The Eighth Decade (2000 -
From 2000 to 2004 is an excerpt from our 75th
Anniversary history published in 2004. The next five years has
been compiled from the minutes and publications of the Association.
On New Year's Day, we are shocked by the
news that our beloved Chaplain, Father Edward J. Simons, OSFS, '34, has
passed away. FR.ED served as Moderator/Chaplain from September,
1976 until his death - longer than any priest in our history. Father's
Mass of Christian Burial is concelebrated by his Oblate confreres at St.
Martha's Church in Northeast Philadelphia where he had served as a
weekend assistant for so many years. The Board of Governors provides an
honor guard at Fr. Ed's casket in the church where he lay in state from
4 PM until his Mass began. The lines are long and longer as this man's
friends wait to pay their respects to this kindly man of God who truly
lived his life in the spirit of St. Francis deSales. We will truly miss
After the funeral Mass, President
Cardullo and Executive Secretary-Treasurer Knobbs approach Father Neil
Kilty, OSFS, '59, about accepting the position of Chaplain. He readily
There is a pall over the January
meeting. For the first time in over twenty-four years, we will be
without Father Simon's smile and humor. The news from the committees is
equally dismal. The Activities Committee is recommending cancelling the
trip to Hershey to see a hockey game and the trip to New York, both for
lack of interest. Bud DiGiacomo, '44, and Jim Hilbert, '71 move to
accept the committee's recommendations and the Board agrees. On the
bright side, Len Knobbs, '53, proposes that we establish a Scholarship
Grant in Father Simon's name and fund it with a $1000 donation from the
Association. Brian Darreff, '74, seconds the motion and it is approved
unanimously by the Board.
President Steve Cardullo, '72, advises
the Board of Governors at the February meeting that the terms of office
for three men on the Board of Directors of Save Northeast Catholic Fund,
Inc. will expire next month and he will accept nominations for those
positions. The terms are for seven years. The men whose terms are
expiring are John T. Musial, '63; John R. Hanejko, '65, and Thomas P.
Morgan, '64. Nominated for the positions are: Musial, Hanejko, and
Martin G. DePerro, '60. There being no other nominees, Cardullo declares
the three elected.
Despite the fact that we just cancelled
two trips, the optimists on the Activities Committee recommend a bus
trip on April 29 to Baltimore to watch the Orioles take on the Texas
Rangers. A motion is made by Joe Mulawka, '51 and seconded by Musial,
and, after a discussion, approved by the Board.
At ceremonies on February 22 five
deserving men are inducted into the NECHS Hall of Fame. Barry Brodzinski,
'73, the all-time leading scorer at North and a star at LaSalle
University, who coached a number of championship teams at Roman Catholic
and then was a varsity assistant at Duquesne University is the inductee
for Athletics. The recipient of the Award for Business/Labor/Military is
Martin J. Maddaloni, '57, the General President of the International
Union of Steamfitters. Our recipient of the Science/Religion Award is
the Most Rev. Martin J. Lohmuller, DD, JCD, '37, an auxiliary Bishop of
Philadelphia. John "Herb" Smith, '46, an outstanding sandlot football
coach in the Port Richmond area receives the Service Award. A teacher at
NECHS since 1959, Robert H. Fitzsimmons, '53 is inducted in the field of
Five Hundred Sixty Nine attend the
Communion Breakfast on April 9. Our principal speaker and the recipient
of Our Outstanding Achievement Award is Marc Howard, co-anchor of
Channel 6's Action News. Toastmaster for the morning is Kevin Reilly, a
former Philadelphia Eagles' linebacker.
The bus trip to see the Orioles breaks
even. Our Old Timers Reunion attracts 93 participants from 10 of the 11
Classes invited and raises a small profit. Thank God for Lucky 12's
Club. Chairman Ed White, '55, reports that ticket sales were the highest
ever, thanks to multiple sales by a few Board members. For the first
time, we go over the $100,000 in sales.
With Steve Cardullo, '72, ineligible for
another term as President, the race is wide open. Two men are nominated
Ed White, '55, and Joe Kilroy, '65. The nominees for the other offices
Memorial Day Services are attended by 75
people. Chairman John Handley, '58, notes that this is about the same
number we have every year.
Election results show Edward J. White,
'55, as the new President. Anthony J. Colletta, '72 continues as First
Vice President. Peter P. Gallagher, '37, is our new Second Vice
President, and Martin G. DePerro, '60, remains Third Vice President.
John J. Barnes, '89, replaces White as Fourth Vice President. John T.
Musial, '63, Secretary, and Kenneth J. Florkowski, '88, Assistant
Secretary are reelected. The financial wing - Leonard F. Knobbs, '53,
Treasurer; John R. Hanejko, '65, First Assistant Treasurer; and Lawrence
A. Dolan, '37, Second Assistant Treasurer retain their positions.
Outgoing president Cardullo is elected Historian.
The Golf Classic on June 12 raises over
$26,800 with 136 golfers and an additional 25 dinner guests/kibitzers in
We end the year with a record 5217 dues
Falcons Fun in the Sun draws 462 to
Moore's - about the same as last year but the profit is down - about
This will divided proportionately among the Scholarship Fund, the
Oblates and Save NEC.
Frank Gleason, '53 Dies
A severe stroke fells former President
Francis J. Gleason on September 2 and he succumbs on September 10. A
member of the Board of Governors since 1960, Frank was one of two men to
serve six terms as President of the Association. He held a number of
other offices during his years on the Board. He was a Trustee of the
Northeast Catholic Alumni Memorial Scholarship Fund, Inc., and the
Association. The founding President of the Save Northeast Catholic Fund,
Inc., he was a member of the Board of Directors at the time of his
death. He will be severely missed by the Association and this writer, a
friend of over 45 years.
As result of Ed White's election to the
presidency and Gleason's death, there are two vacancies on the Board of
Directors of Save Northeast Catholic Fund. White opens nominations and
Patrick J. Boyle, '49, Raymond E. Rysak, '66, and Stephen A. Cardullo,
'72, are nominated. The election determines that Boyle and Cardullo will
fill the unexpired terms ending in February, 2003.
White appoints Knobbs as Executive
Secretary with Hanejko and himself as Assistants. The Board unanimously
The cruise through the Panama Canal is a
success. Twenty three people enjoy their two weeks aboard the "Vision"
and over $3,000 is raised for the Association.
A new record! FALCONWAY XII raises $294,272.36 passing the previous high set in 1993. The
Oblates also receive a record high $37,769.62. Likewise, the Scholarship
Fund with $190,651.68 is a new high, while the $65,851.06 received by
Save NEC is down from last year. Since its inception in 1989,
FALCONWAY has raised over two million dollars for our three
Turkey Bowl Beef and Beer on November 12
moves to Chickie's & Pete's on the Boulevard and attracts 136 revelers.
We make over $1900 for the Association.
Oblates to Leave Faculty House
In February, President White informs the
Board that the Oblates will be leaving the Faculty House at North and
relocating to their various other residences throughout the city. The
Board feels this will create a recruiting problem for the school and
also create a problem for us since our office has been located in the
basement since September, 1956. Brian Darreff, '74 introduces a motion
seconded by Daniel Creedon III, '75, to write to Father Joseph
Morrissey, '66, the Oblate Provincial voicing our displeasure at the
move and request they rescind their decision. It is approved
unanimously. The Real Estate Committee under John Musial, '63, gets busy
looking for new quarters.
A new venture is proposed. In that we
have classes with no representation on the Board, Reunion Planning
Committee Chairman Len Knobbs, '53, proposes that we run reunions for
those classes in an attempt to spark some enthusiasm among the
classmates and, maybe, attract someone to serve on the Board. He makes a
motion to run separate reunions for the Classes of '86, and '91. Pat
Boyle, '49 seconds the motion and it is approved unanimously by the
The Hall of Fame welcomes its newest
members on February 27. James V. Amadei, '54, a world recognized jazz
pianist, is inducted in the field of Arts/Entertainment/Education.
Edward P. Geisz, '42, for a long time the head swimming coach at
Villanova University, receives the award in Athletics. Erwin T. Straw,
'46, former President and CEO of Prime Bank and current Board Chairman
of Earthstar Bank is the recipient of the Business/Labor/Military award.
Oliver G. Ludwig, Ph.D., '53, a Chemistry Professor at Villanova
University since 1968, accepts the Science/Religion award. The Service
award is presented to Lawrence P. Conti, '63, a teacher at NECHS for 34
years. Also, Larry has been the head coach of baseball and basketball at
Philadelphia Community College and is currently head baseball coach at
his Alma Mater, LaSalle University.
In March, the Board hears Father
Morrissey's response to President White's letter. The three page letter
clarifies some of the reasons for the Oblates consolidation of houses.
He offers to meet with the Board and President White schedules a March
14 meeting with the Executive Board.
NECHS President, Father Mark Wrightson,
OSFS, offers the Association the choice of one of two rooms in the
school for office space.
Lucky 12's Chairman Steve Cardullo, '72,
reports that sales are almost 1500 ahead of the same point last year.
April 1, 2001, and it's no Fool's Day.
We gather at the Cathedral Basilica of SS Peter and Paul for Mass and
then adjourn to the Wyndham Franklin Plaza for breakfast. Our featured
speaker is Philadelphia's Police Commissioner John F. Timoney, and the
Toastmaster is our own Don Brennan, '74, editor of the Frankford News
Gleaner. Commissioner Timoney accepts our annual Outstanding Achievement
Award. Francis J. "Tim" Dunleavy, '32, former President and Vice
Chairman of the Board of ITT Corporation receives our Outstanding
Alumnus Award. Sales Chairman John Hanejko, '65 reports there were 630
On April 17, Father William Davis, OSFS,
Religious Superior of the NEC Community advises us that the Oblates will
vacate the Faculty House on July 31 and we will have to leave prior to
that date. The committee will meet with school officials next week to
look over the proposed sites in the school.
Despite our early surge in sales, Lucky
12's Chairman Cardullo reports in May that we ended the drive down 184
tickets from last year. Real Estate Chairman Musial reports that he will
make a motion, on behalf of the committee, to accept the school's offer.
He tells the Board that Father Wrightson said there can be no lease so
it will be an at will situation. However, on the advice of our legal
counsel, there will be a written agreement governing the operation of
the premises and any attempt at restrictions on access to the facility
will result in the corporation vacating the premises. The school will
renovate two rooms on the first floor of the Annex building adjacent to
new Resource Center. The motion is seconded by Len Knobbs, '53 and after
a discussion, the Board approves unanimously.
Our last Memorial Day Mass in the
Faculty House Chapel is concelebrated by Father Kilty and seven other
Oblates. Perhaps because it is the last Mass in a place that was so
familiar to many of us, the Chapel is filled to overflowing.
The June meeting is a long one. Father
Wrightson informs us, by letter, that he will be leaving NECHS and the
new President will Be Father Vincent E. Smith, OSFS, '74. The first time
the school has an alumnus as President.
Because of scheduling conflicts at the
Cathedral and the Wyndham Franklin Plaza, the date of next year's
Breakfast must be changed. Bernie Donnelly, '50, and Len Knobbs, '53,
move to change the date to April 14 instead of the normal two weeks
prior to Easter. The motion passes unanimously.
Only one of our Officer positions has a
contest. Marty DePerro, '60, doesn't seek reelection as Third Vice
President and the race is between Jim Hilbert, '71 and Joe Kilroy, '65.
Kilroy prevails. Those elected are: Ed White, '55, Pres.; Tony Colletta,
'72, 1st V.P., Pete Gallagher, '37, 2nd V.P., Joe Kilroy, '65, 3rd V.P.,
John Barnes, '89, 4th V.P., John Musial, '63, Sec'y., Len Knobbs, '53,
Treas., Ken Florkowski, '88, Ass't. Sec'y, John Hanejko, '65, 1st Ass't.
Treas., Larry Dolan, '37, 2nd Ass't. Treas., and Steve Cardullo, '72,
Finance Committee Chairman Tony Colletta,
'72, presents the proposed budget for the coming fiscal year. He
presents a resolution establishing a Building Fund Reserve funded with a
minimum of $10,000 per year for a minimum of five years. Tony gives a
lengthy report on the reasoning of the committee's recommendation. He
informs the Board that the resolution was adopted by the committee 7 to
1. A lengthy debate ensues over the pros and cons of the resolution.
Nineteen of the 51 class reps present rise to speak for or against its
adoption by the Board. A motion to table is introduced by Brian Darreff,
'74 and seconded by Dan Creedon III, '75. It is defeated on a show of
hands 37 to 14. At this point, one member left the meeting. President
White calls for a vote on the Resolution. Len Knobbs, '53, requests a
roll call vote. The results are 34 yes, 11 no, and 4 abstentions.
Included in the proposed budget are two major changes. First, no longer
will the profit from Falcons Fun in the Sun be donated proportionately
to our three charities, instead it will remain with the Association.
Second, we will no longer underwrite the cost of printing and mailing
the FALCONWAY brochure. The cost will be split by the
three charities. Both of these changes are recommended by the Finance
Committee because of the dwindling financial resources of the
A motion to approve the budget is made
by Colletta, '72, and Cardullo, '72. A number of members speak and a
lengthy debate ensues. On a show of hands, the motion passed 44 - 3,
with 2 abstentions.
Jim Whitehead, '76, makes a motion to
appropriate $10,000 to underwrite tuition to recruit football players.
It is seconded by Dan Creedon, '75. Another lengthy discussion ensues.
Jim Hilbert, '71 moves to table the motion, and it is seconded by Knobbs.
The motion passes unanimously.
The Golf Classic is our usual social
success. A great time is had by those in attendance and we raise almost
$25,000 for the Scholarship Fund.
We increase our dues paying membership
by 3 to 5220 for a new record.
Len Knobbs, '53, is elected to his
seventh consecutive three year term as Treasurer of Northeast Catholic
Alumni Memorial Scholarship Fund, Inc.
On July 29, we depart the Faculty House
for our new quarters in school. It is a bittersweet day for some. We
spent a great deal of our waking hours over the last 47 years in
those confines. It takes all day to move our furniture and equipment and
we are deeply grateful to the thirteen men from the Board who help. For
posterity they are: Ron Fanning, '39, Joe McGillen, '44, Len Knobbs,
'53, Ed White, '55, Joe Alexander, '58, John Musial, '63, John Hanejko,
'65, Joe Kilroy, '65, Ray Rysak, '66, Tom Joyce, '69, Luke Hogan, '71,
Steve Cardullo, '72, and Josh Findlay, '95.
Ten days later, while on vacation in
western North Carolina, Len Knobbs, '53, is struck with a massive heart
attack. He is air-lifted by helicopter to Johnson City, Tennessee, for
emergency quadruple by-pass surgery. On the 25th of August, he is back
in the Alumni Office on a part time basis. Hanejko and White carry on
admirably during his absence and carry a major part of the work load for
the next few months.
On September 8th,323 people come to
Moore's for our annual Fun in the Sun. This is our smallest crowd in the
five years we have been running the general reunion at the Shore.
Activities Chairman Joe Kilroy, '65,
advises that thirty one people will leave for Las Vegas on September 18.
SEPTEMBER 11, 2001
defining moment in United States history changes those plans for seven.
The 24 who go are led by Board member Jim Hilbert, '71, who assures us
that everyone had an enjoyable time. No word on the winners or losers.
The Board of Directors of Save Northeast
Catholic Fund, Inc. meets on September 20 to consider a request by NECHS
President, Father Vincent Smith, OSFS, '74, for funding to purchase
computer hardware and software for the new Resource Center. After a
discussion on the advantages of providing these tools for the students,
Len Knobbs, '53, and Joe Kilroy, '65, introduce a motion to approve
$35,000 for this purpose. The Board concurs unanimously.
Tony Colletta, '72, Finance Committee
Chairman, reports to the Board in October on the committee's
recommendation on Jim Whitehead's motion to appropriate $10,000 for
football scholarships. Colletta states: "At this time, for a variety of
reasons, not the least of which would be the ongoing funding for such a
project, we cannot recommend adoption of the motion. Also, the
Scholarship Fund should and would be the appropriate vehicle for any
tuition assistance grants". Whitehead accepted the committee's decision
and commented "discussion is the beginning of everything".
Funds raised by FALCONWAY XIII drop more than $31,000 below last year. Contributions total
$262,609.09 with the Scholarship Fund receiving $160,333.04, the Oblates
get $32,902.34 both down from last year. Only Save Northeast Catholic
who receives $69,373.71 tops the previous year.
Reunion Planning Chairman Len Knobbs,
'53, reports that we had to cancel the '91 Reunion due to lack of
response. We did run the '86 Reunion with 35 in attendance. Because
Regency Caterers worked with us, we were able to realize a small profit.
More importantly, we were able to secure a new Board member from the
class - Tom Ballard.
The Turkey Bowl Beef and Beer gets
bigger every year. This year, according to Chairman Bob Woltjen, '83, we
had 159 in attendance at Chickie & Pete's and raised just under $3,000.
Plans have been underway for some time
for a Dinner Dance to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the school.
Joe Kilroy, '65, Len Knobbs, '53, and John Musial, '63, are members of
the committee. The banquet will be on February 23 at the Wyndham
Franklin Plaza. A Mass at the Cathedral will precede the dinner. A
commemorative program will be published.
Gift for NECHS
At the February 14, 2002 meeting of the
Board, Finance Committee Chairman Tony Colletta, '72, on behalf of the
committee, recommends that the Association give $25,000 to the school on
the occasion of the 75th Anniversary banquet. It is seconded by Knobbs
and approved unanimously.
Because of the banquet, the Hall of Fame
induction ceremony is not held until March 12. John "Jason" Marquess,
'67, who has chaired the Selection Committee since the inception of the
Hall of Fame steps down and Len Knobbs, '53, is named Chairman by the
committee members. Henry "Hank" Siemiontkowski, '68, a standout
basketball player at North and Villanova, who went on to play in the
Eastern League and Europe, receives the award for Athletics. He has
coached in Sweden, Belgium, Finland, and New Zealand and is a resident
of Sweden. The Arts/Entertainment/Education award is conferred upon John
Doman, '62. A star of stage, screen and TV, John has appeared in over 20
films, and has a starring role in the upcoming HBO series, "The Wire".
Father Thomas Kelley, OSFS, '41 receives the award in the field of
Business/Labor/Military. Father spent 28 years as a Navy Chaplain
achieving the rank of Captain. He recently received the Pro Ecclesia et
Pontifice Medal from Pope John Paul II. The Service award is presented
to Joseph L. Zazyczny, '53. Joe served as a Philadelphia City Councilman
for 12 years and later served as Secretary of the Office of
Administration for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Edmund F. Gordon,
'64, Director of Religious Education for the Diocese of Wilmington,
Delaware, receives the award for Science/Religion.
At the March Board meeting, President
White informs he Board that Martin G. DePerro, '60, submitted his
resignation as a member of the Board of Directors to Save Northeast
Catholic Fund, Inc. Accordingly, he will accept nominations for this
vacancy next month. To be nominated, you must be an elected member of
the Board of Governors of the Association. Marty had previously
submitted his resignation from the Board of Governors due to moving to
Tobyhanna, PA. Falcons Fun in the Sun Chairman John Hanejko, '65, and
Steve Cardullo, '72 move to change the site of the general reunion to
Keenan's in North Wildwood. Hanejko explains that Moore's cannot or will
not give us a mid summer date and Keenan's can host us on August 17.
Price will be $25 in advance and $30 at the door. The motion is passed
unanimously. Len Knobbs, '53, Reunion Planning Chairman, and Bud
DiGiacomo, '44, introduce a motion for the Association to sponsor
reunions for the Classes of '82, '87, and '92, at Regency Caterers on
October 18, 25, and November 1, respectively. The Board approves the
On April 12, two members of the Board,
Jack Marczely, '55, and John Barnes, '89, are nominated to fill the
vacancy on the Board of Directors of Save NEC Fund, Inc. Barnes defeats
Marczely and will complete the unexpired term until February, 2003.
The Communion Breakfast on April 12
attracts 547 to hear Michael Smerconish, Esq., a local radio talk show
host. Lou Nolan, public address announcer for the Philadelphia Flyers,
serves as Toastmaster. Mr. Smerconish accepts our annual Outstanding
Only 87 attend our Old Timers' Reunion,
down from 94 last year.
Steve Cardullo, '72, Lucky 12's Club
Chairman, tells the Board at our May meeting that we sold 10,059 tickets
- the most ever. Once again, the large number was due to multiple sales
by a few Board members.
The incumbent officers are nominated at
the May meeting without opposition. Election Chairman Pat Boyle, '49,
informs the Board in a letter dated June 1 that they are elected.
Attendance at Memorial Day Services
drops to something below our usual seventy. Oblate Fathers Kilty, '59,
Smith, '74, and Ashenbrenner, '44 concelebrate Mass in the school
Golf Classic Raises Record Amount
The Golf Classic on June 10 at Melrose
CC attracts 160 golfers plus the usual cadre of on-lookers. Chairman
John Barnes, '89, and his committee go all-out and produce a record
$27,532.75 for the Scholarship Fund.
Len Knobbs, '53, proposes, at the June
13 Board meeting, we confer Honorary Membership on Dennis George, Esq.
Mr. George has served as Counsel to the Association, pro bono, since
1985. The motion is seconded by Bernie Donnelly, '50, and passes
A year for record achievements. We have
5226 dues paying members.
Only 326 attend Falcons Fun in the Sun
at Keenan's. Not too many of our patrons are happy with the change.
Chairman Hanejko says the committee will meet to look for solutions to
In September, Executive
Secretary-Treasurer Len Knobbs, '53, informs the Board that, once again,
there were problems reserving the date of the Communion Breakfast at the
Cathedral and the Wyndham Franklin Plaza. We had the date at both
places, then were told by the Cathedral that the Cardinal had scheduled
something for our date so we would have to pick another date. Over the
summer, he has gone back and forth with both institutions seeking a
compromise date. He finally secured February 23 and President Ed White,
'55 approved the date. Accordingly, Len makes a motion to concur with
the President's decision, it is seconded by Pat Boyle, '49, and approved
unanimously. President White informs the Board that we will be
celebrating our 75th Anniversary in 2004 and we should begin to plan
now. He names the following committees: Arrangements: Ed White, '55, and
John Musial, '63; Program and Ad Book: Len Knobbs, '53, and Steve
Cardullo, '72; Sales: Pat Boyle, '49, and John Hanejko, '65.
The Board of Directors of Save Northeast
Catholic, Inc., at their September meeting, unanimously adopts a motion
submitted by Secretary-Treasurer Len Knobbs, '53, and John Hanejko, '65,
to pay $100 of each student at North's activity fee. It is felt that
this will be a good recruiting tool in that every student will benefit.
The cost for this year will be $77,000.
At the October meeting of the Board of
Governors, Knobbs makes a motion seconded by Bill Feltwell, '73, to
secure King's Caterers in Bristol, PA, for Sunday, September 26, 2004
for the 75th Anniversary banquet. It is approved unanimously.
FALCONWAY XIV comes to a
close and sets a new record for funds raised - $295,614.73. The Oblates
receive $31,008.93, Save Northeast Catholic is the recipient of
$77,615.23, and the Scholarship Fund receives $186,990.57.
The Activities Committee has been hard
at work pondering a proposal by Mike Leith, '86, to sponsor a 5K Race
1Mile Walk. It would be held on April 12 on West River Drive. Chairman
Joe Kilroy, '65, and Mike Donofrio, '47, introduce a motion to adopt the
proposal. After a lengthy discussion, it is passes with two negative
votes. Falcons Fun in the Sun Chairman John Hanejko, '65, explains that
the committee is recommending moving the location to Lighthouse Pointe
in the Shawcrest section of Wildwood. Also, that it will be joint
venture with the school. Each group will keep all the profit from
advance sales and door sales will be split evenly. He makes a motion to
accept the recommendation, it is seconded by Bill Feltwell, '73, and
On October 20, Paul D. Quinn, Secretary
Emeritus of the Association dies of a sudden heart attack. Paul served
as Secretary for 46 years and as Assistant Secretary for two years. He
had been a member of the Board of Governors for over 50 years. He had
been named an Outstanding Alumnus by the Association in 1969 and was
inducted into the NECHS Hall of Fame in 1994. Another bulwark of the
Association has gone to his heavenly reward.
Attendance at the Turkey Bowl Beef &
Beer on November 24 is down slightly. Chairman Bob Woltjen, '83, advises
that the profit is up, thanks to the "BIG BOARD" drawing. This ingenious
game brought on board by John Barnes, '89, has worked well at the Golf
President Ed White, '55, names Mike
Leith, '86, Chairman of the 5K Run Committee. Leith has been in contact
with the Fairmount Park Commission about securing the date and site. Joe
Kilroy, '65, and Dominic Aspite, '64, make a motion to sponsor a trip to
NYC to see "Beauty and the Beast" on May 17. Cost including dinner,
show, and bus will be $145 per person. It is passed by the Board with
one opposed and two not voting.
At the January meeting, Finance Chairman
Tony Colletta, '72, and Pat Boyle, '49, move to adopt a recommendation
of the committee to appropriate $765 to purchase commemorative watches
for the 26 members of the Catholic League Champion Soccer team. A
lengthy discussion follows. The motion passes 34 - 14 with 1 not voting.
Musial and Knobbs request that their "nay" votes be recorded as such.
President White tells the Board that he will accept nominations for
election next month to the Board of Directors of Save Northeast Catholic
Fund, Inc. The incumbent members whose terms expire are Pat Boyle, '49,
Steve Cardullo, '72, and Joe Kilroy, '65. These three are nominated and
there being no further nominations, White declares them elected to terms
that will expire in 2010.
Mike Leith, '86, informs the Board in
February that the date of April 12 is OK but the site will be Kelly
Breakfast Attendance Lags
Secretary for Catholic Education for the
Archdiocese and a former teacher at NECHS, Dr. Richard McCarron
our Outstanding Achievement Award at the Communion Breakfast on February
23. Don Tollefson, of FOX-TV News, is the Toastmaster. Attendance is the
lowest in 30 years - under 400. Our loss is held to a minimum because of
the generosity of the catering manager at the Wyndham Franklin Plaza.
Father Vincent E. Smith, OSFS, '74, President of NECHS, receives our
Outstanding Alumnus Award. Our long-time attorney, Dennis George who has
filled this role for over 20 years and always pro-bono is named an
Len Knobbs, '53, confirms that we have firm
commitments from the hotel and the Cathedral for next year's date.
The 15th Annual NECHS Hall of Fame
Induction Ceremony takes place on February 25. Joseph F. Kadlec, '62,
Director of Fan Services for the Philadelphia Flyers is the inductee in
the field of Athletics. Since 1967, he has worked in a number of "front
office" capacities for the Flyers. The recipient in the field of
Arts/Entertainment/Education is Kenneth W. Milano, '77. He works as a
GED Instructor at the Lutheran Settlement House in Kensington and as an
English as a Second Language Instructor. He has published a number of
articles and books primarily on history of Kensington and Fishtown. Our
Secretary, John T. Musial, '63, is the Service inductee. John has been a
member of the Alumni Board of Governors, with the exception of two
years, since 1966. He has been involved in CYO sports for over 35 years
as coach, administrator and Regional Athletic Director. The recipient of
the award for Science/Religion is Michael E. Pietrzak, '67. An employee
of RCA, Mike is an Electrical Engineer who has been involved in a number
of modifications to Navy radar systems. He is currently the Responsible
Engineer for a new state-of-the-art shipboard radar system. James A.
Williams, '68, is the recipient in the field of Business/Labor/Military.
Jim began his work in the Labor movement as President and Business
Manager of Glaziers Union Local 252. In 1994, he was elected Regional
Vice President of the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades.
Jim was unanimously elected General President of IUPAT in 2002.
Outlook at the March meeting is dim.
Lucky 12's Chairman Cardullo reports sales are over 200 below last year.
Kilroy tells us that the trip to NYC is cancelled for lack of interest.
The Archdiocese informs Father Smith
that they are requesting a payment of $25,000 toward accumulated deficit
of over $1.7 million. He, in turn, forwards the request to Save
Northeast Catholic Fund's Board of Directors. At their March 26 meeting,
after a lengthy discussion centering around the fact that they have
already committed to paying in excess of $75,000 toward student activity
fees, the Board approves a motion by Len Knobbs, '53 and seconded by Pat
Boyle, '49, to completely underwrite the amount requested. The check
will be forwarded to the Archdiocese after July 1 upon receipt of a copy
of a signed agreement. The motion passes with one negative vote.
In April, the financial outlook for the
Association gets worse, Lucky 12's Club sales are almost 1100 lower than
the previous year. Steve Cardullo, '72, points out that this will
translate into $11000 plus in lost income. Old Timers' Reunion Chairman
Ron Fanning, '39, reports that we only have 67 reservations with less
than two weeks to go. One bright spot, 5K Run Chairman Mike Leith, '86,
advises that we have 104 runners and 34 walkers signed up.
5K Run a Success
Two days later, on a bright sunny
Saturday, 123 runners and 53 walkers participate in the Inaugural Falcon
5K Run. Chairman Mike Leith and President Ed White present commemorative
plates to the overall winners - Michael Kerr (16:57.2) and Elena Gomez
(18:27.4); and certificates to the top three in each age and sex
category. Best news, we make over $3500.
Ninety people show up at Brook Side
Manor on April 23 for the Old Timers' Reunion. If it wasn't for the
50/50, we would have lost money.
At the May meeting, Cardullo reports
that Lucky 12' Club sales came in 1243 below last year. More
importantly, we are more than $10,000 under our budgeted figure and this
is the smallest number of tickets sold since 1992. White appoints a
committee consisting of Len Knobbs, '53, John Hanejko, '65, and Mike
Ferris, '82 to research the feasibility of the Association establishing
a Web site.
Seventy five people are in attendance on
Memorial Day. Father Kilty concelebrates Mass with Fathers Sullivan and
Ashenrenner. Despite a torrential downpour Chairman John Handley, '58,
and President White manage to place a wreath at the Shrine.
On May 28, 2003, at the annual year end
dinner of the Fathers' and Mothers' Association of Northeast Catholic
High School, William J. Feltwell, '73, in his capacity as President of
FAMA, presented a plaque to the Association. The plaque reads To
Northeast Catholic Alumni Association in gratitude for their kindness
and generosity to our sons and for all they do for Northeast Catholic.
Despite a near catastrophe created by
the pro at Melrose CC, the Golf Classic attracts 100 participants. At
last minute less than 2 weeks before its scheduled date, a member
calls the Alumni Office to ask why the date has been changed. Executive
Secretary-Treasurer Knobbs contacts Melrose and is informed that this
was the date that had been assigned to us all along. He calls Chairman
John Barnes, '89, who tries to work things out with Melrose to no avail.
Barnes, and his committee, in true Falcon spirit and tradition overcome
the problems and raise over $25,000 for the Scholarship Fund.
Having served three consecutive terms,
Ed White, '55, is ineligible to run for President. All but one of those
nominated are unopposed. The only office requiring a vote is Assistant
Secretary and Robert M. Woltjen, '83, defeats Jeffrey Rzepczynski, '88.
Those elected in addition to Woltjen are: President - Anthony J.
Colletta, '72, First Vice President - Joseph F. Kilroy, '65, Second Vice
President - Peter P. Gallagher, '37, Third Vice President John J.
Barnes, '89, Fourth Vice President - Kenneth J. Florkowski, '88,
Secretary - John T. Musial, '63, Treasurer - Leonard F. Knobbs, '53,
First Assistant Treasurer - John R. Hanejko, '65, Second Assistant
Treasurer - Lawrence A. Dolan, '37, and Historian - Stephen A. Cardullo,
'72. Motion by Knobbs and Ed McKenna, '63, to appropriate $145 to
purchase commemorative gifts for the Catholic League Champion Chess
team. It is passed with one negative vote.
Dues paying members are 5113, down 113
from last year.
In July, Save Northeast Catholic Fund
forwards its check in the amount of $78,500 covering their payment of
$100 of the activity fee for each student attending NECHS.
Attendance Soars at Shore
On August 2, Five Hundred Ninety Five show up at
Lighthouse Pointe for annual reunion. The joint venture between the
school and the Association can be considered a success.
Chairman John Hanejko, '65, reports, on behalf of the
Falcons Fun in the Sun Committee, at the September meeting, that we made
approximately $8200 on the affair. $2700 was from the sale of our
chances. The school realized a profit of approximately $3,000.
President Tony Colletta, '72 informs the Board that
due to his elevation to the presidency and Kilroy's election as 1st V.
P., there is a vacancy on the Board of Directors of Save Northeast
Catholic Fund, Inc. Ed White, '55, and Bob Woltjen, '83, are nominated
with White the eventual victor. He will serve an unexpired term ending
in February, 2010.
Colletta appoints Len Knobbs, '53, to his
twenty-first consecutive term as Executive Secretary with John Hanejko,
'65, and Ed White, '55, as his Assistants. The Board concurs
In October, Finance Chairman Steve Cardullo, '72,
advises the Board that the Web site committee had made a presentation to
the Finance Committee on the research for a site. The site committee had
interviewed a number of firms and selected Wolfpack as the site manager.
It will cost $3655 to develop and maintain the site. The cost will be
absorbed by the Capital Reserve Fund which was established years ago to
cover capital expenditures such as this.
FALCONWAY TOPS $300,000
For the first time in the sixteen year history of the
FALCONWAY Drive, we exceed the $300,000 mark. The drive
raised $305,946.71. Coincidentally, it also went over the $3 million for
the entire 16 drives. The Scholarship Fund was the beneficiary of
$206,644.93, Save Northeast Catholic Fund received $72,967.32, and the
Oblates received $26,334.46.
At the November 13 Board meeting, Golf Classic
Chairman John Barnes, '89, introduces a motion, seconded by Len Knobbs,
to hold the Golf Classic at Ashbourne Country Club on June 7, 2004. It
The crowd at the Turkey Bowl Beef & Beer dropped
again. Chairman Bob Woltjen, '83, tells us that we made over $3000.
The Board of Trustees of the Scholarship Fund vote
unanimously at their November meeting to approve a motion by Len Knobbs,
'53, and Pat Boyle, '49, to increase the value of the grants to incoming
Freshmen at NECHS to $225,000 and reduce the number of grants awarded to
40. The grants awarded will be 5 @ $10,000, 5 @ $8,000, 5 @ $6000, 5 @
$5000, and 20 @ $4000.
The Board meeting on January 8 is a busy one. Len
Knobbs, '53, advises that the band "Slippery" has been contracted for
the 75th Anniversary Dinner Dance on September 26. Cost of the dinner is
$65 per person which includes cocktails, hors' d'oeuvres, and your
choice of entree - filet mignon, veal cordon bleu or stuffed flounder.
Ads in the History book will go for $150 (page), $100 (½ page), $60 (1/4
page), and $35 (1/8 page). Inside covers will cost $500. He asks Classes
to utilize their funds to purchase ads. Joe Kilroy, '65, and Joe
McGillen, '44, move to sponsor a trip to the Dutch Apple Dinner Theatre
in Lancaster on April 24 at a cost of $70 per person. Motion is passed
with 3 not voting. Ray Rysak, '66, makes a motion that Board members
voluntarily contribute $10 each toward the cost of purchasing the inside
front cover. It is seconded by Jim Hilbert, '71. The motion passes 41 -
3 with 5 not voting.
NECHS Hall of Fame holds its induction ceremony on
February 24. Mike Fallon, '48 is inducted in the field of Athletics. An
All-City and All Big 5 basketball star at St. Joseph's University, he
coached basketball at Cardinal Dougherty HS from 1956 until 1960. Jerry
Jonas, '49, a columnist for Bucks County Courier Times, is the recipient
of the award for Arts/Entertainment/Education. He had also worked as a
cartoonist for the Evening Bulletin and Levittown Evening Press. Louis
J. Sigmund, '50, who received the Navy Cross during the Korean War is
the recipient for Business/Labor/Military. The Service award is
presented to State Representative John J. Taylor, '73. John has served
in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives since 1984. The recipient
of the Science/Religion award is Charles J. Wolf, MD. Since 1999, Dr.
Wolf, a specialist in renal diseases and hypertension, has been the
Chief Medical Officer for Pennsylvania Hospital.
On March 11, Joe Kilroy, '65, informs the Board that
President Colletta had approved the purchase of 50 tickets for a
Phillies vs. Kansas City Royals at the new Citizens Bank Park. Kilroy
makes a motion seconded by Jim Hilbert, '71 to approve the President's
decision. The Board agrees unanimously.
Bill Campbell, locally renowned sportscaster is the
principal speaker at the March 28 Communion Breakfast.
'58, is Toastmaster. Campbell also accepts our annual Outstanding
Achievement Award. Lawrence A. Dolan, '37, and James P. Scanlon, '30
receive our Outstanding Alumnus Award.
At the April meeting Breakfast Sales Chairman John
Hanejko, '65, reports that ticket sales almost made it to 500. We had
489 in attendance. As a result, we have been notified of a significant
increase in the price for next year by the Wyndham Franklin Plaza. Len
Knobbs tells the Board that ticket sales and ad sales for the
Anniversary Dinner Dance are minimal. Vice Chairman of the Activities
Committee Joe Mulawka, '51, advises the Board that the Dutch Apple Trip
has been cancelled due to lack of interest. Ron Fanning, '39, Chairman
of the Old Timers' Reunion advises that sales are terrible with less
than two weeks to go.
Motion by Steve Cardullo, '72, and Mike Fenerty, '81
to appropriate $475 to purchase commemorative gifts for the Catholic
League Champion wrestling team. Motion carries with one nay vote and one
not voting. Motion by Steve Cardullo, '72, and Len Knobbs, '53 to
appropriate $1000 as a donation to the school in connection with the Red
Tie fund raiser being held by NECHS. Motion passes unanimously.
The 2nd Annual Falcon 5K Run attracts fewer
participants than last year but we worked out a few of the kinks from
last year. Thanks to Paul Amrhein, '72, and his innovative software, we
are able to provide instantaneous race results. We have 71 runners and
26 walkers participate. Unfortunately, this writer accidentally erases
the disk with the data so we can't tell you who the winners are.
Only 75 people attend our Old Timers Reunion.
At the end of April, our long awaited website
WWW.NECATHALUMNI.ORG is up and running.
In May, the Board of Trustees of the Scholarship Fund
reelect Len Knobbs, '53 to a three-year term as Treasurer.
At the May meeting, Old Timers' Reunion Chairman Ron
Fanning, '39, reports attendance was less than 100 and says he doesn't
understand why attendance at this affair doesn't increase since we add a
larger class every year.
Memorial Day Services attract only 55 people.
Chairman John Handley asks the Board to come up with ways of attracting
more people to this worthwhile "free" event.
On June 1, Colletta receives a letter from Father
Smith, North's President, enclosing a copy of a letter from the
Archdiocese requesting a payment of $199,000 toward the accumulated
deficit of almost $2 million. This poses a major problem for Save
Northeast Catholic Fund's Board. They have already committed to over an
anticipated $80,000 plus to underwrite the $100 per student toward their
activity fee. This has been promised, in writing, to the students'
parents and been talked up at "open houses" at NECHS to attract
students. The Board is divided. One element wants to do nothing this
year, make our final payment on the commitment to the students and then
consider requests for deficit payments in future fiscal years. Another
side wants to pay the entire requested payment. The discussion goes on
and on. A motion to pay nothing fails 5 to 2. Kilroy and Cardullo move
to make a payment of $25,000 in the next fiscal year upon receipt of a
signed agreement. The motion carries 5 to 2.
With sales lagging for the 75th Anniversary
celebration, the committee decides to mail a letter to every alumnus of
record at a cost of over $4,000. It is hoped this will spur sales of
both ads and dinners.
Chairman Joe Kilroy, '65, reports that Lucky 12's
Club sales are up by 390 over last year.
The budget as proposed by the Finance Committee
contains major changes. Chairman Steve Cardullo, '72, explains them to
the Board. First, the committee is proposing not to hold an Old Timers'
Reunion during the fiscal year ending June 30, 2005. Rather they would
schedule it for the Fall of '05 hoping to attract larger participation.
Second, they propose a significant increase in the expenses for the
Executive Secretary and his assistants. Something that had not been done
in a number of years. Cardullo moved to accept the budget, it was
seconded by Bill McCormac, '61. After a lengthy discussion, it was
approved with one member voting nay. Cardullo proposed an appropriation
of $250 for a Tee Sponsor for the Oblates Golf Classic on September 13.
Len Knobbs seconded it and it was passed unanimously.
There was no opposition to any of the candidates for
the Executive Board. The officers for next year are: Tony Colletta, '72,
- President, Joe Kilroy, '65 - 1st V. P., Pete Gallagher, '37 - 2nd V.
P., John Barnes, '89 - 3rd V. P., Ken Florkowski, '88 - 4th V. P., John
Musial, '63 - Sec'y., Len Knobbs, '53 - Treas., Bob Woltjen, '83 -
Ass't. Sec'y., John Hanejko, '65 - 1st Ass't. Treas., Larry Dolan, '37 -
2nd Ass't. Treas., and Steve Cardullo, '72 Historian.
On June 19, 50 members journey to Citizens Bank Park
to see the Phillies beat the Royals.
We end the year with 4904 dues payers, our lowest
total since 1995.
Save NEC Fund forwards its check in the amount of
$25,000 to the Archdiocese on July 22, as a payment against the NECHS
deficit and eight days later sends Father Smith a check for $81,700
covering payment for the students' activity fee.
On August 7, we fill Lighthouse Pointe almost to
capacity with over 700 in attendance. A great day - sun, fun and
camaraderie. What else can you ask for?
All things considered, we have much to be thankful
for, and in the measure of things, we have accomplished quite a lot in
38,703 living and dead bear the title "alumnus". To
the best of our knowledge over 31,000 are still alive - from 17 members
of the Class of '29 to 169 members of the Class of '04.
In our 75 years, our accomplishments and those of our
members are legendary - not the least of which is our support of NECHS
and the Oblates.
During this period, the Association has contributed
over One million dollars to the school and the Oblates.
Northeast Catholic Alumni Memorial Scholarship Fund,
Inc, in its 36 years of existence has contributed $2,131,531 to Catholic
education by underwriting the tuition of students. The bulk of this -
$1,778,781 - has gone for tuition assistance to students of NECHS.
Save Northeast Catholic Fund has contributed, in
eleven short years, $510,447 to underwrite deficits and various
improvement projects at our Alma Mater.
We continue to provide a link to the site of the
happy days of our adolescence and we strive to continue to provide the
opportunity for a Salesian education in the Northeast Catholic tradition
to future generations.
Twenty five years ago, this author had the help of
Joe McKeown, '33, in composing the first 50 years. This time, I did it
all alone. That's neither complaint nor braggadocio, merely, a way of
saying, if you don't like what you read you can blame me - Len Knobbs,
I am indebted to our Historians for the records, both
written and pictorial, they kept over the years. In particular, I would
like to express my gratitude to Steve Cardullo, '72, for the hours he
spent in research for this project, and to John Hanejko, '65, for his
help in selecting photos and proof reading.
I would be remiss if I didn't mention some very
special people both alive and dead - who played an important part in
shaping the Association and my part in it over the past 47 plus years.
Taking the risk of overlooking or angering someone, I acknowledge
gratefully: Fathers Fernan Brennan, John Tye, Edward Simons, and Neil
Kilty, Chick Quinn, '36, Joe Murphy, '29, Jim Fitzgerald, '42, Charlie
Malone, '30, Jim Cox, '36, Pat Boyle, '49, Rocco lacone, '55, Bill
Arnoldy, '38, Tony Cendrowski, '57, Ray Zegarski, '59, John Musial, '65,
John Hanejko, '65, Tom Morgan, '64, Jim Bollendorf, '73, Steve Cardullo,
'72, Ed White, '55, Tony Colletta, '72, "Swede" Mallon, '29, Jim
Scanlon, '30, "Tim" Dunleavy, '32, Ed Ganister, '32, Joe McKeown, '33,
Bill O'Connell, '34, Paul Kelly, '34, Jack Thiers, '34, Paul Quinn, '36,
Pete Gallagher, '37, Ed Guinan, '37, Frank Gormley, '38, Tom Hills, '38,
John Boyle, '39, Dick McGrath, '39, Joe Edwards, '40, Joe Mackin, '40,
Vince McGowan, '41, Frank Devinney, '42, Joe Kling, '42, Jim Sproul,
'42, Phil McManus, '43, "Bud" DiGiacomo, Leo McCarthy, '44, "Hank"
Blaszczyk, '45, "Reds" Cawley, '45, Jerry Porter, '46, Joe Campbell,
'46, Irv Straw, '46, Jim Flanagan, '47, Tom Cleary, '47, Bernie
Donnelly, '50, Joe Mulawka, '51, Jack Junod, '52, Bill Sullivan, '53,
Bill Parkes, '54, Bill Coyle, '56, Ed Markowski, '56, John Handley, '58,
Bill Nesbitt, '59, Joe Gabor, '61, Bill McCormac, '61, Jim Walker, '62,
Joe Kilroy, '65, Ray Rysak, '66, Jim Whalen, '67, Tom Joyce, '69, Jim
Kelly, '70, Jim Hilbert, '71, Bill Feltwell, '73, Jerry Volgraf, '81,
Bob Woltjen, '83, John Dooley, '84, Ken Florkowski, '88, and John
I saved a special mention for my dear friend and
fellow Class Rep for 40 years - Frank Gleason, May God Bless him.
In 1979, I thanked my wife, Barbara. I would be
remiss if I didn't thank her once again for the help she gave in
selecting photos and reading copy and just being there for the past 47
years while I've spent a great deal of time at "North".
For the sake of those who helped - we hope you
enjoyed traveling from 1929 to 2004 with us in our time machine. In
closing, we feel the efforts of the Association through the years can
best be described by paraphrasing the words of a few stanzas of a
Regrets, we had a few,
But then again, too few to mention,
We did what we had to do
And saw it through without exception.
We planned each charted course,
Each careful step along the byway,
And more... much more than this...
We did it OUR WAY!
Yes, There were times,
We're sure you knew
When we bit off more than we could chew,
But through it all,
When there was doubt,
We ate it up and spit it out,
We faced it all and we stood tall,
And did it, OUR WAY!
At the October meeting of the Board, Knobbs reports
that 300 were in attendance at the 75th Anniversary celebration well
below what we anticipated. However, the event was a financial success
generating over $6600 in profit for the Association.
The FALCONWAYXVI drive
is the most successful to date raising $335,010.47 over $29,000 more
than last year. The Oblates received $30,537., Save NEC Fund -
$73,819.05, and the Scholarship Fund - $230,654.42.
Attendance at the Turkey Bowl Beef and Beer dropped
again to 80. Chairman Bob Woltjen, '83, attributed the decrease to
Eagles game being a late afternoon start. Thanks to the Big Board
drawing we made about $2,000.
A full bus of alumni and friends ventured to New York
City to enjoy the matinee performance of the Radio City Music Hall
Christmas Show. Chairman Joe Kilroy, '65 reports a profit of over $600.
The NECHS Hall of Fame inductees this year are headed
by our own Father Neil Kilty, OSFS, '59 who is the Religion/Science
recipient. Dennis Seddon, '67, long time coach at Roman Catholic is the
recipient for Athletics. Carl Gregory, '51, CEO of the Third Federal
Savings receives the award for Business/Labor/Military. Joseph Hand,
'54, retired police officer and chairman of Hand Promotions is given the
award for Service. Thomas Smith, '66, former teacher at NECHS and
currently the number two man in the Archdiocesan Office of Education
accepts the award for Arts/Entertainment/Education.
425 are in attendance at the annual Communion
Breakfast. John Doman, '62, stage, screen and TV actor is the
Toastmaster and former Pennsylvania Governor Mark Schweiker receives the
Outstanding Achievement Award and delivers the principal address.
President Colletta, '72, presents a plaque honoring Frank Devinney, '42
for fifty years of service on the Board of Governors. John Hanejko,
'65 receives a plaque for 25 years service.
The Falcon 5K Run and Walk is held on Kelly Drive on
Saturday, April 9. Chairman Steve Cardullo, '72, reports 72 runners and
40 walkers participated. The champions were Art deHavenon of New York
City and Joan Hunter. DeHavenon's time was 18:07 and Hunter finished in
18:38 which besides winning the Women's Division was good for third
At the May meeting, Lucky 12's Club Chairman Joe
Kilroy, '65, reports that ticket sales were 427 less than last year.
Breakfast Arrangements Chairman Len Knobbs, '53 advises the Board that
the committee had checked out two other sites but they presented
problems in that the meal would be buffet style and one would be on
paper plates. Accordingly, the committee was recommending that we remain
at the Franklin Wyndham Plaza. The Board concurs unanimously.
Falcons Fun in the Sun committee Chairman John
Hanejko, '65, discussed a meeting the committee had with Mike McCarron,
'84, the school's Director of Institutional Advancement concerning the
split of potential profit from the sale of tickets. The committee
recommends the profit from ticket sales be split evenly with the school.
The Association would retain the profit from the Big Board raffle. After
a lengthy discussion, the Board concurs.
Attendance at the Memorial Day Service drops to 62.
Chairman John Handley, '58 advises that Mass was concelebrated in the
school auditorium by Oblates Fathers Neil Kilty, '59, Robert
Ashenbrenner, '44, John Spellman, '56, and John Sullivan.
Elections at the June meeting see Ed White, '55,
defeat John Musial, '63 for the post of 1st Vice President. The new
officers for the coming year, in addition to White, are: President -
Anthony Colletta, '72; 2nd V. P. - Peter Gallagher, '37; 3rd V. P. -
John Barnes, '89; 4th V. P. - Kenneth Florkowski, '88; Secretary - John
Handley, '58; Treasurer - Leonard Knobbs, '53; Assistant Secretary -
Robert Woltjen, '83; 1st Assistant Treasurer - John Hanejko, '65; 2nd
Assistant Treasurer - Henry Stahl, '66; and Historian - Stephen
There is a new venue for the Golf Classic - Ashbourne
Country Club - and Chairman John Barnes, '89 and his crew do their usual
great job netting over $21,000 for the Scholarship Fund.
At the June 23 meeting of the Board of Directors of
the Save Northeast Catholic Fund a letter is read from the Archdiocese
requesting that the school pay $75,000 toward its deficit. A motion is
made by Knobbs and Kilroy to pay the amount requested. After a
discussion it is passed unanimously.
We end the year with 4,668 members - down from last
year and the first time since 1988 that less than 15% to the membership
are dues paying members.
Falcons Fun in the Sun A Success
The largest turnout ever - 979 - shows up at
Lighthouse Pointe on August 6. The school and the Association split the
profit of $14,099.44 evenly. The Association garners another $2572 as a
result of the raffle.
On September 30 former president Charles J. "Chick"
Quinn dies. Chick served as president from November 27, 1949 to June 30,
1954. He was the last man to be elected president directly by the
membership. He and the late Joe McKeown, '33, were primarily responsible
for the incorporation of the Association. With the new corporate
structure, officers were elected by the Board of Governors and Chick
chose not to run in 1954. He served as the first Treasurer of the
Scholarship Fund from May, 1968 to May, 1971 and as a Trustee from then
until his death.
A month to the day, we lose another Association
stalwart - Lawrence A. Dolan, '37. Larry was first elected to the Board
in November, 1948 and served with the exception of two months until May,
1958. He returned to the Board in March, 1973 and was a member until his
death. Larry served as 1st Assistant Treasurer from July 1987 to June,
1988 and as 2nd Assistant Treasurer from July 1992 to June, 2005.
The annual drive topped last year's mark by over
$5,000 to reach $340,564.08. The Save NEC Fund and the Oblates increased
over last year's total while donations to the Scholarship Fund were well
102 attended our annual Old Timers' Reunion. Every
Class from '33 to '45 was represented.
Chairman Bob Woltjen, '83, reports that 150 attended
the Turkey Bowl Beef & Beer.
NECHS Hall of Fame induction ceremony is held on
February 21, 2006 with the following men honored.
Arts/Entertainment/Education - John Grady, '55, Director of LaSalle
University Honors Program. Athletics - Don D'Ambra, '90, Captain of the
Philadelphia Kixx indoor soccer team. Business/Labor/Military - John
Avery, '69, President of Prudential Life Insurance Company.
Religion/Science - Dr. Michael Shetzline, MD, PhD, a nationally
recognized internist. Service - Edward Lowry, '62, Director of the
Philadelphia Vietnam Veterans Organization.
Golf Classic Chairman John Barnes, '89, reports, at
the March meeting that the Classic will move to North Hills Country
Club. He and Knobbs move to hold the event on May 22. The Board
Steve Cardullo, '72, as Finance Committee Chair moves
to donate $1,000 to the school on the occasion of their Red Tie Gala. It
seconded by Knobbs and approved unanimously by the Board.
445 are present at the Cathedral for our annual
Memorial Mass and then they adjourn to the Sheraton Center City
breakfast. Local comic Joey Callahan is Toastmaster and the principal
speaker and recipient of our Outstanding Achievement award is former
Philadelphia Eagle Vince Papale.
President Tony Colletta, '72, informs the Board, at
the April meeting, that there was no mention in the Red Tie Gala program
of our donation while others were listed. He contacted Father Smith,
school president, for an explanation and to date has not received one.
Eighty-nine runners are joined by thirty walkers, in
a torrential downpour, for the Fourth Annual Falcon 5k Run and Walk held
on Kelly Drive. Nick Willey captures the Men's Gold with a time of
17:25.6. The Women's Crown goes to Joann McMahon. Her time - 21:56.5.
On April 25, Father John J. Conmy, OSFS, '29, dies.
Father was a man of many talents and many firsts. He was our first
President, the first alumnus ordained to the priesthood, the first
alumnus to become Provincial of the Oblates but most of all he was truly
a Man of God.
150 golfers teed off at North Hills CC for our annual
Classic. Initial reports from Chairman John Barnes, '89, indicate a
profit for the Scholarship Fund of between $20 and $25 thousand dollars.
At the June meeting, we have contests for three of
the four vice presidential offices. John Musial, '63, defeats Dave
Mastropietro for 1st VP, Hank Stahl, '66, is the winner over Kevin
Leyland, '84, for 2nd VP, and Brian Darreff, '74, edges Tom Ballard,
'86, for 4th VP. Those elected without opposition were Ed White, '55,
President; John Barnes, '89, 3rd VP; John Handley, '58, Secretary; Len
Knobbs, '53, Treasurer; Bob Woltjen, '83, Assistant Secretary; John
Hanejko, '65, 1st Assistant Treasurer; Jeff Brown, '79, 2nd Assistant
Treasurer; and Anthony Colletta, '72, Historian.
The Finance Committee recommends continuing to place
$10,000 per year for the next four years in the Building Fund Reserve.
There is currently $50,000 in the Fund. Assuming that it is not needed,
this would create a fund of $90,000 by 2010. There is length debate pro
and con the issue. The motion by Steve Cardullo, '72, and John Musial,
'63, is to adopt the recommendation as part of the proposed budget. It
is passed 34 to 14 with 2 abstentions.
On June 19, the Board of Directors of Save Northeast
Catholic Fund, Inc. meets to act on a request from the Archdiocese to
assist in underwriting a proposed deficit of NECHS. Treasurer Knobbs
points out that we have two different performance agreements before us.
The one dated April 20, 2006 is for $280,000 and the one dated May 30,
2006 is for $300,000. Knobbs and Cardullo move to approve the
expenditure of $100,000 to the Archdiocese in support of the school.
After a long debate it is approved 5 to 2.
We end the year with 4,668 dues paying members - 188
below last year.
Attendance at Falcons Fun in the Sun at Lighthouse
Pointe drops to 852 and the profit to the school and the Association
In September, President Ed White, '55, informs the
Board that he has received a request from Mike McCarron, '84, head
basketball coach and Development Director, that the Athletic Department
has ordered two state-of the-art scoreboards for the gym at a cost of
$7,000. They are looking for sponsors. Finance Chairmen Pat McNally,
'82, indicates the committee has met and will present a proposal under
new business. He and Jim Hilbert, '71, move to appropriate $3,500 to
sponsor one of the scoreboards. The motion was approved unanimously.
FALCONWAY XVIII returns are well below
last year's record setting returns. The total of $295,876.41 is over
$44,000 less with the Scholarship Fund suffering most of the loss.
Attendance at Old Timer's Reunion Soars
The change of the Old Timer's Reunion from Spring to
Fall seems to be what the doctor ordered. Attendance is up to 121 - our
largest to date. Chairman Ron Fanning, '39, reports a great time was had
Likewise, Turkey Bowl Beef & Beer Chairman Bob
Woltjen, '83, reports on the November 19 event at Chickie's and Pete's
on the Boulevard.
At the February 8, 2007 meeting of the Board, an
election for positions on the Save NEC Fund Board of Directors. Those
elected will serve for seven years. Seven men have been nominated for
the three positions. One - Ray Rysak, '66 - declined the nomination. The
results were Steve Cardullo, '72 - 31; Pat Boyle, '49 - 30; Joe Glackin,
'73 - 22; Bob Woltjen, '83 - 21; Jack Marczely, '55 - 19; and Jeff
Rzepczynski, '88 - 12. Thus, Cardullo, Boyle, and Glackin were elected.
On February 20, the following men were inducted into
the NECHS Hall of Fame. Arts/Entertainment/Education - Jim Arnosky, '64;
Athletics - Jim Gallagher, '47; Jim Dugan, '63 -
Business/Labor/Military; Father John Dennis, OSFS, '37 -
Religion/Science; and Vince Furlong, '50 - Service.
The Board of Trustees of the Scholarship Fund votes
unanimously to name this year's grants in honor of the Association's
first president and a late member of the Board of Trustees - Father John
J. Conmy, OSFS, '29.
United States Attorney for Eastern Pennsylvania,
Patrick Meehan, is the principal speaker and recipient of our
Outstanding Achievement Award at the Communion Breakfast. Bob (Hird)
Kelly, of the CBS3 TV staff, and a member of the honor class of 1981 is
the Toastmaster. Three Hundred and Ninety-One are in attendance. Frank
Devinney, '42, and Nick Giordano, '61, receive the Outstanding Alumnus
Award. Frank has been a member of the Board of Governors for over 54
years. Nick is the former head of the Philadelphia Stock Exchange and
current acting President of LaSalle University. Len Knobbs, '53, is
honored for 50 years of service on the Board of Governors.
With attendance getting smaller each year, a
discussion ensues at the April Board meeting about the possibility of
relocating to somewhere in the Northeast. President White assures the
Board that the situation will be reviewed each year.
On April 14, 120 attend the first Decade Reunion -
the 80's. The Falcon 5K Run and Walk was held earlier that
day with 56
runners and 18 walkers participating. The champs are Michael Broom
(17:58.51) and Tallulah Mac (22:18.81).
The Golf Classic has 137 golfers tee off - 17 in the
AM and 120 in the PM. It is a huge social and financial success. The
winning foursome with a best ball score of 60 was Bob Hansen, Bart
Sparango, Rick Seiler, and Dom DiSandro, '57. All proceeds, as usual,
benefit the Scholarship Fund.
The Scholarship Fund Trustees elect Len Knobbs, '53,
to his ninth consecutive three-year term as Treasurer.
At the June meeting of the Board there is only one
contest for the Executive Board, between Hank Stahl, '66, and Dave
Mastropietro, '87. Stahl prevails. The other officers for the coming
year are: President - Ed White, '55; 1st VP - John Musial, '63; 3rd VP -
John Barnes, '89; 4th VP - Brian Darreff, '74; Secretary - John Handley,
'58; Treasurer - Len Knobbs, '53; Assistant Secretary - Bob Woltjen,
'83; 1st Assistant Treasurer - John Hanejko, '65; 2nd Assistant
Treasurer - Jeff Brown, '79; and Historian - Tony Colletta, '72.
We have 4,616 members for the year - down slightly
from last year.
698 attend the annual Falcons Fun in the Sun in
August at Lighthouse Pointe in Wildwood. The crowd is down again.
For the first time NECHS has a lay President -
Stanley R. Witalec, '66. Stan is a veteran teacher, principal, and
administrator from the Philadelphia public school system.
At the September 20 meeting of the Trustees of the
Scholarship Fund, Treasurer Len Knobbs, '53, presents an analysis of the
number and value of grants awarded to students entering NECHS. This was
in response to a request by Trustee Pat Boyle, '49 at the last meeting
of the Board. As a result of the analysis, he moves to increase the
value of the grants awarded annually to $250,000 to 30 incoming Freshman
as follows; 5 grants @ $12,000 each; five grants @ $10,000 each; 10
grants @ $8,000 each; and 10 grants @ $6,000 each. It is seconded by
Boyle. All grants are payable in equal semi-annual installments over
four years. The Board concurs unanimously.
In October, five couples sail on The Diamond
Princess for a 15-day cruise from Los Angeles to and around the
Hawaiian islands with a stop in Ensenada, Mexico on the way back. A
modest profit is made for the Association.
FALCONWAY XIX donations total
$333,111.83 up over $37,000 from last year.
In November, both the Old Timer's Reunion and the
Turkey Bowl Beef and Beer set attendance records. 132 attend the Reunion
and 205 are present at the Beef and beer.
The Board of Directors of Save Northeast Fund, Inc.,
meeting in December, receive a letter from school president Stan
Witalec, '66, enclosing a copy of a Performance Agreement signed last
June by Father Smith. It calls for a payment of $400,000. He indicates
that Friends of NECHS and the school had paid part of it. Len Knobbs,
'53, and Tony Colletta, '72 make a motion to pay $125,000 to the
Archdiocese. It passes 5 to 1.
The 20th Annual NECHS Hall of Fame induction ceremony
took place on March 4. The following men were enshrined in services in
the school auditorium - Arts/Entertainment/Education - James Dougherty,
PhD, '41; Athletics - Gerard Brindisi, '74; Business/Labor/Military -
John Fries, '61; Religion/Science - James Padova, MD, '56, and Service -
Edward White, '55.
Communion Breakfast attendance drops
again to 352. Sales Chairman John Hanejko, '65, notes that this is the lowest total
since 1977. FOX29 Sportscaster Don Tollefson receives the Outstanding
Achievement award for his
work with disadvantaged children and he
delivers the principal address. John Barnes, '89, does an excellent job
as Toastmaster filling in for John Doman, '62, when a last minute change
in his filming schedule prohibited him from attending. A long-time and
well-loved North teacher - Robert H. Fitzsimmons, '53 - is named an
On an up note Falcon 5k Run and Walk attendance rises
- 89 runners and 27 walkers.
The Golf Classic, scheduled for Torresdale-Frankford
CC, is postponed due to rain. It will be held on July 21.
All of the incumbent officers are unopposed and are
declared reelected by Elections Committee Chairman Pat Boyle, '49. With
Ed White's reelection as President, he becomes the third man to have
elected to this office six times.
Memorial Day Services begin with a Mass in the school
auditorium concelebrated by our chaplain, Father Neil Kilty, OSFS, '59,
and Fathers Robert Ashenbrenner, OSFS, '44, and John Spellman, OSFS.
Attendance, as reported by Chairman John Handley, '58, was 75 which is
on a par with the last few years.
Chairman John Musial, '63, reports that Lucky 12's
sales are down from last. He points out that the profit from this
venture is what underwrites most of our programs and assistance to the
school. It is vital that every Board member and member of the
Association support the program.
On June 25, 2008, President Ed White, '55, and
Executive Secretary-Treasurer Len Knobbs, '53, meet with school
president Stan Witalec, '66, accountant Gerald McCormac, Jason Marquess,
'67, Jim Meehan, '67, and Dennis Kelly, '67, as representatives of
FONECHS, and David Magee, Director of Educational Financial Services for
the Archdiocese. As a result of this meeting, President White called a
meeting of the Save NEC Board. They met on July 16, with Witalec,
Marquess, and Kelly present, to discuss to the school's financial state.
After listening to their presentation, and hearing from White and Knobbs
about the meeting at the Office of Catholic Education, Knobbs made a
motion seconded by Pat Boyle, '49, to pay $250,000 to the Archdiocese on
behalf of the school.
Dues paying membership increases to 4917 from 4616
last year which almost 16% of the potential membership.
Attendance at Falcons Fun in the Sun at Lighthouse
Pointe in Wildwood increases also from 742 to 793.
On October 15, past president and current Historian
Tony Colletta, '72 resigns from the Board of Governors due to an
increasing work schedule and health issues. This also creates a vacancy
on the Board of Directors of Save Northeast Catholic Fund.
Returns for FALCONWAY XX are down over
$18,000 from last year. Of the $314,371.57 raised, $201,209.52 went to
the Scholarship Fund, $80,520.53 to Save Northeast Catholic Fund, and
$32,641.52 to the Oblates.
In November, the Board of Governors elect Brian
Darreff, '74, to the Board of Directors of Save NEC Fund.
Both the Old Timers' Reunion and Turkey Bowl Beef and
Beer suffer major drops in attendance. Only 76 attend the Old Timers'
which is the lowest since 2003, and 165 attend the Beef and Beer at
Chickie's and Pete's.
At the January meeting, Activities Committee Chairman
Len Knobbs, '53, proposes that we sponsor a cruise to Bermuda from
October 3 to 10. The Norwegian Majesty will leave from the cruise
terminal at the old Philadelphia Navy Yard thus obviating the need for
air travel for most. Inside cabins on decks 3 and 4 would be $645 per
person; outside cabins on the same decks - $695 per person and outside
cabins on deck 6 would be $755 per person. The Association would receive
a commission of $20 per person; a free cocktail party if we book 8
cabins and a free trip for each group of 15 we have on the cruise. If we
get the free cabin(s), they will be folded into the profit. It is
seconded by John Musial, '63, and approved with one member not voting.
On February 10, the 21st NECHS Hall of Fame induction
ceremony takes place in the school auditorium. Thomas Forkin, '52 -
Arts/Entertainment/Education; James Hueber, '66 - Athletics; Steven
McCaffrey, '81 - Business/Labor/Military; Edward McClay, MD, '67; and
Paul Hondros, '66 - Service are the men honored.
The Board of Directors of Save Northeast Catholic
Fund, Inc. meets on February 19 in response to letter from school
president Stan Witalec, '66, requesting their immediate help in
responding to a demand by the Archdiocese that school pay immediately
$400,000 toward its deficit. In attendance were President Ed White, '55,
VP John Musial, '63, Treasurer Len Knobbs, '53, and Directors John
Barnes, '89, Pat Boyle, '49, Steve Cardullo, '72, Brian Darreff, '74,
Joe Glackin, '73, and John Hanejko, '65. After a lengthy discussion
among the directors, Glackin and Darreff made a motion to pay the
$400,000 to the Archdiocese. The Board concurred unanimously. Due to the
need to redeem certificates of deposit and sell securities to meet the
payment, Knobbs contacts the Dr. Richard McCarron, Secretary for
Catholic Education and they agree that the Fund will forward $75,000
immediately and pay the remaining $325,000 by June 15, 2009.
The Lucky 12's Club mailing and Communion Breakfast
announcement are sent to the 21,000 members that we have addresses for
and no sooner do they arrive when the tumult begins. The alumni office
and President White are inundated with complaints regarding the
selection of Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Seamus McCaffrey as the
recipient of our annual Outstanding Achievement Award because of his
alleged stance regarding abortion. John Handley, '58, Speakers'
Committee Chair advises the Board of the process for selection and the
vetting of those nominated, he indicates that they could find no mention
of this in their research. Executive Secretary-Treasurer Len Knobbs, '53
supports his statement and tells the Board that since then, he and John
Hanejko, '65, had spent hours checking the internet, and specifically
back issues of the Catholic Standard and Times and could find no
instance of support for these allegations against McCaffrey. Ed
Markowski, '56, stated; "he had called John Stanton, '45, who advised
him that the Justice didn't answer a questionnaire from the Pro-Life
Political Action Committee of Southeastern Pennsylvania and that he
shared some of his views with Planned Parenthood, thus he is an
abortionist". President Ed White, '55, stated that he had spoken with a
priest friend of his who has known the Justice for a number of years and
that in his opinion he is not pro-choice. He also informed the Board
that McCaffrey has been inducted into the Cardinal Dougherty High School
Hall of Fame and has been recognized on a number of occasions by the
Subsequent to the March 12 meeting of the Board,
Father Nicholas Waseline, OSFS, North's Principal contacts Ed White and
asks to meet with the Executive Board. White schedules the meeting for
March 17. In attendance were Father Waseline and school president Stan
Witalec, '66 along with President Ed White, '55, 1st VP John Musial,
'63, 4th VP Brian Darreff, '74, Secretary John Handley, '58, Executive
Secretary-Treasurer Len Knobbs, '53, 1st Assistant Treasurer John
White began the meeting by informing them that he had
received a letter from Bishop McFadden stating the Archdiocese's
objection to Justice McCaffrey speaking and why various members of the
school administration would be prohibited from attending the Breakfast.
Father Waseline and Mr. Witalec explained that they had received
numerous phone calls complaining about the award to McCaffrey. In
response to a question from Knobbs, he said most were from spouses of
alumni who stated their husbands were too upset to call.
Hanejko indicated that despite many hours of combing
the internet, they had found only one reference to the issue - a page
from the Bucks County Action Fund concerning the Planned Parenthood
endorsement. Handley noted that McCaffrey was not inducted into the
Dougherty Hall of Fame until after he had been through a primary and
general election campaign at which time these issues were supposedly
Mr. Witalec questioned what we will do if there are
pickets at the Cathedral or the hotel. Knobbs responded that the hotel
had advised him that the Sheraton had contacted the Philadelphia Police
Department and that they will have members of their Civil Affairs Unit
on hand to insure order and that he had advised Monsignor McCulken,
rector of the Cathedral, that it might be wise to do likewise. Musial
raised the issue as to whether the Oblates would be present. Father
Waseline stated that Father James Greenfield, Oblate Provincial, had
advised him, by phone, that he would not be attending. Father William
McCandless, OSFS, '89, Salesianum Principal, who is scheduled to be the
Principal Celebrant and Homilist is out town and we were unable to
Darreff stated: "I have not seen any evidence as to
the Justice's stance on life. A member of the Judiciary is not supposed
to enable you to understand their position on issues. As an individual,
I'm not comfortable saying that the Justice is pro-life or
pro-abortion". President White then informed Father Waseline and Mr.
Witalec that the Association would not retract our award to Justice
463 attend the Mass and Communion Breakfast on March
29. Mass at the Cathedral is concelebrated by Oblate
Fathers William McCandless, '89, Neil Kilty, '59, John Spellman, '56, George Brownholtz,
'58, and John McGinley, '58, and Father Michael Ryan. Breakfast follows
at the Sheraton City Center where Inquirer sports columnist Keith
Pompey, '89 is the Toastmaster. Justice McCaffrey receives the
Outstanding Achievement Award, and former president Pat Boyle, '49 is
named an Outstanding Alumnus.
At the May meeting of the Board of Governors,
Executive Secretary-Treasurer Len Knobbs, '53, informs the Board of the
Save NEC Fund decision to pay $400,000 to the Archdiocese on behalf of
the school. He explains that $75,000 has been and the balance will be
forwarded by June 15. He further advises them that makes a total of
$775,000 the Fund has given to the Archdiocese in the last 15 months to
attempt to underwrite the debt of the school. With President White
ineligible for another term, John R. Hanejko, '65, is nominated for
President. He, and the other incumbent officers are unopposed.
Accordingly, Election Committee Chairman Pat Boyle, '49, informs the
Board, by letter, of the members of the Executive Board for the coming
year: President - John R. Hanejko, '65; First Vice President - John T.
Musial, '63; Second Vice President - Henry J. Stahl, '66; Third Vice
President - John J. Barnes, '89; Fourth Vice President - Thomas O.
Ballard, '86; Secretary - John F. Handley, '58; Treasurer - Leonard F.
Knobbs, '53; Assistant Secretary - Robert J. Woltjen, '83; First
Assistant Treasurer - Jeffrey W. Brown, '79; Second Assistant Treasurer
- Joseph T. Mulawka, '51; and Historian - Patrick J. Boyle, '49. By
virtue of their election, Hanejko becomes Chairman of the Board of the
Alumni Memorial Scholarship Fund and President of Save Northeast
Catholic Fund, and Musial and Knobbs become Vice President and
Secretary-Treasurer of Save Northeast Catholic Fund respectively.
Memorial Day Services on May 25 are attended by 85.
Mass is concelebrated in the auditorium by our Chaplain, Father Neil
Kilty, OSF, '59, and Father Vincent Smith, OSFS, '74.
Stan Witalec, '66, resigns as president of NECHS, and
is replaced by former president, Father Vincent Smith, OSFS, '74.
Dues paying membership drops to 4705 - down over 400.
Chairman Ed McKenna, '63 reports that 718 attend
Falcons Fun in the Sun in Wildwood.
121 golfers teed off in the annual Classic held at
Torresdale-Frankford Country Club.
President John Hanejko, '65, at the September
meeting, appoints Len Knobbs, '53, as Executive Secretary a position he
has held since 1983; and himself and Ed White, '55, as Assistants. The
Board concurs unanimously. As a result of some controversy over the
Class Reps election last Spring and problems with attendance at Board
meetings, Hanejko appoints a By-Law revision committee headed by Len
At the September 15 meeting of the Board of Directors of Save NEC
Fund, Secretary-Treasurer Knobbs reports that we are in receipt of a
Performance Agreement from the Archdiocese calling for a payment of
$550,000 which was allegedly signed by Father Vincent Smith, OSFS on
April 28 as President of NECHS. At that time Stan Witalec, '66, was the
school president. He also presents a number of emails that have been
flying back and forth between John Marquess, '67, Friends of NECHS
President, and Dave Magee of the Archdiocese. In one Marquess tell Magee
That the Alumni has agreed to underwrite the deficit. President John
Hanejko, '65, tells the Board that he, Knobbs, and immediate past
president Ed White, '55, had met with Marquess and told him they would
endorse a recommendation to pay the deficit to the extent of the funds
available. At no time did we agree to pay any specific amount or to pay
whatever was requested by the Archdiocese. Hanejko further stated that
any payments would be limited by the funds we have available. Knobbs
pointed out that since this is more than twice what we have on hand we
should wait until we can discuss this with Dr. McCarron. The Board
Fifty-four people sail from Philadelphia on October
3rd to Bermuda on the Association sponsored cruise aboard
Norwegian Majesty. Everyone is having a great time until on the
afternoon of Thursday, October 8, we learn that Cardinal Rigali has
announced that Northeast Catholic High School will close in June. A pall
is cast over the Alumni on board for the remainder of the cruise.
Interestingly enough, the following afternoon, Len Knobbs and Mike
Hagan, son of Bob, '49, are on the aft deck conversing about North and
what it means to so many people when Mike glances at one the stacks and
points out to Len that a falcon has just perched. We are far from land
and both take it a good omen of things to come. Regretfully, their
prognosticating was not too good. On the plus side, the Association
makes over $2500 as a result of the cruise.
The two vacancies on the Save Northeast Catholic Fund
Board Created when John Hanejko was elected President and Brian Darreff,
'74, lost his seat on the Association Board of Governors are filled by
election held at the October meeting. There are three candidates - Ed
White, '55, John Handley, '58, and Tom Ballard, '86. White and Ballard
The main thrust of the meeting, with input from
practically every member fo the Board of Governors, was what can be done
to keep the school open. President Hanejko and Len Knobbs advised the
Board of what had transpired with the Archdiocese and paying the school
deficit over the past few months. In September, the Archdiocese
requested a payment of $550,000 toward the deficit. This was double the
amount Save NEC Fund had on hand. They indicated they, along with past
president Ed White, '55, had met with John Marquess, '67, Jim Meehan,
'67, and Ted Hooven, '74, of Friends of Northeast Catholic, and Father
Smith and Tom Kaiser, '70, representing the school, to formulate a joint
fund raising appeal letter to all alumni. During the process, Father
Smith asked that they hold off until after October 11. The reason being
was an expected pronouncement coming from the Office of Catholic
Education on the future of the school. Mike McBride, '81, who also
serves of the school's Advisory Board, brought those present up-to-date
on some proposed plans concerning keeping the school open under a
different concept. The Board unanimously agreed to support all efforts
in this direction.
On October 20, the Board of Trustees of the Scholarship Fund meets.
The main topic of discussion is the proposed closure of the school.
Chairman John Hanejko, '65, advises the Trustees that he had attended a
meeting at the home of Paul Hondros, '66, this past Saturday. The thrust
of the meeting was the possibility of keeping NECHS open as a Cristo Rey
school. He also informed the Board that we had to take steps to insure
that the young men attending North on grants from the Fund were
protected if school closed and they were forced to attend other
Archdiocesan schools. Treasurer Len Knobbs, '53, presented a proposed
change to Article II of the Constitution which would cover those
students who opt to attend Archdiocesan high schools. The motion was
seconded by Steve Cardullo, '72, and after a lengthy discussion was
Contributions to FALCONWAY XXI amounted
to slightly over $303,000. Down over $10,000 from last year. Chairman
Len Knobbs, '53, reports donations to the Scholarship Fund were behind
by more than $28,000 while Save NEC Fund received $10,000 more and the
Oblates almost $7,000 more.
At the November meeting of the Board of Governors,
Real Estate Committee Chairman Ray Rysak, '66, reports that the
committee has reviewed a number of properties of both a rental and
purchase nature. They tweaked their search to lower the price range. A
minimum of 2,000 sq. feet would be needed. Father Vincent Smith, OSFS,
has indicated that the Association should be custodian of all school
memorabilia, trophies, etc. Addition of this would increase the amount
of space required. Space would be needed outside to house our Shrine of
Our Lady of Fatima which is currently on the school campus. Rysak points
out that this is all predicated upon the school closing in June.
Executive Secretary-Treasurer Len Knobbs, '53,
informs the Board that NECHS and Frankford would play what
likely be their last Turkey Bowl game on Thanksgiving at McCarthy
Stadium at LaSalle University. In accordance with request from
of interested alumni, he had made arrangements to hold a brunch in the
Student Union Ballroom from 8:45 AM till noon. Participants would be
able to view the game from the deck of the ballroom. Price of the brunch
would be $25 plus $10 for the game ticket. He reported that President Hanjeko had made an executive decision approving this which would have
to be approved by the Board if we were to proceed. He pointed out that a
number of tickets had already been sold and made a motion seconded by Ed
White, '55, to approve
Hanejko's decision. The motion was passed with
one member in opposition.
Knobbs then brought to the floor a proposed change to
Article II of the Scholarship Fund's Constitution which had been
unanimously approved by the Fund's Board of Trustees on October 20. It
would have to be ratified by two-thirds of the members present this
evening and then sent to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for final
approval. All members of the Board had received a copy by mail and had
time to review the proposed changes which included opening the grants to
all Archdiocesan high schools. He explained that the rationale was that
if the Christo Rey project failed and school closed in June, the young
men who had received grants to attend NECHS would be covered if they
went on to attend other Archdiocesan high schools. The motion to ratify
the change was seconded by Bill McCormac, '61. After a lengthy
discussion, the Board approved the change with two members not voting.
President Hanejko then brought the Board up-to-date
on the Christo Rey project. Two representatives of Christo Rey toured
the school yesterday and met at length with Paul Hondros, '66, John
Fries, '61, and John Marquess, '67. There is an indication that the
Archdiocese may make a decision shortly to allow Cristo Rey to do a
feasibilty study concerning the use of the facility. Considerable
discussion was generated among the Board. It was the overwhelming
opinion that we should do all we could to support the project.
In December at our annual Board dinner meeting,
Chairman Frank Dufner, '41, reports that only 82 attend the Old
Reunion and we suffered a slight financial loss. On the upside, Turkey
Bowl Beef and Beer Chairman Bob Woltjen, '83, reports there were 174 in
attendance. Knobbs reports that 97 attended the Thanksgiving Day game
brunch and that in case anyone hadn't heard North went out in a blaze of
glory defeating Frankford 28 - 22.
Finance Chairman Steve Cardullo, '72, moves that we
donate $500 for an ad in a special history book of the school currently
being published. It was seconded by John Musial, '63. Our Chaplain
Father Kilty, and Len Knobbs are on the committee that is writing the
84-year history of NECHS. In response to a question from the floor,
Cardullo explined that any profit generated would be used to help
underclassmen at North in the continuation of their education at other
Archdiocesan schools. Mike McBride, '81, didn't think it appropriate
that our money should be used to send students to another school when we
were still trying to keep North open. Cardullo pointed out that the
deadline for submitting ads was January 24. President Hanejko informed
the Board that the application process for Cristo Rey wouldn't be
completed until February 15 and that current students at NECHS need to
make a decision to register at their new school by January 31. Len
Knobbs, '53, noted that the book will be published with or without our
support and it would be a disgrace for the Association not to appear in
the book as a benefactor. Further, if the Cristo Rey project was
successful most of the students would remain at North and the funds
could be used to help them at our Alma Mater.
President Hanejko advised the Board what had transpired re: Cristo
Rey since the last meeting. He stated that he, Len Knobbs, '53, Paul
Hondros, '66, and John Marquess, '67, along with John McConnell, a St.
Joseph's Prep and St. Joseph's college grad who has been named the CEO
of the group, had flown to Chicago on December 7 to meet with
representatives of the Cristo Rey Network. The spent the entire day in
meetings with their administrators. The deadline that the North Catholic
group has to meet is February 15, 2010. The feasability study for
keeping the school open as a Cristo Rey school must be competed by then.
This is a 70-day time frame. Most of the others schools in the network
spent 18 to 30 months in developing their studies. A meeting will be
held in the Alumni office on December 16 for those willing to work for
the success of this project.
Len Knobbs, '53 receives a call from Bishop Joseph McFadden,
Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese, who is responsible for the
Archdiocesan school system, asking him to meet with him at his office.
Knobbs and President Hanejko, '65, attend a meeting a week later with
Bishop McFadden, Dr. Richard McCarron, Secretary for Catholic Education,
and Tom Smith, '66, McCarron's deputy. While the topics discussed are
wide ranging, including the possibility of NECHS remaining open as a
Cristo Rey school, the main topic is what is the Association going to do
with the Scholarship Fund. Knobbs informs the Bishop that the Fund is a
separate charitable corporation operated by an independent Board of
Trustees. He also tells the Archdiocesan representatives that if the
school closes, the Fund will honor its commitment to the current
students at North if they attend other Archdiocesan high schools and
will return to awarding grants to children of active alumni to attend
specific colleges. Further, preliminary discussions among the Trustees
have indicated they may expand the grants to include grandchildren and
to award grants to attend high schools, and grade schools, in the
Philadelphia, Camden, and Trenton dioceses. Bishop McFadden indicates
that his alma mater, St. Thomas More, initially awarded grants to
children of alumni but then expanded it to anyone attending an
Archdiocese of Philadelphia high school. Hanejko and Knobbs responded
that everything was in the discussion stage at this point since they
were hopeful that Cristo Rey would become a reality.
The next evening, the Board of Trustees meets and Hanejko and Knobbs
inform them of their meeting with Bishop McFadden. The Trustees spend a
great deal of time discussing and exploring the various ideas as to what
the Fund will do if Cristo Rey becomes a reality and if not, what the
Fund will do re: future grants and to whom.
This award, created by
the Board of Governors and first presented in 1960, was renamed to honor
Father Tye in 1976.
Alumni Moderator June, 1960 - April, 1973
Captain (Chaplain) John B.
Tye, USA, was awarded the Silver Star for gallantry in
in connection with combat operations against the enemy with the 1st
Cavalry Division in the Pacific Theatre of Operations (Luzon,
Phillipines) during World War II.
General Headquarters, 1st Cavalry Division, General Order No. 50 (1945).
below have received this award in recognition of their exemplary
dedication and service to the ideals and purpose of the Alumni
In our eighty-six years, almost one thousand men have served
on our Board of Governors. Some have served as little as one month
while others have performed dedicated service for many years. We
would like to recognize the thirty one Class Representatives who served
for twenty five years or longer.
Patrick J. Boyle, '49 - November, 1954 - Present Leonard F. Knobbs, '53 - November, 1956 - Present Francis J. Devinney, '42
- November, 1950 to November, 1951; January, 1954 to September, 2011.
Richard C. McGrath, '39 - July, 1943 to November, 1951;
November, 1952 to November, 1957;
November, 1958 to November, 1977; March, 1978 to February, 1998.
Deceased March 24, 2003.
Paul D. Quinn, '36 - November, 1948 to September, 2000.
Deceased October 20, 2002. John F. Handley, '58 - March, 1967 - Present
Musial, '63 - January, 1966 to September, 1990; September, 1992 to
Present John S. Boyle, '39 - November, 1961 - September, 2008. Deceased
January 30, 2012. Raymond E. Rysak, '66 - March, 1969 - Present William J. McCormac, '61 - March, 1969 to March,
2011, September, 2011 - Present Joseph E. McKeown, '33 - November, 1950 to January,
1951; November, 1953 to September, 1996. Deceased September 29,
1996 Stephen A. Cardullo, '72 - September, 1972 - Present Lawrence A. Dolan, '37 - November, 1948 to September,
1957; November, 1957 to May, 1958; March, 1973 to October, 2005.
Deceased October 30, 2005.
Robert J. Fuessinger, '48 - November, 1952 to
September, 1993. Deceased August 15, 2006.
Francis J. Gleason, '53 - November, 1960 to September,
2000. Deceased September 10, 2000.
Joseph J. Mackin, '40 - November, 1947 to October,
1959; November, 1962 to March, 1972; March, 1977 to June, 1995.
Deceased June 23, 1995. John R. Hanejko, '65 - November, 1978 - Present
J. William Arnoldy, '38 - January, 1964 to August,
1998. Deceased August 15, 1998.
Bernard J. McGuire, '50 - November, 1952 to November,
1958; January, 1959 to September, 1972; October, 1972 to November, 1975;
March, 1976 to June, 1985; September, 1985 to February, 1986.
Deceased August 5, 1987.
Joseph P. Brennan, Jr., '69 - March,
1977 to October, 2006; September, 2008 - May, 2011.
Edward J. Ganister, '32 - March, 1967 to January, 1999.
Deceased January 3, 1999. Anthony J. Colletta, '72 - March, 1973 to February,
1985; April, 1989 to November, 2008. Deceased November 19, 2011.
Michael A. Donofrio, '47 - November, 1955 to October,
1965; January, 1966 to February, 1967; March, 1967 to September, 1967;
September, 1989 to July, 2009. Deceased July 5, 2009.
Thomas M. Cleary, '47 - January, 1965 to February,
1996. Deceased January 18, 2001.
Robert E. Kennedy, '54 - September, 1984 to February, 1994; May, 1994 -
April, 2015. Edmund A. Markowski, Jr., '56 - September, 1977 to
September, 1992; September, 1994 to September, 2009. William M. FitzPatrick, '59 - September, 1986 -
Deceased August 15, 2015.
Louis J. Peters, '31 - December, 1964 to September,
1992. Deceased December 31, 1993. Kenneth J. Florkowski, '88 - November, 1988 - Present.
Joseph T. Mulawka, '51 - December, 1987 to April, 2014.
Deceased April 10, 2014. William H. O'Connell, Jr., '34 - January, 1965 to
November, 1990. Deceased November 26, 1990.
Not for fame or reward, not lured by ambition or
goaded by necessity, but in simple obedience to duty as they understood
it, these suffered all, sacrificed all, dared and died.
(Entrance to Arlington National Cemetery)
These men, our brothers,
gave their lives in defense of their country in World War II, Korea,
Viet Nam, and Afghanistan. Please remember them in your prayers.
WORLD WAR II
Lawrence C. Hoelzle
Joseph T. Walsh
Nicholas P. Kavanagh
Joseph P. Mahoney
Joseph L. Rabenstein
William J. Connell
Leo P. Hassett
Charles P. Loeper
Joseph F. Stutz
Edward J. Coleman
Samuel J. Dunbar
Joseph S. Fiala
Joseph A. Gogoj
James F. Harkins
Edward F. Heard
Robert E. McCarthy
Aloysius A. Monaghan
Joseph F. Carr
Andrew J. Frosch
Edward J. Galloway
William J. MacElderry
John J. McCann
Joseph V. Murray
Thomas H. Murray
Walter J. Robinson
George L. Smith
Thomas A. Byrne
Edward B. Drueding
John A. Farrell
Albert P. Foley
John J. Gray
Anthony F. Matthews
Leonard J. McGee
Nelson A. Reed
Hugh T. Shellem
John A. Anderson
Richard J. Burns
Thomas J. Cassidy
John J. Dooner
Joseph T. Dwyer
John W. Farrell
Thomas J. Hobson
Edward E. Houseman
John R. Kelley
Robert J. Kelley
John F. Lawlor
Michael J. Marley
John B. McCann
Vincent J. McElroy
George A. McGee
William J. Newis
Herman P. Winterer
William J. Casey
Thomas F. Kelly
Joseph A. Minnichbach
Lawrence W. Minnick
Andrew C. O'Keefe
Joseph K. Seiler
Edward C. Sekula
Joseph W. Shedaker
Raymond J. Slazas
Vincent K. Snyder
Albert J. Spanier
Edward J. Coleman
James V. Derbyshire
John D. Duffy
Thomas F. Fenerty
Edmund J. Gaffney
Joseph M. Garlick
Gerald F. Gowen
James J. McGinnis
Philip J. Razler
James E. Saul
John C. Schmieder
Francis J. Strenger
Martin E. Wagner
Alfred A. Zajac
Walter J. Zarada
William L. Cobb
Raymond W. Devlin
Alfred F. Dougherty
Charles D. Gibson
Daniel J. Grant
Henry L. Grathwohl
Thomas E. Jardel
Edward F. Kent
Charles T. Lewis
William F. Lynch
Leo E. Markey
John J. McNulty
John J. McVeigh
Edward J. Phillips
William T. Urban
John J. White
WORLD WAR II
William H. Becker
John J. Delaney
John B. Gilkey
Raymond E. Gruber
Philip T. Lehman
Eugene P. Magee
Francis X. McKenna
Charles J. McLinden
Charles J. McVey
Horace J. Murphy
Robert J. Reilly
Francis G. Rudolph
George J. Whalen
James A. White
Paul A. Becker
John F. Clinch
James J. Coffey
Joseph J. Daley
John J. Davis
Edward J. Dooner
Joseph A. Finley
Francis J. Fitzpatrick
Paul R. Foley
Francis J. Gillespie
Eugene T. Gladkowski
James J. Hanlon
Charles W. Lockwood
William F. Matthews
John M. McCann
Frank J. McDonnell
Hugh J. McFadden
Henry T. McMahon
John F. McNally
Charles A. Nessel
Louis B. Rieffel
Anthony J. Rosowski
William H. Schenkel
Anthony T. Serravalli
John D. Sykes
James J. Turner
Maurice L. VanZandt
Harry J. Bell
Raymond J. Broderick
Henry E. Dempski
John A. Donahue
Ralph J. Dooley
Stephen F. Halner
William G. Hare
Charles X. Kuntz
Robert J. Lautenbach
Raymond A. Makin
John G. McBride
Henry P. McCann
Joseph H. McCann
James J. McVey
James P. Mellon
Carmen V. Olivet
Gerald J. O'Neill
Leo J. Reilly
Arthur J. Roit
Joseph F. Rossetti
John J. Rowan
John M. Rutter
James M. Ryan
Ernest E. Schmidt
John J. Stevenson
Raymond J. Trost
Donald M. Woods
Richard E. Bagnor
Anthony T. Cassese
Thomas J. Eck
Charles H. Fox
Francis A. Glanzmann
James F. Gormley
John J. Hannigan
Joseph F. Hendron
Leonard P. Kolodziejski
Thomas W. Phillips
John T. Stevenson
James B. Boyle
William J. Conley
Charles W. Coyle
William J. DeLaurentis
Patrick J. Dever
Aloysius F. Dougherty
William E. Hagerty
Emmett J. Ryan
George A. Steigerwald
Francis J. Davenport
William J. Brennan
Charles M. Klein
William T. Gould
Harry B. Loy
Robert B. Appel
Frank A. Johnson
Thomas J. Schimpf
Maurice T. Cleary
Charles D. Hogue
Robert J. Evans
John F. McGovern
Daniel C. Bianco
Joseph M. Lynch
Joseph J. Sweeney
Bernard F. Sevier
William J. Brennan
Joseph S. Oaks
Christian J. Spoerl
John W. Toland
E. George West
Stanley A. Gogoj
John L. Sullivan
Stephen C. Walter
James R. Grove
Joseph J. Leszczynski
Charles T. Tait
Charles P. Schwind
John F. Dunne
James F. McCafferty
William P. Coll
Joseph M. Gorman
Joseph J. Crawford
Ronald D. Briggs
William D. McCuen
George D. Speece
Robert V. Stever
William A. Kuprevich
Leonard S. Pelullo
Richard J. Conlin
Michael P. Rymarczuk
Joseph J. Nitka
Louis W. Potempa
William M. Riley
Albert C. Wall, Jr.
Lawrence A. Branigan
Anthony J. Metzger
Joseph T. Monaghan
Thomas F. Nilan
George J. Reed, Jr.
Joseph F. Schimpf
Patrick J. Thiroway, Jr.
Anthony F. Citrigno
Edward J. Kapusta
Robert T. Koehler
Congresswoman Kathryn M.
Donald Barnhouse, WCAU-TV News
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
U. S. Senator Hugh Scott
Philadelphia Police Captain Clarence Ferguson
Vince Leonard, KYW-TV News
Pennsylvania Insurance Commissioner Dr. Herbert S. Denenberg
Philadelphia District Attorney Arlen Specter
Rolfe Neill, Editor, Philadelphia Daily News
Richard Sprague, Esq., Special Prosecutor
Barney Morris, WCAU-TV News
Tom Fox, Columnist, Philadelphia Inquirer
U. S. Attorney David Marston, Esq.
U. S. Senator Joseph Biden
Philadelphia Police Commissioner Joseph O'Neill
Larry Kane, WCAU-TV News
Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice James T. McDermott
U. S. Senator John Heinz
Pat Polillo, KYW-TV News
Pennsylvania Supreme Court Chief Justice Robert N. C. Nix, Jr.
Philadelphia District Attorney Ronald D. Castille
Congressman Robert Borski
Philadelphia Councilman W. Thatcher Longstreth
Thomas Brookshier, CBS Sportscaster
Brother Patrick Ellis, FSC, LaSalle University President
Pennsylvania Governor Robert P. Casey
U. S. Armed Forces - Operation Desert Storm
Bill "Speedy" Morris, LaSalle University Basketball Coach
Philadelphia District Attorney Lynne Abraham
Walt Hunter, KYW-TV News
Philadelphia City Controller Jonathan Saidel
Philadelphia Councilwoman Joan Krajewski
David R. Boldt, Columnist,
Ray Didinger, Philadelphia Inquirer Sports Columnist
Marc Howard, Channel 6-TV News
Philadelphia Police Commissioner John F. Timoney
Michael Smerconish, Esq., Philadelphia Inquirer Columnist
Philadelphia Archdiocesan Vicar for Education Dr. Richard McCarron, Jr.
Bill Campbell, Sports Broadcaster and Columnist
Former Pennsylvania Governor Mark Schweiker
Former Philadelphia Eagle Vince Papale
U. S. Attorney Patrick Meehan, Esq.
Don Tollefson, Sports Broadcaster
Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Seamus McCaffery
Oblates of St. Francis deSales
Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles H. Ramsey
Frank Fitzpatrick, Inquirer Sports Columnist
Dom Giordano, WPHT Radio Talk Show Host
Vai Sikahema, NBC10 Sports Director
Sam Katz, Film & TV Documentarian
the School and the Association in 1989 to honor individuals that had
brought fame and distinction to the school and themselves by their
actions in certain disciplines. Until school closed the inductees
were honored at ceremonies held at NECHS. Since 2010, the
recipients are inducted at the Association's Communion Breakfast.
A select committee consisting of the President, Executive Secretary, and
Chaplain of the Association, along with four members - two from the
Board of Governors and two active members of the Association - appointed
by the President review the nominations submitted by the public and make
the final decision.