Class of ’68 Celebrates 55th Reunion at Hazelden

by Thomas N. Leslie ‘68
This Fall, Purdue Sigma Chis who graduated in 1968 celebrated their 55th reunion at George Ade’s Home, Hazelden, in Brook, Indiana. 
Delta Delta Sigma Chi Class of 1968

Front row, L to R: Don (Duane) Bowers, Bob Kaley, Ken Schutte, Tom Leslie, Mike McCraley, Joe (Randy) Newsom, Stence White; Second row lower, L to R. Larry Robbins, Frank Hughes, Jim Chapin; Second row upper, L to R: Jim Maggart, Mike Campbell, Rod Wendt, Arnie Breidenbaugh; Back row, L to R. Mike Wheeler, Hank Suerth, Bob Weskamp, Bob Utterback

18 Brothers Return

Nearly all of the 1968 graduating class celebrated their 55th anniversary during the weekend of October 20-22 at a dinner held at the home of another famous Purdue Sig, author and playwright, George Ade ‘1887.  Eighteen of the twenty-six member graduating class joined the occasion. Since graduating they have used their Purdue degrees to become industrial managers, engineers, bankers, lawyers, a dentist, sales reps, marketers, and consultants.  The class now boasts six Significant Sigs and one Order of Constantine Sig as Brother Robert George Kaley, II, was presented his Significant Sig award at the dinner to become the latest in his pledge class to receive the honor.

Reflecting on the Times

When they entered college in 1964 they saw a Viet Nam “conflict” develop into a full scale war eventually leading to the “Tet Offensive” in 1968.  They experienced mandatory ROTC, women’s “hours” at the dorms and sorority houses, The Beatles, Bob Dylan, The Lovin’ Spoonful, the draft, the end of the gold standard for America’s currency, as well as Purdue’s first trip to the Rose Bowl in 1967.  Members of the class were represented on Purdue’s baseball, football, basketball, swimming, and golf teams.  It had members of the Marching Band and the Purdue Glee Club.  It boasted of having simultaneously the Managing Editor of the Exponent, Student Union President, and the Student Body President, the latter two having obtained honors as members of Iron Key.

Meet Every 5 Years

Reunion organizers, Tom Leslie and Bob Kaley, felt George Ade’s home appropriate for their gathering, not only for his significance to the Delta Delta Chapter, but to Sigma Chi nationally because of his contributions to the General Fraternity.  Ade is most famous for his authorship of the celebrated “Sigma Chi Creed” which is universally recognized among all Sigma Chi chapters.

Following a reunion dinner at McGraw’s on Friday night, the class on Saturday boarded a chartered bus with their wives for the one hour trip to Brook. Stories recollecting college days at the Sig House provided for a late night before a return trip to the Holiday Inn in downtown Lafayette. The group will meet again five years hence in 2028, but plans to meet, as usual, annually at the summer golf outing.

One Response to “Class of ’68 Celebrates 55th Reunion at Hazelden”

James (Jim or Bo) Bockel 1969

Congratulations to all! Nothing but fond memories of this great mentoring group of young men (at the time) for our class of 1969. They set a very high standard and good examples back then and continued to do so with so many Significant Sigs and good lives lived. A little hard to recognize them all, age does take its toll as we all know, but a shout out to my Big Brother, Stence White, and my pledge master, Tom Leslie.


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