Robert Sielski 64 I am apparently either in very good health

Q: Describe the fraternity as you remember it in your time frame.

A: I was surprised by some people on campus describing Delta Chi as an “Animal House” because I didn’t think that we were as crude as the Sigma Nus across the street.  However, we did have our moments, so I suppose that the term could apply.

Q: What are you fondest memories of being a Delta Chi at Michigan?

A: Sitting around the table in the basement singing and drinking.  Pinning serenades and chapter meetings as well.

Q: Do you remember any incidents / funny stories from your DX days?

A: We were a hospitable place, and I remember the stationery salesman (although I don’t remember his name) who traveled from campus to campus, but stayed at the Delta Chi House when he was at Michigan.  He was happy to just sleep on a couch and, as payment, always brought a case or two of beer for us to enjoy along with his stories and ribald poetry.

When I was “D” I was woken at least once at night for money from our petty cash box so that our “AA” could be bailed out of the Ann Arbor jail after being arrested on a drunk and disorderly charge.

Q: Did you live in the house?  

A: I had the downstairs room next to the dining room.  When I moved in, I painted the walls and refinished the floor.

Q: Who were your roommates?  

A: The first year Agris Aunins ’61 was my roommate, and then Derek DuPlantis ’64 for the remainder.

Q: Did you have a nickname and, if so, how did you get it?

A: I was called Charlie, but I am uncertain how that started.

Q: What about your membership in Delta Chi makes you the most proud?

A: Looking back after having been to two reunions, I am amazed about how many brothers remained married to their sweethearts who I knew during our time at school.  Also, about how many brothers became successful in their careers, especially those who contributed most to the “Animal House” name.

Q: Do you stay in touch with any of your Delta Chi brothers?  Who?

A: I hadn’t before our reunion in 2009.

Q: What was your undergraduate degree?   What was the first job you took after college?

A: I was a student of Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering, and also in the Navy ROTC.  Upon graduation in September 1964, I was commissioned as an officer in the Naval Reserve, serving on the destroyer USS Hawkins (DD 873) homeported in Newport, RI, and then serving for two years at the U.S. Navy Ship Repair Facility in Subic Bay, Republic of the Philippines. 

Q: Did you go to graduate school? 

A: Starting in 1971, when I was working for the U.S. Navy in Washington, D.C., I attended the George Washington University at night, earning the degrees of Master of Engineering Administration and Doctor of Science in structural engineering.

Q: Who have you worked for and when?

A: The majority of my working career was as a civilian employee of the U.S. Navy in Washington, primarily in ship design and specializing in ship structures.

Q: Where have you lived?

A: My wife, Edna, and I lived for two years on the U.S. naval base in Subic Bay, Republic of the Philippines, and then from 1968 to 1971 in the Baltimore area.  We lived in the Washington, D.C. area from 1971 until 2001, first in Tacoma Park, MD, and then in Herndon, VA.  In 2001, we moved to southern California, living in Palm Desert, Moreno Valley and Indio.  I moved to my current home near the beach in Melbourne Beach, FL in 2013.

Q: Tell us about your family and interests.

A: In 1966, I married Edna Auger of Middletown, RI, who I had met on my Midshipman cruise while in school.  We were married for 42 years until she died in 2009.  We had one daughter, Merritt, who now lives in Spring Hill, FL.  I have five grandchildren ranging in age from 22 to 12.

Q: Hobbies you have?

A: My principal hobby is athletics; running, biking and swimming.  I have run 24 marathons in 15 states, bicycled in two 100-mile bike events and have completed three triathlons.

Q: Volunteer work

A: I do volunteer work for several professional societies, having chaired or been the papers chair of several symposia.  I am also active in my church, currently the Junior Warden at Saint Sebastian’s by-the-Sea Episcopal Church in Melbourne Beach.

Q: Any illnesses you might like to mention or share?

A: I am apparently either in very good health or else I have an excellent mortician!

Q: What would you say are your life’s biggest successes?

A: I have been recognized by my professional peers by being admitted as a member to the International Ship and Offshore Structures Congress and being elected as a Fellow to the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers.

Q: On the contrary, what would you say are your biggest failures or regrets?  What did you learn from it?

A: No regrets!

Q: What advice would you give the younger Delta Chi members?

A: Do what pleases you and enjoy life.

If any brothers wish to reconnect with Bob, you can do so by calling him at 321-220-0829 or emailing [email protected]