Renewing Tradition

Due to restrictions put in place during the Great Depression, there were no weddings held at the Mission Church for more than three decades. That is until Helene Frakes ’70 and Randall Frakes ’69 had their hearts set on saying “I do” at the center of campus 50 years ago last summer.

It was love at first broadcast, one could say.

Randall Frakes ’69 served as KSCU station manager his sophomore year. It was there he met first-year student Helene Trescony ’70, who followed her father Louis J. Trescony ’42 and grandfather Julius Trescony 1909 to Santa Clara.

Helene would go on to become news director of the station. And within three months of dating, the couple agreed to marry after Randall graduated. The couple announced their engagement to friends and family, and began planning.

A romance that begins on campus should be consecrated on campus, right? But that wasn’t an option in 1969. Although the Mission Santa Clara de Asís had registered the most marriages in its first 60 years of any of the California missions, wedding ceremonies had been on hiatus when the future-Frakes came on the scene.

It had been 30-some years since a bride and groom had said “I do” there, due to the diocese ceasing nuptials at the Mission to avoid competition during the Great Depression.

Livesjoined.frakes
Where better to host a reception than
the top floor of Swig Hall? That’s where Helene and Randall Frakes cut the cake. Photo courtesy Helene Frakes.

But Helene had a vision. She did not want to marry at her home parish, and since attending Santa Clara had made the Mission Church her spiritual home.

She petitioned the Archdiocese of San Francisco. No luck. So Helene persuaded the SCU chaplain’s office and her grandfather and father to advocate to them on her behalf. It took time, but it worked.

Philip Oliger, S.J. wed Helene Trescony and Randall Frakes in the Mission Church on June 15, 1969. She wore a floor-length mantilla purchased in Mexico to celebrate her family’s roots. “Vows were the usual,” she writes, “except I remember deleting the business about obeying.”

Today, they have two sons and four granddaughters—and wedding bells ring at the Mission all year long.

Teaching Empathy, Growing Peace

Seeing war and studying for his Ph.D. taught Bill Stover that empathy can make peace possible. It’s something he spent the rest of his life teaching others. 

Growing Support

Jay MacIntosh ’86 kickstarted a nonprofit to help former foster kids make the transition to adulthood.

Stopping Stigma

Srisruthi Ramesh ’17 works in Southern India to eliminate stigma associated with important parts of a woman’s life. 

Collecting Success

Following stints as a scriptwriter on Happy Days to producing Hannah Montana, Barry O’Brien ’79 is tackling his biggest role yet as showrunner of The Bone Collector TV adaptation.