St. Ethelreda All-Class Reunion – 11-02-13


I went Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013 in the late afternoon and evening to the reunion fundraiser at the school. It was unfortunately a poor turnout but fortunately a fun time nonetheless.   I saw our class picture and all the others in the hallway.   Unfortunately I did not see anyone from our class but saw two from the class behind us – John Sears and Chick Clam.

One of the oldest there besides myself was Rich Loritz, class of ’54, who has a law office in Orland Park and whose uncle was Dr. Anthony Loritz  who had a medical office at 84th and Ashland on the west side of the street. Rich’s father had a dental office there too and Rich opened his first law office there before the neighborhood changed.  His brother, Bob, was in the class after us and he has an older brother, Ralph who I believe was from the class of ’52.

Urbut_P50The Mass was celebrated by  Fr. Gavin Quinn, a Carmelite who helped out at St. Ethelreda from 1967 through 1972. He was and still is an excellent homilist.   He was supported by the St. Ethelreda Choir which did an excellent job. The children helped give tours of the classrooms if you wanted help or you could just browse the classrooms and halls your self or with others.   The building and classrooms are very well maintained although the desks are more modern than when we were there.  The rooms and the cloak rooms evoked many pleasant memories and the computers and class room equipment brought me to the reality that we are now in the age of computers and electronic education.  It amazes me that the Mercy Sisters were able to teach 45 to even 50 or more in the classrooms which  had to be crowded then and yet I do not remember ever feeling crowded. You can tell from old pictures of our classrooms that they were somewhat crowded despite my memory fooling me. 

After the Mass I did my tour and then there were a variety of prizes being raffled off that you could bid on sort of like last year at Bourbon Street. There also was a very nice buffet style dinner followed by visiting and music (not as loud as Bourbon Street thank goodness) and the raffle drawing.  I think we can be proud of St. Ethelreda and the good it is still doing in our old neighborhood.  Mrs. Denise Spells, the principal of St Ethelreda School, the faculty and staff and the students and families are keeping the St Ethelreda Traditions alive in our former community. .St Benedictine University is and has been a partner assisting St. Ethelreda.   We had an excellent turnout from our class year at Bourbon Street.  I hope next year if there is a St. Ethelreda School Reunion again that our class attendance will improve over just me being present to represent our class and hope I can make it again (God willing). I realize many live outside of the Chicago area and others may be in poor health or have other problems making it difficult or impossible to attend this event but those of us who live locally and are still able to ought to  try make it because it helps others less fortunate than we were and keeps alive the school that played such an important role in our growth.

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