Update for Patrick Sheeran Jr.

I have been keeping up to date on the progress of Pat and Karen Sheeran’s son Patrick since his life changing injury sustained when he was hit by a car. Patrick Jr. is an incredibly resilient and strong young man with long road of recovery and therapy in front of him however his progress has been nothing short of miraculous. The human mind and body are phenomenal things to observe after they become injured and search for ways to heal. Patrick’s experience is no different and this becomes evident when you read Pat and Karen’s daily posts on the website: Patrick Sheeran Caring Bridge

I encourage all to visit this site by clicking the above link, watch the progress and by all means leave a message to show your support and the fact that they are in your thoughts. It will be a very different Christmas for the Sheeran’s this year but you can help with your public encouragement.

I wish all of you nothing but health, happiness, and time with family this holiday season.

Cheers, sr


One Of Ours Needs Us

Hey ’73 Falcons and Braves, not sure you received this news on Facebook but we’ve got a brother that needs our support, prayers and if possible, donations.


Shortly after we got the chance to reconnect with Pat Sheeran at the reunion in September his family sustained a life altering event as their son, Pat Sheeran Jr. was critically injured after being hit by a car in Florida.



I visited the Caring Bridge website (linked above) to get an idea of the extent of what the Sheeran’s are facing. Young Patrick has huge mountain to climb as you will see when you follow the thread of his progress thus far. Pat and Karen Sheeran could use our support in a big way. Contact them through Facebook, stay updated through Caring Bridge and leave them a message in the guestbook, and above all keep Patrick in your thoughts and prayers. If you have the resources please consider sending a donation to reach our goal of $120,000.00 for Patrick’s long road to recovery.
I believe this would do them a world of good right now knowing that we have their back.



Vince Scott

Just got some pretty sad news from Terri Sutton Steelman that Vince Scott passed away this week unexpectedly. The report is that it happened while he was running in the Baltimore Marathon.

Hey friends, this is getting too real. We’re not 18 years old any more and tomorrow is never guaranteed. Stay in touch with each other and Be Well.


Thank you

When I initially sat down to write this entry I thought I would do it in the same satirical way that I had written all previous Oaksegami posts leading up to last Sunday at Renault. But after it was written it just didn’t feel right. I was being sarcastic when all I wanted to do was tell each person who attended, thanks.


Personally, I had an awesome time and hope you did as well. Regrettably, the time flew by and I wasn’t able to have the type of conversations with all my friends that I wanted to have. Sorry I missed you Gary, Bobby, Jodi, Ginger, George, Jeff, Karen, et al.

I have been incredibly lucky in that my entire life – from my roots in Absecon to my current home in Maine – has been full, exciting, rewarding, and challenging. But it was my four years at Oakcrest and the life long friends I made there that I think about most often. You made an indelible impression!

In early November of last year I made a trip to SJ when I heard through the grapevine that Bill Petuskey would be in the area visiting his family. It turned out to be his last trip east. I surprised him at the Crabshack in Somers Point where his family was having dinner. Billy was a pretty great guy and good friend in high school and frankly, he only got better as life went on. He and I had communicated via email often during his fight with cancer but when we saw each other again it made me think that our whole class might do well if we all reconnected. At Bill’s memorial celebration last May several of our classmates confirmed my sentiments and our Unofficial ’73@40 fiasco was born.

From there, you did the rest. You spread the word, called the newspapers, volunteered to help, followed the website, made your RSVP …. and showed up. To be quite honest the finished product was far better than I ever anticipated. My wife remarked that it was patently evident that we actually liked each other as she listened to conversations begin again where they left off years ago. There was a family component that was missing from her high school experience.

So … thanks again for making the event a success and for considering our friendships important enough for you to make the effort to attend.

All right now, enough of this sappy stuff. We’ll do it all over again someday. But next time we won’t wait 15 years.

Cheers, sr

Final Countdown

Go ahead – pull out the ‘73 year book and see what we (you) used to look like, start to fret that nobody will recognize you, practice in the mirror sneaking a peek at someone’s nametag because you don’t have the faintest idea who you’re talking to, worry that you’re just not as sharp as you used to be or that you put on a pound or two …


Leave the stupid book on the shelf and take pride in the fresh wrinkles and gray (or lack of) hair. You earned every one of them! Remember that you have 40 years of (good and bad) ‘stuff’ behind you that have made you unrecognizably better than you used to be. The nametag thing? Oh whatever – wear it upside down. And if you’ve lived life the right way the likelihood that you haven’t lost a step or gained a number or two in the clothing department is pretty remote.


We’re all on equal footing, we’re all from the same family and who really cares about paragraph #1 anyhow?

I, for one, intend to simply enjoy the afternoon getting together with old friends, have a burger and a loaded dog, some salad to keep my wife happy, and a trip or two to the Cash Bar .. all this while sharing lies about our high school feats, exaggerating our career successes and minimizing our failures, and promising not to let it go another 15 years. Oh, by the way; we also get to do a little bit for the American Cancer Society for our brother, Billy P.

See you there!

OHS/AHS ‘73 @ 40 Unofficial No Fuss No Muss Reunion

Renault Winery – Tuscany House

September 29, 2013 (2:00 – 5:00)

Game On

Yes, the RSVP list has closed BUT (sshh!) I will get you in the door if you let me know in the next day or two. Email your RSVP NOW not tomorrow, to basicidea@live.com. Renault has given us a little leeway to kick those delinquent, recalcitrant classmates off the fence (you know I’m talking to you – please, for goodness sake, do not make us send George Castine to your house) and onto the list of “of course I’m going”.

90 people have signed up for this fiasco. Renault says, “bring it”. If you know a teacher or coach or administrator, – invite them ….. If you know someone from ‘72 or ‘74 and beyond that would like to catch up – invite them …. more people means more $$$ that will go into the Billy Fund for the American Cancer Society. I can see Petuskey laughing and shaking his head at us!

By the way all those people that I just asked you to invite must RSVP …where? (for the 1000th time) basicidea@live.com

PICTURES: Nancy Klinger Poljak needs photos from ‘back in the day’. Forward them to   npoljak@comcast.net  where they will be put to music for a Bravo cable TV show titled’, The Real Classmates of ‘73.

Dr. Charlie Guenther (world renown specialist in emotional disorders) would like to invite persons afflicted with RSDS (Reunion Straggler Diehard Syndrome) to the Reunion After Party at Tailgater’s in Pomona …. Come receive therapy from our trained professional counselors and complimentary front row seats for the Eagles, Sunday Night Football game. (White Horse Pike  between Jim Leeds Rd. and Odessa Ave.)

Renault Winery Tuscany House, Egg Harbor, Sunday, 29 September 2013, 2-5 p.m., $50 entry fee per person (cash, no credit cards), dress code, Men – clean clothes, Ladies – the little black dress will do just fine, otherwise whatever you’ve got.


The Deadline Approacheth

We’re getting close ….. September 15th is the deadline for email your RSVP to basicidea@live.com.

Response has been great but a few are still sitting on the fence (why? I don’t know because sitting on a fence isn’t very comfortable) and others we simply haven’t been able to get in touch with. Call someone from ’73 and get them involved.

Bribe them if necessary, tell them we’re giving away a car or a trip to Cancun. We won’t but that will be your problem that you can blame on us once they arrive at Renault Winery on 29 September from 2-5 p.m.

Remember it’s $50 per person at the door. Bring cold hard cash, leave your credit cards at home unless you feel the need to visit the Renault gift shop to get your hosts a reunion gift. I will happily accept it but you will still owe me 50 bucks.

We will gladly hand over all the proceeds, after paying the Renault folks for their services, to the American Cancer Society. Maybe we should do this thing every year and just call it the “Billy Fund”. I think he’d approve.

The classmates formerly known as Nancy Klinger and Carol Siewert have taken to doing the ‘day of’ details that I’m terrible with. This is good because I have trouble getting in touch with my feminine side. Be advised they have been sternly advised about the No Wrist Corsage rule and are keeping it simple. Yes, you will be required to wear a name tag since you are likely not nearly as good looking as you were in high school.

CHARLIE GUENTHER has graciously stepped up and offered to host the AFTER PARTY for the Unofficial No Fuss No Muss 40 Year OHA/AHS REUNION ….. at a place of his choosing. Details to be made available at the reunion; (likely somewhere close-by, regrettably not Bossick’s Cove (sp?).

He has begun the detailed process of evaluating the party location options by taking into account sufficient ‘dive-iness’ quotient, temp and quality of beer selections, absence of perky wait staff and any evidence of table cloths, sanitary but not sterile, satisfactory locks on the restroom doors, …. You know stuff like that. Charlie is going the extra mile because ….. Well, he’s Charlie and ….. he cares.

Probably an update or two yet to go as I am old and forget things.

Cheers, my friends – can’t wait to see you again.


Details, Details, Details

1.) Awesome response so far lots of RSVP’s – Lots of questions about payment …. the good news is that we’ve50 bill made it easy …. $50 at the door (not the $45 listed in the snail mail invitation). CASH is king but will take a check (begrudgingly). We are working to get formal receipts for tax purposes for the $20+ portion that will automatically go to the American Cancer Society

2.) Email any pictures you may have from our high school era to Nancy Klinger-Poljak as she is putting together a slide show that is bound to embarrass and expose all of us. If you think one of your BFF(s) is about to send in a photo of you, the best recourse would be to send in a retaliatory strike, i.e. a photo of your own!  npoljak@comcast.net

3.) 29 September 2013, 2-5 p.m. Renault Winery – Tuscany House, Totally Casual BBQ, No Fuss No Muss, (persons wearing tuxedoes or wrist corsages will not be admitted without an appropriate explanation OR $50 per person)

4.) RSVP basicidea@live.com TODAY .. RSVP deadline is 15 September

The Usual Suspects are beginning to sign up

Here’s the list of characters so far that have sent a formal RSVP to basicidea@live.com:

Jeanne Hobson Hubbard, Judy Gronlund Jacob.Kathleen Breder Marburger, Nancy Klinger Poljak, Luann Leseman Inman, Sharon Kennedy Tommi, Patti Wyner Schwenger, Terri Wellner, Pat Sheeran, Tim Leary, Joe Losasso

These are additional names that have checked into the reunion conversation via social media and expressed interest but no RSVP to basicidea@live.comyet.

Pat DiGiacomo, Larry Surkin, Eleanor Ausby Godbold, Ginger Hagaman, Lynn Roesch, Bill Wyner, Jean Weisbecker Hess, Joanne Ripley Hennessy, Donna Slunt Nelson, Doris Ettmueller Hawkins, Dennis Dempsey, Marilyn Mohn Ryan, Nadine Clybourn, Patty Merlino, Mike Curcio, Tammy Schaab (Jay), Joann Henderson, Eileen Wallen Fox, Bill Corbin, Mike Petuskey, Mary Ellen Petuskey, Karen Bergman Petuskey

Help me out by making your reservation at this email address: basicidea@live.comname (please, for goodness sake add the name you had in high school – we’ve all killed too many memory cells since ’73), number in party, and contact email address …. easy as that…

For all other information please read the previous posts here at oaksegami.wordpress.com or send your questions to me at (let me type it just one more time) basicidea@live.com.

Please note the $5 change for what we will be charging – $50 per person with $20 being donated to the American Cancer Society in honor of Bill Petuskey

What You Need (Must) Do …. pretty please

OHS/AHS Unofficial, No Fuss, No Muss 40 Year Class Reunion … Sunday, 29 September, 2 – 5 p.m., Renault Winery, Tuscan House, Egg Harbor …. SOUTH JERSEY, baby!

I have total empathy for the crew that put our 25 year gig together. This is going to be a pretty cool thing if we pull it off and have a good crowd there to enjoy it – BUT am asking everyone to do me a few big favors.

#1 RSVP to Scott R. at basicidea@live.com ONLY! … Telling me on Facebook or a comment on the website like “great idea, count me in” doesn’t count

#2 when you RSVP leave your name (the one you used in high school … Hey, it’s been a long time!), address, email address, how many will be coming with you and their names, and any questions you may have.

#3 cancellation policy – let me know before 15 September … no cancellation? You will still be billed! Someone is fronting the expenses with Renault for this thing so don’t screw it up!!! (We’ll keep a list – we know where to find you)

#4 REREAD #1

#5 ’73 grads Oakcrest and Absegami, of course .. But any of our friends are invited to join us …. More the merrier – also better for our class donation to the American Cancer Society in Billy Petuskey’s honor

#6 Teachers, coaches, front office? … YES, if you know where they are, tell them, invite them, send them to oaksegami.wordpress.com and tell them their assignment is to read and complete items #1 and #4 before class!

Ok, now the truth … We had to raise the price to $50 per person …. Just too many expenses to cover at 45 beans ….

Communication is pretty critical now as we aren’t that far away from Sept. 29 ….

Now, go out there and do your thing!

Cheers, sr

Unofficial 40 Year Class Reunion: Date, Place, Time and Cost

Renault Winery: Tuscan House

Sunday afternoon: 29 September 2013, 2-5 p.m.

$45 (with a cash bar) … $20 will automatically be donated to The American Cancer Society in memory of Bill Petuskey

Dress – yes, please do .. keeping it real casual though

Who? – OHS/AHS Class of ‘73 primarily BUT – would welcome anyone from that era to join us and catch up on 40 years of friendship, success, failure and dirt. (we all have some of each!)

RSVP: yes, this means you! deadline to let us know if you are coming is 5 p.m. – 15 September … r.s.v.p. – a.s.a.p. to basicidea@live.com (will also entertain questions, suggestions, poems and marriage advice  … well, maybe not)

Payment: we are in the process of deciding how best to accomplish this (likely a PayPal account since I haven’t been able to find a fat cat from the class who will underwrite the whole thing) Keep tuned into this site and our FB link to receive this update – RSVP first, I’ll find you to get your money, trust me.

Your Mission should you decide to accept it: spread the word, send them here, talk it up, invite others .. girls – buy a nice dress, guys – wash your T-shirt

It’s On … 29 September, 2013

Mark your calendar. The No Fuss, No Muss Unofficial 40 Year Ultra Casual OHS/AHS ’73 Reunion has life. You made the decision based on the interest you showed on Facebook and here at, oaksegami.wordpress.com. We’ll set this thing up, you find your friends from high school and let them know. There are a few logistical things that need to be done in the meantime to help out but more on that later.

DATE: 29 September, 2013 – 1:00 PM 

The venue has yet to be finalized as we work through a few remaining details however count on a BBQ picnic near the ’73 OHS/AHS Mays Landing campus. The goal is to keep the event cost low because we plan to do this in conjunction with an American Cancer Society fund raiser in memory of our classmate, Bill Petuskey. Your donation and the BBQ will be rolled into one price. The venue will sell us beer while soft drinks and non-beer drinkers can BYOB. Hopefully you’re getting the idea as to just how no fuss, no muss this event is going to be.

Here’s what you can do:

1. Alert your/our friends and get everyone to hit the LIKE button on Facebook so that they’ll be notified when new info comes up

2. Send your email address to basicidea@live.com so a data base can be formed – I promise this information will not be given to the IRS or NSA (they probably have it anyway)

3. We need a tent in case of inclement weather; how big? I don’t know yet ….. just keep this task in mind in case you know where to get one

4. Check in every now and then to get the latest information …. I expect we’ll have more details in the next few weeks

That’s it for now ….

Cheers, SR, TL, JoLo

Bueller? Bueller?

Hello? Is anyone out there? More importantly is there anyone out there from the Oakcrest – Absegami Class of ’73 interested in a reunion (of sorts)? During a recent visit to SJ to attend a memorial service for our classmate Bill Petuskey the subject came up as several from our class expressed not only an interest but a need as well.

Aside from the honor of saying goodbye to one of our class leaders it was great to say hello to so many old friends I hadn’t seen since our 25 year reunion. Personally, it’s becoming more and more important the older I get to hold on to the connections and friendships made over 40 years ago when life was easier and all of us believed we were immortal.

There’s been a lot of water over the dam in the last 40 years and the usual suspects have decided to give this reunion thing a try – but not in the sense that reunions typically are staged. This will be the No Fuss, No Muss, No wrist corsages or suit and tie affair where the emphasis is on catching up with old friends, telling lies about our high school exploits and exaggerating our lives since “Oaksegami” ’73 -(typical reunion stuff). The idea is to have a casual, unstuffy event that when you walk out to the parking lot when its over you realize you are glad you attended even though you weren’t so sure about it when you parked the car a few hours earlier.

Yes, there will be; ‘Hello my name is’ _____ because let’s be serious – our memories are shot and while most faces come back pretty fast the corresponding name doesn’t … Hey, it is what it is!

So here’s the plan. Let me (really doesn’t matter who me is) know if you are interested by emailing me with your return address and your thoughts at basicidea@live.com. Use your contact list, Facebook friends, and Twitter to spread the word, send them to this website oaksegami.wordpress.com and have them respond in kind. We’ll survey the response after about 30 days and get back to you on – when (likely this Fall), where (probably within 15 miles of OHS) and how much (more than a bucket of KFC and less than dinner at the Borgata). .. Could be a BBQ, could be a buffet – Remember No Fuss, No Muss