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53 Registered Classmates Living in Florida

Who thought that a few days after Hurricane Harvey, the US would be hit by another hurricane named Irma?  There are 53 registered  members of the Class of '61 who  are residents of the state of Florida. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all of them and we hope that they have all come through this disaster safely. We know that Rusty Shunk and his wife Judi evacuated from Cape Coral and are safe in the Villages, hoping to return to their home on Wednesday. I also heard from Barb Zweifel Scherer. She and her family evacuated, but are now safely home with power. Bill Hawk posted his message on the website's message board. He also fared well  The Message Board is a great way to communicate with each other. Check it out and post your hurricane experience. You must be logged into the site to post. Just click on the Message Board  link on the left to get started.We would love to hear from ALL OF YOU  and how you survived the storm.  If anyone wants to donate to the American Red Cross Hurricane Relief Fund for Irma, please  click HERE


8 Class of '61 Classmates living in texas

According to our database, we have 8 classmates listed as living in the state of Texas - Karan Aylsworth, Beverly Kucsan  Biddle, Tom Boak, Gary Brandt,  Anthony Krasnai, Diana Horn Kratchman, David Seaman, and Warren Stein. Some of you may also  have friends or relatives there. Rusty Shunk's son Scott lives in Kingwood, an area that was hit hard.  We send our thoughts and prayers to these classmates, friends and relatives and hope all of them and their families are safe. If you would like to help by donating to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund for Texas, please click HERE.  If any of you who live in Texas or any of you who have been in touch with any of these  classmates read this,  please email and  let us know how you or they are doing.


We heard from one of our texas classmates - dave seaman

Here is the text of his email


Hi. this is Dave Seaman, class 0f 61.  Saw the nice note mentioning folks living in Texas. Your posting asked how we are doing.  

Well, we think we are quite blessed considering all the devastation around.  Our primary house is in Houston. The city and surrounding areas have been hit very hard, in fact, the worst I've seen in nearly 40 years in the area. I'm sure you have seen much of the coverage on TV. Simply amazing, but the support of volunteers and neighbors even more so.  It really makes you feel proud to be a Texan.
In Houston, our house and property is not in any of the lower lying areas (Houston Heights) and while we got very wet, we are safe and had no damage.
Our other house is in Rockport, Tx. We no longer have to explain to people where Rockport is thanks to Harvey.  Our little town was devastated. More than 30% of the buildings totally destroyed or gone and another 30-40% too badly damaged to be rebuilt.  Our trees were torn and battered.  Power, water, and gas will be out for weeks. However, here also we have learned that our house did not sustain any structural damage and can be brought on line quickly when services can be restored.
In the end, these events make one appreciate how important our lives and our health truly are.  All else can be replaced.  Thanks to all for the prayers and concerns.
Dave Seaman

NEW  july  2017 Classmates  of the month - Bob & Diane Kehs Hirling

Bob and Diane (Kehs), a “classmate couple” exchanged marriage vows on June 15, 1963 in New York City. At that time, Pennsylvania required a person be age 21 to marry and Diane was only 20. To marry under age 21 required parental signatures and although Diane's parents originally consented to her marriage, they reneged at the last minute. Bob and Diane were to be married at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Bethlehem. Fortunately, the pastor had a friend who was the minister of St. Patrick's Lutheran Church in New York City. He agreed to marry them and the rest is history. There is a certain amount of stigma attached to marrying young, but the fact is, Bob and Diane had and still have a very strong, loving relationship. 

Three months after graduating from Liberty, Bob enlisted in the U.S. Navy and spent his entire tour of duty as a Radarman Second Class aboard the U.S.S. Algol. The Algol, launched in 1943, was eventually sunk to become an artificial reef. Bob expected to be discharged in 1965 but his enlistment was extended because of the Vietnam War. Diane, who was working as a typist for Bethlehem Steel, quit her job and moved to Norfolk, VA, Bob's naval home port. After Bob's discharge in 1966 they returned to Bethlehem, where Bob worked at Bill Bogar's Store (Broad Street) as a TV repairman and Diane worked for Bethlehem Steel's aviation department. 

In 1969 Bob and Diane decided to escape the northeast's snowy, icy, cold winters, and moved to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida where Bob worked as a Special Products Coordinator for Motorola and Diane worked for a law firm as a legal secretary. Diane's father passed away in 1977 so she and Bob returned to Bethlehem for a short time to help her mother. During this period Bob worked in construction and Diane worked as a legal secretary in the patent's department of Air Products. Diane's interest in law prompted her to earn a paralegal degree from Keiser University and in 1984 she became nationally certified as a paralegal. Diane worked in all phases of the law, but specialized mostly in probate and real estate. In 1985 Diane's law firm relocated to Boca Raton. She and Bob made the 21 mile move north where she continued in the legal profession and Bob worked for Chemical Packaging Corporation as a chemical buyer. 

The next several years were challenging for Bob and Diane. Bob started exhibiting symptoms associated with bladder disease and after some testing, he was diagnosed with bladder cancer. The tumor, which attached itself to the bladder was surgically removed and required no chemotherapy or radiation. In 2001, Diane was diagnosed with cancer on her right ear lobe, which was partially removed by surgery. Then in 2014 she was diagnosed with numerous skin cancers, (too much Florida sun) resulting in several surgeries and over 90 radiation treatments.  The experience of each having a catastrophic illness was devastating, but the Hirlings, being the godly people they are, remained very positive and are happy to be healthy and alive. 

In 1992 Bob and Diane moved to Gainesville, Georgia when Bob received an offer from Piedmont Laboratories to be a Chemical Buyer. He remained with Piedmont for 18 years and retired in 2010. In 1993 they moved a short 12 miles to Flowery Branch, Georgia which is part of the Gainesville metropolitan area and proud home of the Atlanta Falcons. The Flowery Branch city council hired Diane as City Clerk. She was responsible for the administrative staff, signed all important documents, attended all City Council meetings, including keeping the minutes, attended all city functions, and performed duties assigned to her by the city. As City Clerk, Diane had first-hand knowledge of the problems Flowery Branch was experiencing. The members of city council and the mayor were incompatible. City Managers either resigned or were terminated after a few months in office. The city was divided between the “good 'ole boys” who did not want change and new residents who wanted to improve the city. With a population of nearly 6,000 people, Flowery Branch had a plethora of problems that needed to be rectified. A group of concerned citizens got together and decided the City needed a new image. Seeking the most qualified candidates, they asked Diane to run for Mayor and she accepted. Diane ran against the previous mayor, won the election and started her four year term on January1, 2006. She was the first woman and first “northerner” to be elected mayor in 125 years. She did bring stability to the City of Flowery Branch. In 2009 Diane ran unopposed for re-election and was sworn in for her second term as mayor on January 1, 2010. Shortly after her swearing in Bob decided to retire from his job. Diane resigned as Mayor on May 31st and on June 10th they moved back to Florida. 

For recreation Bob and Diane go to the library once a week. She likes to read fiction and biographies while he is into reading novels about the civil war, world wars and history. They enjoy going out to dinner with friends and visiting two friends who were Liberty classmates; Barbara Zweifel Scherer who lives in Apollo Beach, Florida and Teri Matey Allen who lives in Wilmington, North Carolina. Diane is an active member of Project Linus, an organization that crochets blankets for babies and young children in need. Over the past years, Bob and Diane traveled throughout the United States, including one trip to Canada. They took two trips to Europe with friends and two cruises to Freeport, the Grand Bahama Island, the Cayman Islands, Puerto Rico, St. Martin and St. Kitts. 

Bob and Diane have been back to Bethlehem numerous times in the past 40 plus years and are quite impressed with the improvements downtown and the annual Music Fest. The one thing they miss about Bethlehem, and of course Philadelphia, is the famous Philly Cheesesteak. Since 1961, the Hirlings faced some challenges, but countless successes. Together they have experienced some of life's most important milestones; living and working in different states, participating in the political arena, sharing each other’s passions and watching all their dreams come true.



Recipient of the LHS Class of 1961 Scholarship in Honor of Ned Huber

Rusty Shunk, as our Class President,  received a thank you note from the graduating senior at LHS who received the Class of 61's Scholarship in honor of Ned Huber. She wrote:

To the Class of 1961,

Thank you so much for your generosity!
I am so grateful and appreciative of the scholarship amount you have awarded me.
You are truly making my college dreams come true!
Thank you!

Joyce Kim

P.S.  I will be attending the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

You can make a contribtion to the Class of 61 Scholarship Fund in honor of Ned Huber or any other classmate at any time.  Please make checks payable to Liberty High School. In memo section of check state that this is a contribution to the Class of 1961 Scholarship Fund and send to  Liberty High School Scholarship Fund,  1115 Linden Street,  Bethlehem, PA 18018 Thanks very much for your generosity.



Dick Krajczar, our roving reporter, traveled half way around the world to attend the induction of the 1961 baseball team into the Liberty High School Sports Hall of Fame. He emailed an article about the event, a portion of the program, and some photos. These were compiled into one article so you can all enjoy the event which was held on May 6. Congratulations to all team members and thank you Dick for the information.  CLICK HERE for the Sports Hall of Fame Induction article..



If you would like to re-read one of the profiles of the featured Classmates of the Month, click on the month of your choice.


March 2017 - Joe Ritsick

April 2017 - Bill Speary

May 2017 -  Bob Houser

June 2017 - Diana Horn Kratchman


The formal induction ceremony for the new Liberty High School Alumni of Distinction was held on January 31, 2017 during halftime of the basketball game between Liberty High School and Bethlehem Catholic High School. Since Pete Ochs came to our 55th Reunion to share his Award of Distinction with the class, he did not make the trip from California for the ceremony.  Susan Jaxheimer Scholl and Judie Clause Johnson attended the ceremony on Pete''s behalf.  Judie officially received Peter's award from Principal Harrison Bailey.  


In addition to Peter Ochs from the Class of 1961, there were two other inductees into the LHS Hall of Distinction. The other two recipients of the Alumnus of Distinction Award are Dr. Reisa A Sperling, Director of the Center  for Alzheimer's Research and Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School from the LHS Class of 1977 and Thomas J. Doluisio, Liberty Teacher, BASD Administrator, Liberty Principal, BASD Superintendent, NCC Trustee and Foundation Member, graduate of PennState University, Kutztown University, and Lehigh University from the LHS Class of 1960.

Peter's inscription on the plaque is Peter M. Ochs, Home Builder, Philanthropist and Non-Profit Developer, Princeton and Stanford Universities, LHS Class of 1961. 

We extend our congratulations to all three new LHS Alumnus of Distinction award winners.

Click here to view some pictures provided by Susan Scholl from the induction ceremony.

Peter Ochs '61 LHS Distinguished Alumnus

Peter M. Ochs, a fellow member of the Class of 1961, was named  a Liberty High School Distinguished Alumnus in November 2016. Peter is a very successful builder and world wide philanthropist.. The LHS committee allowed us to make this announcement and recognize Peter at our 55th Reunion Dinner on Saturday night, November 19, 2016. The official induction will take place on January 31, 2017 at a Liberty High School basketball game with Bethlehem Catholic High School. Barbara Zamadics Martin, our classmate , prepared on behalf of a committee of class members the nomination packet  which was submitted  to Principal Harrison Bailey nominating Pete for this honor.   It was a pleasure for all of us who attended the reunion to see Peter,  who came to the dinner from his home in California where he lives with his wife Gail Geiger, a 1962 graduate of LHS. Please click here to read  Peter's impressive bio listing his many accomplishments and  contributions to his fellow men. 

The Class of 1961 is extremely  proud of Pete's many schievements and very proud to have a second Alumnus of Distinction from our class.

55th Reunion Dinner

55th Reunion Dinner





Unable to attend the 55th or just want to review the events? Click here to see the entire agenda.

Click here to see a few photos from the reunion. Thanks to Rusty Shunk, Tom Haupert, Dick Snyder and Barbara Zweifel Scherer for sharing these pictures.

Carolyn Domenig Latanision Wins Art Award

Carolyn Domenig Latanision '61 won the Mijello Mission Gold Award in the National Watercolor Society’s 96th International Exhibition held at the NWS Gallery in San Pedro, California. The Gold Award presents the winner with a $4000 prize. 

The award winning  painting is RIVETING, BETHLEHEM STEEL.  Carolyn has  done several solo exhibits of this work  in New England where she lives, most recently one requested by New England Biolabs.  (People always seem interested, which is curious to me, and the work has been purchased mostly by collectors.)

Carolyn offered her reason for this painting and the others in her series which is still in progress. "Growing up on the South Side of Bethlehem, I thought I could never move far enough away from the dirt, the noise, and the smells.  But when I heard that the plant was closing for good, my first emotional reaction was to memorialize this place that had so dominated our lives.  Over several years, driving down from Massachusetts, I explored and photographed the abandoned foundries and derelict machine shops where my father, grandfather and  great-grandfather had worked — and which ultimately claimed their lives. My series is based on all these photographs." 


David Waltz '61, LHS Distinguished Alumnus

David L. Waltz (1943-2012), a fellow member of the Class of 1961, was named  a Liberty High School Distinguished Alumnus in the Fall of 2014. Dave, a pioneer in Computer Science,  made contributions that provided the basis for the internet search engines of today. Tom Haupert, our classmate and close friend of Dave,  wrote the letter of nomination on behalf of a committee of class members  to Principal Harrison Bailey nominating Dave for this honor.  Please click here to read the entire nominatiion letter.

Dave, unfortunately died in March, 2012. Because of his prominence and his many contributions to the world of computer science,  David's obituary appeared in the New York Times on March 23, 2012. Please click here to read the entire text of the obituary.

The Class of 1961 is certainly proud of David's many accomplishments and will keep his family in our thoughts and prayers.



Posting Your Information

If you would like to share information, a photograph, or a link you think would be of interest to the Class of '61, please email the  particulars to Barbara Zamadics Martin at  Thank You

News From the Class of 61


* From Rusty Shunk - If you want to donate to the Class of 1961 Scholarship Fund in honor of the late Ned Huber or any other classmate do the following:

 Please make checks payable to Liberty High School. In memo section of check state that this is a contribution to the Class of 1961 Scholarship Fund and send to : Liberty High School Scholarship Fund 1115 Linden Street Bethlehem, PA 18018 Thanks very much for your generosity.


* Charlie Marcon, who attended the reunion on Friday evening,  encouraged anyone who lives in or visits Bethlehem to visit the National Museum of Industial History. Charlie is President and Chairman of the Board. Visit the site at

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939 Cedarbrook Rd,, Plainfield, NJ 07060


Charlie Eichenberg, Webmaster 

4706 Imperial Palm Drive, Largo, FL 33771





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55th Reunion Attendees Say Yes to a 60th Reunion!!

Susan Scholl and the Reunion Committee conducted a survey at the 55th reunion to determine whether the class wanted a 60th reunion and the answer was YES.  Attendees on Satuday night were asked to complete a survey as to whether the Class should plan for a 60th Reunion and what type and when it should be. The class appears to want a Friday and Saturday evening event with a  DJ for the Saturday night dinner.  A dinner was preferred to a luncheon. Susan and Judie would like to try scheduling this reunion during October rather than November when the weather can become winter like. Block out those October weekends in 2021 on your calendars!!! Click here to see the complete survey results. 

A Successful 55th Reunion

A recap of the reunion dinner  from Rusty Shunk -

 Although we had less than half the people this weekend than we had at our 50th, it was a good time.  Friday at Se-Wy-Co, 83 people pre-registered; Saturday at Silver Creek, 109. The Reunion Committee did it again!! if you were unable to attend, you were missed!!!

We honored David Waltz who was our first Alumnus of Distinction in 2015, the three members of the class in the Athletic Hall of Fame (Jack Eckenrode, Norm Koch, and Charlie Marcon—Charlie attended Friday night), and announced that Peter Ochs will be our second Alumnus of Distinction as of January.  See the separate news article on the web page.  Peter flew in from California to receive recognition from the class.  We also honored Susan Jaxheimer Scholl for her 40 years of service to the reunion committee. Other members of the committee are Judie Clause Johnson, Dolly  Berger Ackerman, and Barbara Zweifel Scherer,

Barb Zweifel Scherer offered a tribute to Joanne Yochum Horvath, who served on the Reunion Committee (of which there are now only four members).  I spoke on behalf of Ned Huber and announced the opportunity to make a contribution to the LHS Class of 1961 Scholarship Fund in Ned’s name, since Ned conceived and led our 50th Reunion effort to raise $11,000.  Donors may send contributions to honor Ned (or any other classmate) directly to Liberty HS. 

We also passed a resolution that declares our intention to donate all monies left in the class account when we stop having reunions to the LHS Class of 1961 Scholarship Fund or any other Liberty cause as appropriate at the time.

Barb Zamadics Martin, who manages the class website,  demonstrated some of the features of the page for those in attendance..  Charlie Eichenberg is our webmaster. for member profiles.  If you haven’t registered, please hop on, go to the top of the homepage and sign in as a new member. We are the only class to have our own website.  It’s free. The cost to develop the site was covered by class funds. 

And remember, too, all the directory information is in and easily accessible on the website along with stories and photos, many by Tom Haupert, whose 50th images we used in a power point slide show. Sadly, we have lost at least 136 classmates (about 17%) according to the records we have.

Good conversations, good food, good vintage music again this year by DJ Brian Engler, and specially imprinted red M&Ms mixed in with blue ones as our favor.  Good times.


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