News of the mighty Class of 1952, Part IV

Dave Grumman sent us an article published in the Chicago Tribune about a young black girl in Chicago who saw her best friend shot and killed by a gunman. Deerfield subsequently gave the girl a scholarship to attend the academy, so the article described how the girl managed the transition from South Side Chicago to bucolic New England.

Some members of our class commented on the piece:

Jim Hays wrote “The article that has Deerfield as a backdrop is interesting. Certainly there are huge cultural differences between Chicago’s South Side and Deerfield. The young woman seems to have adjusted quickly and well. It cannot be easy. I wonder how many black students from similar backgrounds there are at Deerfield. My daughter attended Oberlin and there the diverse student body seemed to coagulate into small groups from similar backgrounds or political points of view. I was disappointed that over time there was not more blending of these groups.

“We are drawn to people who have common histories. I suppose millions of years of tribal living have caused that characteristic to become hardwired in us and it is very hard to break it..”

Judy Ewing (Jim’s wife) wrote “I just read the article about Klyn Jones, and appreciated it very much and will share it with Jim when he has the time. It made me sad, however, because now I know how my only black friend from college felt even though we loved her because she had a great sense of humor—but she preferred to go home to Syracuse on weekends as there were only a few black students on campus from ’58-’62. I am going to send her this article, as we still keep in touch and often write about civil rights and race relations. A bunch of us from our dorm all wanted to move into a private dorm. We made the appropriate arrangements, but when the landlady found out that one of the girls was black she said that she could not accommodate us. We got her to change her mind. Actually, we told her that if Jonesy could not room there, then none of us would and we wanted our money back. She then changed her mind, and got to like Jonesy, because she was our friend.

I wish this young woman all the best, as she has a very deep burden to carry around with her as well. I hope she will share it with others because I think it will be helpful.”

Peter Rooke-Ley wrote: “Thanks for sending this touching and encouraging article about the young woman from Chicago.”

Bucky Buckwalter wrote “This is a poignant story. Having lived a good chunk of my life in South Side Chicago-type communities, I wonder if Deerfield might think of a “bridge week” for incoming minorities from quite different cultures who plunge into the elite system and community that Deerfield encompasses. I am amazed that this young woman saw it through at Deerfield. That says a lot about her family values and commitments. I hope she pushes through some of the cultural differences at Deerfield and finds a place. Having said that, I am curious to learn and to know what Deerfield does to make minority students feel like they belong at the academy, especially those from poverty and low-income areas in our cities.”

Here’s a link If you would like to read the original Chicago Tribune article.


Frequently Asked Questions

Upon graduating from Deerfield, alumni enter a diverse network of former Deerfield students. Deerfield alumni have ventured into almost every area of employment, and many are at the top of their respective fields. The advantages of this vast network are numerous and significant, as every member of the Deerfield family receives the following:

Alumni are also eligible for alumni awards, such as the Ashley Award, Heritage Award, and the Mimi Morsman Award.

There are no membership fees or dues for members of the Deerfield family, but Deerfield does ask for assistance in a few areas. First of all, in order for Deerfield to have the most up-to-date records possible, we encourage members to keep us apprised of their current contact info. Alumni are also urged to direct all concerns and suggestions regarding Deerfield’s operations through the Executive Committee, the governing body of the Alumni Association. The committee acts as the voice of the alumni body, and works closely with the school administration. In order to keep tuition affordable and the quality of a Deerfield education at its highest, the Academy depends upon the continuing support of alumni and their families. This support can take the form of annual or capital gifts, or time spent volunteering on behalf of Deerfield.

There are Deerfield Clubs in many major American cities. Please visit here for more information on specific clubs and their sponsored events. 

Of course! Be sure to read the latest issue of From Albany Road in your email’s in-box for current news of what is happening on campus. As we also send out periodic invitations, it’s always best to make sure we have your current physical address. And if you do plan on visiting campus, why not tell us ahead of time?

Contact the Office of Advancement

7 Boyden Lane, PO Box 306
Deerfield, MA 01342