Lake in Frankfort, Michigan. He was a loving and loyal husband, father, grandfather, friend, and colleague, and will be deeply missed. (Toledo Blade, April 24, 2015)

Cantlon, Jim

Jim Cantlon 2010

Jim Cantlon 2015

James F. Cantlon (February 14, 2015)

Please note:  Sunday Morning, June 14, 2020, Remembrance Service at 50th Reunion.

We will honor departed members of the Class of 1970 at a Remembrance Service on Sunday morning, June 14, 2020, during our 50th Reunion. The service will be led by led by our classmate Rev. Chris Bryan. We hope you will plan to attend.

James Francis “Jim” Cantlon passed away at age 67 on Valentine’s Day after a rough fight with lung cancer and COPD.  He died at home in Hospice Care. ng cancer and COPD.  He died at home in Hospice Care.

Jim was born in San Francisco and raised in Reno, Nevada as part of a large and close extended family, the son of Edwin and Kathryn Cantlon.  He attended the Cate School in Carpinteria, California and did a year at Kelly College, Tavistock, Devon, England as part of the English Speaking Union exchange program which began his enduring love of England. When he returned to the US, he attended Williams College, where he was very involved in the backstage operations of the theatre program. After college, Jim joined the Navy and flew as the navigator in jets off the USS Saratoga.  He also worked as an air traffic controller for a time, but left to become part of the hospitality industry working for Omni in Norfolk, Virginia where he held numerous, varied jobs such as food and beverage purchaser, front desk operations, and payroll. During this period he met his future partner, Bill Steele, who was working in hotel catering sales and began their life-long partnership.

In 1989, he moved with Bill to New Hampshire to manage the Horse and Hound Inn in Franconia.  Eventually they purchased the Inn, fulfilled their dream to have their own inn and ran it successfully for 20 years with lots of help from their friends and Bill’s mother, Flossie.   Jim, the business side of their successful partnership, was very organized, wore many hats from reservation/front desk management, inventory/supplies management and purchasing to computerizing the business. As one friend said, “you could always count on Jim to take care of you and to get things done.”  Bill was the creative side, chef, baker, decorator and they complemented each other well and made the inn a special place where people came for apres-ski libations, birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, holidays or any kind of celebration.  Popular with the local community as well as skiers from Cannon Mountain and regular guests, the Hoof and Woof became an integral part of the social fabric.

In 2010 Jim and Bill sold the inn and moved across town with Flossie and spent much of their time planning and going on cruises to places they always wanted to visit. Jim is survived by his sister and brother-in-law Mary Ellen (Meckle) and Jim Elston of South Bristol ME, his sister-in-law Kathy Steele Akins of Burlington NC, his brother-in-law and sister-in-law George Raymond and Cheryl Steele of Zephyrhills, Florida and numerous nieces and nephews and cousins.

Jim was predeceased by his spouse of 4 years and partner of 37 years, James William “Bill” Steele and by his mother-in-law Flossie Mae Steele. (Littleton Courier, date unknown)