Connections typography

Camp Mack Day is one of Manchester’s oldest fall traditions. Started in 1939, it is an annual event for students, faculty and staff to have fun and get to know each other better.

In this issue of Manchester, we are celebrating connections that come from shared traditions, passions, service, friendship and community.

Manchester has a long tradition of celebrating those who met here, fell in love, got married and built a life together. In this issue of Manchester, we are also celebrating connections that come from shared passions, service, friendship, traditions and community.

Did you form a special connection while at Manchester? Please share a photo and short description of your Manchester Connection by emailing and put “Manchester Connections” in the subject line.

Samantha Chapman and Stacy Erickson-Pesetski stand together for a photo while Stacy Erickson-Pesetski holds a beagle in her arms

Samantha Chapman ’12 and Stacy Erickson-Pesetski, Manchester professor of English and associate dean of academic affairs, met in the classroom and bonded through a passion for animal welfare. Erickson-Pesetski, right, was volunteering at Humane Fort Wayne one day in 2022 when Chapman, Indiana state director for the Humane Society of the United States, stopped by with one of the beagles she rescued.

Tiffany Berkbile Numbers and Andrea Numbers stand together for a wedding photo on a pier

Tiffany Berkebile ’10 Numbers and Adrienne Numbers ’10 met as first-year students and instantly became best friends. Adrienne introduced Tiffany to Andrea Numbers ’07, and the rest was history. They loved taking walks, especially by Funderburg Library, and, 10 years later Andrea proposed to Tiffany at their favorite spot. They got married in 2021 in southern California.

the late Dave Friermood (seated) takes a large group photo with his "boys"

For more than 40 years, the late Dave Friermood served Manchester University – in charge of setting up for events, as director of maintenance and as a residence hall custodian to name a few of his roles. Along the way he taught generations of his “boys” what it means to work hard and serve others. They set up a scholarship in his honor.

Kay Guyer, Willa Simmet and Lyn Guyer smile and huddle together for a photo

The peace studies plaque dedication is a tradition that offers opportunities each year to reconnect with each other and with Manchester. Here, Kay Guyer ’13, spouse Willa Simmet and Kay’s mother, Lyn Guyer, attend the 2014 dedication in honor of Ted Studebaker ’67, a pacifist and conscientious objector who served as an agricultural worker during the Vietnam War and was executed by North Vietnam in 1971.

Michael Peo and Patricia Bonebrake Peo photographed smiling and linked arm in arm at their wedding

Michael Peo ’00 and Patricia Bonebrake ’00 Peo met at Homecoming 1998 through mutual friends. They started talking and began dating after that. They got married in 2003 and are celebrating their 20th anniversary this June.

Beate Gilliar, wearing faculty robes, stands with Peter Shepherd wearing robes and a cap
Professor of English Beate Gilliar is well-known for maintaining relationships with former students. Seeing this photo of her with Peter Shepherd ’18, we dropped her an email to ask what he’s doing these days. Within five minutes we had her reply: “Peter, the only person ever, for whom I would get up at 4:45 a.m. to catch a train so I can go to Frankfurt Main Station, meet up with and accompany him to the airport by train, again! That was the only time we could connect when he studied one semester in Germany.” Oh, and he is finishing his Management MBA this spring with a certification in Leadership, Change Management, and Negotiation from Purdue University.
two women sit in a golf cart smiling, while one holds the large golden Labrador Neelix in their lap

Elena Bohlander ’14 and Neelix made a connection when he came to Manchester to train as a service dog. Even though he never quite made it through training, Neelix has made his forever home with Elena and Olan Griffiths ’13, who both work at Manchester.