A ‘Special’ Classical Class of ’65 Virtual Reunion

TUESDAY JANUARY 18 2022 at 730 pm via ZOOM

“From WNEB to Network TV” – a talk by Jim Laurie

Classmate Jim Laurie talks about his new book, a career in network news, and his lifelong passion for global travel.

Does anybody remember Worcester’s “HI-FI station” W-N-E-B? 

In Spring 1964, Jim went on the radio reading the news. He was one of the worst newscasters in radio history.   

The only person to be honest about his performance was the marvelously inspirational English teacher, Anna Shaughnessy (Classical High 1921 to 1966.)  Taking the 16-year-old aside, she suggested he might want to work much harder – first on his writing – and develop his broadcast skills later.

Six years later, Jim was on the air again – this time from Vietnam and Cambodia.  He plunged into war, developed his obsession with global adventure, and landed his first network job at NBC News.

Jim will talk about his early years in Asia – as detailed in his memoir “The Last Helicopter: Two Lives in Indochina” (2020). The book, available at Amazon.com,  is a story of war, love and survival.  TV broadcaster Ted Koppel describes it as “a love story on so many different levels… memories of a young war correspondent learning his craft and falling in love. Cambodia and Viet Nam are, first the backdrop and ultimately the essence of the story. A wonderful book.”

It was the beginning of an exciting career – later reporting from Beijing, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Moscow, London, Sarajevo, Beirut, Belgrade, Berlin, Baghdad, Kabul, Jerusalem, Johannesburg, Mogadishu and dozens of other datelines.

If the ZOOM technology works, Jim will also offer some video and sound from his earliest adventures.  Hope you can join us! 


To give Jim a wider audience, feel free to ask friends and acquaintances who might be “history buffs” and interested in Vietnam and Cambodia in the 1970’s to join the ZOOM call. Just let Ben Bachrach, benbachrach@gmail.com, know who you have invited so he will let them into the session. Jerry Morse will be the moderator for the evening, while Ben handles the technical issues.


The session may last up to 8:45 PM. If you cannot attend at 7:30 – login when you can. If you decide to leave before we adjourn that is okay too.

If you are unfamiliar with ZOOM, feel free to contact Ben Bachrach for assistance.

We know we don’t have contact information for many of our classmates and some of the contact information is outdated. Send any contact information for yourself or other classmates to salitube@aol.com

We have sent emails with login info to everyone on our list. If you did not receive such an email, then please send an email to salitube@aol.com to be added to our list.

Classical ’65 Zoom Committee

Rick Sandler – rick@insgrp.com
Ben Bachrach – benbachrach@gmail.com
Mike Backer – salitube@aol.com

Mark Blazis RIP

Mark Blazis passed away 11/17/2021.


Obituary from the Worcester Telegram

Here are some news articles

https://www.telegram.com/story/sports/outdoors/2021/11/18/mark-blazis-grafton-nature-lover-and-writer-dies-74-penned-column-telegram-gazette/8663552002/

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/mark-blazis-nature-lover-teacher-humanitarian-and-award-winning-writer-dies-at-74/ar-AAQRWnr?ocid=uxbndlbing

Mark Blazis at last reunion with Liz and Bob Frem

Zoom Virtual Reunion

The Next ZOOM reunion will be on Tuesday, January 18, 2022 beginning at 7:30 PM (ET). We expect a fun evening of conversation and catching up.

The session may last up to 8:45 PM. If you cannot attend at 7:30 – login when you can. If you decide to leave before we adjourn that is okay too.

If you are unfamiliar with ZOOM, feel free to contact Ben Bachrach for assistance.

If any of you are interested in helping out organizing future ZOOM reunions, please let us know.

We know we don’t have contact information for many of our classmates and some of the contact information is outdated. Send any contact information for yourself or other classmates to salitube@aol.com

We have sent emails with login info to everyone on our list. If you did not receive such an email, then please send an email to salitube@aol.com to be added to our list.

Classical ’65 Zoom Committee

Rick Sandler – rick@insgrp.com
Ben Bachrach – benbachrach@gmail.com
Mike Backer – salitube@aol.com

WEBSite honor roll

The following people are helping fund the hosting of this website.

  • Mike Backer
  • Eva Silver
  • Cynthia Cohen
  • Judy Michaud Delisle
  • Jeff Green
  • Liz Frem
  • Joel Palley
  • Chaya Bergstein (Karen Plotkin)
  • David Tinsley
  • Susan Sigel Taffet
  • Ben Bachrach
  • Rick Sandler

Contact BenBachrach@gmail.com if you would like to be added to this honor roll.

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