Iowa State University Alumni Association

Cyclone LegaCY Families

I graduated in 1992 and LOVE my Cyclones! I have identical triplet boys and have been dressing them in ISU gear since they were born. They’ve been to VEISHEA, football games, and campus tours throughout their lives, all in the hope that I would get at least one of them to attend ISU!

In October was The Big Tour. We came down for the real campus visit during the boys’ junior year of high school. It was a gorgeous fall weekend. ISU did its best for me.

So, on Aug. 15, I will be moving my son, Nick Lees, into Helser Hall as he starts his freshman year as a Cyclone! I still can’t believe it! When we came down for orientation last month, I cried on and off the whole 2 days ... partly for the nostalgia of my college days and also for the excitement of the next four years of enjoying college again with Nick!

I am so glad to see ISU kicking off the new LegaCY Club – I only wish my boys could have benefitted.  Maybe we could have gotten three Cyclones this fall!

Kim Ditter
(L)(’92 indus engr)
St. Paul, Minn.

In late 1896, my dad, Julius Larsen, was shipwrecked in a Caribbean hurricane and was offered passage back to his native Norway or to the United States. He chose the U.S., where he had a sister in New Haven. Seventeen years old, he found work, learned the language, put himself through high school, then moved on to Yale School of Forestry.

His first job was the US Forest Service in northern Montana and Idaho, and it was there he met the light of this life, Jenny, another Norse immigrant. They were married in Kalispell in 1911. In 1921, serving as director of a USFS forest research station in northern Idaho, he jumped at an offer to teach at forestry at Iowa State. Teaching in Ames, and known as “Skipper,” he earned his master’s and doctorate at ISU, and thus became the patriarch of our Cyclone family. In retirement, he became a respected Ames watercolor artist. A full life for a shipwrecked cabin boy!

My sister was born in Kalispell in 1913, was schooled there and in Ames, and took her BA in English at ISU, graduating in 1935. She married her longtime beau, Robert Blumenschein (’35 gen engr). All three of theirs became Cyclones:  Barbara (’59 home mgmt.); Gary (’65 pre-med), who played baseball for Cap Timm; and Susan (’71 fam environ). Susan kept the legacy alive:  her oldest, Beka (PhD ’05 biochem) and son, Paul (’00 MIS) both graduated from ISU.

Lois and I didn’t do as well, but we did get one of ours to ISU: Margot Ann (’78 English).  Her husband, Rick Tiedje (’72 farm op), wrestled for Harold Nichols. Their son, Nick (’08 forestry), kept it going; he now works at the big wind farm plant in Newton, Iowa.   

I graduated in 1949. After a couple mistakes I found work at a wonderful company, The Maytag Company and, as you did in those days, climbed the corporate ladder. The top rung was as director of national advertising and retail merchandising. Yes, I was the one who moved our advertising to the power of network television – only 4 channels in those days –  and recommended we use the endorsement of a repairman as our spokesman in our commercials. Our incredibly creative agency transformed that idea into a TV icon: The Maytag Repairman, “The Loneliest Guy in Town.”

After 20 years of beach and golf in southwest Florida, we are back in Ames, thoroughly enjoying the university environment, marveling at the scope and professionalism of Iowa State today.

As for the Cyclone legacy:  Well, there are great-grandkids out there. Who knows?

Einar Larsen
(A)(’49 indus admin)
Ames, Iowa

Thank you for bringing back the LegaCY program for children! I am an ISU alum who grew up receiving gifts from the university as a child. It was these small gifts and reminders that made my decision to attend ISU one of high confidence.

As an alumnus, I can’t thank the university enough for the education I received that’s provided such a wonderful quality of life.

Andrew Lauver
(L)(’12 ag studies)
Rockwell City, Iowa

My parents, Sam and Maurene Jennison, met at ISU in the mid-’50s. A home ec major, my mom answered an ad posted in McKay Hall for a cook and housekeeper for the St. Thomas Aquinas Rectory. They became friends with Fr. Supple, and under his teaching and encouragement became Catholics. They married in 1957 and both graduated from ISU. All five of their children, me and my brothers –  Jim, John, Joe, and Jeff – are ISU grads. Now the grandchildren and great-nieces and nephews attend. 

ISU and Ames will always hold a special place in our hearts. My parents just celebrated 60 years of marriage. What a blessed impact ISU has had not only on their family but their faith. I am grateful!

Anne Jennison Mallampalli
(L)(’83 distributed studies)
Pittsburgh, Pa.

There are probably many such examples, but when my granddaughter, Lauren Ellerbach, enters ISU this fall, she will be the fourth generation of our family to attend Iowa State: my mom, Loraine Mundt (’31 home ec), myself, my daughter Amy Martin (’88 math), and her husband Joe Ellerbach (MS EE), plus several great-uncles and aunts, an uncle, and umpteen cousins. In that group are many multiple honor organization members. Lauren is a potential vet med student.

Jeanne (Peterson) Martin
(A)(’57 home ec ed)
Northfield, Minn.

Grant van der Linden (’16) was the 14th member of the van der Linden clan to graduate from Iowa State.

The family legacy started with the three van der Linden brothers of Ames: John (’40), Louis (’41), and Spencer (’48), and Spencer’s wife, Janeth Meneough (’48)

They were followed by a second generation of three more van der Linden brothers, all sons of John: Peter (’75, MS ’80), Dirk (L)(’78 (Grant’s dad), and Thomas (A)(MS ’81), as well as their wives, Judith (O’Keefe) van der Linden (MS ’80); Lee (Horn) van der Linden (L)(’80) (Grant’s mom); and Jean Silberman (A)(’84).

The second generation also included Spence and Jan’s two daughters, Susan (van der Linden) Benson (L)(’74, MS ’78) and Lisbeth “Libby” (van der Linden) McLarty (’76), as well as Susan’s husband, David W. Benson (L)(’74).

Grant was the only third generation member of the clan to attend Iowa State. But who knows, the fourth generation is just starting to be born!!

Dirk van der Linden
(L)(’78 journalism)
Belmond, Iowa

I enjoyed your VISIONS article on ISU legacies.  I don’t know how many 4th generation ISU students there are (or if anyone tracks that statistic) but you have at least one more this fall. My daughter, Anna Herriott, is enrolled as a freshman majoring in animal science (pre-vet).  Her great-grandfather, Cleon Herriott, graduated from Iowa State in 1926; her grandfather, James Herriott, in 1954; and her father, Paul Herriott, in 1987.

Paul Herriott
(L)(’87 elec engr)
Loveland, Ohio

I was reading through the most recent VISIONS and was impressed with all the families that are ISU alums. I wonder if you might be interested in my family’s ISU connections. My father, William Buss, was a 1956 graduate of Iowa State College in civil engineering. I am the youngest of his five daughters. My husband, Jeffrey Eagan, was an accounting graduate in 1981, and our son, Tyler Eagan, was a kinesiology graduate in 2016. My daughter, Haley Eagan, studied at ISU but elected to finish her education in nursing. My mother, Nadine Buss, worked for many years in the Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory. I also have two sisters that have had many years of employment in the College of Design and the Chemistry Department. Mom and Dad are tireless and rabid ISU athletics fans. Many years of football games and basketball games came to an end not too long ago when their health didn’t allow them to attend any longer. Now living at Bickford Assisted Living, they remain loyal ISU fans.

Jane (Buss) Eagan
(L)(’86 phys ed)
Ames, Iowa

Sometimes my siblings and I joke that we didn’t know any other universities existed besides Iowa State, especially when we share with friends the number of Simpson offspring that call ISU their alma mater. Our dad, Roland Simpson, a 1948 graduate of “The Iowa State College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts”, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Husbandry, died this past April at the age of 97. During the last few years of his life one of his special joys was having all three of his kids (also Iowa State graduates) together with him at one time.  When I read the request in the Summer 2017 Visions magazine for family legacy stories, I could not help but think of our family’s ISU legacy and how telling the story would involve us kids collaborating another time for preparing our tale.

We siblings always chuckled at the notion of Dad receiving an Animal Husbandry degree because, to us, his profession had always been photography. He had a darkroom in the basement of the home where we kids grew up and he owned a photo service shop in Des Moines for many years.  While sorting through some of his belongings in the months following his death, I found his Iowa State diploma, a commencement program, a certificate of membership in Sigma Delta Chi (Professional Journalistic Fraternity), and an interesting business size card that reads “To Whom it May Concern:  This is to certify that the bearer, Roland Simpson, is an official Bomb Photographer and upon proper identification is to be admitted to all undergraduate parties in Great Hall.”  The card is signed by Don Stevens, Manager at the Memorial Union, and James Senger, Editor of the ’48 Bomb. (Although our mother, Sybil Simpson, never officially attended Iowa State, she worked for the dean of the College of Engineering after they were married in 1946 until Dad graduated. We can’t help but think she, too, contributed to the Simpson Legacy with ISU.)

My sister, Roberta Simpson-Dolbeare (Journalism and Mass Communication, 1976), would vouch for Dad enthusiastically promoting her attendance at ISU and encouraging her journalistic efforts.  She is owner/operator of Brookside Marketing and probably has been the most intentional of us about maintaining connections with our alma mater, having served as a member (and past president) of the Alumni Association Board of Directors.  Her husband, Eric Dolbeare is also an ISU graduate (Farm Operations, 1977) as are their two children, Jenna Dolbeare-Simonsen (Ag Education, 2007), Cliff Dolbeare (Ag Communications, 2009), and Jenna’s husband, Drew Simonsen (Ag Engineering, 2010). The Dolbeares may put their ISU degrees to work in Illinois, but they still try to get back to campus for sporting or other special events at least a couple of times a year and do their best to follow the Cyclones from afar.

Our brother, Brad Simpson, studied counseling at ISU (Psychology, 1976) and went on to a career in law enforcement, serving on the Des Moines Police Department and the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, from which he retired in 2008.  He is currently an agent with Keller Williams Realty in Ely, NV.  Modern technology also enables my brother to keep in touch with the goings-on at ISU even from his western locale.

I have put my teaching degree from ISU (Elementary Education, 1972) to use in several school systems, teaching Title I Reading full time for two years, subbing for many years while my own kids were at home, and, for the past 10 years, working as a teacher associate in a 4-year-old preschool classroom.  One of our Dad’s legacies dear to me was his passion for photography and making sure we had prints of all the photos he took. (He was pre digital age).  In multiple albums I have a good photo history of the people and places of my time at ISU, including my husband and fellow ISU graduate, David Hundling (Industrial Administration, 1970), as well as the west central Iowa farm home and community where we have lived for the past 43 years.  I don’t go on many walks now without my camera in tow. 

David’s and my son, Brice Hundling, (Ag Studies & Agronomy, 2003) and his wife, Melanie (Iler) Hundling (Exercise Science; Nutrition, 2003) are also Iowa State graduates. Brice’s efforts to continue the family grain and livestock farming operation and Melanie’s employment as a physical therapist, while they raise 5 kids, definitely keep them busy. Our daughter, Gretchen Hundling, broke ranks and attended the University of Northern Iowa (English and Vocal Music, 1998), but we fair-minded Cyclones have to concede she received a fine education there, another of Iowa’s great state institutions.

So far, our dad has 9 great-grandkids, & who knows…maybe some are Cyclones in the making, ready to carry on the Simpson family’s Iowa State legacy! 

Shelley (Simpson) Hundling
(A)('72 el ed)
Breda, Iowa

I count on my older brother David Evans (ISU ’64) as family historian. Our grandfather John Legrand Evans graduated from Yale & finished law school at Michigan. He then returned home to Emerson, IA & was sent by his father back to ISU to take Ag courses as he was being put in charge of the family farms. This was around WWI. His brother Volney Luverne Evans attended ISU & is memorialized on the wall of the ISU Memorial Union near the Zodiac entrance as one of the school’s students who lost his life in WWI.

Our dad, John Louis Evans along with his brother Donald R Evans attended and graduated from ISU in the 1930’s. Their older brother Marion attended for 2-3 yrs before returning to Stronghurst, IL to run farming operations there. Our cousin Arnold Evans (his dad and my grandpa were brothers) is also an ISU alum as is his daughter Anne Lynn Evans (mid 1970’s). My brother David was there 1959-64, then attended Wharton to get his Masters. As for me, (Evan John Evans, Fremont, NE ’67, ISU ’72) I continued 1 yr after graduation adding another major, then taught high school before returning to take more classes, primarily in theatre and dance. I got to spend 2 summers on the showboat in Clinton.

My brother’s daughter Mary Lynn Evans, another ISU grad, was there I believe, 1983-87.  Starting this fall for her freshman year will be my great niece (and David’s granddaughter, her dad is David’s son John, who I believe attended U of I) Rachael Marie Evans.

So, our first Evans started there over 100 years ago and we’ll have another on campus this fall for the 1st time in a few years. I was there last September for a Beta Theta Pi (ALL other Evans men were Phi Psi’s - my grandmother who was a Delta Gam at U of I around 1904 was worried because the “Beta’s drink!”) reunion and took in the football game vs UNI, and hoping for a better outcome this fall.  A walk around campus confirmed to me how beautiful it is.

Thank you for reading Carole, and you are lucky that your family is continuing TWO traditions with kids at ISU and Maryville (is it still NW Missouri State?).

Go ‘Clones!!!

Evan John (EJ) Evans
(L)('72 English)
Santa Rosa, Calif.

I have never been able to sit down with VISIONS and read it as soon as I get it, so this is late and probably you will not be able to use it, but I wanted to share.

I was the first of our family to graduate from college (ISU PE’69). The first even on my mother’s side and the second on my father’s side. I am so proud to have graduated from ISU. I could tell you stories about me and my journey at ISU and how it impacted my future, but this is about legacy.

Our 3 children did not graduate from ISU, as at that time other options were less expensive, with scholarships etc. They have, however, been influenced by me in the fact that they are all diehard Cyclone fans like their Mother (a Clone to the bone). They consider ISU as their university more than the one they graduated from. The grandchildren have also been influence by Mommo CYCLONE, as I am referred too.

Our oldest grand child is all CYCLONE. He has even won dress up contests at Middle school the Friday before the UI vs. ISU football game!! Attends as many of the athletic events as possible.

Our two youngest grand children have been fun to watch as they learn to love CY. They both were taken to women’s BB games at an early age and saw CY. About 2 ½ years ago, I videoed Cy when he was on the court with the cheerleaders during a Women’s Basketball game to show to the grandchildren. I never anticipated what was to happen. I showed it to our grandson (at age 2 or so) who is currently 4 and we then had to watch it at least 5 more times!!  From that time on, when he saw me we had to watch CY on my phone. When ISU played Kansas in Basketball and was the game of the week and ESPN came to ISU, he even climbed up on the table that the TV was sitting on to point out to everyone that Iowa State was on TV!! His father is a Hawkeye, even though he did not graduate from UI…. A house divided  but I do feel I have the edge as I talk about CY and IOWA STATE a lot.

Then along came his sister. Who also loved the CY video and also requests it when she sees me. She is much more a Cyclone fan. Whenever I wear something with ISU on it she says ”IOWA STATE” or if I have on CY, you guessed it… she says CY. Whenever she sees CY or IOWA STSTE she makes sure everyone knows it. She just loves CY. Whenever her Mom would ask her who she loves she would say CY. So for her two year old birthday party, the first of June, the party was for everyone to come to the “I LOVE CY and Fries” Party. The decorations were cardinal and gold. The mainstay of food was a variety of French fries. I made her CYCLONE dress. That gave me the opportunity to give her CY items. We gave her a stuffed CY, a picture book of the university with pictures of her at ISU and with the Jack Trice football CY, and the hard book ISU 101. She plays regularly with CY, Loves to look at the photograph book and the book she chooses to have people read to her is ISU 101. She has even told her Mother that she wants Mommo Cyclone to take her to the campanile.

Hopefully, they will think twice about where she will go to college.

Carolyn Parry Weir
(L)('69 phys ed)
Marshalltown, Iowa

When my granddaughter Lauren Ellerbach enters ISU this fall, she will be the fourth generation: my mom, Loraine Mundt (31' HEc); me (Jeanne Peterson, '57 (HEc Ed),; my daughter, Amy Martin ('88 math) and her husband Joe Ellerbach (MS EE); plus several great-uncles and aunts, an uncle, and umpteen cousins.

In that group are many multiple honor organization members. Lauren is a potential vet med student.

Jeanne (Peterson) Martin
(A)('57 home ec ed)
Northfield, Minn.

Our Cyclone family! Pictured are Curt Richardson (’88 ag engr), Aubrey Richardson (junior in indust design), Brad Richardson (junior in ag engr), Gail Richardson (’64 child dev), John Richardson (’64 ag engr), Piper Richardson (’16 business), Bailley Richardson (’15 biosystems engr), Eric Richardson (’86 agron), and Dean Richardson (’91 an sci).

John and Gail Richardson (A)
John: ’64 ag engr
Gail: ’64 child devel
Auburn, Iowa

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