May 112020

We are saddened to inform you of the passing of James Stuckey ‘51.

James Stuckey ’51 of Bloomington, Illinois, died May 1, 2020. He was 93. Jim served in the U.S. Army before his time at Illinois Wesleyan, where he was a member of Sigma Chi. He later studied at the University of Illinois. Jim farmed in northern Ford (Ill.) County for most of his life before moving to Rochester, Illinois, in 2005. He was the county executive director of the Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service (ASCS) for Ford County (1961-72) and Iroquois County (1972-92). He was presented the Ford County Progressive Farmers Award in 1958. He was recognized by ASCS with state and national service awards in 1990. Jim was a dedicated public servant who served on the Piper City (Ill.) School and Parkland College boards. He was also on the boards of Piper City Home Guaranty Savings and Loan, Greenbriar Nursing Home and the Ford County Chapter of the American Cancer Society. He was a longtime member of the Rotary Club of Piper City and United Presbyterian Church of Piper City. He volunteered for the Cooperative Extension Service and local 4-H program. Jim enjoyed playing bridge, jigsaw puzzles, word and number games, boating, sailing and skiing. He moved in 2017 to Westminster Village in Bloomington, where he was a member of a vocal group, attended exercise classes, called bingo and worked in the woodshop. He was preceded in death by his first wife Helenjean (Lauterbach) Stuckey ’51, and second wife. He is survived by three children, Randy Stuckey ’75, Charles Stuckey ’77 and Beth (Stuckey) Woodard-Wolfe ’78, 15 grandchildren, 15 great-grandchildren, one sister, and many nieces and nephews.

 Posted by at 11:35 am
Apr 212020

We regret to inform you of the passing of Bobby Winkles ‘52. Bobby Winkles ’52 died April 17, 2020. He was 90. Bobby played baseball and basketball at Illinois Wesleyan, and was active in Sigma Chi. He played in Minor League Baseball for seven years before being offered the job of Arizona State University’s first head baseball coach. Bobby built the program from scratch and turned it into a national power by winning three national championships in his 13 years at the helm. He posted a combined record of 524-173, coached 16 All-Americans and was named NCAA Coach of the Year three times. He later managed for four years in Major League Baseball with the California Angels and Oakland Athletics, and also spent several seasons in a variety of roles with the San Francisco Giants, Chicago White Sox and Montreal Expos. Bobby was inducted into the ASU Hall of Fame in 1982, the American Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 1997 and College Baseball Hall of Fame in 2006. He was named Illinois Wesleyan’s Distinguished Alumni Award winner in 1971. Click here to read about Bobby’s legacy as the former Arizona State baseball coach.

 Posted by at 12:31 pm
Apr 072020

Here are ways to virtually engage with IWU and fellow Titans:

  • Performances from IWU alumni, students and faculty
    Contact us at if you have a virtual performance to share. Follow the School of Theatre Arts Facebook page for posts about performances by students and alumni.
  • Back to College Classes
    Check out videos of previous classes featuring alumni.
  • Take part in Titan Talks: Webinar Series
    We are excited to launch this series featuring alumni, faculty and staff.
  • Start a Titan Group
    Have you been wanting to start a book club? Let us know at and we can help connect you to other interested alumni.
  • IWU Social Media
    Follow Illinois Wesleyan University Alumni Association social media for the latest updates and announcements – FacebookTwitterLinkedIn.
  • Virtual Titan Connections
    We miss connecting with Titans in person, but we would love to see photos or videos from your virtual connections. Show your Titan pride and tag IWU Alumni Association (@IWU_AlumniAssoc) on Twitter and (@illinoiswesleyanalumni) on Facebook. You can also post in your Regional Alumni Chapter’s Facebook group, reunion group, or affinity group.
  • Titan Challenges
    Challenge your fellow Titans to a virtual 5K or fitness challenge. Be sure to wear your favorite Titan gear and share a photo on social media or you can send it to
Apr 072020

Ways to Support Fellow Titans
    1. To share a word of support for your classmates at this time, submit a post to your class newsletter by emailing your editor or if your class does not have an editor, send your post to
    2. You can provide support to the Titan Student Emergency Fund. This fund will provide relief to students with needs such as housing, travel, moving and storage, transportation and vehicle repair, and technology needs related to remote learning.
    3. If you have expertise or a career opportunity that you can share with students, please connect with a Hart Career Center staff member for a phone or video appointment through a Handshake account here. You can also post job and internship opportunities on the site. View FAQs here.
    4. University Archives & Special Collections wants to hear your experiences and reflections to keep a historical record of the impact of the pandemic on the Illinois Wesleyan community, you can learn more here.
    5. Assist the IWU Admissions team in student recruitment efforts. Our alumni are the best and most qualified to meet with prospective students to share your IWU experience. Sign up here: Titan Alumni Ambassadors.
    6. You can see more ideas here.
Mar 252020

Thank you very much to Wilberta (Naden) Pickett ’50 for sending in some information about herself and some classmates, who she continues to keep in touch with.

Mildred (Gaston) Berryman ’50 was a public school music teacher, organist and a choir director. She continues to live in Virginia, and still very much enjoys visiting with others over the telephone.

Clara (Zaccaro) Madonia ’50 spent time playing the piano duet arrangements of the Beethoven Symphonies when they first arrived, and at Illinois Wesleyan learned how to speak English while hanging out with friends at Professor Lowell and Stella Hazzad’s daily tea open house. She was a social worker and now lives in New Jersey. Her sister, Marina Firestone ’49 came to IWU on a scholarship from Italy, speaking no English.

Nadine (Callahan) Simpson ’49 was roommates with Wilberta during her junior year. Nadine and her husband went to Mozambique, where he was a missionary doctor and Nadine was a journalist. They are doing well, and live in Tennessee.

Ruth (Belyea) Beamis ’50 lives in Maine and has one daughter. She is active in Caring Connections, visiting nursing homes. She and Wilberta were part of a team sponsored by AFS during the summer of 1949, and worked for six weeks at the Lincoln State School in Lincoln, Illinois.

Wilberta (Naden) Pickett ’50 herself will turn 92 in June, and she is still blessed with good health with her husband John. The two will soon celebrate their 69th anniversary. The remain active, enjoying exercise classes and the social and cultural life in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She received her Masters in Sacred Music from the NYC Union Theological Seminary in 1952. She received a Choir Master degree from the American Guild of Organists and is a Certified Church Musician from the Presbyterian Association of Musicians.

Haroldine (Johnson) Bourelli ’51 was Wilberta’s roommate her senior year. She had six children, one of which was Alex Bourelly ’86, an attorney in Washington, D.C..

If you are interested in contacting any of these alumnae fill out this form and we will get back to you as soon as we can.




 Posted by at 4:26 pm
Feb 192020

Thank you to Suzanne Coventry ’55 for sending this wonderful photo of her and her family. She also reports that recently, here in Bloomington she has visited the courthouse, museum, the farmer’s market, Davis’ mansion and of course, The Yarn Garden. She went by Mercy Creek bus to see The Festival of Trees and the movie “A Beautiful Day in The Neighborhood.” This winter, Suzanne will fly to St. Paul for Christmas and stay at Bandana Square, and in January she will fly to Gulf Shores.

In the first row are Suzanne, her daughters and her great-grandson.

 Posted by at 3:10 pm
Feb 172020

Jean Gaines ’53 reports that she has eight grandchildren and welcomed her first great-grandchild on May 1, 2019. She lives at The Mayflower Retirement Community in WinterPark, Florida. She enjoys hearing from her old classmates and friends!

 Posted by at 4:39 pm
Feb 172020

We are saddened to inform you that Helen Mae LaCroix (Johnson) ’53 passed away February 10th, at the age of 88. She was born on January 22, 1932 in Chicago. At Illinois Wesleyan University she met Chuck LaCroix, and during their marriage the two had five children. She was a wonderful mother who valued the time she had with her loved ones. Her art has been exhibited in several art galleries, and she taught workshops at Gorton Community Center. She is survived by four children and four grandchildren.

Read the full obituary here.

Helen LaCroix monoprint as displayed by The Robert T. Wright Community Gallery of Art.


 Posted by at 4:10 pm
Feb 072020

Thank-A-Giver Day (TAG Day) is Monday, February 10. This day provides the IWU campus community with the opportunity to thank donors who support Illinois Wesleyan. IWU celebrates each year in mid-February because it marks the symbolic point during the academic year – about 70% of the way through – when we rely on support from alumni and friends, our endowment, and external grants.

If you would like to be celebrated as a donor today, you can make a gift at

 Posted by at 11:10 am