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Paterno legend traces back to prep roots

Bio | Email

Senior College Football writer Thayer Evans previously wrote for The New York Times and Houston Chronicle, as well as contributing to The Economist, USA Today, The Washington Post and more. Follow him on Twitter.

 
Updated Sep 9, 2011 10:08 PM ET

STATE COLLEGE, Pa.

When Brooklyn Prep’s varsity football team broke from a huddle during a scrimmage against the school’s junior varsity, center Jay Reilly discovered the ball had been spit on.

Standing on the other side of that ball in 1942 was a wiry 140-pound Italian sophomore named Joe Paterno, who stared squarely into the eyes of the older and husky Reilly, who outweighed him by 50 pounds.

 

Joe Paterno

 

Joe Paterno (right) is pictured with his brother George during their days as football stars at Brooklyn Prep.

Brooklyn Eagle

“I spit on the ball,” Reilly recalls Paterno telling him.

After a brief silence, Paterno continued, “What are you going to do about it?”

“He was a little guy with a lot of guts,” says Reilly, 86, a 1943 graduate of Brooklyn Prep. “He was a tough kid.”

Six decades later, the legendary 84-year-old Paterno still isn’t backing down. The all-time winningest coach in the history of major-college football, this season is his 46th as Penn State’s head coach.

And while he’s expected to coach his No. 23 team’s home game Saturday against third-ranked Alabama from the press box because of right shoulder and pelvis injuries suffered in an accidental collision at practice last month, he’s stared down pleas in recent years that he should no longer be coaching because of his age.

Not that it surprises the fuzzy memories of Paterno’s dwindling group of surviving teammates and classmates from Brooklyn Prep, a now-closed, all-boys Catholic Jesuit high school from which he graduated in 1945.

“Joe wouldn’t walk away from a fight,” Reilly says.

But it was Brooklyn Prep that molded Paterno’s drive and determination that later made him a star quarterback at Brown University and has defined him since he started coaching at Penn State in 1950.

“It was a tough school,” Paterno says of Brooklyn Prep. “It wasn’t easy, but it was good. It gave me a feel for where we were and who we were and where we should go.”

Says Reilly, “Joe had a God-given gift, but what he is today is largely because of Brooklyn Prep and the Jesuits.”

Paterno started at Brooklyn Prep in 1941 and used to attend chapel daily before school, which wasn’t mandatory. But he and the school’s other students were required to wear a jacket and tie.

As a student, Paterno excelled in the difficult curriculum at Brooklyn Prep, which was located in the Crown Heights area. He took four years of Latin and Greek as well as a couple of years of French and plenty of mathematics.

“He was an excellent student,” Reilly says. “Very smart.”

When Paterno didn’t have football or basketball practice, he used to meet with Thomas Birmingham, one of the school’s Jesuits, after school and translate the works of the Latin poet Virgil for fun. Birmingham also worked closely with one of Paterno’s classmates, William Peter Blatty, the author of the novel, “The Exorcist.”

“He’s a real Renaissance man,” Reilly says of Paterno. “To hear him talk, you’d never believe it.”

Paterno also built quite the reputation on the football field. Brooklyn Prep coach Zev Graham recognized Paterno’s grit and made him his team’s starting quarterback as a junior.

The team ran the North Carolina double-wing offense that featured his younger brother, George Paterno, at left halfback.

“He couldn’t run, he couldn’t kick, he couldn’t pass,” Reilly says of Joe Paterno. “All he could do was win.”

But Paterno lost the last game of his high school career to now-closed St. Cecilia High School in New Jersey, which was coached at the time by a young Vince Lombardi. The left-handed Paterno hurt his throwing shoulder in the first half and was briefly replaced by his backup, Herb Imbornoni.

At halftime, Paterno got a shot of Novocain so he could play in the second half.

“He continued with one arm,” says Imbornoni, 83, a 1946 graduate of Brooklyn Prep. “It was something.”

In the second half, Lombardi employed a four-man defensive line, which only made matters worse for Paterno and Brooklyn Prep’s offense.

“We’d never seen that,” says Joe Bova, 83, who played with Paterno and graduated from Brooklyn Prep in 1945. “We weren’t trained for that.”

After the game, Paterno and his teammates were stunned they had lost.

 

“We were in complete disbelief,” Bova says. “It was unbelievable. Who knew Vince Lombardi in those days, right?”

Graham, a former All-American at Fordham, was also way ahead of his time. He thought his players talked too much in the huddle, so his team didn’t use a huddle Paterno’s senior season.

Instead, Paterno called the plays using number sequences.

“Zev had a tremendous influence on Joe,” Reilly says.

Besides football, Paterno was also a star basketball player for Brooklyn Prep and was the team’s captain. Bova recalls Paterno being able to launch set shots from midcourt.

“He had moves that today these champion players make,” Bova says. “He was doing that back in the forties.”

Paterno, however, didn’t shine at every sport he tried. He and his brother once tried out for the school’s baseball team, but after watching each take unsuccessful swings, Graham gave them a brutally honest assessment.

“You guys can forget it,” Imbornoni recalls Graham telling the Paternos. “You couldn’t hit a bull’s ass with a banjo.”

Away from football though, Paterno was just as tough as he was on the field.

Reilly’s brother, Dick Reilly, was close friends with Paterno while at Brooklyn Prep and played in the backfield with him. He used to tell stories about Paterno’s feistiness before Alzheimer’s disease stole his memory eight years ago, Jay Reilly says.

While in high school, Reilly recalls his brother and Paterno used to hang out on Friday nights at a homely roadside inn in Brooklyn called Ma Hayes, a popular spot for high school and college students. There, Paterno drank beer with his friends and listened to music by then-popular artists such as The Andrew Sisters, Glenn Miller and Tommy Dorsey.

Whenever Paterno and Dick Reilly got into arguments with others at Ma Hayes, they didn’t hesitate to back it up physically.

“They would step outside with whoever,” Jay Reilly says.

 

 

Paterno also helped organize dances at Brooklyn Prep as president of the school’s sodality. Girls had to be invited from the area’s Catholic high schools.

“Joe was a good dancer,” says Joe Murphy, 84, who played football with Paterno and graduated from Brooklyn Prep in 1945.

During the summers of 1943 and 1944, Paterno worked with Murphy as an usher during Brooklyn Dodgers games at Ebbets Field, which was just a couple of long blocks from Brooklyn Prep. Paterno was also a counselor with Murphy for a stint one summer at a youth camp in Livingstone Manor, N.Y., which is in the Catskills Mountains.

After their senior football season, the pair also worked together sorting mail during the Christmas holidays for the Brooklyn postmaster. Back then, Paterno wanted to be an attorney like his father, Angelo, and coach football on the side, Murphy recalls.

“He could have done anything,” Murphy says.

But despite all his success, Paterno hasn’t forgotten Brooklyn Prep, which closed in 1968. He attended The Brooklyn Prep Alumni Association’s annual dinner a few years ago and remains in contact with several of his classmates.

“It had an influence on me all my life,” Paterno says of Brooklyn Prep. “It was an experience I would wish every student who goes to high school would have. It was just a great, great environment. I have nothing but good thoughts every time I think about my high school days.”

So do Paterno’s teammates and classmates, who marvel at him still coaching when many others he went to high school with are deceased.

“If he weren’t so absorbed with coaching, I don’t know he’d still be around,” says Kevin Delany, 84, a 1945 graduate of Brooklyn Prep. “I think it’s keeping him alive myself.”

And with Paterno in the last year of his contract, there’s once again widespread speculation this season may be his last. Yet he has not given any indication that he plans to retire.

He’s simply staring forward again, just like he’s done for years.

All of this will take money, time, faith and perseverance. Nothing is easy in Haiti. Our contributions have returned to their previous level after spiking in 2010.The general public has gotten the idea that their contributions are not reaching the people, and to some degree this is true. The major organizations say they are holding the money for" future projects" but our needs are acute. We have the ability to put the funds to work immediately and in our expansion, helping the whole town of Milot by providing jobs. It's amazing what a job,even the lowest paying one, does for someone's dignity. It's another example of the "immediate gratifcation" one gets from working in Haiti.

I am prejudiced enough to believe that the thoughts and prayers of the Brooklyn Prep alumni are given more weight at the levels needed to help achieve our goals

Best regards
Dave Butler '57

Posted May 11, 2011

The Brooklyn Prep Alumni Association celebrated its 50th Anniversary Alumni Dinner last week on Thursday May 5th. It was a wonderful evening with over 460 Alumni in attendance. Hank Egan '55, who recently retired after a 15 year career as a coach in the NBA, was our Alumnus of the Year and Father Gerry Reedy SJ, past President of the College of the Holy Cross and a scholastic at the Prep from 1964-1967, was our Honorary Alumnus of the Year.  


Our Moderator, Father Dan Fitzpatrick SJ, became ill at the end of Mass but is now back at his desk and has fully recuperated. Thanks for your calls and prayers.   


We understand that both the expense and distance make it difficult for many to attend. We deeply appreciate the ongoing support of all of our Alumni- you can click on the link below to view pictures from the Mass and Dinner.

http://dott.smugmug.com/Other/50th-Annual-BP-Dinner/16966582_8QB3d4#1283084308_Jh8NhZD

just click on the photo ....to ENLARGE the photo.......and then right click to download it to your computer

Best regards,
BPAA
 


Posted March 2, 2011

News:

A book that includes some steps down Prep’s memory lane….

Joseph Roccasalvo ’58, who was a scholastic and teacher at the Prep in the mid sixties, has written several books.  The latest is a memoire, As It Were.  I think many alumni will enjoy it.  Some of us overlapped with him as students, others had him as teacher or coach/advisor. His Prep reminiscences brought back specific memories for me of teachers, places and traditions at the Prep ! The book is available through www.xlibris.com

Peter McLoughlin ‘66





Posted February 2, 2011

This letter was sent to the BPAA by the Provincial of the Jesuit New York Provence informing us of the sad decision that the Jesuits would no longer care for the Parish of St Ignatius in Brooklyn.

Dear Brothers and Friends in the Lord, Peace of Christ.

                As of today, the Episcopal decree suppressing the Parish of St. Ignatius, Brooklyn, a parish which has been in the care of the Society of Jesus for over a century, goes into effect.  Fr. Juan Gonzalez, S.M., the pastor St. Francis of Assisi-St. Blaise, now assumes responsibility for the care of the newly merged parish.  The Collaborative Committee, with leaders from St. Francis and St. Ignatius, will continue to guide the integration of these faith communities. 

                The parishioners of St. Ignatius feel deeply the departure of the Jesuits.  Since the announcement of Bishop DiMarzio’s decision to suppress the parish, the leadership of St. Ignatius has had a series of meetings with Fr. Ed Quinnan, my assistant for pastoral ministry, so that they could express their concerns and ask their questions.  Then I met with the parishioners on January 19.  The people of St. Ignatius freely expressed their pain and their disappointments.  Yet they also wanted to celebrate with the Jesuits who served them over the years.  Last Friday night, I presided at a joyful Eucharist, celebrating 102 years of Jesuit service in Crown Heights.  The parishioners invited many of the Jesuits assigned to the parish over our many years of service to this Liturgy of Thanksgiving. 

                I thank Fr. John Hyatt for his homily that evening which encouraged the people of St. Ignatius to live the spirit of St. Ignatius and open themselves to the graced surprises God has in store for them.  I also thank Frs. Steve Pugliese and Rocco Danzi for their presence and support of the people of St. Ignatius.  Lastly, I thank Fr. Carlos Quijano for the many years he has given to St. Ignatius Parish.

                Frs. Mick Corcoran and Jack Podsiadlo will continue to reside in the Jesuit community on Carroll St.  They, too, find themselves in a time of transition.  Over time I will have to decide the best use of this building and act accordingly. 

                In my remarks at Friday’s liturgy, I asked forgiveness for any shortcomings of the Society during our years of service to the parish.  I also praised the faithfulness and generosity of both parishioners and Jesuits.  History, we pray, will show that Jesuits have labored and ministered with fidelity, enthusiasm and creativity even as we have struggled at times to make ends meet and provide for the needs of the parish.

                Please pray for the good people of St. Ignatius Parish as they continue to adjust to God’s unfolding plan for them. 

 

 

Gratefully in our Lord,

 
  Ciancimino signature2 copy
 

 

 


David S. Ciancimino, S.J.

Provincial




Posted January 4, 2011

Passing of Father Lawrence Wroblewski SJ - Brooklyn Prep Class of '62

Fr. Lawrence J. Wroblewski, S.J., McQuaid Jesuit's Dean of Academics, passed away on January 1, 2011, after a brief illness at age 66. He served at McQuaid Jesuit for 38 years.

Fr. Wroblewski, born November 27, 1944, entered the Jesuit novitiate at St. Andrew-on-Hudson following his graduation from Brooklyn Prep in 1962. He pronounced vows on August 15, 1964 and continued at St. Andrew-on-Hudson to complete his Juniorate in 1966. From 1966-1968, Fr. Wroblewski completed Philosophy and Collegiate courses at Shrub Oak. In 1969 he received his M.A. in English from Washington University in St. Louis, MO. He then came to McQuaid Jesuit from 1969-1971 to complete his regency teaching English and Theology. In 1971, Fr. Wroblewski studied Theology at Woodstock College in New York City. On June 8, 1974, he was ordained at Fordham University Chapel.

Following his ordination, Fr. Wroblewski returned to McQuaid Jesuit to teach English and Theology. In 1991, he was named Assistant Principal and later became the Dean of Academics. Fr. Wroblewski continued to teach throughout his entire tenure at McQuaid and dedicated much of his time to the plays and productions of the school.

Fr. Wroblewski is predeceased by his parents, Dr. Joseph and Evelyn Wroblewski, and his brother John. He is survived by two brothers, Joseph of Brooklyn, NY and Ronald (Dolores) of Babylon, NY; two nephews, Mark and Paul.

Fr. Wroblewski will lie in state in McQuaid Jesuit Chapel (1800 South Clinton Ave.) on TUESDAY January 4th from 5:30 - 8:00 PM.

Fr. Wroblewski will also lie in state in Our Lady of Lourdes Church (Corner of Rhinecliff and Imperial Drives) on WEDNESDAY January 5th from 5:30 - 7:15 PM where his Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 7:30 PM. Interment will be in the Jesuit Cemetery at Auriesville, NY. Those who wish may make contributions in Fr. Wroblewski's name to McQuaid Jesuit. For further information on Fr. Wroblewski's life please visit www.McQuaid.org.



Posted December 24, 2010

This Christmas Blessing is sent to all Alumni by Father Dan Fitzpatrick SJ,  Father Jack Alexander SJ and the Board of the Brooklyn Prep Alumni Association - Merry Christmas
 

A Blessed Christmas to All BP Alumni and your loved ones!

 

Many of you have probably read a letter on the BP website from the mother of one of our scholarship recipients at McQuaid Jesuit HS in Rochester, N.Y. The woman ends her letter with words of a hopeful dream for her son: " ... I wanted him to be a wonderful and successful man that would always think of the "Greater Good" and make the world a better place for having been here."

 

It is hopes like these that the BPAA is encouraging as we give out our scholarship money. What a return on our investment when we hear that the young still desire to make our world a better place! May the Lord fill our hearts with gratitude at Christmas that we have been able to continue the great Jesuit tradition of giving rather than receiving. May these words of gratitude from this mother be a source of great joy as we celebrate the coming of the Lord among us and rejoice in knowing that through BPAA we are reaching out and helping young people mature and dream good things for the future of our world.

 

May your New Year be bright with many new blessings from the Lord.

On behalf of the Board of Directors of BPAA,

 

Fr. Dan Fitzpatrick, S.J. 

Moderator


Fr. Jack Alexander, S.J. 

Chaplain





Posted December 9, 2010

The following letter was recently received by the BPAA from the President of  Xavier High School. It clearly demonstrates the benefit our Alumni continue to provide to Jesuit High Schools in the New York area. The legacy of Brooklyn Prep will live on forever due to the the generosity of our Alumni.

December 8, 2010

Mr. Jack Barry

President

Brooklyn Prep Alumni Association

Dear Jack,

Enclosed you will find the 2010 Annual Report.  We hope you enjoy the new look and celebrate the story it tells: the story of Xavier High School today. This is a story of strength, of spirit and of tradition.  It is a story told by young men like Richard Balagtas ’12 (p.53) and Ken Jean-Baptiste ’11 (p.56), who seize opportunities before them and make the most of their time on 16th Street. It is the story of Xavier history repeating itself, as the rugby team last May once again secured a National Championship, just days after the ’85 team celebrated the 25th anniversary of securing the feat for the very first time for Xavier; and it is the story of dedication: of alumni like Dan Rodriguez ’58 (p. 12), Roger Kirwan ’60 (p. 16) and Pete Seccia ’85 (p.22) who have fully committed themselves to our mission and support it with the generosity of their time, talent and treasure. 

The story told within the enclosed Annual Report would not have been possible without the support of President’s Council members like the Brooklyn Prep Alumni Association who contributed $2,085,000 out of the $2,713,00 total raised this past year—a total of 77% and a testament to the tremendous importance of the President’s Council to Xavier.  Your partnership in the work of Xavier High School is a blessing and one which we cherish greatly.

Please know that we could never thank you enough for your support and all that it makes possible for our students. We do hope that we can count on your continued support for the current 2010-2011 fiscal year, and for years thereafter. 

We wish a very Merry Christmas to the BPAA and all of the Alumni of Brooklyn Prep for their continued support of Jesuit education. With our sincerest appreciation for your generosity, we remain,

Xavier High School


Posted December 6, 2010

The Brooklyn Prep Alumni Association received this wonderful letter from the mother of a scholarship recipient. We thought all of our very generous Alumni would appreciate reading his story.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________

My son Michael is a recipient of funds from the Brooklyn Prep Endowment fund.  I would like to thank you for your immense generosity and foresight to be a living spirit for youth.  Michael attends McQuaid Jesuit High School in Rochester, NY.  I am a single parent at this time and a nurse. Michael’s older brother finished at Seton Hall University in 2008 where he also pitched for the baseball team.

Ironically we do have a very close friend who has been a coach and mentor to Michael who lived across the street from Brooklyn Prep.  He too was the son of a single parent.  He attended Catholic schools through elementary school but his mother could not afford to send him to Brooklyn Prep at that time. So reading the “Last Man Standing” philosophy and thinking about how this Brooklyn neighborhood has come full circle to us was very moving.  It seems some wonderful men have been raised in Brooklyn.

Michael has a wonderful and empathetic heart.  He seems to have found a loving and supportive home at McQuaid in these first few weeks in spite of a rocky start.  He tends to be very bright and sometimes just a little lazy.  His recent success has been very empowering to him and he is a very happy kid. He hopes to be on the baseball team there in the spring and follow his brother in that venue. 

I said in my initial letter to McQuaid that I really felt the Holy Spirit has guided me to find a way for him to be there in spite of a very good school system where we live.  I knew I wanted him to be a wonderful and successful man that would always think of the “Greater Good” and make the world a better place for having been here.

I hope you have a wonderful and blessed Christmas and again, Thank you so much.


Posted December 4, 2010

Brooklyn Prep Runs Again!
Xavier track athletes formed a commemorative BP track team


Saturday November 20 marked the the 67th Annual Jesuit Cross Country Championships, held at Van Cortlandt Park, bringing together athletes from 13 Jesuit schools who toed he line on that beautiful fall morning.

The first time that meet took place, in 1944, there were only five schools present - Fordham Prep, Regis, St. Peter's Prep, Xavier and Brooklyn Prep, which closed its doors in 1972.

But what was remarkable about this year's meet was that, for the first time in close to 40 years, Brooklyn Prep was able to run again.

Over the years the Brooklyn Prep Alumni have made their mark in the track and field world and on the CHSAA. Their dedication to their school and the sport was evident in 2009 when they came to the CHSAA Indoor Championships to honor their late coach, Murt Lawerence. This act of dedication inspired the Xavier track coach, Pat Dormer to do something for the Brooklyn Prep alumni.

"Track alumni love to get together and talk about the old days, the great races and the hard workouts," Coach Dormer said. "They love to remember when the coach yelled at them or the successes that they experienced while being part of the team. Then they usually inquire about the kids on the team now. Only in the case of Brooklyn Prep, they can’t do this since the school closed in 1972. I thought that it would be great to have Brooklyn Prep run again. I took the top runners on my team from Brooklyn who, perhaps, would have gone to Brooklyn Prep if the school was still open, and had them don the blue and white of BP. The kids loved the idea of representing their fellow Jesuit brothers.”


Jesuit Cross Country Coaches with Phil Nolan Brooklyn Prep class of 1949.
(From the left: Geogre Feblez, Fordham Prep, Bret Kroeger-Boston College
High, Jose Albornoz-Loyola-Blakefield, Mike Burgess-St. Peter’s Prep,
Todd Stewart- McQuaid(in Back), Phil Nolan BP’49, David Schickler- McQuaid,
Curtis Cockenburg-St. Joseph’s Prep, John Ausema- Gonzaga,
Chris Febles- Regis, John DOnodeo- Regis, Pat Dormer – Xavier (kneeling)

 

Other Jesuit coaches loved the idea and said they were committed to keeping the memory of Brooklyn Prep alive at this meet. So from now on, Brooklyn Prep will be represented at the Jesuit Championships. Any runner from any Jesuit school who would have gone to BP or is the son or grandson of a BP grad will have the opportunity to run for Brooklyn Prep - symbolically, that is. The goal is to have a complete team at the meet, to have Brooklyn Prep score on all levels, and to wear the white and blue uniforms to remember the school that served the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn for 64 years.

So, how did BP do? As it turned out, the Xavier runners representing BP finished 7th overall in the varsity race, and even snagged 1st among the NYC-area Jesuit schools, including all four original schools that would have competed in 1944.


Mr. John Raslowsky, Xavier President, Mr. Phil Nolan BP ’49,
Rod Walker BP ’71 and Xavier A.D., Mr. Pat Dormer Xavier
Track Coach.

Phil Nolan, BP Class of 1949 was on hand to witness the event and as a special bonus, he handed out all the medals and team awards. Mr. Nolan said that he truly enjoyed the day and was touched by the gesture.

In all, the meet was a great way to end the season. Eliot Kaufmann ’14 was able to go undefeated in all league championships this season, becoming the first freshman in Xavier history to be named Sectional, Intersectional and Jesuit Freshmen cross-country champion.

Congrats to Ivan Caesar ’11 for breaking the famed 15-minute barrier on his last time over the 2.5-mile course.
 
Posted November 29,2010

The Parish of  St. Ignatius at 1101 Carroll Street has fallen on difficult times. Parishoner participation has declined sharply over the past decade and the Diocese of Brooklyn can no longer absorb the mounting losses. The Church will officially close on January 31, 2011. Another sad day for our old neighborhood.

Posted November 23, 2010


11/20 Jesuit Championships-  A great way to end the season.  Eliot Kaufmann was able to go undefeated in all league Championships this season.  He is the Sectional, Intersectional and Jesuit Freshmen Cross country champ.  The first time in school history that a Freshmen has accomplished such a feat.  The Varsity ran a valiant race, but lost to their counterparts from Brooklyn Prep.  Brooklyn Prep was the first NYC Jesuit school beating Regis, Xavier Fordham and Cristo Rey.  As many people know, We honored Brooklyn Prep by having those runners from Brooklyn on the Xavier team run as Brooklyn Prep. BP closed its doors in 1972, so this was the first time since then that they were able to compete at Jesuits. Phil Nolan BP'49 showed up to cheer the boys on and he marveled at how  big a meet Jesuits has now become.  Congrats to Ivan Caesar for Breaking the famed 15 minute barrier on his last time over the 2.5 mile course

Posted November 12, 2010

BP Trackmen to be honored.

 

This will be the 65th Annual Jesuit Cross Country Championships.  It will be held at VCP on Saturday Nov 20th.  The finish is the traditional CHSAA finish line. Time schedule is listed below.

 This year we have confirmed entries from the following Jesuit Schools:
McQuaid(NY), ST Joe's (Pa), Fairfield (CT), Loyola (MD), Gonzaga (DC), ST Peter's Prep (NJ),Canisus(NY), Regis Fordham Prep, Cristo Rey(NY), Loyola (NYC), Xavier and Brooklyn Prep.  The races had to be moved up from our usual start time because of the IC4A Cross Country Championships. (The meet director of that meet is Tom Dewey BP class of 1968. He was also my college coach at Fordham.)

 I got the idea to honor the Brooklyn Prep alumni after the CHSAA Indoor Championships in2009 when they had the special award for Murt Lawrence.  So many Brooklyn Prep alumni showed up and they sat with our boys, I thought it would be nice to do something in their honor.  So this year, I will take the best 7 runners who would have gone to Brooklyn Prep and they will wear the blue and white with the interlocking BP over the left chest. Most of these runners will be from Xavier but a few could be from Regis and Brooklyn Prep will run as a team again. All the Jesuit Cross Country coaches involved with the meet love the idea of honoring Brooklyn Prep.


JESUIT CROSS COUNTRY CHAMPIONSHIPS

DATE:           Saturday, November 20, 2010

PLACE:         Van Cortlandt Park, Bronx, New York

TIME:             Freshman Boys Race: --          8:40 a.m.         (Over a 1 ½ mile course)

                        Varsity  Boys Race: --             8:50 a.m.         (over a 2 ½ mile course)
                        JV Boys Race: --                     9:00 a.m.         (over a 2 ½ mile course)

 

Patrick J Dormer

Chairman of Social Studies

Varsity Cross Country/ Track and Field Coach

Xavier High School

30 West 16th Street

New York, NY 10011



Posted November 8, 2010

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP)—As camera flashes lit up Beaver Stadium, Joe Paterno got a ride to a victory celebration atop the broad arms and shoulders of two burly offensive linemen.

Career win No. 400 for Penn State’s beloved coach will be remembered around Happy Valley for a long time.

Backup quarterback Matt McGloin threw for four scores, the defense pitched a second-half shutout and the Nittany Lions (6-3, 3-2 Big Ten) rallied from a three-touchdown deficit Saturday night to defeat Northwestern 35-21 and get the 83-year-old Paterno his latest milestone.

“They had me up there before I knew it. I was hoping they wouldn’t to be very honest,” Paterno said after a getting mobbed near the end zone by players, school officials and family including his wife, Sue. Linemen Chima Okoli and Eric Shrive were among the players who lifted a smiling Paterno off his feet.

“I would be dishonest if I told you it wasn’t a moving night for me, and it was,” Paterno said.

JoePa is the first major college coach to hit 400 victories, but he tried to keep things as low key as possible, even with many of the 100,000-plus fans chanting his name. He’s always tried to keep the focus on his team and the game, no matter how much hype there might be around his career.

With backup tailback Stephfon Green proudly holding up a sign that read, “400. The Paterno Way,” the coach ended his brief post-game speech to the blue-and-white denizens with remarks that got them even more fired up.

“People ask me why I’ve stayed here so long, and you know what, look around, look around,” he said as the crowd roared. “Now that the celebration’s over, let’s go beat Ohio State!”

Only two other coaches have more wins. Eddie Robinson had 408 with FCS school Grambling State, while John Gagliardi had 476 entering the weekend with Division III St. John’s, Minn.

The festivities looked like they would be put on hold after a dreary first half for the Nittany Lions, and dual-threat Wildcats quarterback Dan Persa did his best to play spoiler.

He sliced through the defense for 109 yards on 25 carries and touchdown runs of 6 and 4 yards in the first half. He was also 16 of 25 passing for 201 yards, including a throw caught with one hand by leaping tight end Drake Dunsmore in the back of the end zone for a 21-0 lead late in the half for Northwestern (6-3, 2-3).

It turned out to be Northwestern’s last big play, and Penn State dominated from there.

After a so-so start, McGloin re-energized the team with a two-minute drill that ended with a 7-yard touchdown catch by Brett Brackett with 3 seconds left in the half to cut the deficit to 21-7.

McGloin threw two more touchdown passes in the third quarter against a shell-shocked Northwestern defense before freshman tailback Silas Redd put Penn State up for good with a 4-yard scoring run with 1:31 left in the quarter.

“We lost momentum. They played with a little bit more of a chip on their shoulder,” Wildcats coach Pat Fitzgerald said. “We’ve got to fix our attitude and be able to seize momentum back and put our guys in position to do that.”

As if enough history wasn’t already being made at raucous Beaver Stadium, the win also matched the biggest come-from-behind victory under Paterno. In 1994, the Nittany Lions also rallied from 21 down to beat Illinois.

Freshman Rob Bolden started for the first time since getting knocked out of the Minnesota game two weeks ago with a concussion, but was pulled after fumbling the ball away on a sack on his second series.

Enter McGloin, the scrappy former walk-on who finished 18 of 29 passing for 225 yards. Paterno said afterward that Bolden wasn’t hurt.

Northwestern had a last gasp when Persa drove the offense to the Penn State 9 with 8:13 left but he threw an incompletion into the end zone on fourth down. Linebacker Michael Mauti led a furious second-half defensive charge to contain the dual-threat quarterback.

Chants of “Joe Paterno! Joe Paterno!” echoed through the stands with 6:30 left and Penn State up comfortably by two touchdowns. With fans furiously clicking away at their cameras, Paterno stood idly by on the sideline, hands in his gray Penn State parka, not paying much attention to all the ruckus.

Even Sue Paterno was trying to not to make a big deal about the milestone this week. The Paternos’ son and quarterback coach Jay Paterno said the whole family initially planned not to attend.

“Mom, I hate to tell you, but it’s kind of a big deal. 400 wins really hasn’t been done at this level,” he said in relaying the conversation before tearing up.

The boss, in the meantime, was more impressed by how his team won.

“To see them come back the way they came back,” JoePa said, “really, it sounds phony, but really it was more important to me than whether it was 350 wins or 400 wins.”

Posted October 20, 2010

The Basketball Old Timers of America held its 71st Reunion Dinner last night at Bishop Ford and introduced four new members into its hall of fame: former St. John's star guard Jerry Houston, former Poly Prep boys and girls' coach Michael Junsch, former St. John's All American, NBA star and two time Olympic gold medalist Chris Mullin and former Fordham great Ken Charles.

The dinner, which is run by president Ray Nash, has become the premier event of the year for the New York basketball community.

It was great to see so many college coaches in attendance. New St. John's coach Steve Hines and his assistants, Rico Hines and Tony Chiles, worked the crowd. Legend Lou Carneseca was there, along new Fordham coach Tom Pecora and assistant Van Macon. New coaches for Iona and St. Francis, Tom Cluess and Glen Braica, respectively, was also in attendance. Braica's assistant, Andy Johnson joined the newly minted coach.

Manhattan coach Barry Rohrssen, LIU coach Jim Ferry, Davidson coach Bob McKillop, former Houston assistant Jerry Hobbie and John Dunne of St. Peter's (whose teams seems ready to make a run for the MAAC title next season) were also in attendance.

Some things I didn't know about the inductees:

As a senior at La Salle Academy in 1960, Houston broke the CHSAA scoring record with 69 against Andrew Jackson. He later scored the winning free throws as a senior at St. John's when the Redmen defeated Villanova to win the 1965 NIT in the late Joe Lapchick's final game as a head coach.

Junsch coached Poly Prep's girls team for 19 seasons, compiling a 342-25 record, winning 11 Ivy Prep League titles and seven NY State championships. In 14 years as a boys' varsity coach, his teams were 202-161 and won the Ivy Prep League four times.

Mullin, who missed the ceremony to attend a memorial service for the late Golden State Warriors owner Franklin Meulli, was the first St. John's player to score 2,000 points and played on both the 1964 Olympic team as an amateur and the 1992 Olympic Dream Team as an NBA player.

Charles, a native of Trinidad and Tobago, averaged 15.3 points as a sophomore for the 1971 Fordham team that went 26-3 and reached the NCAA Regional semi-finals before losing to Villanova. He averaged 24.3 points per game as a senior -- scoring 46 against St. Peter's in the Gardens.

He played in the NBA for four seasons."

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/blogs/weiss/#ixzz0mnNCOCfM

Posted September 8, 2010

Richard Cummings and Bob Jegle from the Class of '69 found this bit of BP history and were kind enough to forward it to us:

 

In 1846, more than half a century before Brooklyn became part of NYC, the Kings County Board of Supervisors purchased land to build a penitentiary for felons and workhouse for misdemeanants. The site was in what is now known as Crown Heights but was then called "Crow Hill." Construction was completed sufficiently in 1848 that the first group of prisoners was admitted that March 23rd to begin serving sentences. 

The prison complex was bounded by Rogers and Nostrand Avenues and by Carol and Montgomery Streets.

Initially, the emergence of 5-borough Greater NYC in 1898 brought about little change in NYC DOC's operations. It continued control over only NY County jail/prison facilities and their inmates. The county sheriffs of Kings, Queens and Richmond County retained control over their respective institutions and inmates. But in 1905, the state Legislature mandated shutdown of Kings County Penitentiary and the removal of its inmates to the NYC DOC Penitentiary on Blackwell’s Island (now Roosevelt Island). Kings County Penitentiary closing and its inmate transfers were completed February 3, 1907. On July 19 that same year, NYC DOC’s jurisdiction was extended by the Legislature to cover all Brooklyn criminal prisoners. That added to DOC’s list of facilities the Raymond St. jail known officially as the Kings County Jail. On January 1, 1908, its designation was changed to City Jail, Brooklyn.

In 1906 Bishop McDonnell of Brooklyn bought the ex-penitentiary property from NYC and sold it the next year to the Society of Jesus to build the Jesuits' Brooklyn College and Prep School. College operations lasted only a half-dozen years, but the high school continued into the early 1970s as Brooklyn Prep. In 1972 the Prep closed, and the city bought its buildings for Medgar Evers College.

Posted August 9, 2010

 

BROOKLYN JESUIT PREP

is having a celebration on

SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 25TH to

 

 

WELCOME TONY RUSSO'69

BACK TO THE NEIGHBORHOOD.

 

 

Tony Russo, St. Teresa’s ’65, Brooklyn Prep ’69, is the new

Principal (Headmaster?) of Brooklyn Jesuit Prep. Please join Tony, his wife,

Margie (St Teresa’s ’65), family

and friends as we welcome him back home to Crown Heights.

 

The celebration will begin with 3:30 Mass at St. Teresa’s Church, followed by

tours of the school

(located at 560 Sterling Place).

Brief remarks and refreshments will follow.

 

 

PLEASE RSVP BY SEPTEMBER 20th .

 

Send your name and number of guests to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

or call (718) 634-8914.

 

Posted July 29, 2010

Dr Jim Lacey Ph.D. '51

Professor Emeritus
Eastern Connecticut State University

 

Jim Lacey grew up in Brooklyn, New York, in the Golden Age before the Dodgers departed for Tinseltown. He was the victim of a classical education under the auspices of the Jesuits at Brooklyn Prep and St. Peter's College, where he majored in Philosophy, English, and (well, almost) mathematics.

After a year at the University of Bern, Switzerland, studying German and English literature, as well as half a dozen other subjects, he became the first Teaching Assistant in the English department at Boston College. With an M.A. almost in hand, Jim did a stint as an artillery officer at Fort Benning, GA, returned to New York, married the love of his life whom he had met at a summer camp when she was 15 as soon as she graduated from Smith College, got a job teaching English at St. Francis College in Brooklyn, and began to take courses at New York University. After a year of research at the University of Munich in Germany, Jim (finally!) earned a Ph.D. in American Civilization from NYU and found a home at Eastern Connecticut State College, where he came in the fall of 1968.

At Eastern Jim founded the American Studies Program, chaired the English department, served on the Advisory Board of the Connecticut Review and the Board of Directors of the Henry Barnard Foundation, and was Director of the University Honors Program for ten years. While he was director, the program achieved regional and national recognition; as President of the Northeast Regional Honors Council, Jim organized the 2000 conference in San Juan, Puerto Rico, and presided over the annual conference in Brooklyn the following year.

In addition to developing new courses involving active learning, interdisciplinary study, and internships, Jim has been active professionally. He has read papers at national and regional conferences of the American Studies Association and the National Collegiate Honors Council, and has published chapters in scholarly books, as well as reviews, reports, and articles in journals including the American Quarterly, Connecticut History, International Exchange, and American Studies International, for which he regularly reported on conferences of the German Association for American Studies.

Turning an avocation, sailing, to professional account, Jim developed an honors colloquium, New England and the Sea, and has published reviews, reports of conferences, and stories and articles on maritime history and boating in Messing About in Boats. It must also be confessed that Jim is a science fiction nut, who introduced a course and workshop on the subject at Eastern and is guilty of having published a novelette, "Witch Children," in Galaxy, one of those garishly illustrated pulp magazines that flourished in the heyday of hard-core science fiction. In recognition of his excellence in teaching, devotion to scholarship, and service to the university, Jim was the recipient of Eastern's Distinguished Faculty Member Award in 1999.

Though he retired in 2003, Jim teaches a course about once a year. Recently he has offered ENG 235, The Bible as Literature, a course which he developed, and LAP 130, World Religions, a seminar for freshmen. With his wife Barbara, Jim recently taught a three-week session on biblical criticism and illustrations. Jim and Barbara Lacey, who is Professor Emerita of History at St. Joseph College, celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in August, 2008. They have two children, Christopher and Beth, both of whom have Ph.D.s in science, and six grandchildren. In May, 2010, Jim published an upbeat novel, Double Trouble: A Ryan/Lehrer Mystery , just for fun. It is available at and also from Amazon.com in both paperback and Kindle formats.

Posted July 26, 2011

This a wonderful story about Robert Fenn a recent graduate of Bishop Loughlin HS. Jim Dorney '69 is the Principal at Bishop Loughlin.

 

Graduation

Loughlinite Gets Diploma 70 Years After Entering School

By Marie Elena Giossi
Published: 06/23/2010
Nancy McKeeverPhoto courtesy Bishop Loughlin M.H.S.  
Bishop Loughlin M.H.S.’s Class of 2010 was honored to share their graduation day with Robert Fenn, second from left. Congratulating him on his achievement were Sweenie Saint-Vil, class valedictorian, above, left, and salutatorians Anthony Heyward and Elisa Randall, at right. Fenn is pictured below, left, with Principal James Dorney.
 
 
   
Seventy years, eight months and 25 days after Robert Fenn began his freshman year at Bishop Loughlin M.H.S., Clinton Hill/Fort Greene, he received his high school diploma with the Class of 2010.
On his graduation day, the 85-year-old beamed with pride in his royal purple cap and gown. Before awarding diplomas to the 225 teenage graduates, Principal James Dorney announced that the first diploma would be presented to a special student and shared Fenn’s story, explaining how he “voluntarily gave up his chance at a Bishop Loughlin diploma” to serve his country during World War II.
As Brother Dennis Cronin, F.S.C., school president, conferred the degree upon Fenn, the senior class, faculty and guests, including Fenn’s sons, rose to their feet and erupted in applause. But the most gratifying cheers came from his wife of 58 years, Helen, who insisted he attend graduation even though she’s undergoing treatment in the hospital. Following the ceremony, Fenn went straight to see her, still wearing his cap and gown. “She went wild,” he said.
A few days later, Fenn returned to Loughlin. Using his cane, he walked slowly but with purpose and a new sense of pride through the halls he bounded through as a teenager. Holding his diploma, he made his way to the principal’s office to express his gratitude for the recognition and kindness he’s received along with that certificate.
“This feels great,” Fenn said, eyeing the leather-bound booklet containing his diploma. “I have to look at it every once in a while to make sure it’s real.” With a smile, he added, “Now my sons are trying to get me to go out and find a job.”
Not finishing his high school career is something Fenn has had to face almost everyday – literally. The two-story Vanderbilt Ave. carriage house where he’s lived most of his life diagonally faces the school’s Lafayette Ave. entrance and athletic field.
Brooklyn was booming when he was born in the top floor of that home on April 16, 1925. His parents baptized him across the street at Queen of All Saints Church, where he later attended school, received first Communion and Confirmation. In eighth grade, he passed the entrance exam for Loughlin, a perfect choice, he thought. “I lived right across the street so I could never be late,” he said.
Recalling his years at Loughlin, Fenn said, “It was great.” In those days, it was an all-boys school and the teachers were “all (Christian) Brothers.” He was a good student, but said he preferred athletics to academics. His favorite memories were made on the field, competing on the school’s tennis, track and handball teams.
In the spring of 1943, Fenn turned 18 and enlisted in the U.S. Air Force to serve in World War II. His parish priest, Father Charles Boyd, wrote him a letter of recommendation, a copy of which is contained in a scrapbook he treasures.
Dorney FennPhoto © Marie Elena Giossi
Upon receiving his orders, he went to Greensboro, N.C., for basic training and then advanced aerial instruction at St. Vincent’s College, Latrobe, Pa. He practiced flying biplanes and crop dusters.
“We were given the choice of being a bombardier, navigator or pilot. I wanted to fly bombers but they put me into fighter planes,” he said. “In May of ’45, I graduated and got my wings. They were getting ready ship us overseas but by then it was all over.” After serving two years and five months, he was honorably discharged in March, 1946.
A month away from his 21st birthday, Fenn was flying high when he returned to his parents’ home, ready to plan for his future. Within two months, his father died. “After that, it was off to work,” he said.
Following a brief stint doing clerical work and payroll for a construction company in Peter Cooper Village, Stuyvesant Town, he landed a data processing position at Brooklyn-based Kentile Floors. In 1952, he married Helen, who worked for many years at the St. Vincent de Paul Society, and settled down outside Fort Greene. When Fenn’s mother died a couple years later, the couple moved into his childhood home and raised three sons, Robert, Michael and Gerard. Robert and Michael graduated from Bishop Loughlin, in 1972 and 1976, respectively, while their youngest attended Brooklyn Tech.
When Fenn left Kentile in the mid-1980s, he became the American Federation of Musicians’ data processing manager until he retired in 1990.
Although life never stopped moving for Fenn, he never stopped thinking about the diploma he never received. “I would have liked to have had it,” he said wistfully.
Having given up on that dream long ago, he was amazed when the opportunity unexpectedly arose.
After his sons graduated, he didn’t have much to do with the school until the winter of 2008. Fenn’s sons knew their dad couldn’t shovel snow anymore so they called the school to ask if students could help. Three days later, Dorney brought some students and a teacher to visit the Fenns. He assured the couple that students would handle the shoveling from then on and they’ve remained true to that promise.
When the Fenn boys called to thank Dorney, they mentioned that their dad never actually graduated from the school because he went off to war. The school records showed he was only shy a few classes so Dorney offered to give Fenn life experience credits and his long-overdue diploma.
“I’ve been thrilled to see how happy he and his wife are about this,” said Dorney, who was also impressed by the senior class’ enthusiasm. “I was happy they were able to appreciate the significance.”
Dorney suspects there might be other servicemen in Fenn’s shoes and plans to delve further into school records to see if there are others to whom they may award diplomas.

Posted November 8, 2009

This story was in the New York Post on Saturday the 8th of November. It speaks to the character and ideals possessed by Joe Paterno '45. Greg McCaig '71 made us aware of the story and was kind enogh to call Father Jack Alexander SJ to tell him about this wonder story. Greg also offers some insightful commentary as to how this story relates to our days at the Prep. Thanks Greg!

 

Hey guys......

Read a story in Sat NY Post.

It was about the Ohio St. vs/ Penn St game today.

 

It turns out that the QB for Ohio St is a central PA kid who chose to go to the dark side (OSU) despite being recruited by Joe Pa. last year.

So in advance of his appearance in Happy Valley today, the Official Penn St Marketing Assoc printed up thousands of T-shirts with this kid as the target -literally.

The shirts were dominated by the kids first name -Tyrell --and saying that he was Tyrell the Cryer --with a bulls eye on his uniform number (2)

 

The great Joe Pa --rooted in his Jesuit experience --told the PSMA on thurs --that the shirts were inappropriate and that he demanded that they be pulled from sale immediately.

 

They bowed to the legendary Coach!!!

The whole batch of thousands of already printed t-shirts was immediately removed from any and all campus points of sale. (WOW !!!!)

 

As I read the story and it's amazing conclusion ---I picked up the phone to call our beloved Fr. Alex.

 

My intention was to share my thoughts about this story.

 

Here you have a massive state wide school (45,000 +students)

And a very public state school.(that's to say --no Church influence allowed)

Yet ....here's is a Brooklyn born, Brooklyn Prep educated, and a Jesuit philosophy instilled man ---who is able to not only question an obvious miscarriage towards a young man who simply chose what he believed to be his direction in life ---but as a very public iconic figure ---he accomplishes the extraordinary result because of his personal Christian life.

That right ! ---his life --his belief were all that he needed.

He flexed his Catholic Jesuit life belief ---and simply told the administration to stop it.

It was all about --a wise man ---taught long ago by the great Jesuits ----that this was inappropriate . Nothing politically correct. Simply ---this is about the way I was raised --the way I was taught (Jesuits) the way I live my life and because of those reasons I am telling you --to stop this attack on this young man,

AMAZING !!!!

 

He took the great Jesuit reasoning of ". “Cura Personales” and stopped a very public state school from doing what he firmly belived to be the wrong path. He knocked them out cold. How amazing is that?

 

Fr Alex --loved my take on the whole story.

We both agreed that we didn't need any story to embellish the legacy of Joe Pa.

But this one was a great addendum to that legacy of a great inspired dedicated life ---built long ago on the shoulders of the Jesuits.

 

99% of the people that love and adore Joe Pa ---do so because of his remarkable success as a football coach. We all from the Brooklyn Prep world are part of the 1% --who know him as the real "Man for others" that the Jesuits taught him to be.

 

What a special 1% --we belong to.

 

God Bless

 

I love the Jesuits and I love Brooklyn Prep !!!!!

 

greg

 

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. — Welcome home, Terrelle. Or maybe not, if we are to believe what you said before last year’s Penn State game.

“I’m from Ohio now.”

Terrelle Pryor of Jeannette. Pa., starting quarterback for Ohio State and certified villain in the Keystone State after choosing the Buckeyes over the Nittany Lions.

It would have been OK to not to stay home — guys cross borders all the time — but Pryor dropped this bomb on signing day:

“Too country,” he said. “I don’t like the area.”

So it’s no surprise Pryor will not have many friends in Beaver Stadium today, when the Nittany Lions (8-1 overall, 4-1 in the Big 10) play host to the Buckeyes (7-2, 4-1). With undefeated Iowa in control of its destiny, it’s an elimination game for the Buckeyes and Nittany Lions — the loser virtually having no shot of a conference title.

Terrelle Pryor
AP
Terrelle Pryor
adsonar_placementId=1482094;adsonar_pid=871776;adsonar_ps=-1;adsonar_zw=300;adsonar_zh=225;adsonar_jv='ads.adsonar.com';The Penn State Marketing Association designed a T-shirt with a Nittany Lions handing a shirt to a forlorn-looking football player wearing Pryor’s No. 2 and the following inscription: “The Nutcracker: A Terrelle Cryer Story.”

Penn State coach Joe Paterno didn’t find the shirt appropriate, and the PSMA has pulled them, which, of course, is one of the great marketing ploys of all time. Even Pryor wants one.

“I’d like to get a few [T-shirts] before the game,” he said after last week’s destruction of New Mexico State. “I’d like to wear one in warm-ups. I guess they’re trying to get in my head. I’m glad I found out before the game. I can’t let anything get to me.”

Especially Penn State’s defense. It was Mark Rubin who forced Pryor to fumble last year setting up the Nittany Lions’ winning touchdown. After the loss, Pryor was inconsolable on the sidelines in Ohio Stadium.

Alas, the inspiration for the banned T-shirt. Pryor has thrown just four more touchdowns (13) than interceptions (9). He has completed just 54.6 percent of his passes. His four-turnover game at Purdue led to a Boilermakers win and the end of Ohio State’s 17-game conference road win streak.

“They’re going to tear me up,” Pryor said of Penn State fans. “I’m sure they’ll be throwing stuff and yelling stuff, and I’ll probably get booed in warm-ups. But I won’t hear any of it. I’ve got my [football] family with me. We’ve got to be a rock.”

 

 

Sample Image

 

Here's a photo of Joe Paterno, Class of '45 with another BP Alumnus, Andy Rizzo, Class of '60.

 

 

Posted October 3, 2009

 

The following is a death notice we received for our beloved Father Oppido SJ.

 

 

DEATH NOTICE

 

The usual suffrages of the Society are to be offered for the repose of the soul of Father Oppido, SJ who died on Friday, October 2, 2009 at Christ Hospital in Jersey City, New Jersey. Father Oppido was born on January 28, 1925 in Brooklyn, New York and entered the Society of Jesus at St. Andrew-on-Hudson, Poughkeepsie, New York, on August 14, 1942.

 

WAKE: Sunday, October 4, 20097:00 – 9:00 PM Monday, October 5, 2009 2:00 – 5:00 PM St. Peter’s Prep Chapel 144 Grand Street Jersey City, NJ 07302-4499

 

MASS OF CHRISTIAN BURIAL: Monday, October 5, 2009 7:00 PM

Our Lady of Czestochawa Church120 Sussex St
Jersey City, NJ 07302 (between Washington and Warren Streets)
Parking is available in the St. Peter’s Prep parking lot on York Street (between Van Vorst and Warren Streets)

BURIAL: Jesuit CemeteryAuriesville, NYAu

 

Notes of condolence may be sent to Father Oppido’s sister:

 

Ms. Mary Oppido

159 Taylor Avenue

East Meadow, NY 11554

 

Requiescat in Pace

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted September 10, 2009

In 1998 the Brooklyn Prep Alumni Association honored Brother Rick Curry, SJ as our Honorary Alumnus of the Year. Brother Curry founded the National Theatre Workshop of the Handicapped over 30 years ago, which provides support and guidance to handicapped people with a strong emphasis on helping returning veterans.

On Sunday September 13th at the Holy Trinity Church in Washington DC Brother Curry will be ordained a priest. The BPAA offers Brother Curry our deepest congradulations on this wonderful day. Anyone wishing to make a donation to this needy cause may go to the NTWH website at www.ntwh.org

 

Posted May 23, 2009

On Tuesday May 19th Father Jack Alexander SJ was honored by the President of Fordham Prep, Father Ken Boller SJ, and the Board of the Brooklyn Prep Alumni Association for his dedication and foresight in creating of the Rev. John D Alexander Endowment Fund. The Fund over the past decade has donated $1,600,000 to over 300 needy students so that they may have the benefit of a Jesuit education. A portrait of Father Jack was hung in the Hall of Honor at Fordham Prep along with a plaque that reads:

In gratitude for the ongoing scholarship support from the Brooklyn Prep Alumni Association's

Rev. John D Alexander SJ Endowment Fund

This will be a lasting reminder of the great benefit to Jesuit eduation that has been provided by the Brooklyn Prep Alumni Association. Click on the link below to view photos of the evening.

http://dott.smugmug.com/gallery/8329739_iMWHQ#545819942_EWuXq

Posted May 12, 2009

The following is a letter from the Murphy Family. Their daughter was one of our Scholarship Recipients for 2009. She spoke eloquently at the Mass before our recent Annual Dinner about the impact the BPAA Scholarship has had on her life.

Dear Mr. Barry, Fr. Fitzpatrick and all the Members of the Brooklyn Prep Alumni Association:

It was certainly a pleasure and honor to meet you both at the Alumni mass last night. We cannot thank you enough for the generosity and support shown to our daughter over the past four years. Her years at Loyola School have enriched her academically, socially and spiritually. She was so touched by the many alumni who stopped to congratulate her and offer their kind words. We know that not only is she well prepared for college life but for a future of giving back to others. Nothing exemplifies this more than the example of the Brooklyn Prep Alumni Association. Again, we wish to thank you from the bottom of our hearts and wish you God's continued blessings. You are truly men for others.

Regards,

The Murphy Family

Posted May 11, 2009

The 48th Annual Reunion Dinner was a fantastic evening attended by over 415 Alumni. Three Scholarship Recipients spoke and Bill Clancy MD '59 was honored as Alumnus of the Year. Photos of the evenings events can be viewed in the News/Photos and Reunions/Past Annual Dinners sections. Next years dinner will be held on Thursday May 6th 2010.

Posted April 25, 2009

Did you ever wonder where all our fellow Alumni have settled over the years. Well thanks to our Webmaster Bud Roepkin '53 here is a list of the different states and countries where BP Alumni now reside.

ALABAMA - 8
ALASKA - 3
ARKANSAS - 2
ARIZONA - 39
CALIFORNIA - 213
COLORADO - 33
CONNECTICUT - 189
DELAWARE - 10
FLORIDA - 369
GEORGIA - 53
HAWAII - 10
IDAHO - 2
ILLINOIS - 39
INDIANA - 11
IOWA - 1
KANSAS - 5
KENTUCKY - 11
LOUISIANA - 4
MAINE - 15
MARYLAND - 112
MASSACHUCETS - 103
MICHIGAN - 23
MINNESOTA - 11
MISSISSIPPI - 5
MISSOURI - 16
MONTANA - 2
NEBRASKA - 3
NEVADA - 11
NEW HAMPSHIRE - 22
NEW JERSEY - 559
NEW MEXICO - 14
NEW YORK - 2018
NORTH CAROLINA - 92
NORTH DAKOTA - 1
OHIO - 47
OKLAHOMA - 9
OREGON - 10
PENNSYLVANIA - 119
RHODE ISLAND - 15
SOUTH CAROLINA - 42
SOUTH DAKOTA - 1
TENNESSEE - 17
TEXAS - 81
UTAH - 1
VERMONT - 30
VIRGINIA - 146
WASHINGTON - 39
WEST VIRGINIA - 1
WISCONSIN - 12
WYOMING - 2
DIST. OF COLUMBIA - 22

AP ( MILITARY ADDRESS) - 1
CANADA - 8
CHILE - 1
COSTA RICA - 1
ENGLAND - 2
FRANCE - 1
GERMANY - 1
IRELAND - 2
JAPAN - 1
KOREA - 1
NETHERLANDS - 1
NETHERLANDS ANTILLES - 1
PHILIPPINES - 5
PUERTO RICO - 1
REPUBLIC OF CHINA - 1
SWITZERLAND - 1
THAILAND - 2

 


 

Posted April 23, 2009

Every year at our Annual Dinner in May we honor an Alumnus who has demonstrated the virtues of living a Christian life. Although success in ones chosen career is important it is only part of this story. The candidates must display conscience, competence and compassion in their private and public lives.

If you know of fellow Alumni that you believe should be considered please send all pertinent information, including a resume if possible, to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by mail to : This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

BPAA-Alumnus of the Year

Father Dan Fitzpatrick SJ

Fordham University

Loyola Hall

Bronx, NY 10458

Thank you for your help.

 


 

Posted - April 6, 2009

Murt Lawrence Celebration and Party

On the feast of St. Valentine, about 60 Brooklyn Prep track alumni and two dozen Lawrence children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren demonstrated their love, admiration and respect for Murt Lawrence, coach, teacher, father, mentor and role model of a truly-Christian gentleman.

 

The day began at “The Armory”, the indoor track venue of yesteryear, which used to wreak with the odor of wintergreen and atomic balm, and where many of Murt’s track stalwarts competed on the 220 yd. flat floor track, hoping they would not be sent to splinterville on the unbanked turns.

 

The “new” Armory now sports a 200 meter banked track with synthetic composite bouncy material on the raised wooden flooring as well as a huge 4-sided TV screen hanging from the ceiling in the middle of the arena, continuously showing the race currently underway. Surprisingly none of the female and male competitors appeared to make a misstep as they juggled racing and watching themselves on “the big screen”. Murt never taught us how to manage that! We can all imagine what he might have said.

 

By mid-afternoon the alums and the Lawrence families began to quickly congregate in the stands above the “last turn” looking down the final straightaway to the finish. There were handshakes, hugs and bearhugs, quizzical looks (is that really you?), and an enormous sense of camaraderie. Over the next 2-3 hours times became faster, heights and distances became greater, career successes exceeded expectations and reality, facts about family, hobbies and ailments were exchanged, and lost teammates were mourned. Occasionally we would follow a close race, but it was all about a bond solidified under the tutelage of a man we had come to honor.

 

These were the CHSAA Championships in Track & Field for the boys and girls in all the Catholic high schools in the NY Metro area. Later in the afternoon, we were all invited down onto the floor inside the track. There we gathered for the start of the “Murt Lawrence Boys Championship 1600M Run” while overhead the big screen announced: “The Armory honors long time Brooklyn Prep Coach Murtha P. Lawrence for his dedication to the sport of Track & Field.” This signage would appear on the screen intermittently throughout the day. Kevin Lawrence, Murt’s youngest son, was the Official Starter, and the race, appropriately enough, was won by a young man from a Jesuit school, Canisius Prep, in the very fast time of 4:17.54. He was kind enough to participate in a few group photos.

 

Immediately after the race, the CHSAA honored Murt posthumously and awarded a blazer to Kevin Lawrence, representing Murt and the whole Lawrence family. After this ceremony we made our way back to our seats for more fraternizing and story-telling. Soon it was time to head to Coogan’s up the street for the Reunion Dinner.

 

We had a brief reception to allow us to get a beverage, find our seats, and mingle some more. Fr. Jack Alexander, SJ, Chaplain of the BPAA, said grace before we all moved through the buffet line and had an excellent dinner. As dessert was being served, a few of Murt’s Men expressed their feelings about what Murt meant to them and to the sport. Then Kevin Lawrence spoke about his Dad and about the memorial fund for Murt at ACHIEVE and its “Talking Hands Program”. Kevin reported that, to date, about $8500 had been donated by BP track alums and that this money was being used to help fund the annual Spring Concert in which the “special people” sang songs in sign language. Each year over 1000 people attend this event. Murt’s daughter, Nancy, is one of the participants of this program and a beneficiary of all that ACHIEVE has to offer. She was at the Reunion Dinner and is a warml and loving woman, who really enjoyed herself. ACHIEVE, and the Lawrence family in particular, are deeply moved and very appreciative of the generosity of Murt’s Men for a cause that meant so much to him.

 

In addition, two of Murt’s grandson’s each spoke about their grandfather and what he was like and meant to them and their families. We saw Murt from a different perspective. They spoke from the heart and it had its impact there in each of us. They were a marvelous testament to Murt. The evening concluded with a benediction from Fr. Dan Fitzpatrick, SJ, the new Moderator of BPAA, in which he remembered those teammates who are ill and those now being coached by Murt on his angelic track team.

 

Many guys wanted to come but were unable to do so due to distance, family conflicts, illness, infirmities, etc. A few sent notes and tributes to Murt, some of which are published on the BP Track Alums website.

 

This memorial event for Murt was great success. A comment by the Lawrence family sums it up best. “Thank you for an amazing day in New York. We are all lucky to be the beneficiaries of your hard work. I hope you enjoyed February 14th as much as my sisters and I did, and all the extended Lawrence's, too. It was, as stated, ‘a hell of a party’.”

 

Posted - March 1, 2009

Murt Lawrence Memorial Event

On the feast of St. Valentine, about 60 Brooklyn Prep track alumni and two dozen Lawrence children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren demonstrated their love, admiration and respect for Murt Lawrence, coach, teacher, father, mentor and role model of a truly-Christian gentleman.

The day began at "The Armory", the indoor track venue of yesteryear, which used to wreak the odor of wintergreen and atomic balm, and where many of Murt’s track stalwarts competed on the 220 yd. Flat floor track hoping they would not be sent to splinterville on the unbanked turns.

The "new" Armory now sports a 200 meter banked track with synthetic composite bouncy material an the raised wooden flooring as well as a huge 4-sided TV screen hanging from the ceiling in the middle of the arena, continously showing the race currently underway. Surprisingly none of the female and male competitors appeared to make a misstep as they juggled racing and watching themselves on "the big screen". Murt never taught us how to manage that! We can all imagine what he might have said.

By mid-afternoon the alums and the Lawrence families began to quickly congregate in the stands about the "last turn" looking down the final straightaway to the finish. There were handshakes, hugs and bearhugs, quizzical looks (is that really?), and an enormous sense of camaraderie. Over the next 2-3 hours times became faster, heights and distances became greater, career successes exceeded expectations and reality, facts about family, hobbies and ailments were exchanged, and lost teammates were mourned. Occasionally we would follow a close race, but it was all about a bond solidified under the tutelage of a man we had come to honor.

These were the CHSSA Champions in Track & Field for the boys and girls in all the Catholic high schools in the NY metro area. Later in the afternoon, we were all invited down onto the floor inside the track. There we gathered for the start of the "Murt Lawrence Boys Championship 1600M Run" while overhead the big screen announced "The Armory honors long time Brooklyn Prep Coach Murtha P. Lawrence for his dedication to the sport of Track & Field." This signage would appear on the screen intermittently throughout the day. Kevin Lawrence, Murt’s youngest son, was the Official Starter, and the race, appropriately enough, was won by a young man from a Jesuit school, Canisius Prep, in the very fast time of 4:17.54. He was kind enough to participate in a few group photos.

Immediately after the race, the CHSSA honored Murt posthumously and awarded a blazer to Kevin Lawrence, representing Murt and the whole Lawrence family. After this ceremony we made our way back to our seats for more fraternizing and story-telling. Soon it was time to head to Coogan’s up the street for the Reunion Dinner.

We had a brief reception to allow us to get a beverage, find our seats, and mingle some more. Fr. Jack Alexander, SJ Chaplain of the BPAA, said grace before we all moved through the buffet line and had an excellent dinner. As dessert was being served, a few of Murt’s Men expressed their feelings about what Murt meant to them and to the sport. Then Kevin Lawrence spoke about his Dad and about the memorial fund for Murt at ACHIEVE and its "Talking Hands Program". Kevin reported that, to date, about $8500 had been donated by BP track alums and that this money was being used to help fund the annual Spring Concert in which the "special people" sang songs in sign language. Each year over 1000 people attend this event. Murt’s daughter, Nancy, is one of the participants of this program and a beneficiary of all that ACHIEVE has to offer. She was at the Reunion Dinner and is a warm and loving woman, who really enjoyed herself. ACHIEVE, and the Lawrence family in particular are deeply moved and very appreciative of the generosity of Murt’s Men for a cause that meant so much to him.

In addition, two of Murt’s grandson’s each spoke about their grandfather and what he was like and meant to them and their families. We saw Murt from a different perspective. They spoke from the heart and it had its impact there in each of us. They were a marvelous testament to Murt. The evening concluded with a benediction from Fr. Dan Fitzpatrick, SJ the new Moderator of BPAA, in which he remembered those teammates who are ill and those now being coached by Murt on his angelic track team.

Many guys wanted to come but were unable to do so due to distance, family conflicts, illness, infirmities, etc. A few sent notes and tributes to Murt, some of which are published on the BP Track Alums website.

This memorial event for Murt was a great success. A comment by the Lawrence family sums it up best. "Thank you for an amazing day in New York. We are all lucky to be the beneficiaries of you hard work. I hope you enjoyed February 14th as much as my sisters and I did, and all the extended Lawrence’s too. It was, as stated, ‘a hell of a party’."

 


 

Posted - February 24, 2009

Frank Ziegler, '58 will be honored at the Hearts and Minds - St. Peter's College Annual Scholarship Dinner on April 2, 2009. He will be receiving the Loyalty to Alma Mater Award.


 

Posted - January 25, 2009

Murt Lawrence Memorial Event

On Saturday, February 14, 2009, the Catholic High School Athletic Association will be conducting the City Championships at “The Armory”. I am sure you all remember that place. For your amusement, amazement, and general interest in nostalgia, you may wish to go on-line at either www.chsaatrack.org or http://ny.milesplit.us. At this meet the 1600M will be named in honor of Murt Lawrence. While we don’t as yet have the exact time, the Meet Director estimates that it will be run some time between Noon and 1PM. The Meet starts at 9AM for those who really want their fill of HS Track. It would be terrific if many of us could be there for the 1600M. I believe that Murt came in 2nd in this race (the Mile) in his senior year when it was held in MSG. At around 5-5:30PM, the CHSAA honors certain coaches each year; and one of them this year will be Murt, posthumously. A CHSAA blazer will be awarded to Kevin Lawrence, representing Murt and the family.

After these ceremonies we will convene at Coogan’s Restaurant, 4015 Broadway at 169th St. for a buffet dinner and suitable liquid refreshments in a separate room just for our group. This dinner will be the reunion dinner for all of the BP Track guys and it will run from 6PM until 8:00PM. Refreshments after that are on your own tab in the main room of the restaurant. In order to make sure that we will have the room, we need a headcount as quickly as possible and we will need to make a deposit. So it is very important that we hear from those of you who intend to come along with a check for the dinner. Spouses are welcome. The cost of the dinner with refreshments, tax, fees & gratuities is $50 per person. The space available to us has a limited capacity (maybe around 100). Therefore, the first guys who send in their checks get in. If you intend to come and have not yet sent in your check, you need to do so quickly so that you won’t be disappointed. The Lawrence family will have 16 adults there, plus an additional 3 great-grandchildren of Murt.

If you received previous correspondence, when we were unsure of the cost of the dinner, it was suggested that you send a check for $100. Any residual would either be paid back to you, or you could opt to donate the money to a cause (see below) that would also honor Murt. If you did so, the first $50 will go to the cost of your dinner, the remainder will go to the Memorial Fund (see below). If you sent in $100 and are not going to the dinner, then all of it will go to the Memorial Fund. If, however, you would like some of that returned to you, please notify Frank Tomeo at the address below.

For those who have yet to send any money, we have changed the procedure now that we have firmed up our plans and the cost of the dinner. If you are coming to the dinner, then send a check to Frank. The check should be made out to the “Murtha P. Lawrence Fund” with Reunion Dinner written on face and sent to: Frank Tomeo, 2427 Goose Creek Rd., Dunnville, KY 42528. That gets you into the dinner. If you would also like to send in a gift of any amount to the Memorial Fund, see the instructions below for that purpose.

If you do not plan to attend the reunion dinner, but would like to donate to the Memorial Fund, please see what follows. It describes what the Fund will be used for as well as how to make a donation in Murt’s memory.

There had been considerable discussion within the steering committee about what to do with donations to honor Murt’s memory. The criteria adopted was to do what we think Murt would want us to do. To that end we discussed the matter with Murt’s children and they among themselves. The decision is to donate the money collected to the ACHIEVE Talking Hands Program ( http://www.achieveny.org/ ) located in Binghampton, NY, where Murt lived in the last years of his life. This was formerly known as the Broome-Tioga ARC and was formed by parents for individuals with intellectual and other developmental disabilities. Murt’s daughter, Nancy, was a beneficiary of this program and Murt and Maura worked with the program and were so pleased with how it helped Nancy. When Murt died, and when Maura died just a few months later, the family asked that donations be made to this program in lieu of flowers. Some of us have already given to this Program in memory of Murt. At Murt’s funeral, the individuals in the Program came and sang (in sign language) for Murt. It must have been a very touching moment. To give directly to the Program, call Amy Howard at: 607-231-5260 and specify the gift is in memory of Murt Lawrence. For additional info about donating, go to: http://www.achieveny.org/donate.htm. Please do not donate on-line, even though it is easy, because you cannot identify the gift as being in memory of Murt.

 

Please go to the Memorials section and read the wonderful story submitted by Murt's son Kevin.

 

 

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