Brother Steve Saltzman `85 was delighted to help welcome Brother Tom Stoner `56 who stopped by the Chapter House on Saturday, November 9th during Penn Theta’s pre-game active/alumni gathering as part of Homecoming Weekend.   Brother Stoner regaled the undergrads with tales of alleged misdeeds committed while he was an active member of Penn Theta.  Other alumni may have even been involved (allegedly). 

However, we have now heard from Brother Bill Winder ’56 who claims at least partial innocence and that he knows nothing of stealing Christmas Trees to decorate the house, nor of being caught by police, singing obscene limericks, procuring a lion statue, antics at the Drake Hotel, dropping trou for cash payments, or dalliances with Evans School Students. But Brother Winder does state that it sounds like great fun was had by “whomever”.

Brother Stoner didn’t name any names, but he noted that when the then actives met with the Dean of Men, the Dean had a copy of that day’s newspaper on his desk - the front page headline read, “Not a Merry Christmas, Boys!” and summarized the contents of the police report.  However, the Dean was friends with the judge in Media, PA who had arraigned the Brothers and the alleged misdeeds were “handled” outside official records.  Allegedly.

Brother Ted Moock, ‘56 has let us know that unless Brother Stoner has any good evidence, “I am innocent of all charges”. 

Brother Jack Swope says it sounds like everyone but Brother Stoner was innocent. As a commuter student, he was home with his mother who can vouch for him.  But Brother Swope remembers reading an Inquirer story entitled “Yule Tide Hatchet Men” - nabbed on Route 1 with eight stolen fir trees chopped down on Federal property. Brother Swope is sure that Brothers Moock and Winder were likely involved.  

Brother Francis Judge added: “If I recall correctly, the trees were surrounding a water reservoir but since I was not there, I cannot be sure. Nice to hear from Tom Stoner, Bill Winder, Ted Moock, Jack Swope.”

Of course, Brother Saltzman emphatically told the active Brothers listening to this SAE folklore that there is no proof of Penn Theta involvement in such misdeeds; he admonished the undergrads to NOT get any bright ideas from Brother Stoner’s stories of “alleged” activities.

One thing that is supported by clear evidence by all who attended the Penn Theta gathering was it was great to see Brother Stoner as well as to hear from others from his era.  Make plans to join alumni and actives at the Chapter House upon our next events!

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