Top doctors in the house

By Cody Ellerd

Hopefully it doesn't say anything about Island food, but three of Seattle's top doctors in gastroenterology hail from Mercer Island.

Seattle Magazine has listed John J. Brandabur, Michael Gluck and Richard A. Kozarek in its September issue on ``Top Doctors.'' All three practice together at Virginia Mason Medical Center. The winners are selected by surveys sent to 5,000 physicians in the area.

``It's a nice measure of peer recognition in the community,'' said Brandabur.

The Virginia Mason team, which is headed up by Kozarek, also was ranked among the top 50 in the nation for gastroenterological care by U.S. News & World Report in its July ``America's Best Hospitals'' issue.

The pope, without a telescope

They had their sleeping bags to keep them warm, their ponchos to keep them dry and their faith to unite them. St. Monica Catholic Church leaders on Mercer Island headed up a two-week pilgrimage of 77 youngsters leading up to World Youth Day in Cologne, Germany on Aug. 21.

For two weeks the group trekked through Italy, Switzerland and France visiting holy sites. They also got to see the new pope -- from about six feet away.

``You could see he was a very holy person,'' said Sage Dorrington, who led St. Monica's trip. ``Seeing the love he had for the youth of the world was pretty powerful.''

International World Youth Day happens every two to three years. It culminated this year with the Concluding Mass delivered by Pope Benedict XVI in his native Germany. St. Monica's group, about half of which Dorrington says were Islanders, camped out the night before the pope's address in an old mining area with 800,000 other youngsters from around the world.

Dorrington said there were a fair share of hardships along the way, including lost luggage and money, as well as the sheer physical challenge of the extensive hiking the group did.

``It's hot and it's crowded,'' Dorrington said, ``but it's neat because you have that common thing -- your faith.''

Missing the boat

In the school spirit contest, it looks like the old East Seattle School's class of 1946 has beat out the class of '45.

Two weeks ago, the eighth-grade class of '46 took a 60-year reunion cruise around Lake Washington. No matter that their 60th year doesn't come until 2006 -- they figured they'd better do it now before the old building is possibly demolished. But that got 1945 graduate Sally Easterbrook, whose 60th-year reunion really does land in this year, thinking that maybe her class should have planned better.

``We should have gotten on the ball the way they did,'' Easterbrook said. ``They were smart.'' With a handful of her old classmates also still living in the area, she wonders if it's not too late to revisit their old East Seattle School days as well.

Digging through her momentos, Easterbrook came up with her own relics of Island history. Among her finds was a copy of the school newsletter that tells of the latest styles.

``Parting hair in the middle, friendship rings, ski sweaters, strollers, eating pints of ice cream, white stockings and lapel pins,'' the paper reads.

Class of '46, how stylish were you?

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