Frank Vlastnik ’87 is co-author of a new showcase of the life and work of the renowned designer to the stars, The Art of Bob Mackie, which includes a foreword by Carol Burnett and an afterword by Cher. You can read the full write up about his book here.
Michael Mason ’80, retired FBI executive assistant director, is pitching in to combat a bus driver shortage in Chesterfield County Public Schools. He has enthusiastically started a “second career” as a school bus driver. You can read the article here.
Produced by Bill Damaschke ’85, “Moulin Rouge! The Musical” dominated the pandemic-delayed Tony Awards with 10 awards, including Best Musical. View the full list of winners here.
Lynn Lupo ’81 is the lead vocalist for Heartless, a Heart tribute band, which played September shows at the Phoenix Band Shell in Delavan, Wisconsin, The Wharf in Manitowoc, Wisconsin, and Septemberfest in Schaumburg, Illinois. Lynn has over 30 years of experience in musical performance, including a 12-year run fronting the cover band, Phoenix. Here is the link to the Heartless website.
Timothy Ruegg ’82 of Seward, Nebraska, died Sept. 12, 2021. He was 61. Tim earned a bachelor’s degree in music education at Illinois Wesleyan and a master’s degree in church music from Pacific Coast Baptist Bible College. He served in the U.S. Air Force as a trombonist and composer/arranger for Strategic Air Command Band and Heartland of America Band at Offutt Air Force Base, and was deployed to the Persian Gulf in support of operations Desert Storm and Desert Shield. After his military career, he dedicated himself full-time to ministry and served on the staff of colleges and churches in California, Oklahoma and Washington. He had served as pastor of Calvary Baptist Church in Seward since 2005. He also worked at Walmart in Seward for 15 years. Tim loved his community and enjoyed opportunities to play in and conduct the Seward Municipal Band and the University-Community Band. He is survived by his wife Peggy (Miller) Reugg ’82, 13 children, 19 grandchildren, mother and four siblings.
Paula Gentry ’81 officially retired from her teaching and her church work, and moved back to Oklahoma in August!
Doug Thomas ’84 of Phoenix died Aug. 10, 2021. He was 59. Doug was a member of the Illinois Wesleyan basketball team and Sigma Chi fraternity. After his time at IWU, he earned a Juris Doctor from Washington University in St. Louis, and he practiced law in Phoenix for 26 years. He also served on the Phoenix Union High School District Governing Board for 12 years. His passions included fly fishing, music, travel, theatre, family and his German shepherds. He is survived by two stepchildren and many extended family members and friends.
A catastrophic personal injury led Sam Porritt ’84 to start the Falling Forward Foundation, a nonprofit allowing individuals to continue rehab after insurance stops paying. You can read the full article here.
With the start of the new 2021-22 school year, it is official: Jody Munsterman has retired after 39 years of teaching. As a senior at Illinois Wesleyan University, she completed 18 weeks of student teaching at Bent School in the fall of 1981. She was originally assigned to student teach with Nancy Malcolm , a third-grade teacher, but two weeks before she reported back to campus, she was informed by Mrs. Malcolm she had been assigned a combination class of third and fourth graders. “Little did I know, I would begin my teaching experience and conclude my career with a combination classroom,” Mrs. M said, as her last class was a combination of fourth and fifth grade students. Read the full article on her retirement here.
Richard Whitlock ’89 of rural Clinton, Illinois, died July 15, 2021. He was 54. Rich studied economics at Illinois Wesleyan and most recently worked as a claims adjuster for COUNTRY Financial. He also served as fire chief of Ellsworth (Ill.) Fire Department. Rich was a member of the Living Hope Christian Church in Downs, Illinois, where he helped in the construction of the permanent building. His hobbies included horsemanship, woodworking and pheasant hunting. He is survived by two daughters, his loving companion and her four children, his mother and a brother.