Kirk Kirkham ’50

Wife, Katherine, and I have been sheltering in place in San Francisco (and Bolinas) since March and complying meticulously with Covid-19 protocols. But come 4th of July we couldn’t resist our traditional adventure to camp and hike in a particularly wild, rugged and isolated part of the Big Sur area to which we have special access. My son James, 51, and I, 87, finally knocked off my bucket list an all day hike down Gamboa ridge to the virgin redwood forest of Vicente Creek. Having made it back without injury, to the happy surprise of my son, I sat down exhausted on the edge of my bed, fell asleep, plunged to the floor, and ended with a black and blue swollen left hand and gravel-rashed nose and forehead per the attached photo. The irony makes me laugh every time and fills me with gratitude that I can still foolishly risk wilderness adventures (a habit indelibly implanted 1946-1950. Do we still swim our horses in the pool at the base of Red Reef canyon?). Also when we got home, my wife dug a tick out of my right shoulder blade with a pair of needle nosed pliers – another happy reminder of Thacher.
During the academic year 1949-50 Thacher offered Greek taught by Keith Vosberg to occupy the attention of a group of perennially trouble making students. Am I the last survivor? Tad Williamson, Morris Noble, Tim Whelan, Jim Schurz are all dead. Happily, Miles Carlisle ‘50 still survives in the even wilder wilderness of Washington DC. Miles, were you in Vosberg’s class too? Was Greek ever offered again?
I had hoped to attend my 70th reunion (pocket knife in my Levis), but Covid-19 intervened. As the fellow who tripped off the roof of a sky scraper said as he passed 87 floors: So far, so good.

James F. (Kirk) Kirkham CdeP 1950

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