Alumni Necrology

Ellis Bowditch Brewster ’35

Ellis Bowditch Brewster ’35, who practiced dentistry on his native Long Island for almost a half-century, was born in Bay Shore on January 13, 1913. The son of Olin S., a bank cashier, and Sybil Bowditch Brewster, he was a descendant of the eminent astronomer and mathematician Nathaniel Bowditch. Ellis Brewster, also known as “Duff,” came to College Hill in 1931, following his graduation from Bay Shore High School. He joined Tau Kappa Epsilon and, while pursuing pre-dental studies, played tennis on the team coached by Jean Gélas and captained by the outstandingly talented Richard T. “Dick” Murphy ’33. Years later, Ellis Brewster fondly remembered the French-accented comment, worthy of Yogi Berra, that Coach Gélas once made to him: “Booster, if you don’t win, you will be sure to lose!”

After obtaining his B.S. degree in 1935, Ellis Brewster enrolled at Tufts College Dental School, where he was awarded a fellowship in anatomy and earned his D.M.D. degree in 1939. He began his practice in his hometown of Bay Shore that fall, following a summer internship at Pilgrim State Hospital in Brentwood, NY. Married on January 24, 1941, to Oakley Yates Campbell, he was called into the U.S. Army Dental Corps a year later. He served as a captain through the end of World War II and resumed his dental practice in Bay Shore in early 1946.

Beginning in the 1970s, Dr. Brewster, a former president of the Suffolk County Dental Society, offered his services as a missionary dentist with Evangelical Field Missions in Haiti. Inspired by religious and humanitarian impulses, he provided dental care to impoverished Haitians three weeks each year for seven consecutive years and contracted malaria during one of those sojourns. He subsequently went with the Christian Medical Society to the Dominican Republic for two years and lastly to Honduras in 1983.

Ellis Brewster, who retired “regretfully” from his practice at age 75 in 1988, was a past president of the Bay Shore Rotary Club and a Paul Harris Fellow. An ardent tennis player almost to the age of 90, he also enjoyed boating, fishing, and duck hunting on the Great South Bay. A founding member of the Suffolk County Waterfowlers Association, he continued his sports activities after his retirement move to St. Simon’s Island, GA. In 1997, he had a book, That Fish Girl, published, which reflected his experiences fishing in coastal Georgia’s waters and depicted local character and color.

Ellis Brewster, who remained close to the College throughout his life, and was the only member of his class at his 65th Reunion in 2000, made his last move to a daughter’s home in Ingleside, TX, where he enjoyed fishing in Corpus Christie Bay. He died in Ingleside on November 30, 2009, at the age of 96. He is survived by four daughters, Sybil O. Bregman, Mary Ellen Brewster, Stephanie Wagoner, and Ellissa Cuevas, all from his first marriage, which had ended in divorce. He subsequently twice remarried. Also surviving are numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
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Lawrence Curtiss Smith ’36

Lawrence Curtiss Smith ’36, a longtime sales representative for H.J. Heinz, the food products company, was born on June 19, 1913, in New Rochelle, NY. The son of Floyd R., a pediatrician, and Jane Curtis Smith, he prepared for college at South Kent School in Connecticut and came to Hamilton in 1932 from Pittsfield, MA. “Larry” Smith joined Alpha Delta Phi and lettered in hockey as well as tennis, his favorite sport. He was also photographic editor for The Hamiltonian.

After receiving his B.S. degree in 1936, Larry Smith found employment as a credit reporter for Dun & Bradstreet in New York City. He remained with the company for five years. Soon thereafter, in June 1942, he entered the U.S. Army Air Corps. That same month, he and Dorothy M. Davis were married in Kingston, NY. He served his country through the end of World War II and saw action in the Pacific theater. Discharged in early 1946, he became a sales representative for H.J. Heinz in Northern New England and retained that position for some 30 years.

Long a resident of Bennington, VT, Larry Smith was an active member of the First United Methodist Church, where he taught Sunday school for three decades. Always a sports devotee, he took to cross-country skiing and golf in his later years, while retaining his passion for tennis.

Lawrence C. Smith died in Bennington on April 9, 2010, in his 97th year. Predeceased by his wife in 1998, he is survived by a son, Lawrence C. Smith, Jr.; two daughters, Deborah Kudzia and Susan Bourget; and two grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
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Daniel Carlson Vandermeulen ’36

Daniel Carlson Vandermeulen ’36, emeritus professor of economics at the Claremont Graduate School, grew up in Buffalo, NY, where he was born on December 18. 1914. His parents were George T., a lawyer, and Jennie Carlson Vandermeulen. He came to College Hill in 1932 from South Park High School in Buffalo and joined Theta Delta Chi. He participated in track and was active in debate, and excelled academically, earning the Chauncey S. Truax Greek Scholarship as well as the Hawley Latin Prize. Elected to Phi Beta Kappa, he was graduated with honors in 1936.

Dan Vandermeulen, who had gradually developed an interest in economics at Hamilton, even though he had never taken a course in that field, went on to Harvard University, where he was required to complete undergraduate work in economics before entering its graduate program. In that program he studied with some of the most distinguished economists of the time, such as Joseph Schumpeter, and one of his fellow students was the future Nobel laureate Paul A. Samuelson. He received his Ph.D. from Harvard in 1947.

Married on September 3, 1941, in Cambridge, MA, to Alice M. John, a fellow graduate student in economics, Dan Vandermeulen held instructorships in that field at Harvard from 1939 to 1941 and at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology from 1941 to 1946. He moved to California that year, having received appointment as assistant professor of economics at both the newly founded Claremont Men’s College and the Claremont Graduate School. In 1957, he left the Men’s College following his appointment as professor of economics at the Graduate School, a position he retained until his retirement in 1983. In addition to a number of scholarly articles and book reviews, Professor Vandermeulen was the coauthor, with his wife, of National Income: Analysis by Sector Accounts (1956) and author of Linear Economic Theory (1971).

In retirement, Dan Vandermeulen continued to reside in the Claremont area. An aficionado of classical music, he frequently attended concerts of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. He was also an ardent fan of local sports teams and held a season ticket to the L.A. Rams home games from 1952 until the Rams’ final season in Southern California in 1994. In addition, he was fascinated by the theory of the golf swing and spent countless hours on the driving range. Physically active until the last years of his long life, he had walked six to eight miles around Claremont every evening for decades.

Daniel C. Vandermeulen, a faithfully supportive alumnus, died on May 9, 2010, in his 95th year. Predeceased by his wife in 1983, he is survived by a son, David J. Vandermeulen, and two grandchildren, Laura D. and John B. Vandermeulen.
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Joseph John Gadbaw (né Sakowski) ’39

Joseph John Gadbaw (né Sakowski) ’39, a highly regarded physician and pioneer geriatrician who practiced in Michigan for more than 40 years, was born on November 3, 1916, in Utica, NY. His parents were Joseph and Wanda Dombrowska Sakowski. Adopted and reared by Marion Gadbaw, whose name he took, Joe Gadbaw was graduated in 1934 from Utica Free Academy. He stayed on there for a year of further preparation before entering Hamilton. Commuting daily to the campus from Utica, he never became “part of the College scene,” as he later recalled. However, while pursuing premedical studies in the hope of realizing his boyhood dream of becoming a physician, he did find time and opportunity to play on Hamilton’s golf team and letter in the sport. A member of Tau Kappa Epsilon, he was awarded his A.B. degree in 1939.

Joe Gadbaw went on to Syracuse University’s medical school, where he earned his M.D. degree in 1943. As a medical student during World War II, he had already been inducted into the U.S. Army, which deferred him from active duty while he served his internship and assistant residency at Harper Hospital in Detroit. Married in 1944 to Ann Gosson in Syracuse, he went on active duty in 1946 and was assigned to occupied Germany as a captain in the Medical Corps.

Discharged in 1948, Dr. Gadbaw returned to Harper Hospital, where he completed his residency in internal medicine. Later that year, he established his private practice in the Detroit suburb of Farmington. During his 20 years of practice in that community, he developed a special interest in health care for the elderly, and when Wayne County General Hospital offered him the medical directorship of its long-term care facility in 1968, he took it. However, after four years, having found that he was spending too much time taking care of paper rather than patients, he left that post to again focus his full attention on clinical practice. He continued to do so as a staff member of Henry Ford Hospital in West Bloomfield, MI, beginning in 1976.

Dr. Gadbaw’s concern for the care of senior citizens soon prompted him to begin outreach to retirement communities and nursing homes. He became medical director of nine convalescent and long-term care institutions in Southwest Michigan, using his Farmington home as his base. Likening himself to an old-fashioned country doctor, Joe Gadbaw put some 25,000 miles a year on his car, visiting patients in those institutions and often making house calls as well. Working 50-70 hours a week, he saw his patients regularly and did “a lot of hand-holding and a lot of listening” while seeing to their care.

At a time when geriatric medicine was not yet formally recognized by the American Medical Association as a specialty, Dr. Gadbaw realized the need to address the care of the elderly as, with ever-increasing life spans, their numbers in the population burgeoned. As an instructor in internal medicine at the University of Michigan Medical School, he promoted geriatric care. He also chaired a commission on aging in his community and served as a member of a geriatric task force. In recognition of his contributions “as an innovator and persevering friend of our elderly, a voice crying in the wilderness of societal and medical neglect,” he received the Laureate Award from the Michigan chapter of the American College of Physicians in 1993.

After 14 years at Henry Ford Hospital, Joe Gadbaw retired in 1990, at the age of 73. He and Ann moved north to Traverse City, MI, where Joe continued to indulge his lifelong affection for the game of golf. He enjoyed refurbishing old-fashioned wood-stick golf clubs made of hickory, as well as participating, with numerous members of his family, in the annual “The Haig” tournament. A tribute to famed golfer Walter Hagen, who once lived in Traverse City, the tournament was organized by Dr. Gadbaw, who also provided the vintage hickory clubs for its participants. He continued to take part in the tournament as its “driving force” into his 90s.

Joseph J. Gadbaw, a devoted alumnus, died on February 21, 2010, at his home in Traverse City, at the age of 93. Besides his wife of 65 years, he is survived by five daughters, Joann Gadbaw, Mary Davis, Anne Paus, Elizabeth Kelderhouse, and Cate Gadbaw; three sons, Joseph J., Jr. ’68, R. Michael, and John Gadbaw; 20 grandchildren, including Sarah V. ’00 and Joseph J. Gadbaw III ’03; and seven great-grandchildren. Joe Gadbaw, who inspired his children to “strive for excellence in their life pursuits,” also provided inspiration as well as financial assistance to Hamilton premedical students with the Dr. Joe and Ann Gadbaw Family Scholarship.
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Bernard Lee Lovejoy ’39

Bernard Lee Lovejoy ’39, a retired dairy farmer, grew up in Harpursville, NY, northeast of Binghamton, where he was born on October 5, 1917, to Miles E. and Pearl Yager Lovejoy. Bernard Lovejoy, known as “Bud,” came to Hamilton in 1935 as a graduate of Bainbridge (NY) High School. During his two years on the Hill he joined Lambda Chi Alpha, played freshman baseball and varsity soccer, and was elected to Quadrangle. After missing a few classes and an exam because of a soccer game injury, and refused permission to make up the work, he left the College and returned to his family’s 600-acre dairy farm near Harpursville.

Married on July 2, 1938, to Ruth S. Edmunds in Holley, NY, Bud Lovejoy joined in the operation of his family’s farm. He was later owner and operator of Joyhaven Farms, which retailed milk and ice cream. In 1953, he became a partner in Susquemongo Farms in Bainbridge, also a milk and ice cream retailer as well as a dairy bar operator. In retirement he divided the year between Harpursville and Ft. Myers, FL.

Bernard Lovejoy died on May 20, 2010, at the age of 92. Predeceased by his wife, he leaves no immediate survivors.
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Contact Information

Stacey Himmelberger

Editor, Hamilton Alumni Review
198 College Hill Road
Clinton, NY 13323
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