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WINTER EDITION 2016

 

This is the 31st edition of the Golden Burrs Quarterly Newsletter sponsored by the Events Committee Members.  All the committee members wish you and yours a very..... 

 

Merry Christmas and a Happy and Healthy New Year. 

 

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Manger Scene - Our Lady of Victory Church - Philadelphia

 

 

In this issue, under the "West Catholic Prep Banner" you will find information gleaned from the West Catholic Prep Report of Donors; Jim Lynch's Varsity Football reports; The West Catholic Centennial Mass at the Cathedral; the WCP Calendar of Events; the date for the Class of 1958's Annual Luncheon; information about donations made to West Catholic and the Christian Brothers on behalf of the Golden Burrs of 1958; and a report about the retirement of Akyra Murray's jersey.

 

In the "News Features" there are two great articles submitted by Don (Andy) Thompson and Frank Metzler; Pictures of Brother Jubilarians and information about the Christian Brothers' retirement locations and the Brothers living at each facility; more information about Transfiguration Parish; an article entitled "Remembering Pearl Harbor".

See the comments from our friends and classmates which are a continuing source of encouragement to the team members.

 

Sadly, we learned of the passing of our classmates John E. Niefer Sr. and Philip H. Carson.

 

As always we close the newsletter with Rich Buzza's "Final Thought".

 

 

PAST AND UPCOMING HAPPENINGS AT WEST CATHOLIC PREP

 

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2015-2016 ANNUAL REPORT OF DONORS

 

The Annual Report of Donors for the period from July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016, listed the Class of 1958 in the TOP 10 CLASSES in all three categories: Amount, Percentage and Participation. 

 

 

WEST CATHOLIC PREP VARSITY FOOTBALL REPORTS

 

submitted by:  JIM LYNCH 

Reports and pictures gleaned from MaxPreps.com; wcburrsfootball.com; tedsilary.com; Philadelphia Inquirer

 

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In 2015 the Catholic League athletic directors passed a football realignment plan splitting the league into two seven-team divisions, based on the school classifications of large and small enrollments. 

 

West Catholic Prep is in the Blue Division (small enrollment) along with Bonner-Prendergast, Cardinal O'Hara, Lansdale Catholic, Conwell-Egan, Bishop McDevitt and Neumann-Goretti. 

 

August 26 - Pottsgrove 13 - West Catholic Prep 18

 

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Final

West Catholic

6

6

6

0

18

Pottsgrove

0

0

0

13

13

 


The West Catholic Burrs football team nudged the host Pottsgrove Falcons, 18-13 in this non-league game at the Falcons home field in Pottsgrove. 

 

The Burrs scored a touchdown each in the first three quarters - Amadou Barry on a 25 yd. run in the first, Calil Wortham on a 10 yd. run in the second, and Calil Wortham scored again on a 1 yd. run in the third.  

 

Pottsgrove's only scores were in the fourth quarter - a 22 yd. pass from quarterback Finn to Malik Garner with a point after, and a

1 yd. run by Javon Colbert. 

 

September 3 - Roman Catholic 28 - West Catholic Prep 7  

 

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Final

Roman Catholic

0

7

14

7

28

West Catholic

0

  7 

 0 

7

 

The West Catholic Burrs football team was beaten 28-7 in Saturday's non-league challenge with the host Roman Catholic Cahillite at Maxwell Field in Wildwood, NJ.  

 

Second Quarter:

 

West's only score was in the second quarter with a 25 yd. run by Supreme Kemp with J. Sanders kicking the point after.

 

Roman got on the board with a 61 yd. run by AJ Gaymon and a kick by Ryan Flannery.

 

Third Quarter:

 

Roman added 14 points when Marquise Cooper scored on a 3 yd. run with Ryan Flannery's kick adding a point.  Joey Bristow had a 24 yd. catch from Anthony Butler and Ryan Flannery's kick was good. 

 

Fourth Quarter:

 

 Roman's Miles McLeod scored on a 13 yd. run and Ryan Flannery's kick was good.

The Burrs now sport a 1-1 record.  They take the field next when they host Haverford School for a non-league challenge on Friday, September 9.  West Catholic will meet a Fords team coming off a 43-6 non-league win over Delaware Valley Charter (Philadelphia, PA).  The Fords record now stands at 1-0.

September 9 - West Catholic Prep 34 - Haverford School 37

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Final

Haverford

8

0

8

21

37

West Catholic

2

18

6

8

34

In Friday's non-league game, the Haverford School Fords tripped up the host West Catholic Burrs, by a score of 37-34 at Widener University.

 

First Quarter:

 

West got a Safety when Jacir Savoy tackled Malik Twyman in end zone.  

 

Haverford scored on a 77 yd. pass from Tommy Toal to Judson, and a two point conversion pass from Toal to A. Richards.  

 

Second Quarter:

Haverford failed to score in the second period while the Burrs put 18 on the scoreboard as follows:  Tahj Powell 8 yd. pass from Da'vion Kidd-Jackson (pass failed); Tahj Powell 15 yd. pass from Kidd-Jackson (pass failed); Kidd-Jackson 1 yd. run. (run failed).

Third Quarter:

Haverford scored on a Malik Twyman 13 yd. run and a two point conversion run by Twyman. 

The Burrs Ahmad Kent scored on a 21 yd. pass from Kidd-Jackson (kick failed).

Fourth Quarter:

Haverford's Tommy Toal scored on a 13 yd. run and C. Mccollum's kick was good.  Sam Lindner scored on a 32 yd. pass from Tommy Toal with C. Mccollum's kick adding the point after.  Malik Twyman 4 yd. run and C. Mccollum's kick was good.

West scored on a Da'vion Kidd-Jackson 13 yd. run and added two points on a Kidd-Jackson pass to Rovny Dasilva.

The Burrs now sport a 1-2 record.  They take the field next when they travel to Conwell-Egan Catholic for a Philadelphia Catholic - Blue game on Friday, September 16.  West Catholic will battle a Eagles team coming off a 30-22 non-league loss to Episcopal Academy (Newtown Square, PA).  The Eagles record now stands at 1-1.

September 16 - Conwell-Egan 28 - West Catholic Prep 6 

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Final

Conwell-Egan

28

West Catholic

6

The Conwell-Egan Eagles won Friday's home conference game at Harry S Truman HS against West Catholic by a score of 28-6.  West only score was made by the defense on a fumble recovery in the first quarter. 

This was the first regular season division game loss by West Catholic since their Oct. 5, 2006 loss by a final score of 26-12 to Conwell-Egan.   This loss ended West's 43-game winning steak in CL regular season games (2006-15). The Burrs now sport a 1-3 record.

September 23 - West Catholic Prep  24 -  Lansdale Catholic 20

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Final

West Catholic

16 

24

Lansdale Catholic

14 

20

The West Catholic Burrs Football team won Friday's home conference game against Lansdale Catholic at Widener University.

Second Quarter:

Da'vion Kidd-Jackson threw two touchdown passes to Amadou Barry, adding a two point conversions to each touchdown.  Lansdale Catholic's first half performance was flat, resulting in a half-time score of 16-0.  

Third Quarter:

The LC ground game got on track in the second half with a touchdown in the third quarter.

Fourth Quarter:

A touchdown and point after in the early fourth quarter brought the score to 16-13. 

The Burrs added a third touchdown pass from Da'vion Kidd-Jackson to Amadou Barry and a two point conversion by Ahmad Kent with 5:31 remaining. 

LC scored a touchdown and point after with 3:21 to go, resulting in the final score of 24-20.

West has a 2-3 record overall and 1-1 in their division.  Next Friday at 7:30 PM the Burrs will face Neumann-Goretti in a divisional home game at Widener.  

September 30 - West Catholic Prep 46 - Neumann-Goretti 0

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Final

West Catholic

14 

24 

46

Neumann-Goretti

0

The Burrs won handily in a conference game against Neumann-Goretti at Widener University.

Game Summary:  Calil Wortham rushed 10 times for 147 yds.  Da'vion Kidd-Jackson completed 9 of 14 passes for 155 yds.  Jacir Savoy had six tackles, three TFL's and one interception. 

Scoring:

First Quarter:

Supreme Kemp scored on a 34 yd. pass from Da'vion Kidd-Jackson - a two point conversion failed.  Calil Wortham ran 21 yds. - Niles Brown scored two on a pass from Kidd-Jackson.

Second Quarter:

Da'vion Kidd-Jackson scored on a 39 yd. pass from Kidd-Jackson - Supreme Kemp ran for two points.

Third Quarter:

Calil Wortham scored on a 52 yd. run  - Kidd-Jackson ran for the two point conversion.  Amadou Barry scored on a 12 yd. pass from Anthony Mirabile - Calil Wortham ran for two.  Jacir Savoy had a 46 yd. interception return - Koddy Mills ran for two points.

West Catholic is now at 3-3 overall and 2-1 in their division.

West plays Germantown Academy for a non-league challenge next Saturday at Germantown. 

October 8 - Germantown Academy 18 - West Catholic Prep 12

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Final

Germantown Acad.

8

18

West Catholic

6

12

West Catholic lost this non-league game against Germantown Academy.

Scoring:

First Quarter:

A 27 yd. field goal by Vince Capone put Germantown on the board.  

Second Quarter:

West scored six points on a 30 yd. pass from Da'vion Kidd-Jackson to Amadou Barry.

Third Quarter:

Germantown's Tanner Long scored on a 4 yd. pass from Kyle McCloskey and Vince Capone's kick was good.

Fourth Quarter:

West added six points on a Supreme Kemp 1 yd. run.  The point after attempt failed.

With only 35 ticks on the game clock Germantown's Nick Picariello scored on a 9 yard pass from Kyle McCloskey, with Kahlil Ashley-Darrah adding two points on a pass from McCloskey, to win the game.   

West is now at 3 wins and 4 losses overall and 2-1 in their division.  Next Saturday West faces Bonner-Prendergast for a Divisional match-up.   

October 15 - Bonner-Prendergast 12 - West Catholic Prep 20

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Final

West Catholic

 8

20

Bonner-Prendergast

 0

12

The West Catholic Burrs won this important Blue Division game at Bonner-Prendergast.  

Scoring:

First Quarter:

B-P scored first when Alex Coll took a block punt 12 yds. for a TD.   

West Catholic's Da'vion Kidd-Jackson responded with a 65 yd. scoring pass to Ahmad Kent.  The two point conversion attempt failed.   

Second Quarter:

Kidd-Jackson left the game in the second quarter after suffering an arm injury and was replaced by Anthony Mirabile who transferred into West Catholic from Plymouth Whitemarsh in April.

B-P's Shawn Harmon scored on a 7 yd. run.  The two point conversion attempt failed.

West Catholic's Anthony Mirabile threw a 51 yd. TD pass to Dajone Averett.  A two point conversion pass failed.

Fourth Quarter:

West clinched the win with a  2 yd. screen pass by Anthony Mirabile to Ahmad Kent who turned it into a 22 yd. touchdown run.  Mirabile then caught the two-point conversion pass from running back Calil Wortham on a halfback-option pass with 5 minutes, 10 seconds left on the clock.

West is now at 4 wins and 4 losses overall and 3-1 in their division.  The Burrs have two regular-season games remaining.  

 October 21 - West Catholic Prep 32 - Bishop McDevitt 25

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Final

West Catholic

12

 8

32

Bishop McDevitt

12

 13

25

In this home conference game, the Burrs won a hard fought game at Widener U. 

Scoring:

West Catholic's Anthony Mirabile completed 11 of 22 passes for 204 yds. with four passes resulting in TD's.  

Tahj Powell scored 3 TD's for 68 yds; Amadou Barry and Supreme Kemp scored 1 TD each and Calil Wortham had 19 carries for 153 yds. scoring on a two point conversion in the fourth quarter.

The Burrs are at 5 wins and 4 losses overall and 4-1 in the Blue Division.  The Burrs go up against undefeated Cardinal O'Hara next Friday at O'Hara for the Catholic League Blue Division Championship.

  October 28 - Cardinal O'Hara 27 - West Catholic Prep 26

Catholic League Blue Division Championship

     

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Cardinal O'Hara

3

0

3

 6

12

West Catholic

6

6

0

 0

12

 

OT

OT

 

Final

Cardinal O'Hara

8

7

 

27

West Catholic

8

6

26

 

West Catholic lost this critical match-up with O'Hara by one point after a hard fought game that went to double OT.

 

At the end of the first half West was leading 12 to 3, before O'Hara mounted a comeback to tie the game. 

 

Scoring:

 

First Quarter:

 

O'Hara's Kevin Calamita scored a 27 yd. field goal.

 

West's Calil Wortham scored on a 4 yd. run; a two point conversion attempt failed.

 

Second Quarter:

 

West's Ahmad Kent scored on a 26 yd. pass from Da'vion Kidd-Jackson.

 

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Ahmad Kent's two point conversion attempt was stopped on the one-yard line by Derrick Patrick Jr. and Jack Gibson.

 

Third Quarter:

 

O'Hara's Kevin Calamita, a junior, kicked a 29 yd. field goal. 

 

Fourth Quarter:

 

With the game on the line, O'Hara Justin Santilla scored on a 18 yd. pass from Tommy O'Hara which tied the game.  With a minute and 6 seconds left in regulation Kevin Calamita knew the game came down to his point after attempt, which failed.  He thought he had cost the team the league championship.

 

First OT:

 

O'Hara's QB Tommy O'Hara scored on a 2 yd. run and Justin Santilla converted for two.

 

The Burrs struck back with a 1 yd. run by Calil Wortham and a conversion for two points.  Game still tied.

 

Second OT:

 

West scored first on a 7 yd. pass from Kidd-Jackson to Rovny Dasilva.  A critical moment came when O'Hara's Jamir Redd stopped West Catholic's Calil Wortham on the Burrs' two point conversion try.

 

O'Hara's QB Tommy O'Hara ran 4 yd. for a touchdown and Kevin Calamita redeemed himself with a game winning kick.

 

West Catholic stands at 5 wins and 5 losses overall and 4-2 in the Blue Division.

 

 

November 5 - West Catholic Prep 65 - Strawberry Mansion 8

 

 

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Final

West Catholic

21

19

12

13

65

Strawberry Mansion

0

8

 0

0 

8

 

With only 16 players suited up for the game, Strawberry Mansion was doomed from the start.  The Burrs easily broke the record for most points in a City Title game and the 57 point margin was a CL/CT record.  West already owned the record for biggest blowout victory before this game.  Their first record was accomplished in 2008 against Bok, 55-0.

 

Da'vion Kidd-Jackson passed 6 for 8 for 184 yards and four TD's, while backup QB Anthony Mirabile hit four of his five attempts for 59 yards. 

 

Amadou Barry (3-73, three TD's)  and Ahmad Kent (3-69, one TD) were the receiving headliners.  Calil Wortham (12-63, one TD) topped the ground game.  Mansion Basil Wilson (79 rushing, 75 passing) accounted for all but eight of his team's 162 scrimmage yards.

 

West made an effort to not run up the score in this game.  Four guys who carried the ball in this game hadn't done so all season and Coach Brian Fluck did not pursue two points over and over again after each TD.  Soph Jahlil Sanders had kicked just one point all season, but he was given eight opportunities and scored on three of them. 

 

Finally, the Burrs last TD of the game was on a 54 yard interception return by junior Jason Dunn.

 

West will face Valley Forge Military Academy for the PIAA District 12 - Class AA Championship at the South Philadelphia Supersite on November 12.

 

November 12 - West Catholic Prep 58 - Valley Forge Military Academy 7

 

 

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Final

West Catholic

32

26

0

 0

58 

Valley Forge Military

0

0

 

 

7

No information available on when VFMA scored the 7 points.

 

The Burrs had a blowout win over Valley Forge Military Academy in this District 12, Class AA Championship game.  The score was 58-0 at half-time.  It was reported that West Catholic began taking a knee prior to half-time and made no attempt to run up the score in the 3rd and 4th quarters.

 

West Catholic (7-5) will face Schuylkill Haven (11-1) in the first round of the State Championship Playoffs on Saturday, November 19th at Northern Lehigh High School in Palmerton, PA.  Schuylkill Haven advanced to the first round by beating Palmerton 42-7.

 

November 19 - Schuylkill Haven 41 - West Catholic Prep 12

 

 

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Final

Schuylkill Haven

7

7

11

 16

 41

West Catholic

6

0

0

6

12

West Catholic's season came to an end in a first round State Championship Playoff loss to Schuylkill Haven.

 

Scoring:

 

 

 

 

 Dawson Evitts kick was good.  Score at half-time: Schuylkill Haven 14 West 6.

 

Third Quarter:

 

Schuylkill Haven's Dawson Evitts kicked a 20 yd. field goal.

 

Schuylkill Haven recovered a fumble by West Catholic on the WC 13 yard line.  Danny Lozada scored on a 1 yd. rushing TD and Mike Kalyan rushed for a 2 point conversion. 

 

Fourth Quarter:

 

Schuylkill Haven's Dawson Evitts kicked a 33 yd. Field Goal. 

 

With 5 minutes to go in the game West Catholic's Da'vion Kidd-Jackson completed a 43 yd. pass to Amadou Barry for a TD.  West's 2 point conversion attempt failed.

 

Schuylkill Haven's Kobe Brish scored on a 15 yd. Rushing TD, the two point conversion failed.

 

With one minute to go Schuylkill Haven's Kobe Brish scored on a 10 yd. Rushing TD and Dawson Evitts made the point after.

 

A great season for the West Catholic Burrs has come to an end.  "GO WEST".

 

 

 

 ALL CATHOLIC FOOTBALL TEAMS ANNOUNCED

 

 

 

 

BLUE DIVISION DEFENSE:


Line:  Calvin Pressley

 

Linebacker: 

 

Congratulations to these outstanding players and to all the West Catholic Burrs for a great season.

 

 

 

WEST CATHOLIC BEGINS 100TH YEAR CELEBRATION

POSTED 10/18/2016 ON THE WEST CATHOLIC PREP WEBSITE

 

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Picture gleaned from Catholicphilly.com

 

On Sunday, October 16th the West Catholic Community came together for a Mass to celebrate it's Centennial year.  The Mass took place at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul with Archbishop Chaput as the celebrant.  In his Homily the Archbishop addressed the West Catholic Community in attendance and challenged them to continue to pray for Catholic education and continue to be supportive of the school.

 

Following Mass the attendees headed across the street to the Logan hotel for lunch and a short program.  The lunch was filled with great food and fellowship, and during the program Senator Bob Casey addressed the crowd about the importance of Catholic Education and of the schools mission.

 

WEST CATHOLIC RETIRES AKYRA MURRAY'S JERSEY

gleaned from Philly.com/Rally

 

in the Pulse Nightclub shooting that took place just 6 months ago in Orlando, Florida.

 

The West Catholic star basketball player's jersey was officially retired at half-time of the Burrs home opener on December 13, 2016.  The team presented Akyra's jersey to her parents and other family members. 

 

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The Burrs did Akyra proud with a blowout win of 67-8.

 

1

2

3

4

Final

West Catholic

25

14

12

16

67

Kipp Dubois Collegiate

0

3

4

1

8

 

 

MARK YOUR CALENDAR FOR THE NEXT GOLDEN BURRS OF '58 LUNCHEON

 

The GOLDEN BURRS OF '58 will be celebrating the 59TH ANNIVERSARY of their graduation from

 

"THE WEST PHILADELPHIA CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL FOR BOYS"

 

On: THURSDAY, MAY 11, 2017

 

All members and friends of the Class of 1958 are welcome.

 

Details will be published in the Spring 2017 Newsletter and invitations will be e-mailed in mid-March '17.

 

 

DONATION TO WEST CATHOLIC PREP

In commemoration of the Centennial Anniversary of West Catholic, a donation in the amount of $200.00 has been made to West Catholic Preparatory High School on behalf of the Golden Burrs Class of 1958. 

 

ANNUAL CHRISTMAS DONATION TO

At the September 13th meeting, the Golden Burrs Events Committee reaffirmed it's commitment to donate $250.00 to the Christian Brothers’ Retirement Fund each year at Christmas time.  This donation was offered in memory of the deceased members of the West Catholic Boys' Class of 1958.  

 

 

WEST CATHOLIC PREP CALENDAR OF EVENTS

 

Sports Hall of Fame Awards Dinner - Clarion Hotel, Essington, PA - March 2017 (details to follow)

 

Alumni Communion Breakfast - Springfield Country Club - Sunday, April 23, 2017

 

100th Anniversary Gala -Springfield Country Club, Saturday, May 6, 2017

 

Burrs at the Beach - Westy's Irish Pub, Wildwood, NJ - Sunday, June 25, 2017

 

 

NEWS FEATURES

 

"A TALE OF TWO CITIES AND SCHOOLS"

 

CHRISTIAN BROTHERS BRING ABOUT "REVOLUTION"

 

submitted by: DON (ANDY) THOMPSON

 

Frank Metzler's interesting September update on the awards given St. Gabriel's Hall stirred some strong memories for me.  He noted that in the last several years, St. Gabe's had received several hundred thousand dollars and multiple awards to support the

Brothers' and Archdiocese's on going work with teenage boys who the Philadelphia courts have sent to St. Gabe's for residential treatment, including education.

 

What impressed me was not only to learn that our classmate Brother Larry Dempsey, once known affectionately as Good Shepherd's "Kid Dempsey", continues to teach at St. Gabe's to this day, but the professionalism and support for the youths has grown exponentially.  Many of the 1958 West Catholic class are probably unfamiliar with St. Gabe's even though it is nearby in

Audubon and previously identified with Phoenixville, just outside the city.  Frank noted that many Brothers began their teaching career at St. Gabe's.  I as a 1963 graduate of the Brothers' formation program, along with about half my graduating class of young Brothers, was assigned to St. Gabe's to teach summer courses for the adolescent wards of the court.  Back then, we did not have much financial support or high tech to help us with the kids.  Rather, we worked with them on the ball fields, basketball court and in small groups including taking them on botanical search expeditions into the nearby woods of Audubon, Pennsylvania just off the Schuylkill River.

 

I want to share with my West Catholic 1958 classmates a lesson I learned from those kids on the basketball court.  One day's experience stands out.  There were nine adolescents and myself on the court surrounded by escape-defying high brick walls.  We divided up into teams for a game.  What I found stunning was that it became immediately clear there were not two teams but nine.  Every time a lad got the ball, he immediately shot it, even if he was beyond the key.  None of the kids passed the ball.  They seemed to have no prior experience of playing on a team and had no motivation to learn.  After the game, we were talking and they asked me why I became a Brother:  What was I in it for?  Rather than responding, I asked what they thought.  With all seriousness, the first kid answered:  Free beer on Friday nights.  No one laughed.  He meant it and the others seemed to think it was credible.  That afternoon's experiences gave me a clear picture how great was the challenge the Brothers faced as they attempted to help these kids straighten out their lives and have a chance at finding their place in the world.

 

After those twelve weeks of teaching summer school at St. Gabe's, I moved on to my next assignment, Washington, DC., arriving there on 28 August, the night of the Civil Rights March on Washington.  The Brothers at St. John's College High School had keep an extra ticket for me to join them and attend the Peter, Paul and Mary concert at the Carter Barron Amphitheatre under the stars, in forested Rock Creek Park.  Once seated with that seemingly wealthy and upwardly mobile crowd, I knew I was in a different world from St. Gabe's and from West.  That difference was soon highlighted in my St. John's classroom.  School started and one day in the early weeks, I noticed the kids seemed particularly agitated.  Their excitement and whispering seemed to grow throughout the day.  After the last class, I pulled one senior aside and asked:  "What's going on?"  He whispered there was going to be a fight between two kids in Rock Creek Park.  I responded: "So?"  I did not get it.  What was the big deal?  For these college-oriented youths, a fight was a big deal, unlike my experiences attending West Catholic in the late 1950's when every day it seemed we had to be on guard, travel in pairs, especially while waiting to hitch a late-afternoon ride at 51st and Chestnut. 

 

What impressed me about these tales of two cities, Phoenixville, PA and Washington, D.C., was that the Brothers dedicated their lives to successfully identifying and meeting the needs of the young adolescents, regardless of where they were on the economic ladder.  They all had needs.

 

Charles Dickens' 1859 novel, A TALE OF TWO CITIES, was a historic fiction about the gap between the rich and poor of Paris and London, the oppressive nobles and the impoverished peasants.  The core of Dickens novel was about striving for new life, resurrection.  Both social classes needed help.  From the time of the French revolution (1789-1799), through the time of the March on Washington (1968), until today, the de LaSalle Christian Brothers have continued to do their best to meet the needs of young men regardless of where they found them on the economic ladder.  Oppression and privilege exist, the Brothers recognize, at both the top and bottom of that ladder.  As our teachers and mentors they have created a revolutionary heritage for all of us to celebrate and carry forward into the future.  Go team.

 

A FAMILY CONNECTION TO RYAN HOWARD AND THE PHILLIES

 

submitted by:  FRANK METZLER

 

On Labor Day Weekend 2010, my sister's grandson, Aidan Joseph Silva, suddenly collapsed and died of Unexplained Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA).  Aidan was only seven years old.  SCA is not the same as a heart attack.  A heart attack is a stoppage of the heart due to a blockage of some kind.  SCA strikes when there is an arrhythmia or disturbance of the normal heart rhythm, caused by either a "short" in the electrical system of the heart or by a structural anomaly.

 

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Aidan loved the Phillies and was buried in his Phillies sweatshirt.  His favorite player was Ryan Howard.  Through a variety of connections, my nephew's family connected with Ryan. 

 

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VAULT COVER  

 

Eight months after Aidan's passing, his elementary school dedicated a grove of trees and a plaque in his memory.  The Phillie Phanatic was there to cheer the kids up and the Phillies surprised the Silvas with a video tribute from Ryan, who dedicated his next game (in Atlanta) to Aidan.   After hitting a home run in his very first-at-bat that night, Tom McCarthy and Chris Wheeler told the story of Ryan's dedication to Aidan on the air. 

 

My nephew Steven and his wife, Christy, told their story to the Phillies front office in 2014 when their foundation, Aidan's Heart Foundation, was selected as a recipient of Phillies Charities.  They highlighted their efforts to facilitate Automated External Defibrillator (AED)  donations and placements in schools and athletic fields, the heart screenings, they host at no cost to families, and their involvement in the passage of Pennsylvania Act 35, nicknamed, "Aidan's Law", signed into law in April 2014.  This legislation establishes a database of which schools in the state have AEDs and which need them as well as a program to help PA schools acquire AEDs and hands-on CPR training for students, staff, parents and coaches.  
 
On Saturday night, October 1st, 2016, my sister Peg, her son and his family went to the Phillie's game to see Ryan play for the Phils one last time.  Ryan knew they'd be at the game and invited them to meet with him and his family after the game.  He checks in with the Silvas from time to time, and his wife Krystle has been to the foundation's annual 5K for Aidan J., to which Ryan has donated signed memorabilia over the years. 

 

Finally, at 24th and Walnut, the new Phillies Mural faces 30th Street Station across the Schuylkill River.  In the upper left-hand corner, my grandnephew Aidan is featured among the fans. 

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Sorry to brag, but I'm grateful to Ryan, his family, and the Phillies for the support and friendship that he has given to my nephew and his family.  Thanks for taking the time to read this.  My nephew and family are healing nicely.


For more about Aidan and Aidan's Heart Foundation, visit:  www.AidansHeart.org

 

 

BROTHER JUBILARIANS

 

submitted by:  FRANK ADOLF

Pictures gleaned from the 2016 Winter Edition of LaSallian Visions

 

 

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MORE ABOUT TRANSFIGURATION PARISH

 

submitted by:  FRANK ADOLF

 

As you know, from reading the Special West Catholic Centennial Edition, Rich Buzza, Jim Lynch and I visited West Catholic on several occasions in June and July 2016 to copy pictures for a slide presentation that was shown at the West Catholic Centennial Luncheon on October 16, 2016.  On one of the trips I took a detour and stopped at 56th Street and Cedar Avenue to photograph the site.  As reported in the fall edition of 2013, the only building of the Transfiguration parish plant that is still standing is the school, which is now the Boys' Latin Of Philadelphia Charter School. 

 

Here are four pictures of the property.  The first was taken in the early 1900's prior to the establishment and construction of the Transfiguration parish buildings; the second was taken in 1946 from the SW corner of 57th and Cedar Avenue; the two remaining pictures were taken from the same vantage point at the SW corner of 56th and Cedar Avenue circa 1950's and when I visited in June of this year. 

 

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Picture from the 1955 Transfiguration 50th Anniversary Booklet

 

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1946 - Transfiguration Church and School and Misericordia Hospital dominated the surrounding neighborhood.

 

Picture taken from the SW Corner of 57th Street and Cedar Avenue

Picture from Frank Adolf's family archives

 

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56th Street and Cedar Avenue 

Picture from the 1955 Transfiguration 50th Anniversary Booklet

 

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 June 21, 2016 - 56th Street and Cedar Avenue

Picture by Frank Adolf

 

After a little over 100 years, the plot of ground where Transfiguration Church and Rectory once stood is again an empty lot.  

 

Also, in my continuing efforts to find artifacts from Transfiguration and other closed churches, I recently discovered that the Main Altar from Transfiguration's lower church (pictured below), installed in 1955 for the Parish Golden Jubilee, is now just a few blocks away at 63rd Street and Cedar Avenue.  It is the center Altar facing the congregation at St. Cyprian Church (formerly St. Carthage).

 

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Picture from the 1955 Transfiguration 50th Anniversary Booklet

 

Notice the IHS in the center of the Altar is identical to the below altar at St. Cyprian.

 

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Picture from St. Cyprian Parish Website

Msgr. Britto, pastor of St. Cyprian

 

 

REMEMBERING PEARL HARBOR

DECEMBER 7, 1941

 

submitted by:  FRANK ADOLF

 

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MAIL FROM CLASSMATES AND FRIENDS

 

Tom Sweeney:  Frank you are amazing. What you give to so many of us old guys is truly a beautiful gift.  Thanks thanks and many more thanks. Sweeney

 

Bob Giampietro '68:  Thank you, Rich. Hope you are well and good.  I appreciate being on your list. Thanks for thinking of me.

Very good content! I enjoy reading it.  Regards,  Bob

 

John Kraft '57:  Hello Frank, Another GREAT edition of the Fall Edition 2016.  The last article certainly brought back some fine memories.  Approximately 25 years ago my family was returning from a trip and of course landed at Phila. Airport.  I had not been back to the 56th & Willows in many a year so I asked my wife & children if they wanted to se the house where Dad grew up.  They did not say yes or no, but since it was me who really wanted to make the visit we did.  When we arrived at 5658 there were four African Americans sitting on the front steps so my family did not want to get out of the car.  This was my house and I did not have any fear.  When I introduced myself explaining that this was my house growing up they handed me a beer and the meeting went very well.    Best Regards, John "57"

 

Jack Devine:  Frank:  I am sure I will run in to you at one of these events.  Thanks for what you do.  Jack - Transfiguration 

 

Stan Faust '62:  Thanks Frank.  Still alive I am and still able to fly my airplanes and glider.  Still also working more than full time on an Army contract helping to keep our ground troops Safe.  They mostly keep me in the field keeping systems working properly, but more and more now working on our new systems to be put into twin engine Dash 8s that keep me in CONUS.   The MBS article was good to see as I was at MBS before going to West.  Keep them coming, Stan

 

Paul Colistra, President of WCP:  Frank, as always, a TREMENDOUS job on this. Go Burrs! 

 

Jack Walls '59:  Rich, Thanks for sending me a copy of the Class of 58's Newsletter.  I especially enjoyed your column about your ride thru the old neighborhood, all too true.... Passed everything along to others in the class of '59.  Again, thanks and I hope all is well with you.

 

Ann Cahill (Retired English Teacher from St. Gabriel's):  Thanks, Rich.  Yes, I was happy to read good things about St. Gabes.  And your article brought back a lot of memories for me too.  Only the names would change --to protect the innocent! " Don't worry, I retired my red pen five years ago.) 

 

Jim Quinn:  Frank, another accolade for your GREAT work on the WC Year Book.  I have a request if you would.  I'd not ask for an unsolicited email address of one of our 58ers, but if you could forward this to Dan Remy I'd appreciate it.   "Jim Quinn would like to communicate with you."      

 

Jim Trainor:  Thanks to everyone well done.

 

Joe Gavaghan:  Hey Frank,  I'll forward this issue to my niece Peggy and she can copy it and give it to Ned Jones.  Thank you and your staff for another interesting newsletter.  It's good that some of the pieces from the old city parishes are being recycled around the USA.  Again, thank you.

 

Frank O'Keefe, Jr.:  Frank and your team, thanks again for the memories.  Your News Letters are the greatest and bring fond memories back each time that I read one.

 

Dan Remy:  Hello Jim (Quinn)....Dan here....So Happy to Hear from You....My thanks to Adolf for connecting us.

 

Bob Dowd:  Our 9/11 ........15 years after 'Pearl Harbor' Dec. 7, 1941.....would have been 3 months into our junior year.....Dec. 1956 at West.....perspective.

 

COMMENTS ABOUT THE CENTENNIAL NEWSLETTER

Frank O'Keefe, Jr.: Another great job from you and your staff.  This is a great email from a group of Great West Catholic Grads. 

 

Charlie Bonner:  You three guys did an excellent job putting this together.  Congratulations!!!  And thank you.

 

Rich Loftus:  Thanks to you, Rich, and Jim for a great nostalgic piece about our school. 

 

Jim Clark:  Thank you Frank.  Clarkie

 

Charles Porrini '49:  Frank, Thank you for the Special Golden Burrs Centennial Newsletter.  I'll print it out so I can look at the pictures.  I see you have Reds Bagnell's picture in there.  He was a senior when I was a freshman.  Charles

 

Joe Adolf '55:  Frank - Great job - Joe 

 

Ann Cahill:  Thanks Rich, Congratulations on a great job.  I was thinking of all of my relatives who went to West.  My father was in that 1916 class.  My uncle played baseball there.  One cousin played football, two others basketball.  My late brother was president in 1950.  Good memories!

 

Joe Grimley:  Thank you,  Great Job!  

 

Frank Cubbage:  Great job Frank.  Thanks for sending the Newsletter, the picture of our CC team brings back memories of good times.  Even though I wasn't as good as most of those guys, I considered them friends, especially John Holbrook who I met on my first day at WC.  We walked around the block together after lunch almost every day along with Bill Kealey.  I remember thinking, "how could a guy (John) that walked so slow, run so fast".   And then there was Murph who lived a few houses from Hornig, he was so devoted that we would see him running in the neighborhood on the weekend. 

Tom Henry:  Thank you for the great work you and the others are doing to keep us connected.  

 

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Senior Prom - May 2, 1958

A find a friend (or yourself) opportunity.

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: fjapfa1539@comcast.net

 

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 John E. Niefer Sr. and

Philip H. Carson.

 

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John E. Niefer Sr. - September 29, 2016 

 

Jim Clark:   I attended our classmate John Niefer's Memorial Service at St. Anastasia Church in Newtown Square.  Our Classmate Dennis Brennan was also there, along with 6 letter carrier's from the Broomall Post Office, who where co-workers of John and mine.  It was so nice to see them again after my retirement back in 1997.  A great bunch of friends.  John Niefer was an M.B.S.er with Rich Buzza and I, and my co-worker for 25 years too.  A sad event that brought old friends back together.  Clarkie

 

 

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Philip H. Carson - October 12, 2016

 

Jim Clark:  I attended the viewing for Phil Carson.  I left a West Catholic Pennant in his casket, and the family was very grateful.  Clarkie

 

Frank Adolf:  I attended Phil Carson's viewing on the morning of his Funeral Mass, delivering the St. La Salle Auxiliary Perpetual enrollment from the Class of 1958.  Also, I met Marty Rafter and his wife Mary at the viewing. 

 

You know the old saying "it is a small world", well I learned just prior to the funeral that my Daughter-in-law Mary Adolf is a friend of  Phil's daughter Michele. 

 

May John and Phil Rest in Peace.

 

Obituaries for John and Phil can be found on our website at: www.goldenburrs-1958.com

 

 

FINAL THOUGHT

 

submitted by: RICH BUZZA

 

In our last issue of Final Thought I told you about going back to the city of Philadelphia but I neglected to tell you the reason why, well Frank Adolf, Jim Lynch and I were asked by Brother Kevin Stanton to put together a slide presentation showing the history of West Catholic High School for Boys 1916 to 1989.  We jumped into it with our usual goal of absolute perfection which was the minimum required by our team leader Frank Adolf.  We spent four very hot afternoons going over the historic year books selecting various photos which we felt depicted the times and mood of West Catholic.  Upon the completion of the photography and much time in the editing process, a completed slide show presentation was given to the professionals at La Salle for a final edit for viewing at the 100th anniversary luncheon. 

 

If you would like to see some photos of the history of West just log on to:

http://www.goldenburrs-1958.com/

and click onto: 

OCTOBER 17, 2015 - SPECIAL GOLDEN BURRS NEWSLETTER

 

Now on a more somber note, on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving I attended a Memorial for the first born child of one of our classmates, who, very suddenly and totally unexpectedly was taken into the arms of the Lord.  I heard someone say "God only knows where they are getting the strength to get through this ordeal."  I thought about this and concluded that this man whom I have known for seventy odd years has always been a fine Christian gentleman and one of God's favorite sons and indeed, He would provide the needed help and support to him and his family in their time of need.  Amen.

 

 

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:  FJAPFA1539@COMCAST.NET

 

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