penfield class of 1960

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Beth Richards SOLTERO
7127 Hillgreen Drive Dallas, TX 75214
(home) 214-826-7742 (office) 214-820-2273


Elizabeth Anne (Richards) Soltero – Beth

Born in NYC 6-29-1943. Two brothers, Chuck and Jack (graduated Penfield High School in 1957). Dad worked for Graflex cameras (based in Rochester/Pittsford) and we were transferred to Burbank, Ca., in 1947. After polio (which left me totally paralyzed) at age of 4, my parents got me into swimming and eventually competitive swimming which helped me to regain my physical strength. Transferred back to Rochester in 1953. Attended Brighton School for 6th grade and then parents moved to Salt Road in East Penfield and I started Penfield in 7th Grade. At time of graduation, I was 16 (youngest in the class) and not sure what I wanted to pursue. I worked at Genesee Hospital for a year after high school. My brother, Jack, was coming back from the Navy and I decided to go to RIT with him (1961). I worked full-time at the hospital and received my AAS in business in 1963. Moved to NYC and became secretary of the Medical Department for Sinclair Oil Corp. The medical director was a cardiologist and a world leader in heart research which launched my interest and career in heart research. I met Gene, my husband, in 1965 over his high cholesterol while he was on a fellowship from MIT and working at Sinclair! We became “best friends” and married in August, 1969. We moved to Oklahoma City for 11 months (I led a research study for L-Dopa as a new treatment for Parkinson’s Disease) and then to Dallas where we still reside. Gene has been in the Oil and Gas business throughout his entire career. While in Oklahoma and Gene out of the country, I slept though one of the worst tornadoes to come through Oklahoma City. It picked up our little sports car parked right under our bedroom window and turned it 90º, but did no damage to the apartment. I was surprised when I looked out the window in the morning. That was my introduction to tornadoes! After our move to Dallas, I stayed in medical research, becoming an editor for the Journal of Clinical Pathology. Gene’s work has taken us to many parts of the world and throughout the US and we took the girls with us whenever possible. Travelling, meeting people, forming long-lasting friendships, and learning about customs has been a fascinating part of our lives.

We have 2 daughters, Karen (4-12-74) and Wendy (1-12-78 to 10-28-00). I remained in the medical field (heart research) until the birth of our first child. I stayed home and raised the girls while assisting occasionally on special projects. My activities included civic, philanthropic and school projects. Returned to heart research at Baylor University Medical Center in 1991 on a part-time basis. This evolved to obtaining my board certifications in clinical research and became Administrative Director of the Clinical Cardiovascular Research Center at Baylor. The department focuses on medical and surgical cardiovascular clinical trials, pharmaceutical sponsored as well as NIH and original studies—including very exciting work with autologous stem cell studies.

Upon my formal retirement last year, the department was renamed the Soltero Cardiovascular Research Center which was held as a surprise to me and announced at a dinner that was explained to me as “an event to promote cardiovascular research”. Gene and Karen knew about it and some very dear friends from near and far were there to add to the surprise along with professionals and donors. As a couple of people mentioned to me afterwards, it is unusual to have something named for you while you are still alive! So very true and very humbling!

Tragically, our daughter, Wendy while a senior at Occidental College in Pasadena, Ca., was a victim of a random robbery spree on 10-28-00. Karen and Wendy were not only sisters, but best-friends roommates, and soul mates. They lived together while Karen was finishing her MBA and Wendy was finishing her undergraduate degree. If you wish, visit our website, for more information. Karen still lives in the LA area, works part-time for Zion Oil while pursuing her photography ( along with writing her first novel and several columns. She was an Olympic torchbearer in 2002 (in her sister’s memory), has participated in triathlons, sailed with her Daddy and pursued other sports. My brothers married sisters. Chuck lives in Rome, New York and has 2 daughters – one who was tragically killed by a car in 1999. Jack, retired from Kodak, has 2 sons and lived in Greece, NY until his death in June of 2010. My parents maintained their home on Salt Road until their deaths two months apart in 2001.

We sail (race) Snipe class, ski, play tennis, read, hike, golf, exercise, swim, and have traveled extensively both for business and pleasure. I use to run before arthritis and have not been able to sail competitively either. Our health has been excellent other than my arthritis that has required multiple surgeries and artificial joints and repairs. This has had an impact on the level of my sports but I work through it. Gene and Karen compete as skipper and crew in international sailing regattas while I take the photographs from the committee boat! Actually, that is why he won’t be with me at the cocktail party on Friday evening as he is competing in the Snipe Nationals in Annapolis – but flying to Rochester on Saturday morning for the remainder of the reunion and to visit with my family and friends as well.

The loss of our beloved daughter has changed our lives in ways no one could predict. We are active with the Brady campaign to promote responsible gun ownership and I have lobbied in Washington. My work with the Texas Crime Commission has taken me to prisons to discuss with inmates the ramifications of crime on family and friends and may train as a mediator. I do wherever else I can to be of support to those who walk this same path and work in Wendy’s memory in the hopes I can perhaps have some small impact on reducing the escalating crime in our society.

It was truly a delight to meet up with some of our classmates and renew old friendships at a July event a couple of years ago in Penfield. We live in Dallas, near White Rock Lake, have lots of room and welcome visitors!

Beth (Richards) Soltero
7127 Hillgreen Drive
Dallas, TX 5214
(home) 214-826-7742
(office) 214-820-2273





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