is the home page for the Irvington (NJ) High School graduating class of
1955. Catch up on what's been happening with your classmates. Send in your
current photo and concise bio and we'll add it to our site!
(Updated July 13, 2015)
Some adventurous news from Ron Thrum -
(Updated June 22, 2015)
As I noted in my 2015 IHS’55 Annual Letter, an IHS All-Classes Reunion luncheon would be held on June 5, 2015 at Doolan’s in Spring Lake, NJ. The oldest graduate there was from the class of 1931, and the youngest from 1972.
Twelve attending from our class on June 5th; myself Fred Enfield, Faith MARTIN Costello, Bob Brittain, Jack Kratt, Lois SELICK Lipp, Jim Rattay, Joanne FRIED Scher, Richard Schuetz, Mike Turk, Sue BRAUNSTEIN Turk, Al Wagner, and John Winecker.
This is an annual event and the next one is scheduled for June 10, 2016. I will present some photos in my 2016 annual letter.
(Updated July 31, 2014)
News from IHS55 Website Technician Lisa Willaman:
Werner Stumpf was my dad. He passed away on July 28th. Below is the obituary.
Wes (Werner Eric) Stumpf, 76, of Mahopac, NY, died on July 28, 2014. Wes was born on December 25, 1937, in Newark, NJ, to Frederick and Elly (Gorenzel) Stumpf. Wes graduated from Irvington H.S. (1955) and received a B.S. in Math from Rutgers Univ., a M.S. in Math and Programming Science from NYU, and a M.Ph. in Electronics and Computer Eng. from Syracuse Univ. Wes worked as a senior programmer and architect with IBM. After retirement, he kept busy teaching computer programming, substitute teaching, and as an airport transportation business operator. Wes also had a great affinity for the NY Yankees. Survivors include his life partner, Janis Massa, Bronx NY, two daughters, Lisa Willaman (husband Rick), Austin TX, and Jeanne Stumpf, Camp Hill PA, and two sons, Greg Stumpf (daughter Audrey), Norman OK and Kris Schmidt-Stumpf, Madison WI. He is also survived by his brother, Frederick Stumpf (wife Carole), Corolla NC. There will be no services.
(Updated July 22, 2014)
Our 59 & 1/2 year reunion is on September 21, 2014 in Pt. Pleasant.
(Updated March 15, 2014)
News from Marlene Ficzko Bratach:
" I arrived at Grove Street School starting in the second grade. I went through that school with: Three Pats - Lynch, Lasser, Paches, and two Marlenes - Dupuy and myself. Not earth shattering news, but I always found it interesting that "Pat" and "Marlene" were such common names, at least at Grove Street School at the time. Pat Lynch and I are still the very best of friends since second grade; she is a real treasure of a friend. Marlene"
(Updated March 31, 2013)
Wonderful!! To hear from you via "snail mail". I have a new e-mail address and forgot to keep you in the loop, now you have my new up-datedaddress.
Just a brief description of what I am currently up to.
Still working at Fort Dix, NJ with mobilizing and demobilizing Soldiers who are still going to Afghanistan. Iraq still has Soldiers, but they are in an "advisory capacity". Presumable not combat.
Afghanistan is still fighting. Will it never end? Last year the Soldiers coming home told us that the people love the Americans. This year, the people want us out of their country because Al-Qaida now has a strong presence there because of their week President. Yet we are sending billions and billions of OUR tax dollars to them. I still haven'tfigured out why.
We are now sending Soldiers to Somalia and the Sudan in Africa to quell the ethnic cleansing and unrest between tribes. Troops are also going to Central and South America because Al-Qaida is coming thru the Mexican border as illegal's What a mess, what is our government thinking of? None of this info is a military secret or even classified by the Army. Just my way of sharing how we need to remember our troops and stop them everywhere we see them and say "thankyou for your service".
You can, of course condense this info. to fit your newsletters as space can be limited.
Hope to see most everyone at our next reunion. I missed the last one.Thanks again for the "snail mail" update.
Barbara (Messina) Brenner
(Updated November 30, 2012)
"The following "father's day" gift news was received from classmate Tom Mieliwocki:
(Updated November 07, 2012)
PELSON-- Victor Abraham. Victor Abraham Pelson, died peacefully October 29th in NYC. Survived by his wife of 52 years, Barbara (Meyers); his loving sons Mark (Katherine), Jonathan (Katie), and Daniel (Jenny), and six grandchildren, Sarah, Megan, Mary, Benjamin, Zachary, and Tyler. Born in Newark in 1937, Victor and his now deceased sister Charlotte grew up in Irvington, NJ, where he graduated from Irvington High School in 1955, as did Barbara. Victor received his BS in Mechanical Engineering from Newark College of Engineering (NJIT), and his MBA from New York University School of Business. He began his extraordinary career at Western Electric as an engineer, quickly moving up through the ranks of AT&T and ultimately achieving the position of Chairman of Global Operations and a member of the Board of Directors. While at AT&T, Victor navigated the Company through multiple challenges, including architecting key aspects of the company's divestiture of its manufacturing arm following an anti-trust suit filed by the federal government, and the creation of the regional Bell operating companies. He played the key role in establishing AT&T as a truly global company, and was one of the first American executives to establish manufacturing facilities throughout the world, including in China and Singapore. He retired from AT&T in 1996. Victor served as the Chairman of the New Jersey State Chamber of Congress from 1989-1991, and was Chairman of the Board of NJIT for 14 years, where he also received an Honorary Doctorate. He served on many boards, including Acterna Corporation, Combustion Engineering, Dun & Bradstreet, Dynatech Corporation, Eaton Corporation, and United Parcel Service, and was a Senior Advisor to UBS Securities. Victor also navigated many challenges in his own life as a child and young man, losing his mother when he was a teen and his father soon after. Living in poverty, he cared for his disabled sister while working and going to school. Despite this, he did not acknowledge these obstacles as an adult, although they served to shape his approach to life. Victor was known by his friends and business associates as a man of great integrity, wisdom, and humor. He had an uncanny ability to bring clarity to complex issues and make wise decisions about business, and life, that led many to seek out Victor for counsel. As a father and grandfather, Victor was a hero and the center of the Pelson family. As a husband, Victor was the love of Barbara's life, marrying soon after college, and despite traveling to every distant corner of the world, never letting a day go by without wishing his wife goodnight. A man who stood with Presidents, Victor still connected deeply with everyday people who valued hard work, honesty, and devotion to family. Victor will be remembered as a brilliant businessman, a loving and devoted dad, and a husband who wanted nothing more than to be at the side of his adoring wife Barbara. Services Sunday, December 2, 11am at Temple Emanuel-El, Fifth Avenue at 65th Street. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the Victor A. Pelson Scholarship Fund, NJIT, Newark, NJ.
(Updated August 26, 2012)
Classmate Flo Wasilcyk Frana has informed me that her eldest son Jim, 49 died this past Sunday (8/12/12). He drowned while swimming in Daytona, FL. Internment will be tomorrow 8/16/12. Jim is survived by his wife (Flo's wonderful daughter-in-law) Lisa, and "awesome" grandchildren Trevor 19 and Shelby 14. She asks that you include them in your prayers. fe
(Updated August 8, 2012)
"News from classmate Jean Barkasi Martone: A couple of months ago, I joined a camera club. I know nothing about cameras, but very much want to learn. This club's goal is to promote and remember the legacy of my cousin, photographer "Eddie Adams" (who has become a hometown hero). I feel a strong affinity to this club because they are in the process of raising money to secure a plaque in Eddie's memory in our hometown. Following is the web site about the plaque effort: http://triblive.com/home/1904165-74/adams-eddie-says-kensington-saturday-museum-photography-valley-club-dinner
The club is a group of graphic artists, professional photographers, illustrators, etc. and amateurs, like myself. They will critique, guide, advise and recommend articles, tutorials, etc. online to self-teach members. Regarding the photo of the biker and his girlfriend, the week it was taken, the club's topic was "social commentary." Biker guy captured the American dream.....he has everything he wants. He has his Harley, he doesn't need a helmet, he has his girl and ice cream. There's nothing better than those things and 'freedom of the road'! There is a paradox here in his 'macho-ness' and the almost childlikeness of eating ice cream. I received many kudos on this one. The club president called it an "American classic." When i saw them, I knew there was something here.
This week I drove past a little "out of business" bridal store and she (the mannequin) called out to me. I drove around the block, stopped at the closed shop and started to take photos. They were all awful with reflections and distortion. I couldn't even find her through the glass. Later, I found a free editing website, from which I enhanced the photo using an effect called "Yesteryear." It was so much fun making the bride all peachy-colored and vintage looking. This photo was well received. I am glad I was drawn to her.
(Updated April 24, 2012)
Barbara A. Sullivan (1937 - 2012)
AGE: 75 • Manchester, NJ
Barbara A Sullivan 75 of Manchester died Wednesday April 18th at Community Medical Center, Toms River. She worked as a Librarian for 15 years for Woodbridge Public Library before retiring in 1996. Born in Irvington, she resided in Iselin for 37 years before moving to Manchester 12 years ago. She was a member of the Leisure Knoll Columbiettes, Footlighters and Red Hat Society. She was an avid bingo player and enjoyed her trips to Atlantic City. She is predeceased by her husband, Donald and granddaughter, Dawn both in 2007. Surviving is her 2 sons and daughters-in-law, Donald & Margie of Newfield, Mark & Kim of Manahawkin, daughter, Carolyn DiCapua & husband Bob of Woodbridge, brother, Lee Johnson & wife Chris of Florida, and 6 grandchildren, Michael, Samantha, Tyler, Alicia, Mark and Amanda. Visitation is Sunday 2-4 & 7-9 PM at Oliverie Funeral Home 2925 Ridgeway Rd Manchester. Funeral Liturgy is Monday 10 Am at St John's Church Lakehurst with entombment to follow at St Mary of the Lake Cemetery, Lakewood. For directions, or to send online condolences, please visit our website atwww.oliveriefuneralhome.com.
(Updated April 3, 2012)
I am very sad to report that classmate Otto Stahl passed away on 3/28/12 after battling a long illness. Otto called me last week to update me on his illness situation. It was not a good report.
Following is my entry into the guest sign-in book, in his Star Ledger obit: "I am very sad about Otto's passing. He was an enthusiastic IHS'55 classmate; attending all reunions. He also called me at least twice a year to keep in touch. He called me last week to update me on his illness and to update himself on our class web-site that I administer. I will miss his calls and his loyalty to the class, as I am sure many from IHS'55 will as well." -Fred Enfield 4/1/12
Following is a partial reprint of the obit in the Star Ledger:"Otto Stahl Jr. entered into eternal rest, after a long illness, on March 28, 2012, in Jupiter, Fla. He was 77. A funeral service will be celebrated at Corpus Christi Church, 234 Southern Blvd., Chatham Township, N.J., on Friday, April 6, 2012, at"... More -Published in Star-Ledger on April 1, 2012
(Updated February 23, 2012)
Classmate Tom Mieliwocki has proudly submitted this news about his daughter-in-law: "Our daughter-in-law, Rebecca Mieliwocki, was selected Best Teacher of her school, Burbank Middle School, where she teaches 7th grade English. She was submitted as the school's representative to the Burbank School District Teacher Of The Year competition. She was then selected as the Burbank School District's Teacher Of The Year and went into competition with the representatives from the other school districts in the LA County, and was selected the LA County Teacher Of The Year. This put her into the State competition where she was selected California Teacher Of The Year. She will be presented with this honor in Sacramento this week. In the mean time, she was now in competition at the National level. After several sessions of interviews with representatives of the National Board of Education, competing against a representative from each of the other States and Territories, she recently learned that she is one of the top 4 being considered for the title of National Teacher Of The Year. If she wins this competition, she will be introduced to the Country by the President in the White House Rose Garden. The final selection will be announced in late April, 2012."
(Updated January 25, 2012)
Update from Lee Maltenfort received 1/17/12:
From Joan Meyer Shannon:
(Updated November 7, 2011)
Best of Luck to Allen Cohen: Earlier this spring, 2011, Allen had difficulty breathing after simple short walks. On June 1, he had successful valve and bypass surgery. During re-couping at home, however, it was discovered he had A-Fib Coagulation, which, I am also happy to report, was corrected in hospital. Since then, Allen also lost some weight, and after cardiac rehab has started a gym workout regime. fe
(Updated August 27, 2011)
An IHS'55 very-mini-reunion luncheon occurred in Palm Beach Shores, FL on April 26, 2011.
(Updated August 22, 2011)
The photo below, of course, taken at Mount Rushmore, shows Ron Thrum and wife Janet fully enjoying their grand-parenting role on a 3 week RV western trip this August (2011), with three of their grandsons.
They have thus far visited the Black Hills in S.D. including Bad Lands National Park, Wind Cave National Park, and now we are in Cody, Wy. heading for Yellowstone
(Updated August 03, 2011)
Olympic Park video: Classmate Tommy Tenore has sent a nostalgic YouTube video of Olympic Park. The link is in the Revisit 1955 Section.
(Updated February 23, 2011)
Fred Enfield reports that three IHS'55 chicks were spotted having lunch together last week at Mulligans in Jensen Beach, FL. l to r: FL residents, Hildy Fleischer and Betty Smith Perna and snowbird; Anneliese Furtner Crefeld. (Photo by Hildy.)
(Updated February 09, 2011)
News from Fred Enfield (2/7/11):
Doris has had her first book published under her pen-moniker Doris Asche. It's in hardback and paperback, and is called Abby's Magic Mirror, about growing up in our NJ environs. Olympic park has its own chapter, and there are photos of IHS flag swingers, and even a photo of hubby Bob. You might call it an auto-biographical story.
(Updated December 6, 2010)
From Fred Enfield:
(Updated October 14, 2010)
(Updated July 21, 2010)
(Updated June 17, 2010 )
"Inspired by the activity of her class, Rose Picariello has written a poem describing her own years:"
The Name's The Same
When I was born, many years ago
I was given the name, Picariello
As time went by it stayed the same
At age 19 I entered the marriage game
I wasn't too good, I suspect at this....
For alas, three years later it went amiss.
Raising two girls alone seemd to be
My one function in life a family of three.
Accepting the fates, never minding my part
When ten years later I gave again, my heart.
How foolish we mortals and certainly I,
Head the list of human errors, but wonder why.?????
The time passed quickly, my children grown
They went individually, I was alone.
Here I was with a name borrowed for some time
When I thought, "How silly this name isn't mine."
The bond was broken, no connection at all...
My decision was made to alter, beyond the fall....
Some names come and some names go...
When all was said and done, I went back to..
Thanks for the memories....
(Updated May 1, 2010)
Barbara Messina Brenner alerts classmates to vpike.com web site to search your old Irvington homes and other haunts. Vpike uses google but is a quicker short cut to both a street photo and map, side by side.
(Updated April 26, 2010)
Cora freedman, wife of Dr. Michael freedman reported to the class, that Michael died on 2/16/10. He was Professor of Medicine Emeritus at NYU Medical School, and a pioneer in the field of geriatric medicine. He is survived by his wife Cora, two children; Deborah & Larry, and three adorable grand-daughters.
(Updated January 8, 2010)
News from Marlene Ficzko Bratach <email@example.com>
Fred: After almost 72 years of living in NJ, I relocated to Decatur, IL in October (2009). My daughter and son-in-law have lived here since Anne was offered a professor's position at Millikin University in 2003. She has her Ph. D. Hubby Andy does not, but he is a very well loved and respected TA at Millikin - can't ask for anything more than that. Anyway, they had asked me in 2004 to come here to live. I put off a decision until last Christmas. Came here in June, bought a one-family home in 5 days, gave Anne power-of-attorney to act on my behalf for the closing, and relocated on October 23. (My 72nd birthday was October 28 - what a lovely celebration with Anne and Andy.)
Classmate Janet Cataldo Tully, reports that classmate Antonia (Toni) (Palmisano) Ricigliano, on Jan.1, 2010, became the first woman Mayor of Edison, N.J.
Edison is the fifth largest municipality in N.J. with a population of over 100,000. Janet, who lives in Edison and is a neighbor of Toni's was attended Toni's historical inauguration.
We all wish Toni the best.
(Updated September 2, 2009)
Congratulations to classmate Robert Wedin and IHS flag-swinger Doris Aschenbach ('56).
They were hitched in May, 2009!
(Updated July 7, 2009)
Classmate and multimedia artist Stan Gilbert has a new web site: www.stangilbert.blogspot.com
(Updated June 8, 2009)
An IHS'55 Small World Story:
On the way home from Spain on 5/4/09, Marion and I flew to London Heathrow for a day and night, so we could visit Windsor. While i was on one of our hotel computers talking to a few american women who were on the other computers, one of them (Nancy) turned out to be the wife of one of our IHS '55 classmates - Marty Salzbach - who was upstairs in their room. During our 'reunion' it turned out that I had visited him in Tampa when I was there on a Flying Tigers market research trip in 1980. See photo below. Fred Enfield (5/30/09)
(Updated May 29, 2009)
An update on Helen Dudas (deceased) has been received from her sister Joan Weinstein, her email reads as follows:
"Just wanted to update you on one of your classmates. My sister was Helen Dudas. She passed away in October of 2004. She had advanced diabetes. She married in October 1960 to Theodore Pietrzykowski and they had 6 children: Michael, Christine, Linda, Susan, Theodore John, and Cynthia. At the time of Helen's death she was divorced and went back to using her maiden name. My niece Christine found this site. I don't think Helen knew about it which is too bad. She would have liked to know about her high school friends. Your home page is great. Happiness and long life to you all. Joan (Joannie) Weinstein <firstname.lastname@example.org>"
(Updated April 9, 2009)
Joan Meyer Shannon reports on the 2009 FL all-classes reunion:
This annual event was held this year in Boynton Beach in March. Joannie says that our class was well represented and lots of memories and laughs were shared by herself, her husband Tom, Billy Appelbaum, Betty Arbeitman Blum, Marcia Grossman Bovit, Marlene Dupuy Daffner, Linda Heyman Halperin, Marcia Zanger Kaufman and Betty Smith Perna.
(Updated March 23, 2009)
Boynton Beach Reunion
Many "thanks" for being my "driver". We sure had a ball! Sending the photos to the rest of the "kids" in NJ. These pictures were taken at the luncheon in Boynton Beach on Saturday! Wish you all were there, but you can share in the smiles! Hope to see everyone September 26, 2010, but ya'll welcome to visit M.B. Joanie O'D., until your next visit here - love/hugs from M.B.
Identified in the third group photo are l to r: Back row: Marcia Grossman Bovit, Marcia Zanger Kaufman, Marlene Dupuy Daffner Anneliese Furtner Crefeld, Betty Arbeitman Blum, Front row: Betty Smith Perna, Linda Heyman Halperin, Joanie Meyer Shannon
(Updated February 11, 2009)
News from Bob Bahrey:
Now that my serious life’s responsibilities are behind me, such as employment, and raising a family, I am really having a good time in retirement.
For example, this past summer I motorcycled to Alaska, 10,000 mile 4 weeks.
Following is a synopsis of my trip which appears in the local BMW motorcycle club monthly news letter. I was recently elected president of a local 40+ member orchestra comprised of mostly retired seniors. I’m on the far left front in the violin section.
I spend lot’s of time with my two grandson’s ages 6 & 8, visiting sites in and around Chicago area, biking, and playing together. I’m in a 6 member folk fiddle group playing gigs from time to time.
Active in my Unitarian Church Doing most of the repair and maintenance on my home and 3 vehicles.
Synopsis of my trip (pdf)
(Updated December 3, 2008 )
Barbara Sanchelli passed away 11/24/08
In a message from Betty Smith..dates 11/25/08:
Fred, Anneliese just called and asked me to relay this to you as her computer is giving her problems. Barbara Glodek Hoheb called to tell her that Barbara Sanchelli passed away in her home yesterday after not doing well for quite some time. Barbara Hoheb, a good friend of hers, was with her at the time. Sorry to be the bearer of this sad news.
(Updated September 28, 2008 )Ann Stickel Baker has become a bionic women; having had both knees replaced this past May. For those who might have to face it she says that after three months, she is glad she did it. "As I was told prior to surgery, that it is an extremely painful operation, but to look at it as a healing pain which will continue to get better as opposed to the pain prior to surgery which continues to get worse." -Ann
(Updated July 13, 2008 )
Classmate and multimedia artist Stan Gilbert has a new site, displaying some of his recent works: http://www.stanleygilbert.com/
(Updated March 09, 2008 )
MORRIS "MARIO" A. ALBANESE, 72, of BARNEGAT, passed on Friday, Feb. 22.
He was predeceased by two brothers, Damian and Julius. Surviving are his beloved wife of 33 years, Patrice J. Donnelly Albanese; three loving sons, Charles A. and his wife Mary of Basking Ridge, Guy D. and his wife Jean of Springfield, and Damian C. and his wife Lisa of Manahawkin; four cherished grandchildren, Elizabeth, Jack, Tommy and Mathew; a loving sister, Ramona and her husband Ralph Basilone of Barnegat; many devoted nieces and nephews; and his beloved Angel and Hope.
The viewing will be from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m. Tuesday at Barnegat Funeral Home, 841 W. Bay Ave. (corner of Gunning River Road), Barnegat. A funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday at the funeral home. Entombment will follow in White Cedars Memorial Park, Manahawkin. In lieu of flowers, donations to The Cancer Center, c/o Hackensack University Medical Center Foundation, 360 Essex St., Suite 301, Hackensack, NJ 07601, would be appreciated.
(Updated February 18, 2008 )
Marlene Ficzko Bratach reports the following passing:
Miss Dorothy M. Lyszczek, 70, of Linden died on Sunday, February 10, 2008, at home.
Relatives and friends are kindly invited to attend the funeral from the Werson Funeral Home, 635 No. Wood Ave., Linden, on Thursday, Feb. 14,2008, at 9:15 a.m. Funeral Mass is in St. John the Apostle R.C.Church, Clark, at 10 a.m. Interment is in Holy Cross Cemetery,North Arlington. Visiting hours are on Wednesday from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9p.m.
Born in Newark, Miss Lyszczek lived in Linden for the past 23 years.
She was a claims adjuster with Mutual Benefit Life Insurance Company in Newark for 32 years before retiring in 1988.
Miss Lyszczek was a 1955 graduate of Irvington High School and a member of St. Casimir's R.C. Church, Newark.
She was predeceased by her parents, the late Andrew L and Aniela L.(nee
In lieu of flowers, donations to the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, Tennessee 38105 in her memory would be appreciated.
Still Truckin': Oregon Coast, June 2007
From Robert Bahrey: I visited the late Herb Mayer and his wife in Yakima in June 2006 while on my 5,500 mile BMW solo motorcycle ride to and from the West Coast.
(Updated January 06, 2008 )
From The New Age Examiner Tunkhannock, PA
Robert A. Signorello died on Wednesday, May 9, 2007, in the Mercy Hospital Hospice Unit in Scranton.
He was born on Feb. 28, 1937, son of the late Sam and Mary Brown Signorello.
Prior to his retirement he was employed as an engineer at the General Dynamics plant in Eynon. He was an Army veteran and a member of St. Joachim's Church in Meshoppen. He was an avid fisherman and hunter and a number one field hockey, soccer and cheerleading fan at his granddaughter's games.
He was preceded in death by his first wife, Claire Leahy Signorello, and his second wife, Anita Walz Signorello.
He is survived by daughters Claire Kropa, Tunkhannock; Kim Garey and husband William, Vestal, N.Y.; son Thomas and wife Holly Signorello, Wilmington, N.C.; five granddaughters; and a grandson.
Services were held on Monday, May 14, from the Church of Nativity B.V.M. in Tunkhannock.
Interment, St. Bonaventure Cemetery, Meshoppen.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Hospice Unit, Mercy Hospital, Scranton, or to the local Boy Scout troops.
(Updated December 30, 2007)
Article: Stanley Wnek, 87, legendary athlete
By the time Stanley Wnek graduated high school, area newspapers already had dubbed him a legend.