Letters/EMail


From: Ricardo (Richard) C. Colon
To: David T. Feliciano
Sent: Sunday, May 01, 2005 1:57 PM
Subject: My Brief House Kids Bio

Hi David

In response to your questions, I was sitting with my wife telling her about my time at St Agnes and the 8mm movies my dad took of us there. She asked me if I'd ever looked on the internet to see if other people of St Agnes were maybe looking for House Kids. I looked on the net and found the site after a couple attempts at different variations of St Agnes.

My name was Richard Colon at that time... now it is Ricardo C. Colon. I first arrived with my brother Rudy in 1960. My Brother Rudy was 8 yrs old and I was 6 yrs old. My Brother Eddie arrived in 1961. I and my brother Rudy were there for 3 yrs and Eddie was there 2 yrs. We all left St Agnes together in 1963. I was 9 yrs old when I left.

I was in Regina as I remember and my brother Eddie was in Little Flower. I forgot what group Rudy was in. I don't really remember but a couple of guys from there and I will always remember Reverend Mother Sister Ann Bernadette. I also remember Mr. O'Brien, Mr. Glen and Mr. Coleman I think he was a guidance councilor or something like that.

If I understand and remember the chronology of events as they were recounted to me, my mother was ill after contracting Tuberculosis. Sometime thereafter my father got the brilliant idea to see if the Church could help him to take care of us. He was an active alcoholic at the time and was as he told us... without any idea how to raise 3 boy on his own. He told the church people at St Cecelia's in Spanish Harlem that he was a family member left with the task of finding a home for us after our father was killed and my mother committed to a terminal hospital for incurable Tuberculosis.

He took us, my brother Rudy and myself, to the church and sat us down at a large table where we were given lots of plastic green soldiers to play with until he was to return (yeah , as though he was really gonna return). Some long time later that day a nun came into the room and she ushered us into the first day at a new life in Sparkill, NY at the St Agnes convent for boys.

Aside from the regular day to day of life at the convent, I only remember a few things. I remember the Spring bazaars, the church services, color wars, the trips to have our pictures taken with Santa Clause, Bear Mountain, trips to Coney Island and the rock lined yard where we played on a daily basis and most of our general population interaction took place.

I have only told this confession to my current wife and will tell you now of the guilt that I lived under for a short time while I was there. I was at confession once and I have no idea what got into me but I decided that the crucifix that was in the confessional would make a great one for me to own. I decided to take it and did so. Oh my goodness you'd think the world was coming to an end....here we are in the midst of the Cuban missile crisis and all they talked about all day was the missing Crucifix. Sister Mary Margaret then told us that whomever took the cross was gonna burn in everlasting torment and damnation for eternity.

Oh Oh. not that !!!!! well a couple days later while we were out in the field I managed to sneak to the nuns garden area, ( as I remembered it). I dug up the Crucifix that I buried there a week before. First chance I found I put the dirt covered crucifix back on the wall of the confessional and lived in relief of the curse she told us of. That was a very traumatic few days for me.

I don't really remember much more than going to class and what our dorms looked like. I don't remember leaving and I have only been there once as I passed a sign on the highway when I was in my 30s that pointed out the way to Sparkill. I wondered if it was the same place I had lived so many years before and decided to take a look..... I was touched to say the least when I pulled up and saw the missing buildings and found the field that seemed to large when I was a kid. Now it looks like a small yard. The mountain up the hill didn't seem to humongous and the pond we ice skated looked like little more than just what it is.... a pond. I remembered it as a lake.

Once when I was watching Jerry Spinger, I saw a man in the front row of the audience with a T-shirt on the read " I'm a house Kid" .... go figure

I live in Deerfield Beach, FL. I am a payment processor for a land developer. I have 3 kids. My oldest son Cory is an accountant in Little Rock Arkansas, My younger son Marcus is a cook here in South Florida and my daughter Ebony works for a Pediatrician in Florida. My Wife Jan an RN here in Florida and my lord continues to watch over me as he did when he had me sent to St Agnes to be cared for until better arrangements could be made at his command. My brother Rudy lives in Brooklyn still with his wife and daughter. He works for the State insurance fund, I have no idea what he does there. My brother Eddie lives in Tampa, FL. He is an electrician. I live an otherwise blessed life with my wife and I love the fact that you guys have kept this thing going for so long.

As I read all the stuff on your website I laughed, cried and looked at all the great photos.

Thanks so very much.

Ricardo


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