Reunion roundup

Reunions held in 2012: Class of 1962 reunion

7 - 9 December 2012

By: David Dent


Mike Adler, Dick Baines, Gil Barbezat, Karl Berge, Marie Coetzee, Bob Cowie, David Dent, Denis Duval, Sam Fehrs en, John Godlonton, David Greenfield, Derek Heeger, Doris Hollander, Chris Kuhn, Jon Larsen, Wolf Levinsohn, Abe Loghdey, Keith Loxton, Maxie Marr, Dermine Maytham, Tony Miles, Gavin Morrison, Elkin Simson, Sam Soriano, Julian Stekhoven, Franz Stellmacher, Dave Taylor, Rob Tedder, Cyril van Gelderen, Jenny Verster-Cohen, Joan Westaway (Cavvadas), Sol Zieff.



From Folklore to Science: Hereditary Stomach Cancer in Maori. (Gil Barbezat),
The Technology Travel Group (Mike Adler),
Animals in the Canadian Rockies - to Hibernate or not. (Bob Cowie),
Making a difference through Continuing Professional Development? (Sam Fehrson),
Recreational Creativity (John Godlonton),
We should not consider legalising euthanasia in South Africa? (Jon Larsen),
Medical Highlights, Cleveland Hospital (Wolf Levinson),
General Practice in Tasmania Today (Keith Loxton),
The Enigmatic Assyrian (Julian Stekhoven),
Technology Personal Glimpses of Antarctica - Audiovisual presentation (Marie Coetzee).

Thirty-two graduates of the class of 1962, and fifteen of their better halves met on the weekend 7th - 9th December, 2012, a date which marked half a century since they had stood in black gowns in the hot Jameson Hall, and were capped with the MBChB degree.

The first reunion encounter was on Friday at a registration lunch in the Mac Club at Medical School. It was quite extraordinary. None of the class had changed at all, and everyone looked exactly as they had on graduation day. This lack of aging can only be due to genes, global warming, and the inherent indestructability of this particular class. There was much catching-up conversation, a favourite question being “Are you STILL practicing?” The Dean, Professor Marian Jacobs, welcomed the group, and reminded them that not only was this the 50th anniversary of their graduating, but it was also the Centennial Year of the founding of the Medical Faculty. She outlined how the demography of the classes had changed, and how the Faculty was now ranked the first in Africa, and within the first 50 in the world.

On Friday evening there was more catching up over wine and snacks on the mezzanine level of the Baxter Theatre. Chris Kuhn had very kindly laid on a wine tasting where half the wines were his very own products. He had also arranged a special reunion label for the Cabernet bottles. After an hour of sips and snacks the group tottered into the theatre to hear Marc Lottering and his non-stop comedy show “I don’t work on Sundays”. Many of the jokes were so off-colour and below the belt that few of this pure group understood them. There were, however, gales of laughter from the audience, and not a dry seat in the house.

The Academic Meeting was on Saturday morning. The two sessions were ably and firmly chaired by Cyril van Gelderen and Dick Baines. There was amazing diversity and depth, and many of the presentations were absolutely fascinating, if not stunning.

The Reunion Dinner was held at Hildebrand Restaurant on the Waterfront, this venue being the popular request to repeat the previous reunion dinner there. Cape Town did not disappoint: There was a howling south easter to make everyone feel that they were back in the mother city. The group stood outside in the gale for the class photograph, swaying with every gust. Thereafter a good meal was had by all. Cyril van Gelderen proposed a generous toast to the class, and Bob Cowie made a witty and moving after dinner speech.

Sunday morning saw a good walk, and then a jolly breakfast in Kirstenbosch. Farewells were said, and the silent unspoken thought was whether this was the last time? We are most grateful to Joan Tuff who did the superb background organisation for this reunion.