2009-06-25 / Top Stories

Parishioners Gather At Holy Family School Closing Tribute

By Jason Linetsky

Clockwise from left: Father John Amann, Holy Family Church pastor, recites a prayer; plaque commemorating 59 years of Catholic education; (top) Teresa Ippolito and Mary Lou Reitz, school principal, unveil plaque, and Class of '94 alumni Nicole Talico and Maria Bravo. Photos by Jason Linetsky        Clockwise from left: Father John Amann, Holy Family Church pastor, recites a prayer; plaque commemorating 59 years of Catholic education; (top) Teresa Ippolito and Mary Lou Reitz, school principal, unveil plaque, and Class of '94 alumni Nicole Talico and Maria Bravo. Photos by Jason Linetsky Parishioners of the Holy Family Church gathered Sunday to pay tribute to six decades of Catholic education at the Holy Family School, which is closing this year.

Following a special mass — "Holy Family School's Legacy and Farewell Mass 1950-2009" — a ceremony was held to unveil a plaque placed near the Conklin Avenue entrance in honor of past and present students, parents, and faculty of the school. Faculty member Teresa Ippolito and Principal Mary Lou Reitz then pulled the cover to reveal the marble testament.

Before talking about the school's history, Pastor Rev. John Amann, with holy water in hand, proceeded to read the commemorative inscription, which he followed with a prayer for all who have attended the school.

Jimmy Diele (Class of 1982), who sometimes serves as a disc jockey for church events, fondly remembered several faculty members who made an impact on his life.

"My favorite teacher," Diele recalled, "was my 5th grade teacher, Sister Catherine Marie, the sweetest person and a wonderful teacher. I learned so much about music from Mr. Chierico. He had the best children's and adult choir. There were two great principals in my time: Sister Annette Marie and Sister Francis Paul. Both wonderful people."

Nicole Tamico and Maria Bravo (Class of 1994) also recalled their memories attending Holy Family, such as "buying Mother's Day carnations for $2, hot dog sales, milk money, half days, and having to be in school for Brooklyn-Queens Day when public school students had off."

Diele summed it up for all alumni, "These wonderful people gave us wisdom, knowledge, and taught us how to pray and love. Holy Family School will be forever in my memory and my heart, as it will be for many others."

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