I read with interest your article about the last remaining member of the Class of ’38, and I felt compelled to add a few notes to embellish your summary a bit. I am the son of a member of that class, and my Dad, Jack Platten, lived and breathed Princeton, his class, and his classmates through the last 70 years of his life until he died in 2008. He lived in Princeton and attended every home football game since 1933, and every home basketball game except one that he missed due to a car accident that had him in the hospital. He was reunion chairman almost since he graduated, so I got to know many of his classmates who visited, and with whom he corresponded.
There were some truly wonderful and interesting people, many of whom were not superstars but just plain solid folks. I think of Bill Tams, longtime class correspondent, a modest fellow with a great sense of humor — he and my Dad, and George Morgan, Ed Fleer, Bob Kulp, and a few others created a mythical classmate named Tiger Larson whom they bragged about every once in a while in the PAW for some amazing feat he presumably pulled off. They had a friend who was not a classmate play the role of Tiger Larson and attend a reunion (maybe the 25th?). Other classmates claimed to remember him from their time on campus, so the ruse was very effective. I don’t think they had him win the Nobel Prize or anything, but they made up some prizes and honors that sounded authentic, and they had a really good time with that fantasy.
Other members of the class of note that were not mentioned in your article included Peter Frelinghuysen, congressman from New Jersey, and Alex Notopoulos, who was a WWII secret service spy of some note and should not be forgotten. Also, the class had a Dixieland band made up of classmates, including a couple of honorary women classmates, called the “Eight-Balls” who played at Reunions every five years.
I suppose I could go on and on with memories of that class. I liked your write up, it just wasn’t long enough. I suggest you put together a two or three page summary of each class that has expired, and get classes, as they reach their 50th reunion, to craft their own history for the ages. It would be nice to capture some of the best stories and reflect on the some of the wonderful people who populated those classes. I am sure each has a rich history, much like the Class of ’38.