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“My time with Michigan Delta Chi was different from most because my parents lived in Ann Arbor, about a quarter mile from the Chapter House.  When everyone else went home for vacations or the summer, I would walk home, unhappily.

I did not want to live at home. I spent my freshman year in South Quad. When Rush started, I toured the houses with little success. Delta Chi and its 20+ active members was the best (only?) choice. We had a large pledge class of seven members and were the last class to enjoy the pleasures of hell week. [E.g., duck waddling down to the basement to spit on, and put out, a fire with the tabasco and pepper liquid solution we slurped up on the main floor.]

Many of the brothers and alumni who hung around the house had nicknames; Pork, the Wedge, Wub, Dimmil, Toad, “F” and more.  They weren’t very clever (see mine), but they did build comradery.  Ours was a “social fraternity”, not academic. Social meant playing football on the sloping lawn (offense always downhill), cards and six-day Risk games during Rush. I particularly liked singing in the drinking room downstairs with Pork banging away on the old piano. Our sports teams competed but we weren’t very good.

I was lucky enough to get the Front Triple largely for myself (before John Russel came to cook). Next to a bathroom (good for overnight visitors) and the front door, what more could you ask for?

Rush was always a tense time. We needed dues paying members to keep going. (I was always behind by a month or two myself.)  The Greek life was not particularly popular during the ‘60s, so all of the houses were fighting for pledges and several went under. We were quite accepting of young men wise enough to get into Michigan and wanting to join us. My recollection is that we never hit 30 actives. We were often closer to half of that. Actives (and several Alumni in grad school) did, however, live in the house, so we got by.

Our relationship with the National office in Iowa was not the best. They seemed more interested in bigger houses that followed all of the National’s rules. We generally thought of ourselves as MICHIGAN Delta Chis, not just Delta Chis. Things have apparently changed, presumably for the better. We always pined for a relationship with one of the sororities we sang about, but it never worked out. Some of the brothers, however, were more successful, like Mike Novak '69 and his Tri-Delt girlfriend.

One of my most memorable (and scary) events at the house was watching the Army draft lottery on TV. Anyone whose birthday was on one of the first 120 ping pong balls selected was sure to be drafted and probably go to Vietnam; up to 240 was likely to go, after 240, no chance. As the dates were called, brothers who “won” low numbers would yell, get up and go down stairs to get drunk. I came in at 312, was ecstatic and stayed upstairs.”

After John received his Bachelor’s degree from U of M, he went on to receive a law degree with honors from the University of Toledo in ’74. Since then, he has been a senior partner at the Detroit Law Firm of Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn, published more than 50 articles in national and regional journals and law reviews, lectured in national and regional seminars and conferences on employee benefits, taught graduate level law courses, was a founding principal of Part D Advisors, Inc. and co-founded K-Care Solutions, Inc. In 2001, he became an inaugural Fellow of the American Bar Association’s prestigious American College of Employee Benefits Counsel.

John is currently an attorney at Eggertsen Consulting, P.C., which involves the consultation and litigation representation of employers, third party administrators, insurers, HOMs and other healthcare services providers.

John has been a member of the Building Corporation for decades since they needed a lawyer. He lives in Ann Arbor and doesn’t plan on retiring any time soon.