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It was a golden moment for University of Wisconsin Oshkosh alumna Barb (Schultz) Strade, of Madison, on May 14, as she helped lead the spring commencement procession with fellow Class of 1961 classmates.

Among those graduating with a bachelor’s degree from the College of Business in the afternoon ceremony was Strade’s granddaughter, Patricia Crupi, of Oshkosh.

“I think it is such a nice family connection,” said Strade, who invited her granddaughter and her daughter  to the Golden Titan 50th class reunion luncheon prior to the ceremony.

“I think it is just wonderful to be together at this celebration,” she said.

Thirty-one graduates of the Class of 1961 returned to campus for the UW Oshkosh reunion festivities, including a dinner Friday night, a tour of campus Saturday morning, the luncheon program and lots of reminiscing. About half of them chose to don golden robes and take part in the Commencement procession, leading the University’s newest grads into their future.

Strade, a middle school teacher in DeForest, only “vaguely” remembers her own UW Oshkosh graduation day. Since she spent her last semester student teaching while planning her wedding that took place three weeks following graduation, it was a whirlwind.

“I remember thinking, ‘whoo, I made it!’” she said.

When Strade looked over her invitation to the Golden Titan festivities, she was surprised to learn it coincided with Crupi’s graduation. Before agreeing to take part, though, Strade wanted to be sure that she wouldn’t embarrass her granddaughter on her big day.

Crupi, of course, was thrilled to share the day with her grandma.

In addition to being honored at graduation and catching up with former classmates, the Class of 1961 launched an effort to create the Golden Titan endowed scholarship. Contributions to the 1961 class gift will create the foundation for this scholarship.

Future Golden Titans reunion gifts will be added to it,  allowing the impact of the award to grow along with the principal of the fund.

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