Michael Stecker MD
Annette Rader's 2001 autobiography, as well as those from others Mumford 1961 classmates, can be read at:
It's so nice of you to have thought of and pursued this project of collecting the biographies of our classmates. I finally sat down and read them all, and it was very interesting. Great idea. Now, here's mine.
After graduating Mumford, I attended Wayne State in the School of Occupational Therapy. In April 1964, I married my Mumford high school sweetheart, Herschel Fink. I had gone to his prom in 1959, and he was my prom date in 1961. After our marriage, we moved to Davison, Michigan, which we thought was a suburb of Flint, but soon discovered was really a small town. Quite a change from Detroit.
Herschel had already been working as a reporter on The Flint Journal the year we were engaged. I still had a year of college left, and enrolled in the University of Michigan Flint College, a wonderful school, which I really loved. The only down side was that I had to give up occupational therapy, and ended up getting a teaching certificate. Ironically, U of M's occupational therapy school is now located on the greatly expanded Flint campus.
I taught school briefly in Davison until Herschel was offered a job as a reporter at The Detroit News. I happily moved back, since I'm a "home-body" at heart, and am close to my family. I substitute taught for several years in the Royal Oak School District, while we started a family.
At the same time that our first child was born at the end of August 1968, Herschel began a four-year night law school program. The last two years of law school he was night city editor of The News. Our life was rather crazy. We practically never saw each other, since he slept days, got up and ate dinner with us for his breakfast, then went to evening classes, and from there to The News, where he worked all night. Somehow, we survived. Eventually, Herschel developed his "dream job" of being a First Amendment lawyer at the firm of Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn in Detroit, combining both his careers by representing news media, including the Detroit Free Press, TV stations and networks.
I'm extremely proud of both of my children, Sheri, 33, and Marc, 30. Both graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Michigan. Sheri went on to Stanford for her combined medical degree and PhD. Marc went to
Sheri recently took a leave of absence from her residency in emergency medicine at Harvard's Massachusetts General Hospital to complete the research and writing of a narrative non-fiction book about the young doctors of Srebrenica, the city under siege during the Bosnian war. She had spent almost a year in Bosnia doing research before starting her residency. She has also done a lot of human rights work, starting at Stanford with Students Against Genocide, and then for the International Medical Corps and Physicians for Human Rights. During the Kosovo war she was right on the border helping the refugees, and then followed troops into Kosovo. (A few more gray hairs for me.) Sheri has an agent, and the book was recently purchased by Public Affairs, a prominent publishing house for serious non-fiction. Look for her book, hopefully next year at this time. It's tentatively called "Blood of Warriors."
I was a so-called "stay-at-home" mom, but I don't remember ever staying home. I worked very hard for over 30 years doing a variety of interesting volunteer "jobs," which were extremely rewarding. I also did every kind of craft imaginable, such as weaving, macramé, needlepoint, knitting and sewing.
As our parents began having health problems, my volunteer work shifted toward them. I'm so fortunate to have had wonderful parents and in-laws, so it was my pleasure to be able to help them. I lost my dad, who was my "pal," on August 6, 1999, the day of my parents' 60th wedding anniversary. I'm blessed to still have my 87-year-old mother, and Herschel's 92-year-old mother.
I've always had a dream, which was put on hold for many, many years while we raised and educated our children. I'm terrified to fly, and don't like to travel, which I only do to attend happy occasions for family and friends, or when our children were away at school. My life-long dream was to live on a lake, since I love the water, and for every day to seem like a vacation.
Four years ago we bought an old house with a spectacular western view of gorgeous sunsets down the entire length of Cass Lake. We spent two fabulous summers in our "up North" house, which was five minute north of our "regular" house.
In February 1999, I began the exciting adventure of designing our dream house with architect Don Paul Young. Don was not frightened off by my 40 pages of notes and four drawings. To his credit, he let this be my house, and during the next nine glorious months, he put my ideas on paper. Due to his expertise, it's a little gem!
In April 2000, we demolished the old house, and started construction on the new one in June 2000. It's not a big house, but it's a special house, and construction is going V-E-R-Y slowly. It will probably end up taking a full two years, and not be ready until late spring 2002. I spend a great deal of my time on this project; it's a big job. Herschel just says, "Tell me when we've moved, and which house to come home to!"
As for hobbies, I've played tennis for the past 30 years. Perhaps you've seen my license plate, "4TLOVE." I walk outside in the summer for exercise, and inside on a treadmill in the winter. I love to read, and enjoy my book club.
I'm looking forward to our 40th reunion -- it's hard to believe so much time has gone by!
Annette Rader Fink