FALL EDITION 2016
The Golden Burrs Events Committee members are pleased to bring you this 29th edition of the Class of 1958's Newsletter.
In this issue, under the "West Catholic Prep Banner" you will find John Staiber's report on the Annual Burrs at the Beach All-Class Reunion with pictures of the Golden Burrs of '58 attendees; information about new staff positions at West Catholic Prep; information about the Annual Cardinal O'Connor Golf Outing; and details about the October 16th Centennial Anniversary Mass and Luncheon.
In the "News Features" you will find the following reports: two articles about awards received at St. Gabriel's Hall; the Sale of Little Flower Manor; the opening of a charter school at the former MBS Campus; news about new senior housing in So. Philadelphia; the ordination of Bishop Deliman; the winning of a silver medal by a West Catholic Alum; the death of Michael Brooks Class of 1976 and Jon Polito Class of 1968; and an update about what happened to the artifacts from Our Lady of Victory Parish.
Sadly, we learned of the passing of our classmate Charles "Bud" Gallion.
Thanks to all those classmates and friends who took the time to send us notes about the newsletter. Your thoughts are very much appreciated.
As always we close the newsletter with Rich Buzza's "Final Thought".
PAST AND UPCOMING HAPPENINGS AT WEST CATHOLIC PREP
"BURRS AT THE BEACH 2016"
submitted by: JOHN STAIBER
Another nice sunny day for the annual WC all-class summer bash at Westy's Irish Pub in North Wildwood, NJ. Always good to see so many fellow Golden Burrs enjoying this great outing. As was the case for the past few years, the band "Blackthorn" performed to an enthusiastic crowd.
For those who have never attended this yearly event it is quite an opportunity to reconnect with not only class mates but also with guys & girls from our old neighborhoods and grade schools. It is a lot of fun meeting up and talking to these friends from long ago.
Our class of '58 was nicely represented but not as well as in the past. We counted 21 this year as compared to 28 in 2015. For various reasons a number of "regular faces" were absent, most notably, George Light who is a mainstay of the committee running the event. George is recovering from a recent illness and couldn't make it in time this year.
Please see below some photos and a list of our classmates who participated this year (June 26, 2016):
Tom Hughes, Ned Jones, Larry Signora, Fran & Jim Lynch & Bill Marella
Sam McGhie & Angelo Sivieri
Bill Marella, Pete O'Hara & Tom Hughes
Dick Boyle, Joe Storniolo & Joe Kady '59
John Staiber & Joe Zurad
More classmates and B@B event photos.
Additional photos ready to view at: www.goldenburrs-1958.com
List of Class Attendees by Parish:
MBS = Walt Kokol, Duke Gallagher, Angie Sivieri
St. Clement = Dick Boyle, Joe Kady '59, Joe Storniolo
De Sales = Ned Jones, Ken Hemphill
St. Barneys = Tommy Hughes, Bill Kohlenberg,
Bob Sproul, Bob Ward, Jack Woods
Good Shepherd = Jim Lynch, Bernie Lawless, Bill Marella, Pete O'Hara, Larry Signora
St. James = Sam McGhie
OLV = John Staiber
HNJ = Joe Zurad
It was great to see so many friends and classmates. Hope to see everyone again in 2017.
WEST CATHOLIC PREP ADDS STAFF TO 3 POSITIONS
Posted 07/12/2016 on WCP website
West Catholic Prep is pleased to announce the hiring of 3 new staff members to join our team here at West Catholic Prep.
Mrs. Jen Davis has been named Assistant Principal for Academic Affairs. Jen previously served as Interim Assistant Principal and has been at West Catholic in numerous roles since 2010.
Mr. Andrew Brady '02 has been hired as the Director of Institutional Advancement. Andrew taught at West from 2006-2010, and worked in the Advancement office from 2013-2015.
Mr. Jason Hasson has been hired as the Admissions Coordinator. Jason comes to West from Pope John XXIII in Sparta, NJ where he taught Phys Ed. Jason will also serve as the Boys Varsity Head Basketball Coach.
Jennifer Davis Andrew Brady '02 Jason Hasson
WEST CATHOLIC CALENDAR OF EVENTS
CARDINAL O'CONNOR ANNUAL GOLF CLASSIC
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 6, 2016 - BALA GOLF CLUB
Mr. Leonard Mazur - Class of 1963 - will receive the Fourth Annual Bishop McFadden Award at the closing dinner.
CENTENNIAL ANNIVERSARY MASS AND LUNCHEON
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 16, 2016
On Sunday October 16, at 11:00 AM, Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. will celebrate a Centennial Anniversary Mass in honor of West Catholic Prep at the Cathedral Basilica of Sts. Peter and Paul, 18th and Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia PA.
A luncheon will immediately follow at The Logan Philadelphia Hotel, 1 Logan Square (18th and Benjamin Franklin Parkway).
Luncheon Tickets: $50.00 - Cash Bar
Limited parking is available at the Cathedral. Valet parking is available at The Logan for $25.00 per car.
Tickets may be purchased on-line via the school's website at: www.westcatholic.org or by mailing your payment to West Catholic Preparatory High School, 4501 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19139
For additional information contact Regina Hairston at: email@example.com
ST. GABRIEL’S HALL AWARDS
CONDUCTED BY THE CHRISTIAN BROTHERS
submitted by: FRANK METZLER
St. Gabriel’s Hall in Audubon, Montgomery County, is an Archdiocesan Residential Treatment Facility for court adjudicated adolescent boys and the facility recently ranked first in successful outcomes among seven such facilities in the Philadelphia area.
St. Gabriel’s opened in 1898 by Archbishop Patrick J. Ryan, as the Philadelphia Catholic Protectory for Boys (area then called Phoenixville) and was placed under the care of the Christian Brothers.
Our classmate, Brother Larry Dempsey, presently works at St. Gabs and many of our teachers at West Catholic spent their first year of teaching at the Protectory.
St. Gabriel’s ranked third out of seven in 2009, ranked first in 2011 receiving a performance bonus of $325,000, and ranked first again this year receiving a performance bonus of $330,000.
St. Gabriel’s Hall also received a $60k grant for vital classroom upgrades for three of its programs in the St. Gabriel System.
St. Gabriel's Hall program received over $24K for upgrades to the Technical Education's Program in Culinary Arts and other program shops for building maintenance, laundering, shoe repairing, Microsoft Office, tailoring, and gardening. Family treatment and counseling are available.
The Mitchell Program at St. Gab’s received over $24k to upgrade their 120-day intensive residential treatment program for court adjudicated boys between 13 and 18. All programs are aligned with the School District of Philadelphia, giving on-site accredited
academic school program to earn credit for GED testing. St. Gabriel’s Hall was recognized this year for the most graduates in one year, January and June commencements.
The De La Salle Vocational program, located in Bensalem, Bucks County, received over $19k toward the day treatment center for upgrades to classrooms and equipment. The center educates over 300 students in a year.
The Brothers and staff are to be commended for their work and achievements in caring for the young men they serve.
ST. GABRIEL'S HALL STUDENT RECEIVES THE 2016 PENNSYLVANIA GED GRADUATE STUDENTS
OF THE YEAR AWARD
As reported by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, Felix Alberto of North Philadelphia, a recent graduate of St. Gabriel's Hall was honored as Pennsylvania's GED Student of the Year. He received a $1,000 dollar scholarship to the college of his choice and an IPAD.
Since 1898 St. Gabriel's Hall
has been serving troubled youth in the spirit of St. John Baptist De La Salle,
founder of the Christian
Brothers. Our former Guidance Director at West, Brother David Peter, was the Director of the Catholic Protectory in 1962 and he was influential in having the punishment stigma attached to the building changed to St. Gabriel's Hall.
The full article may be read on the website: archphila.org. and you may visit St-Gabes.org/residential/saint-gabriels-hall.
SALE OF LITTLE FLOWER MANOR - DARBY, PA
submitted by: FRANK METZLER
Surrounded by the lush greenery of the Little Flower Manor, located on Springfield Road, Darby, PA, Delaware County Officials
announced on Thursday, June 30th, that they purchased the 37.5 acre LFM from the owners, Sisters of the Divine Redeemer, for $1.7 million.
In the 1930's, the Sisters purchased the property, which was used as an orphanage then a nursing home, and closed in 2005.
Delaware County acquired the property two years ago, when officials entered into an agreement of sale with the Sisters. With the purchase of this property, Delaware County now has 1,110 acres of county parks and 17,000 acres of protected open space.
FORMER MBS PARISH SCHOOL REOPENS AS INDEPENDENCE CHARTER SCHOOL WEST
Gleaned from Hidden City Philadelphia Website
submitted by: FRANK ADOLF
In 2015 Father John Hand, then pastor of St. Francis de Sales United by the Blessed Sacrament, negotiated the sale of the former Most Blessed Sacrament Parish Campus to Independence Charter School. After extensive renovations the school on Chester Avenue will be reactivated this September 6th offering classes to 300 students from kindergarten through second grade. The plans submitted to the Philadelphia School District calls for a growth to 900 students in six years.
The formal groundbreaking for St. John Neumann Place II, which will provide 52 units of affordable subsidized housing for eligible seniors 62 years of age and older in South Philadelphia, took place on Aug. 9 in the presence of archdiocesan officials, federal, state and local officials as well as satisfied residents of the adjoining 75-unit St. John Neumann Center, which opened in 2008.
Both are located on the campus of the former St. John Neumann High School for Boys, which consolidated with St. Maria Goretti High School for Girls in 2004.
The new $15 million facility will also include a Wellness Center that can be utilized by income-qualified seniors from the surrounding neighborhood.
photo by Sarah Webb
Bishop Deliman with co-consecrators - Bishop Nelson Perez (left) and Bishop Ronald Gainer
Bishop Deliman addressed the congregation in Spanish and then in English. He thanked his elderly mother, two brothers and other family members in attendance. He especially thanked his brother-priests from the class of 1973.
WEST CATHOLIC PREP ALUM WINS SILVER AT RIO OLYMPICS
submitted by: JIM LYNCH
Nia Ali, a former student at West Catholic Prep, was one of the United States Medalist in the hurdle events in Rio. Below is a report from CSN Philly.
Name: Nia Ali
Sport: Track and Field
Event(s): 100-meter Hurdles
Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pa.
College: University of Southern California ‘11, Psychology
World Championship Experience
Personal: Daughter of the late Aleem Ali and Melita Johnson...Has one son, Titus...Enjoys playing the piano, basketball, dancing and helping children in any way...2011 NCAA outdoor champion (100-meter hurdles)...Ran track at the University of Tennessee before transferring to the University of Southern California.
MICHAEL BROOKS - CLASS OF 1976 - DIES AT AGE 58
Gleaned from The Philadelphia Inquirer August 23, 2016
Michael Brooks, a star basketball player at West Catholic and La Salle College in the late 1970's, died on Monday August 21, 2016
near his home in Switzerland.
Brooks was diagnosed with plastic anemia in 2011, a disease that attacks the bone marrow and immune system. A bone marrow transplant was completed but his body rejected the transplant. Death was caused by a severe stroke.
Brooks was named captain of the 1980 U.S. Olympic Men's Basketball Team but they never played because of President Carter's boycott of the Moscow Olympics. He played six seasons in the NBA moving to France in 1988 to play professionally. He had established permanent residence in Europe.
JON POLITO - CLASS OF 1968 - DIES AT AGE 65
Gleaned from NBC News
Jon Polito, best known for his roles in Coen Brothers films, including "the Big Lebowski" and "Miller's Crossing", died on September 1, 2016 at City of Hope Hospital, in Duarte, California. He was being treated for multiple myeloma.
Jon was a West Catholic Alum from the Class of 1968 and a graduate of Villanova University.
Among his many TV appearances were: "Homicide: Life on the Street" and "Modern Family". He was awarded an Obie in 1980 for his stage performances.
LOCATING ARTIFACTS FROM OUR LADY OF VICTORY CHURCH
submitted by: FRANK ADOLF
Through extensive internet searches I have found additional information concerning the sale and installation of artifacts from Our Lady of Victory Church which have been installed in two new churches in the south.
ST. MARGARET QUEEN OF SCOTLAND PARISH - FOLEY, ALABAMA
The Catholic parish that is St. Margaret Queen of Scotland was founded in 1906.
In 2008 because of an annual growth of 65 families over a four year period, it became necessary to replace the original church that could only seat 225 people with a new church able to accommodate 700 to 750 parishioners.
The project costing $4.5 million has at its centerpiece 12 large stained glass windows from Our Lady of Victory Church in Philadelphia.
The windows were originally purchased in the early 1900’s from the Zettler Studio in Munich, Germany and were Romanesque in style.
The Beyer Studios in Philadelphia reconstructed each window into a Gothic peak for installation in the new church. Five of the windows are on the west wall, five on the east wall, and two behind the altar area. The Mobile archdiocese spent $144,000 for the 12 windows and $135,000 to restore them.
Our Lady of Victory windows installed in St. Margaret Church, Foley Al.
Each window has an angel in the canopy of each lancet window. The angels were added at Beyer Studio, and they hold a symbolic object depicting the particular scene in the life of Jesus.
Left: Original "Nativity" window
Right: Reconstructed "Nativity" window with Angel holding a Harp
Right: Original "Presentation of Jesus in the Temple" window
Left: Reconstructed "Presentation" window with Angel holding a dove
Reconstructed “The Annunciation” window with Angel holding lilies and a cross
Reconstructed “Crucifixion” window with Angel holding a crown of thorns
Right: Reconstructed “Resurrection” window with Angel holding five roses signifying the five wounds
Left: Reconstructed “Ascension” window with Angel holding a crown and scepter
The other windows and what each Angel holds are as follows:
“Holy Family” – carpenters square
“Finding of Jesus in the Temple” – commandments
“Baptism” – water pitcher
“Wedding Feast at Cana” - wedding rings
“Our Lord Blesses the Children” – scripture reference, Mark 10:13-14
“The Last Supper” – chalice
ST. PAUL PARISH - PENSACOLA, FLORIDA
St. Paul parish was founded in July of 1963 and the original church opened in 1965.
Due to an increase in parishioners it became necessary to replace the first church was a larger facility.
New Church of St. Paul dedicated August 24, 2008
The remaining four windows from Our Lady of Victory were installed in the new Church of St. Paul in Pensacola, Florida. The windows were also restored and reworked into a Gothic style by Beyer Studios in Philadelphia. Beyer also created four new windows to match the antiques from Our Lady of Victory and included the original antique border glass from the OLV windows.
The original windows are: The Good Shepherd, The Presentation of Mary in the Temple, The Marriage of Joseph and Mary, and Our Lady of Victory.
The newly created windows with the antique border glass are: Saint Peregrine, The Resurrection, The Ascension, and Saint Jude.
Beyer Studios added angels at the top of each window. Each angel is a distinct creation and each one holds a symbol relating to the scene depicted in the window. For example, the marriage of Joseph and Mary has an angel holding a paten containing wedding rings.
For more information visit St. Paul’s parish website at:
The below Beyer website contains pictures of the Our Lady of Victory windows that were reconstructed for St. Margaret and St. Paul parishes.
Perhaps, some day one of our readers will visit St. Paul's and take pictures of the four windows from Our Lady of Victory.
MAIL FROM CLASSMATES AND FRIENDS
Tom W. Mullen: Hi Frank, Thank you for forwarding the Golden Burrs Newsletter, sure takes me down memory lane, and I might add great memories. West Catholic was a great school with great guys. Sure do miss those days.
Have a wonderful year in good health.
Don (Andy) Thompson: Frank and Editorial Team, Great job with the Summer 2016 Edition. Thanks very much. I read it first thing this a.m. with special interest in the loss of Ms. Akyra Murray, 18, who recently graduated from West and was killed at the Orlando Pulse nightclub shooting. When I then picked up the local paper, The Washington Post, its front page had a large photo of Ms.Patience Carter of Philadelphia who was hospitalized but survived two bullet wounds in the same attack. The photo's blurb noted her friend, Akyra Murray did not make it. So your newsletter's story brought home the entire event with particular poignancy. We are Orlando. Much appreciated.
Brother Richard Kestler, retired President of WCP: Frank, Thanks again for a terrific job. You capture so well the history and major points of the years. West has been blessed to have a man of your talent at the helm of this production. Thank you and know that I enjoy these reads. I also share them with the Brothers who were around at this time in history. Bro. Richard.
George and Edie Wallace: Thank you.
Al Chadwick '57: As usual excellent work. By the way St. Elizabeth Parish in Upper Uwchlan Township the pastor is my cousin, Fr. Tom Mullin. He was I believe WB Class of 1967. His mother's sister was married to Jim Donlan (WC Boys Class of 1927) as my Aunt Betty Donlan. He had 2 sisters (cousins of mine) who died in 2015, Barbara Ann Mullin, WC Girls Class of 1955 & Noreen Mullin WC Girls Class of 1957. The picture of the Senior Prom, my Sister Cassie (WCG Class of 1958), is on the stair case about half way up or down. As usual lots of memories, Al & Arlene Chadwick
Brother Kevin Stanton: Dear Frank, Thanks for the most recent edition of your '58 Newsletter. I've always been impressed by the research you and your classmates put into that effort.
Jim McGrath: Hi Frank. Just wanted to drop a line or two about the great job your crew does on the newsletter. Always find it very informative. Loved all the pictures especially the ones about the Artifacts from Transy. Great job keeping track of them and letting us see where they were moved to. Good to know they are being enjoyed by others and not just stored away in a warehouse to be forgotten.
I do, however, have to make one small correction to the photo of the DeSales dance. As much as I appreciate the thought, the person labeled as Jim McGrath is not Jim McGrath. I looked more like the little guy on the left scratching his head. I was only 4/8" until I was 20 years old. The second reason is that I never went to the DeSales dance. I went to Bandstand in '57 & '58, and started going to Holy Cross and St. Alice dances in 1959 after I had a job and could afford to buy my first car. I got pulled on Woodland Avenue a lot because the cops didn't think I was old enough to drive. I did manage to get Dick Clark to sign my yearbook in '58. I also have Phil Sheridan and Wee Willie Weber's autograph from St. Alice's dance.
Met my first wife at Holy Cross when either Jim Kavanaugh or Charlie Manley gave me a push into her and I knocked her to the floor. We spent a very happy 25 years and one day until her passing in '88. My NEW wife and I just celebrated our 25th last month. Hoping to see another 25 (at least). She teaches Line Dancing in Coatsville every Thursday morning so naturally I get plenty of exercise. Again, congrats on the great newsletter. Keep 'em coming. Jim
Vince Leonetti: As always a great job. Thanks Pal. Have a great day!!!! Vince.
Bob Giampietro '68: Thank you very much, Rich. I appreciate you keeping me on the list. Always fun to read. Hope you have a very good summer. Bob G.
Jim Clark: Extremely well done Frank. Thank You. Clarkie
Paul Colistra, President of WCP: Frank, on behalf of the school - “THANK YOU!" You do tremendous work. Keep it up. Let us know if the school can ever help you.
Remy: Dear Frank Thank you so
much for all the work you put into this wonderful publication. One of the blessings of my life has been to
be part of the Class of 1958 that shaped my life with spirit, morals, ethics,
and admiration and affection for so many of my classmates. As they say: "It was a wonderful
As you probably know, as we grow older, we have some regrets, some great wins, and some losses, and mostly memories of the good moments. West Catholic, the friends and classmates we had, that was my foundation for life. I love you guys!
At the 50th Reunion, I saw so many of you who built good lives and marriages... also success in your aspirations. I was proud of all of you...a true Band of Brothers, still after 50 years.
I don't want to be soapy, but guys who could go the distance were a great inspiration to me. The Brothers, they were a God sent gift to a 14 year old French Catholic immigrant at the age of ten after the war, occupation, and the poor years post-war.
I lost my parents and my Grandmother, an Armenian Massacre survivor brought me to our great country. More so, she is the one who took my hand and walked me to meet BIG Brother John. I was smart but rather undisciplined. Well, one class with Brother Joseph and a few slaps, I learned proper behavior quickly and Brother Dennis sure ingrained that in me. I am grateful or all five slaps I received deservingly that made me a mature Catholic gentleman...perhaps not quite...just a decent guy.
I went to Universities like many of you, but none gave me the gifts that West Catholic gave...A tradition to carry on.
With my Affection to You All, Dan Remy (the Frenchman)
Jack Neuschel: Frank, Always enjoy reading the newsletter. You all are commended on the work you put into this endeavor. Was saddened to see that Akyra Murray, a recent grad, was killed in the tragedy in Orlando. Had the opportunity to attend a Candlelight Vigil for Healing and Peace at St. Norbert Abbey in DePere, Wi. for the victims, families and first responders. Very reflective time for prayer, scripture, silent reflection, music, tolling of the Abbey Bell, intercessory prayer. No sermons, speeches.
Have a good summer. Jack
Joe Gavaghan: Good afternoon Frank, Some well deserved words of praise for your hard work from a Viso & WC grads. Happy Independence Day to the Adolfs, Joe
submitted by: FRANK ADOLF
DO YOU HAVE ANY COMMENTS OR REMEMBRANCES OF THE 40'S AND 50'S, ESPECIALLY YOUR PARISHES AND NEIGHBORHOODS? SEND THEM TO US FOR PUBLICATION IN A FUTURE NEWSLETTER AT: firstname.lastname@example.org
Senior Prom - May 2, 1958
PLEASE REMEMBER IN YOUR PRAYERS
WE REMEMBER and ask for your prayers for those who are ill, especially Dave Crines who is recovering from a stroke, George Light who is dealing with a significant health issue and Jim Prendergast who is recovering from a second back surgery.
Please remember in your prayers all of our classmates who have gone to their eternal reward, especially Charles Gallion.
Charles "Bud" Gallion - June 20, 2016
May Charles Rest In Peace.
submitted by: RICH BUZZA
My managing editor is always after me to submit my column so to satisfy him, here goes. Recently, I had occasion to make a few trips from my Delaware Co. home into beautiful Philadelphia (I will tell you why in another column) anyway, I decided to drive and what an interesting drive it was. I came in S.W. Philly via Longacre Blvd. through Yeadon which eventually turns into Whitby Ave. As I came up through Yeadon I went past the old "White Rock" baseball Field, crossed over the Cobbs Creek Bridge and up to the old "Hollow" baseball field (yes, that is where Clarkie almost drown while falling into a rain swollen Cobbs Creek, that's a story unto itself, just ask Clarkie). What a shock, the woods were all overgrown and were so thick that there are herds of deer running all over where we used to play as kids.
Well, here I am at 58th and Whitby Ave. the first thing that I look for is the meat market on 58th St. at which I worked as a delivery boy but the building was gone along with the two adjoining buildings, now a vacant lot, I was overcome with a sense of disappointment. As I continued my trip down Whitby Ave. to Baltimore Ave. still looking for some familiar landmark, still nothing. The old Post Office at 52nd and Baltimore was gone, no more Linton's next door, I know things have to change, oh well. Now I am turning left onto 49th St. from Baltimore Ave. I walked this street everyday going to and from West and nothing was familiar (Tip...Don't get old). I did see some new things like a church located in a house front on Whitby Ave. and a sign for Fortune Teller in the house next door and I was almost broad sided by a guy on an off road 4 wheel vehicle going about 50 mph, why that is totally illegal you say, well yes, but I found out later that this guy was the local drug dealer out on a delivery and he rides the 4 wheeler so that the police can't catch him. Anyway, I completed my trip to S.W. Philly and returned to beautiful Delaware Co. still in one piece.
After the trip I am left remembering all of the things which I thought were so important and a big part of my life which are no longer in existence. I remember the inside beauty of our Most Blessed Sacrament Church, the grade school which I attended for eight years, and our beloved West Catholic at 49th and Chestnut torn down and forever gone, the movies on Saturday afternoon (with our gang it was the Ambassador or the Sherwood and sometimes the Lenox) the box ball games on the street, our self organized neighborhood rival baseball and football games and the lasting friendship of kids with which you grew up and remembering the ones who have gone to heaven.
Don't you know you can't go home again." writer Ella Winter
God Bless WEST CATHOLIC! Live Jesus in our Hearts. Forever.
KEEP THE SPIRIT ALIVE!
THIS E-MAIL IS BEING SENT TO ALL MEMBERS OF THE WEST CATHOLIC BOYS' CLASS OF 1958 AND FRIENDS OF THE CLASS. IF YOU NO LONGER WISH TO RECEIVE OUR COMMUNICATIONS OR IF YOU ARE RECEIVING UNSOLICITED E-MAILS FROM ANYONE PERTAINING TO THE CLASS OF 1958, PLEASE NOTIFY FRANK ADOLF AT: