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As an alum of the University of Washington, I enjoy reading Columns magazine and was recently touched by your message in the March edition, regarding quality health care for children [Message from the UW Foundation Chair, March 2011]. I, too, have a special place in my heart for the University of Washington Medical Center (UWMC) and wanted to share my story with you.

My husband and I were recently expecting our first child and unfortunately, went into pre-term labor during our sixth month of pregnancy. Our son, Hudson, was born Jan. 27, 2011. He was transported to the UWMC’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, where he was cared for until his passing on Jan. 28.

In honor of our son, my husband and I have set up a memorial foundation in his name, in which all proceeds will benefit the UW NICU.

As parents who have lost their child, we are doing everything we can to spread the word about his life and what remarkable care he had. Giving back has provided us hope and healing.

Heather A. McNeel, ’96


I just wanted to say thanks for encouraging alums to take pride in their standing as graduates of the University of Washington [Prelude column, Taking Pride in Being a Husky, March 2011].

Your thoughts really struck home with me as you used the word “pride” several times. It is also the focal sentiment of the UW’s new “Song of Washington,” Rise Up With Pride for Washington, which I composed in 2008.

If any university were a country unto itself, its school song would be its national anthem and Rise Up With Pride is no exception. For my part, I am proud to be a Husky grad and honored to have been given a lifetime membership in the UW Alumni Association.

If there’s ever anything I can do to help promote the song as a means of creating an emotional draw for alums to “rise up with pride” for any occasion associated with the UW, please feel free to call on me. I love [Bill] Conti’s musical score to my lyrics and will be forever grateful and proud of the honor I was given.

Go Dawgs!

Catherine Henderson, ’08


The March 28 issue of Sports Illustrated has a photograph of Husky basketball players Darnell Gant, Aziz N’Diaye and Justin Holiday at the end of the game against North Carolina.

Why is the prominent uniform color black? You have to look hard to find the purple or gold.

I remember, to my surprise, seeing the same color scheme at the Husky-UCLA football game last fall. Please get back to purple and gold.

Roger Flodin, ’52


I was disappointed in your recent issue as it seems there are no living alums who graduated prior to 1960, as your “Alumnotes” start with 1960. For the record, I graduated in 1954 and I know some of my classmates are still living.

Robert C. Hamblin, ’54
Estes Park, Colo.

Editor’s Note: A strange thing happened when we were putting together our March issue—we did not receive any class notes from alumni earlier than the class of 1960. We encourage alumni from all classes to send class notes to us.


I am delighted to learn that, “For the first time in history, the UW has at its helm five female commanders-in-chief” [Madame President, March 2011]. However, I found the photo spread disheartening and undermining of that progress.

Look again at poses, clothing and affect—would professional men be presented in the same manner? Women have a long way to go, and we can be our own worst enemies.

We have not won the battle for equality and continue to need to be discerning and vigilante about the images we project. And where was the accompanying story about these history-making women?

Barbara Davis, ’80, M.S.W.
Amherst, Mass.


Recently a colleague forwarded me your [magazine] highlighting the announcement of the new PACCAR Hall [“PACCAR Hall Opens for Business”, December 2010]. As a former employee of PACCAR, I was disappointed to see you had spelled it “Paccar.”

PACCAR is an acronym for Pacific Car and Rail and has been a Northwest institution for more than 100 years. I understand it is a common mistake but it’s up to those who know to educate those who don’t. I think that the UW should be one of those who know.

Daniel Etulain
Via email


Thank you for publicly recognizing [“Working with Soldiers Battling Substance Abuse”, March 2011] that many of us:

  • Are veterans
  • Are college graduates
  • Have addictive personalities and behaviors
  • And, quite possibly, [are] in need of substance-abuse assistance, one way or another

I will surely pass this on to my friends who are substance-abuse counselors at the local VA Medical Center.

Unfortunately and fortunately, substance abuse is not something that is not age- or war-specific. It can strike anywhere and to any war veteran.

Robert Henry Walz, ’73
Founder, Last Frontier Expeditions
Hemingway Tours & Safaris
Vancouver, Wash.

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