My name is Andy Kaye, BS/Math, class of 1969. I have many terrific memories of Joe (& Jean) — folks songs and wooden puzzles in his living room, swimming during lunch hour, and so on – but the one I would like to share is:
After Joe had retired as President and was back to teaching, I was coming on campus to do recruiting for the company I worked for in Santa Barbara, and I invited Joe and Jean to join my wife and me for dinner at the Indian Hill restaurant. In the midst of dinner, Joe gave a start — his pager had gone off — this was in the days before cell phones. He excused himself, made a call, came back to the table, and said, “I’ll be back in time for dessert.” Then he left. When he came back a while later, he was shaking his head and chuckling — as he so often did. One of his freshman had gotten stuck while doing a make-up lab, and since Joe had given his students his pager number and his permission to call him, the student had called — and, of course, Joe had responded. He — retired Founding President of Harvey Mudd College, and widely-respected physicist – had gotten up from his dinner with us to help a freshman who was stuck while doing a make-up lab. That’s the Joe Platt that I remember.