Frank R. Hall and Associates
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Biographical Sketch Jack Donovan

It Was A Very Good Year With Jack Donovan!

Jack and I met in Kansas City at the Annual Conference of the National Association for Hospital Development (NAHD) in 1972. In the early years our relationship developed at meetings of this professional organization, now known as the Association for Health Care Philanthropy. Originally we attended these meetings to learn how to be hospital fundraisers; later we came to maintain our relationships with others in the field; and, finally we were asked to teach. Each year it was a different city for the Association's annual meeting and as we became more active we also met at Regional Meetings. Then, we were invited to the Faculty of the Institute for Health Care Philanthropy at the University of Wisconsin's Madison Campus and each year for 15 years from the early 80's to the late 90's we met each July for a week in Madison in addition to the various Conferences.

My memories of our relationship are almost always tied to the city we were in when things happened, so, this remembrance will be divided geographically. Jack and I have often joked that we've drunk beer together in more than half of these United States and the Canadian Provinces, too. One of the memory games we often play is to see if we can remember all our meeting locales. Neither of us can ever do it. There were many and our memories are not what they used to be.


The NAHD meeting in Kansas City was my third National Conference. I was beginning to realize that Fundraisers as a group are among the most bombastic people on earth. Every sentence uttered from the podium featured a prominent "I" personal pronoun, and nearly every presentation at the conference was an absolute orgy of self-congratulation.

That week when I met Jack Donovan I realized he was unique in this group, because he was willing to tell you that he didn't always know exactly what to do. We hit it off immediately. I was from Desert Hospital in Palm Springs, California, a former banker who had been lured two years before to the Fund Raising Profession by the offer of a living wage. Jack was a former Priest who learned fund raising with Ketchum in Pittsburgh and had recently been appointed to the position of Director of Development at Salem Hospital in Massachusetts.

By the end of the Conference we were friends. We decided that there had been enough "bull shit" in Kansas City to fertilize the entire Kansas corn crop and enough "hot air" to float the Goodyear Blimp. But, we had learned a few things that would be helpful back home, much of it from each other, and we resolved to get together again the following year.


I met Mary Donovan the next year when she came to Washington with Jack. Since I had never been to the East Coast before, Jack and Mary were determined to show me the sights.

My brother Wally, a Convention Bureau Manager by trade, had traveled extensively. He had carefully schooled me on how to act when traveling and particularly on how to order meals in restaurants. "Always ask the waiter for his recommendation," he told me. "Because he'll expect his tip to be based on whether you like the food or not, he'll suggest the best the kitchen has to offer."

We tried to find a restaurant in Georgetown for dinner that first night, but, they all stopped serving at 10 p.m. (the time, Jack informed me, a Northeasterner is just beginning to think about having his dinner). We found a cab driver who knew of an Italian place open late, so, off we went in anticipation of getting a decent meal. It seemed to be a nice place, so, I decided to show off my newly acquired restaurant expertise.

"What do you recommend?" I asked the waiter. My dining partners were hanging on my every word.

"It's all good," he replied.

Undeterred, I pushed on, "And, what is your most popular dish?"

"It's all about the same," he said.

Desperate now, I pleaded, "But, what do you like best, when you eat here?"

"Oh, I never eat here. I don't like Italian food. I'm Puerto Rican," he said.

Defeated, I ordered spaghetti, as did everyone else.


The day before we were to leave, Jack and Mary took me to see the White House. When we arrived at the gate we found a sign posted, "No public tours today."

"What's going on?" Jack asked one of the uniformed guards.

"High level meetings," he replied.

In the cab on the way back to the Hotel we speculated on the purpose of the "High Level" meetings. "Maybe it's the Arab-Israeli crisis," I suggested.

"Nah." piped the Cabby. "Spiro Agnew is going to resign tomorrow."

Then the Vice President, Agnew was in a lot of hot water over deals he'd done when he was Governor of Maryland. While the Watergate Scandal was beginning to percolate up into the national consciousness, none of us, in October of 1973, expected Agnew's resignation.

After the cab dropped us off I told Jack I thought the Cabby was some kind of nut. Jack said, "No, you watch, Cabbies know everything happening in Washington before the Washington Post does, wait and see."

The next day as I watched the World Series game in the Washington National Airport awaiting my flight home, ABC broke into regular programming to cover the resignation of Spiro Agnew.


By the time of the Boston Conference, Jack and I had become senior statesmen in NAHD. We both held leadership positions, he as Chair of the Accreditation Committee and I as a Regional Director for Southern California. We had each passed the day-long "Fellow" examination the previous year and after seven short years in the business we were among second group of Hospital Development Professionals to receive the "Fellow" designation. We received our Medallions in Boston.

After the conference Jack invited me to spend a few days in Marblehead, the first time I had had an opportunity to see his beautiful home. Since this was my first trip to Massachusetts Jack felt I needed a certain amount of education.

He took great delight in pointing out that Traffic Laws in Massachusetts are simply friendly suggestions. While California pedestrians scrupulously observe "Walk/Don't Walk" signs, Massachusetts pedestrians march out into a busy street holding their arm up outstretched, palm outward, and fingers upward to warn oncoming motorists that they are "coming through." At least the more polite pedestrians extend all five fingers upward, some of the less polite seem to salute with only one finger.

Jack actually giggled when he showed me a line of seven cars preparing to turn left in an intersection clearly marked "No Left Turn."

Jack also assured me that American History did not start with the California Gold Rush in 1849. He took me to a section of Marblehead built in the 17th Century and showed me wooden tombstones in the Salem cemetery memorializing mariners who died a hundred years before the Declaration of Independence.

I brought along a publication honoring the 25th anniversary of the founding of my new hospital, Hoag Memorial in Newport Beach. Jack showed me the publication for the bicentennial of Salem Hospital.

It seemed that no matter where I turned Massachusetts bested California, then I brought out the "California Surfer Bum" t-shirts I had brought along for John, Doug and Brian. When they happily stripped off their conservative New England attire to don the t-shirts, I had a measure of revenge.


This was the first conference at which I taught a seminar. Jack attended the seminar to provide moral support, which made me feel more comfortable as a presenter.

While in San Diego, I had a chance to meet Jack's Sister and then Jack came north to spend a couple of days with me in Orange County then on to visit Mary's sister and brother-in-law in Northridge. This was the first time, but not the last that Jack stayed over in my apartment.


Much happened to Jack and I between 1978 and 1981. Jack had left Salem Hospital to go into private business in 1980 and after a few months of broken promises by his new boss, decided Fund Raising Consulting held a better future for him. He joined the Haney Company, an old and venerable firm headquartered in Salem, primarily because it would allow him to stay at his home in Marblehead.

I had some very low points in those three years as well. The death of my Mother had thrown me for a loop. When I saw Jack that fall in Denver I realized how much I depended on his wise counsel.

I was asked that year to Chair an all day workshop on Annual Giving. I invited several of my friends, including Jack, to participate. Several leaders of the Association complained that Jack shouldn't be allowed to participate because he was now a Consultant, which to their way of thinking might somehow taint Jack's presentation. I ignored the complaints and the session was so well received that we were invited the following year to reorganize it into a session for new Development Professionals, which we called "The Primer" and which has now been adopted by the Association as a permanent part of their Educational Program.


In the preceding year a revolt against the leadership of the Association prompted an at-large nomination of a candidate for Chairman to challenge the election of the man nominated by the Association's Nominating Committee. As one of the "Outs" I was deeply involved in the Campaign to unseat the "establishment" candidate. Jack, as a consultant seeking business from parties on both sides of the issue was discreetly helping me behind the scenes.

As is often the case with such organizations the split was along geographic lines with Dave, our candidate from San Francisco and Joe, the Nominating Committee's candidate being promoted by the East Coast contingent. Dave, our candidate, won.

Over drinks that afternoon Jack gave me some insight into how it had been pulled off.

I told him I found it odd that several prominent eastern members from Pennsylvania and New York were convinced to vote for our guy. Jack said, "That's because you paid attention to them. You made them feel wanted. The other side took them for granted." A lesson I have never forgotten.

Jack also gave me my first glimpse of what was to become "Political Correctness."

"Notice how some women in the audience hissed when Joe referred to 'my girls' during his campaign speech?" Jack asked. "He was referring to his daughters, he has four of them, but, the audience, about 60% women, thought Joe was talking about his office staff referring to them as "girls," so, they hissed at him and voted against him because of it. People are getting so thin skinned that we'll have to start watching every word we say or we'll offend someone for sure." He concluded. How right he was.

At the victory party that night, Jack and I met a young fundraiser from a Dallas hospital, a former Basketball Player from Duke named Glen Smiley, who entertained all of us by reading aloud from Dan Jenkins then recently published book, "Baja Oklahoma." The Heroine of the book is a waitress in a Fort Worth saloon who hopes to succeed as a writer of Country and Western Songs. Her song titles were hilarious. One I'll never forget was, "My husband ran away with my best friend and I miss HER."


It was in Cincinnati that Jack and I, Jim Bowers, Jim Greenfield and Jon Olson presented the first Development Primer. It was well received. We added Marlene Casini to the panel the following year because our faculty's lack of "diversity" seemed to be the audience's only complaint. Jack tried an Irish joke that didn't go over well. We decided that ethnic humor was no longer acceptable even if you represented the ethnic group in question. Polish Jokes, which had been recently popular, were also out. Jokes about women, gays or handicapped people were all definitely "bad form." Only jokes about stupid or inept men of indeterminate ethnic background were acceptable.

We were learning more about the rules of Political Correctness.

We ate a lot of German food that year and discovered that the Cincinnati Chili, of which the locals are deservedly proud, rivals that of the Southwest.


As mentioned earlier, after Jack's brief sojourn in private business, he came back into the fund raising field by accepting a senior position with the firm of Haney Associates, headquartered in Massachusetts.

I had become acquainted with the firm in 1973 when we had engaged them to conduct a study and a campaign for $10 Million at Desert Hospital. The Firm was founded by a Preacher who learned early in his career that raising the money to build churches and other public buildings was more fun and profitable than tending "his flock." On his death he left the firm to his two sons. The one I met was Bill.

Bill Haney was a tall gangling guy who always seemed to be rumpled and sleepy. He'd often nod off in campaign meetings. "It's a result of Jet Lag," his assistant assured me. Another thing that I remember about him is that he had a disconcerting habit of clearing his throat at the beginning of every sentence.

He came to Palm Springs to conduct the "really important interviews" of our wealthiest potential donors and I made arrangements for him to meet with Sam Bloomfield, a very very wealthy former patient of the hospital. I think Sam was afraid of being alone with Bill because he insisted I come along on the interview over lunch at the luxurious Spa Hotel. After a little small talk about the weather and Sam's operation Bill got around to the questions for the feasibility study.

"Ahem" said Bill, "Mr. Bloomfield, would you be in a position to give a million dollars to the campaign for Desert Hospital?"

"Sure," said Sam "I'm in a position to do it, but, I'm sure as hell not going to."

In spite of Sam's reluctance to make a gift, the campaign got underway anyway and as it progressed it became apparent that Desert Hospital's Public Relations Department wasn't going to be much help. The Haney people (Bill and Mike the Campaign Director), sent in a young man to develop a Public Relations Plan. He worked for two weeks on his plan and then presented it to our campaign committee. The plan centered on a public event, at which we would invite the Mayor of Palm Springs (a 50-plus Mortician) to wrestle a lion cub or, better yet, an alligator. We were all aghast.

"Where did you get this guy?" I asked Mike.

"Well," he said earnestly, "He's new with our firm, but, he had extensive experience in Colorado."

Years later Mike confessed that the young man had responded to an ad in a trade journal. His previous experience consisted of being Night Manager of a Circle K store in Denver.

The Haney folks were incredibly lucky to land Jack Donovan in 1981 and in three short years Jack had put them back on top of the consulting business. Then Bill Haney died. Jack negotiated with the widow to buy the firm, but that didn't work out.

J. Donovan Associates was born.


Jack and I were invited to present the Primer at a conference of the New England Association for Hospital Development in Concord in the spring of 1984. Jack arranged for tickets to a Red Sox game and I drove into Boston to meet him for our big night out. I had decided that I'd like to attend a ball game in every Major League Park and Jack knew I'd never been to Fenway. We had hot dogs for dinner and watched the BoSox blast the White Sox. What a treat that was. I bought a t-shirt to commemorate the occasion and I still wear it to work out.

1984 RENO

It was early in 1984 that I met Patricia Nielson, the woman I wanted to be my wife. We became engaged that spring, but it was 13 years before I finally got her to the altar. But, that's another story.

The AHP Convention was held in Reno in October of 1984 and Patricia came with me. That's where she met Jack. That Convention was also memorable to me because the Association presented its highest award (the Si Seymour Award) to me. Jack would have won this award years ago, but it goes only to a Hospital Development Executive. Consultants aren't even considered.


In June of 1985 I was in the neighborhood for some meeting or another and I was invited to spend the weekend with Jack and Mary. The Lakers t-shirt I wore as "hang out wear" prompted Jack to mention that the Lakers and Celtics were playing the following day in the sixth game of the NBA Championship Series at the Boston Garden.

How we ended up going to the game is classic Donovan.

Jack knew that a neighbor couple had four tickets to the game and planned to take their two daughters along. Jack suggested to Mary that she invite the daughters to go swimming at "The Club" instead of going to the game, which she did. The girls, interested no doubt in sharing some time with those good looking Donovan Boys, leaped at the chance, begging their father to let them go. "What will I do with the tickets?" asked their father. Jack had an answer for that one and the next day he and I drove to an MTA station, parked the car and took the subway into Boston Garden. It was one of the most memorable days of my life.

When we entered the Garden I noticed that there were people standing five and six deep behind every section of seats. I assumed that the Garden had sold Standing Room.

"What do they charge those people for standing room?" I asked Jack.

"Oh, they didn't pay, they're the friends of the ushers," he informed me.

Figuring there must be some sort of Law Enforcement vehicle to prevent so many gatecrashers I asked, "But, what about the cops?"

Jack said, "Oh, I'm sure some of them are friends of the cops too."

Jack took me on a tour of the Garden and showed me that the Beer Line was already about 50 yards long.

"Some of those guys never leave the line," Jack told me. "Because there's a two beer limit, they buy their beers, go to the end of the line and by the time they get back up to the front both beer cups are empty, so they buy two more. They watch the game on the monitors while they stand in line."

I looked around the Garden and the only color anyone seemed to be wearing was Kelly Green. I thanked God that I hadn't worn my Laker Cap - we would have been killed. In fact there were two people in the Garden rooting for the Lakers, me and Jack Nicholson who was in the front row, courtside.

Then the game was on. Kareem, Magic, Worthy and Cooper for the Lakers. Bird, Parish, McHale, and Ainge for the Celts. It was wonderful.

Those were the days before NBA Players sported nose rings, tattoos, gang bandanas, peroxide spiky hair, and even before Rodman and his evening gown. It was also before Magic revealed he had HIV. You looked up to the players, you respected them as role models for your kids. Today's Professional Athletes are exemplified by the New Orleans Saints player who, when asked why he liked Mike Ditka, said "He treats us like men - he lets us wear earrings."

To top it off, the Lakers won. "Wait 'til next year," said Jack. And he was right.


One of J. Donovan Associates' first clients was Northridge Hospital in California's San Fernando Valley. Because of the successful campaign he conducted for them, Jack was invited to do a feasibility study for a Community Hospital nearby.

Jack didn't have a lot of employees in those early days, so when he got the contract to do the study he contacted Patricia and me to help him do interviews. We worked closely together for several weeks.

We learned that the hospital had been founded by a doctor who owned it until a few years before. On the advice of his Tax Lawyer he had created a Non-Profit Corporation to which he contributed his stock in the Hospital Corporation creating a terrific tax deduction. Now he controlled a Non-Profit Hospital. He recruited a Board of Directors, consisting of his friends, but all power was still vested in an "Executive Committee" which consisted of three people: the doctor, his lawyer and his accountant. All of them drew salaries, big ones, too.

Hearing that people gave money to Non-Profit Hospitals, the Doctor then created a Foundation to receive any gifts that donors might make. Then he hired Jack to find out whether anyone would financially support a capital campaign.

Because everyone connected with the hospital knew that the Doctor who was the former owner was continuing to enrich himself, nearly everyone we talked to laughed when we asked if they would support a campaign.

In the end, Jack was forced to tell the Foundation they would not succeed if they attempted to raise funds. To my knowledge, they've never raised a dime to this day.


Each year from 1985 to 1999 Jack and I met in Madison as Faculty of the Association for Health Care Philanthropy Institute. At first we were merely Faculty, then we became Deans over our areas, "Fundamentals" for me and "Major Gifts-Capital Campaigns" for Jack.

The schedule was almost always the same. Arrive the Saturday before the 4th of July, a reception the first night, classes all day on Sunday, Monday and Wednesday with half day programs on Tuesday and Thursday.

We did have some free time. Some evenings we would grab a beer at one of the many Beer Halls on State Street, play some pool (where I earned the nickname Bakersfield Fats), splurge on a frozen yogurt, or sit out on the patio of the Student Union overlooking the lake. Always we talked. We shared notes on Fund Raising successes or failures and talked about the many characters who populate our profession.

For example, there was "Dancing Don." No, not the Quarterback, he was Dandy Don. Dancing Don was 55 or so, a Planned Giving Officer from a Midwestern Hospital who was on the Institute's Planned Giving Faculty. As his nickname implied, he loved to dance. Because the participants in our Institute are mostly new to the profession, they are mostly young, or at least younger than we are. Dancing Don would organize a group of young people to go dancing on Saturday and Sunday nights and off they would go, sometimes not returning until the wee hours. Tales about Dancing Don and his Charges are legend.

One year they had difficulty finding a Cocktail Lounge with music and ended up dancing the night away in a Gay Bar. Another year, Dancing Don, in his cups, fell into the lake. But, come Monday morning Dancing Don would be in class giving his lecture and for the rest of the week he would be quiet and withdrawn never venturing out with the group.

One year I asked Jack what made Don so schizophrenic, acting like an idiot on the weekend and then being a "straight arrow" the rest of the week. Jack told me it was because Dancing Don's wife always arrived in Madison on Monday and stayed the rest of the week.

Wednesday night in Madison was our favorite. On Wednesday nights, the Wisconsin State Orchestra gave a free "Concert on the Green" from the steps of the State Capital. Residents, students, visitors and even politicians grab a blanket and bring a picnic dinner to hear the concert. If our Institute dates fell during the week of the 4th of July, they would always play the 1812 Overture with real canons, bells and fireworks. I don't know why an overture celebrating the victory of Russia over Napoleon makes so many Americans teary-eyed on the 4th of July, but it does. Jack and I were among them.

In recent years as Jack's company grew more prosperous, he hosted a dinner during the week in Madison for his clients who happened to be there. Since, by this time, I had joined the St. Joseph Health System and represented 14 hospitals, many of which were Jack's clients, I was nearly always invited. That was great fun too. It was touching to see in what great esteem Jack is held by everyone who has ever had the good fortune to engage his services. Over the years the J. Donovan Associates firm has worked with me in Orange, Mission Viejo, Fullerton, Eureka, Napa, and Apple Valley in California and Lubbock in Texas. Every one of the campaigns he conducted exceeded its goal.

Finally, it was in Madison that Jack earned the nickname "Handsome Jack." One evening when I called my Patty before retiring for the night she asked me, "And how is Handsome Jack?" I told him about it, and since then Patty always calls him Handsome Jack. What does she call me? She calls me "Frank," so, we have become known as Handsome Jack and Frank.

I ask you, would you rather be called Handsome Jack or Bakersfield Fats?

GLENDALE 1989-91

I was consulting with Glendale Adventist Hospital when we engaged J. Donovan Associates to conduct a campaign. Over a two year period Jack and I did our best to help them reach their goal.

What made Glendale Adventist Hospital interesting was the organizational structure, which, I guess, is shared by all Adventist Hospitals. To the Adventists, hospitals are very much a part of their ministry. The Board of an Adventist Hospital is composed entirely of persons of the Adventist faith and is appointed by the Church hierarchy. The Hospital Chief Executive Officer reports to the head Bishop (or whatever title is used by the Church's headman).

You can't be a Vice President of an Adventist Hospital unless you are a member of the Adventist faith. Bill, the Development Director at the time for Glendale Adventist was not an Adventist, so, his chances for advancement were slim and none.

The number of Adventists in the United States is relatively small compared to other faiths, so there aren't a lot of Adventist Churches. All the Executives and all of the Board Members and all the employees who were Adventists went to the same church and socialized with each other. At Glendale, the Hospital CEO and his wife were the best friends of the Dietary Manager and her husband, which must have made it a little uncomfortable for the Vice President in between them on the organization chart.

In addition, nepotism is rampant in Adventist Hospitals. Nearly every kid working part time in the Dietary Department or on the Receiving Dock is the child of some Board member or other Church big shot. This made for some interesting management/employee relationships.

This brings us to Noanie, who was the Development Director's Secretary. She had always been the Secretary in the Foundation Office, long before Bill was hired. She was also the wife of the Head Adventist for all of Southern California, the man to whom the Glendale CEO reported. So each morning all of the Vice Presidents, one at a time, would drop into the Foundation office to pay their respects to Noanie.

Once Bill discovered that his Secretary was such a powerful person he became scared to death of her, as well he might have been. She could have squashed him like a bug. The problem was, that while Noanie was a very nice lady, she didn't actually do any work. She mostly just chatted with the Vice Presidents and any Board Members who happened to drop by. Bill would hide in his office when Noanie had important visitors because invariably the executive in audience would glower at him if he interrupted their conversation with the great lady of the church.

Finally, Bill got up the nerve to tell the CEO he needed a secretary who actually did correspondence and took minutes, those kinds of things. The CEO suggested that if Bill wanted those things done he could just do them himself, because he wasn't about to fire the wife of the guy he reported to. So, Bill took the minutes and wrote the letters, too.

Because the Hospital is a ministry to the Adventist leadership, they also stringently enforce their religious beliefs on their patients. They are Vegetarians, so you will not find meat or meat products on your tray if you are a patient. You won't find anything with caffeine or alcohol in it either. To show you how open minded they are, they will proudly tell you that if you become a patient you can have meat as long as it's prescribed by your physician. Since most of the doctors are Adventists too, you will play hell convincing one to prescribe a steak or even a hot dog for you.

Adventists also strictly observe their Sabbath and can't participate in any activity that isn't directly related to worship between sundown on Friday and sundown on Saturday. This makes it difficult to do a fund raising event on a weekend. I once suggested that they could hold their Gala on a Saturday in midwinter when the sun goes down early. I was told that it wasn't just that they couldn't do any work on the Sabbath, but they couldn't cause anyone else to do any work either. So, no non-Adventist hotel employee could decorate the room or prepare food during the forbidden hours for an Adventist party. This pretty much confines Adventist Hospital Galas to Sunday nights, not the most popular night to go out for the average Non-Adventist.

Once you were at the Gala, which was usually held at some fancy place like the Beverly Hills Hotel, you couldn't drink or dance either. Entertainment was provided by a paid name entertainer, and that, plus a Vegetarian meal were all you got for your $300. If you wanted a little wine with dinner you could get the waiter to bring you a bottle as long as you paid extra at Wine List prices and if you wanted a cocktail you could jolly well get up from the table and go down to the Lobby Bar and get it.

This was an interesting engagement at Glendale Adventist Hospital. Heaven only knows how Jack achieved that goal, but he did.


Jack and Mary invited Patty and me for a long weekend in Hilton Head in early spring of 1993. Our trip coincided with the coldest weather in many a moon in Hilton Head and on our arrival, Jack took me on a walk around the golf course behind his home. The Greens and Lakes were frozen over and a few homeowners who were not in residence had left their automatic sprinkler systems on creating a fairyland maze of ice in their back yards.

Jack and Mary took us on a tour of the island and then off for a tour of Buford, the historic city filmed as the backdrop for the movie, Forrest Gump. Patty and Mary toured some of the local shopping while Jack and I checked out the gym of the local Sheraton.

The next morning at sun up Jack saw me wandering around the golf course adjacent to his back yard. I explained that my brother Wally had died the previous year and left instructions with his widow that he wanted his ashes spread on golf courses around the United States. Since my Sister-in-law knew I traveled a lot, she handed me a box containing Wally's ashes and instructed me to spread them on as many golf courses as possible. Jack caught me in the act. I told him I carried a little Tupperware cup full of his ashes wherever I went, just in case I ran into a handy Golf Course. I lived in dread of being confronted by a Greenskeeper asking "what have you got in that cup?" - or worse yet, explaining it to Airport Security.

Jack sold the house some time later and I've never been back, but, Wally is still there - no doubt bitching about his lie.


Wisconsin won the Big Ten Football Championship in the fall of 1993 and Jack and Mary decided to attend the 1994 Rose Bowl Game featuring the Badgers against U.C.L.A. Patty arranged for them to stay at the famously elegant Huntington Ritz Carlton Hotel. Brad Holmes, our mutual friend from Milwaukee, arranged game tickets and Bill Hall, the Hotel Manager, a family friend, arranged for them to attend the Rose Parade.

When they arrived in Pasadena we took them on a New Year's Eve day tour of the area where the Rose Parade Floats were under construction. We had lunch in Old Pasadena and then toured the historic San Gabriel Mission founded by the Franciscans in 1775, one of the oldest structures in California. Jack reminded me that the Pub in which we'd had a beer the last time I was in Marblehead was older than the Mission. One-upped again.

On New Year's Day Jack and Mary saw the Parade and watched the Badgers beat the Bruins 21 to 16. The following day we took them to one of the most beautiful racetracks in the world, Santa Anita, a few miles from our home. We all had a wonderful and memorable time.


Shortly after Jack had his colon surgery, we convinced him and Mary to come back to California for an encore of their previous visit. We attended a Hockey game at the Anaheim "Pond" and watched the Mighty Ducks take on the New York Rangers featuring Wayne Gretsky. Only a few games from his retirement, none of us had ever seen "The Great One" before and it was a real treat. He didn't score a goal, but, we saw him get an assist.

On this trip too, we went to Santa Anita and spent much time eating good food and engaging in good conversation.

AND THEN THERE WAS THE TIME IN: Miami and Dallas and Toronto and Naples (Florida) and Annapolis and Newport and Chicago and Philadelphia and San Antonio and San Francisco and Williamsburg and Plymouth and Orlando and Houston and New Orleans and other places, too, that I have forgotten.

They were all "Very Good Years!"



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