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  • 50 Years 1
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50 years worth of stories

Class of 1965 celebrates reunion during Commencement

“When no one (including Spartanburg Fire and Rescue) could control the flying food, Dean [Frank] Logan stepped into the middle of total chaos: ‘What in the hell is going on?!?!’ Order was immediately restored, followed by T-bone steaks with trimmings served at our next evening meal!”

“Tables turned on their side for fortifications, spaghetti spatting against the floor-to-ceiling windows and sliding down, cops, fire trucks, the mob’s parade down Main Street to Converse, where that oldest of traditions, a panty raid, ensued… the overreaching local constabulary sicced the dogs on us, and we called it a day. A good way to cap our years at dear ol’ WC.”

More than any other memory, it seems, the Wofford Class of 1965 remembers the food riot best. They shared food fight stories and other tales of their Wofford experience in a booklet published for their 50-year reunion.

Each year Wofford holds the 50th class reunion during Commencement weekend. The class joins the 50-Year Club at Homecoming, but their special reunion weekend in the spring includes leading the newest class of graduates during graduation, a reunion dinner and lots of catching up with old friends. This year 47 members of the class were present for the reunion (including Billy Rivers and Jerry Park, whose memories of the food riot lead this article).

Many alumni point to Dean Frank Logan as a mentor during their college careers. The Rev. Doug Bowling, who carried the Class of 1965 banner during Commencement, for example, tells how he met with Logan shortly after being accepted as a transfer student in 1963:

“He glared across his desk and said, ‘You’ve been accepted to Wofford. Just how in the hell do you plan to pay for this?’ I replied, ‘Sir, I have no idea.’ He shoved three forms across his desk. One was an annual grant from a church, the second a National Defense Loan and the third a Methodist Foundation loan. He said, ‘I’ve filled out these forms. Now sign them!’ I did! Because of his gruff love I have a degree from Wofford. May the angels bless him forever.” Bowling is now enjoying life as a retired United Methodist minister in Greer, S.C., with his wife, Marlene.

Todd Heldreth writes that he owes his wife, Carolyn, and Logan both for his degree: “Dean Frank Logan was a mentor to me and taught me what a real Wofford man should be. At graduation Wofford awarded my wife an honorary degree-PHT (Pushing Hubby Through)… This was from the heart and was well deserved.” Heldreth worked 43 years in education before retiring in 2011. He and his wife live in Lexington, S.C., where he is heavily involved in his community.

Frank James “Jim” DeVine Jr. worked in textiles for 25 years before switching to work as a wellness specialist at 47. He now works part time for the Ann Spring Close Sports Complex in Fort Mill, S.C. “I got into fitness at age 40, and have run marathons and triathlons since. I even did the Ironman triathlon at age 65,” writes DeVine. “I have always been proud to be a Wofford grad.”

James D. “Jim” Traywick fondly remembers the words of his “enthralling” professors, including his geology professor, John Harrington, who taught him to understand “the was-ness of the is.” Wofford’s ROTC program was also memorable: “ROTC did the best it could to prepare a very green, not-very-gung-ho second lieutenant for the most absurd first set of orders imaginable, as commanding officer of an ammunition renovation detachment that did not exist, had to be formed up, go through basic training and then deploy to Vietnam. I think I survived the ordeal.” Traywick lives in Cope, S.C., with his wife, Nancy, and runs Frog Level Farm in Edisto Island with his nephew and son. He enjoys flying his Cessna 172 to the beach for weekends. He currently is planning a flight to Cuba.

Some class members were unable to attend the reunion, including Dan H. Montgomery Jr., who lives in Japan as a retired teacher, and Ray T. Sawyer, who lives in the United Kingdom and built his career on the study of leeches (“yes, the bloodsuckers,” he writes). Dominic Alfred “Mickey” Caggiano Sr. was also unable to attend, but reports that since graduating from Wofford he has been involved in, among other things, commercial development, including assisting on the design of the “Peachoid” water tank and Premium Outlets “The Yellow Mall” in Gaffney. Rob Moreland also missed the reunion, but he may have been unable because of his work as a national disaster response volunteer with the Red Cross. He has completed 26 deployments, including New York City during 9/11 and New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina.

by Sarah Madden ’17

Facts about the Class of 1965

The Class of 1965 came to Wofford in September 1961 with 249 members.

They came to a newly reconstructed Main Building and a new Milliken Science Hall.

While they were students, Shipp and DuPre Halls opened, and the student body first grew beyond 1,000 students.
  
At the start of their senior year, Wofford became the first private college in South Carolina to desegregate, making the Class of 1965 the first class to graduate from an integrated Wofford College.

The business office was still running the pleasure fund—created by a member of the Class of 1939—and the Old Gold and Black student newspaper noted that on afternoons before a fraternity weekend or dance, the business office looked like a loan office!

For Homecoming, the bands included The Vibrations, Dr. Feelgood and the Interns and Maurice Williams and the Zodiacs.

by Dr. Phillip Stone ’94, Archivist