LATER THIS MONTH, A MOTLEY GROUP of U.S. and Canadian citizens will gather at a restaurant in Mukilteo and you can be certain the authorities will be on guard. For there’s a good chance that entourage is going to carry on and make a lot of noise—mostly in the form of loud laughter. And why not? It will be the 50th reunion of this gang of McMahon Hall alums. Even though they are scattered all over two countries, they gather every year.
This gang met way back when Lyndon Baines Johnson was president and McMahon Hall—one of the UW’s first co-ed dorms—had opened in 1965. And what a time it was. “It was a very interesting and often tumultuous time,” recalls Randy Williamson, ’73, of Seattle, “given the protests about the Vietnam War, the hippie movement, etc. However, most of us were not part of that and just tried to survive in an atmosphere of studying hard and getting good grades.”
But studying wasn’t the only thing on their minds. While the women lived in one wing and men in another, they would often meet in the room of Charlie Zimmerman, ’72, and Lionel E. Ditz, ’67, the group’s lone foreigner (OK, he was from Canada) for a smoke or a beer. “I was the only one over 21, so I ran out for beers,” Ditz says from his home in Winnipeg. “Then I ran downstairs to get some ice from the kitchen.”
On the academic side of things, Zimmerman and Dave Tegeler, ’67, ’68, both engineering students kept things entertaining by making homemade rockets and launching them to see how they would lift off. As you can imagine, it made for fun viewing.
Lionel E. Ditz, ’67
John Huguenin, ’69
Susan K. Lemke, ’68
Robert Malstrom, ’68
Lou Sackmann, ’68
Dave Tegeler, ’67, ’68
Douglas Thompson, ’67
Mary Westcott Svela, ’68
Charlie Zimmerman, ’72
Pat Cranston (professor emeritus)