St. Agnes Alumni WebNews
House Kids @ Home
WebNews #37; Tenth Anniverary Special, Thursday; September 19, 2013
When profiling is “reasonable,” injustice becomes excusable 7/24/13
|| *** ST. AGNES ALUMNI 71st ANNUAL PICNIC, AUGUST 19, 2017; MARK ON YOUR CALENDAR *** 4/27/17
|| *** In Loving Memory of Pastor "Pat" Feliciano *** 3/8/14 *** Peter Feliciano Needs Your Prayers *** 12/14/15
| Fr. Ray Masterson Obit 3/19/14 Fr. Ray Masterson Remembrance Letter 3/19/14 Fr. Ray Masterson Remembrance 3/19/14
|| The boys of St Agnes, a video by Sr Margaret Palliser 3/20/14 Augusta DiMarino; Mother of 4 Maltese "House Kids" 11/10/15
| George Favre, 82, Sparkill, A House Kid, Biography 5/24/14 View Sacred Heart Chapel Video 2/24/14
Alumni Newsletter, Spring 2015 5/11/15 In Memory of Hugh J. “MAC” McAvinue, By Gerald F. Merna 2/22/15
10th Anniversary Special Edition - StAgnesAlumni.org Website
In This Issue:
A Tribute To Coach Jim Faulk - eMail
Click Here To View: A Tribute To Coach Jim Faulk - Pictorial
From: Gerald F. (Jerry) Merna
To: David Feliciano, Webmaster, St. Agnes Alumni website (www.stagnesalumni.org/)
Subject: A Tribute To Coach Jim Faulk - Pictorial
You asked if I could prepare a pictorial story about our legendary St. Agnes’ Coach Jim Faulk for inclusion in the special Anniversary Issue of the St. Agnes Alumni Assn. website. Here is what I have been able to put together considering time restraints and adequate background material that I hope is what you had in mind.
There are so many stories, tales, legends, rumors and other forms of writings that have been printed or told in one form or another about our respected, renowned and celebrated Coach Jim Faulk that it would literally take a “book” (or two) to capture them all. Though there is a “scarcity” of pictures of Coach, I have been able to come up with a few.
There was so much more to this man known by many of us who came before, during and after his time as the St. Agnes Coach or Athletic Director that perhaps will never be told in full, though I have tried to tell as much of his “story” as I could, mostly by using any and all “writings,” news clippings/articles, tributes, etc. by Alumni and others that speak much better and in more detail about him than I could attempt to write. The memory of Coach Faulk more than deserves to have this “accumulation of items” put together in one place so that everyone can recall him vividly, including those who may never have known him personally, and appreciate the dedication, trust, devotion and sacrifices this man, and his equally devoted wife, Elizabeth M. (Betty) Faulk, made on behalf of all St. Agnes “House’s Kids.” As a result, this “Tribute” may be a bit long because I am including those writings.
So in effect I am “grateful” to you asking me to do this, forcing me to do something I always planned to do but just never got around to it. Let me also note that it would be extremely difficult to fully and/or accurately “credit” every single person whose pictures, comments, material or other info I have used herein, but where possible I have attempted to do so. I hope no one is offended if I did not accurately or failed entirely to acknowledge their contributions, but Coach knows who you are, and he’s smiling down on all of us.
And I’m sure there will be some Alumni who may not entirely share the same feelings about Coach that so many of us do, for a variety of reasons, and they are always welcome to express those feelings. Most of us came from one of the two other “Homes,” St. Dominic’s in Blauvelt and St. Agatha’s in Nanuet where we completed grammar school before arriving at St. Agnes for our high school years, some for “Shop” at St. Agnes and most of us going to Tappan Zee High School in Piermont, and as a result we have memories of a variety of experiences, including some of less than stellar treatment. Athletes in particular are prone to question the “coaching techniques” Coach may have used and interpreted some of it as “harsh.” I recall something your Brother Pete wrote about this, saying, “All good coaches resort to methods that push you the limits to allow you to perform at 110% of your abilities. It is this “extra push” by the Coach that usually makes the difference in a tight game. Coach Faulk was a very great and extremely effective coach—guys who understood what he was doing really did look up to and admired him.” So many of us also followed Coach into the Marine Corps and learned quickly when those same techniques ”bestowed” on us in boot camp or Officer Candidate School made us the best Marines we could be, to ensure when the call to battle came, we would be ready! None of us are perfect—some of our individual experiences with Coach and some of the Nuns who cared for us are understandable, but I feel it would serve no useful purpose to elaborate on any of them.
If I had more time and additional resources, I could have done a better job, but here it is. Good luck with your “Anniversary Issue” and warm regards,
GERALD F. (Jerry) MERNA
By Bernard S. Neville 11/25/98
Assistance: Arthur Gunther, Editor, Rockland Journal News
Printed in Community View, Rockland Journal News
February 28, 1957
March 20, 1958
From: Nicholas Gibbons
Sent: Tuesday, September 17, 2013 10:18 PM
To: Peter Feliciano; cc: David Feliciano
Subject: St. Agnes
My name is Nick Gibbons, I would like to say you guys have done a great job on this web site.
I spent 11 years as a houses kid along with my brothers John & George. We were there from 1942 through 1953, when I graduated 8th grade and was asked to leave for whatever reason. My question to you is do I remember a Benjamin Feliciano or am I losing it. People I was friends with were Mario & Bobby Altomare, Huey Dunne, Martin Crowe, the Corianos, John O'Brien as well as a bunch of others. I went from the babies, Sister SueSue up to Eight grade. I had every job there from darning socks, chow hall with Emmit Flood, working in the kitchen, pots and pans for Harry, to climbing into the tube boilers to chip scale from the inside of the boilers for Mr. Frank. To this, I still consider it a miserable childhood but I lived through it.
My Grandfather's sister was a Nun up there and is buried in the cemetery, Sister Mary Gibbons. I met her a few times after I got out of the home but never knew she was at the convent till I saw her Grave. All in all I really hated the place, not that it was anyone's fault up there. So far life has been good after getting out and putting all the life skills I learned up there to work for me.
Keep up the good work and hopefully I'll make the next picnic.
From: John J. Antonacci
To: Gaspar53@aol.com ; David T. Feliciano
Sent: Saturday, November 13, 2004 1:25 PM
Subject: Re: Sparkill
I remember Joe Rosen quite well he was a quiet person very sincere he was the God Father to all of us for 46 years he put out a newsletter keeping us informed about the lives of the House's kids when they married, when the had children, what careers we have chosen what branch of service we served in. But most of all his since of humor no matter how down you were when you got to his jokes they made you laugh. I spoke to him by phone and by mail he was a very gracious individual. I put him on my Christmas mailing list and sent him a card every Christmas I felt it was the least I could do after all he was sending letters to over 500 house's kids 4 times a year . One year I went up to see him in person at the candy store in Sparkill he was there with Tarry I brought up a few gifts for him he was so humble he had tears in his eyes and said I made him feel like it was parlor . Joe never had parlor and never received a parlor bag until that Sunday. My wife was with me she was speechless . Joe went to mass everyday and went to the convent every night say the rosary with the nuns .Tarry was his best friend and the God Father was the king in that little candy store everyone who entered greeted him with respect. I will never forget the day we shared parlor together and before I left I gave him a hug and thanked him for all his hard work in putting out the newletter keeping us all informed and together like one large family.
From: Jim Lundberg
To: David T. Feliciano
Sent: Thursday, January 12, 2006 9:14 AM
Subject: St Agnes Alumnus
I am writing this email from my office in Iraq. I was rewriting some phone numbers into my new day planner when I noticed that I had a number for Art & Gloria Kingsly. Art was in charge of the Alumni Newsletter. I then remember Art saying something about an Alumni Website. So I put “St. Agnes Home for Boys” in the search engine and voila I see my old school. I was in St. Agnes from 1965 to 1970 when I graduated from elementary school. Wow was it nice to see the photos of the school and Sacred Heart Church. Memories, memories and more memories came flooding in. I would like very much to contribute my biography to your website if that would be all right. I see that there are many “old timers” in the bios, fellas that go way back to the 20’s and 30’s. I did not realize how far back St. Agnes really goes into the years. I would like to see my generation of fellow home boys in the website as well and can do a lot to help track them down. Tell me what I can do as I think that this is an important piece of history we should be cherishing. I am wondering where all the pictures are that were taken of the school and of us during the 1965 – 1970 years. It would be interesting to add those to see how the home changed so much from the 30’s. I am sure there are some around somewhere and it will be fun to help track them down.
James E. Lundberg Jr. ‘70
On 08/23/13, Colon, Ricardo (MDFR) wrote:
Subject: I am a House's Kid... just reaching out to say thank you
My name is Ricardo C. Colón. I am a House’s Kid. I was cared for by the Dominican Sisters from 1960 until 1963. I and my brothers were there for three years.
I read a letter that you sent in 2007 to the President of the NYPD Anchor Club.
After reading it in its entirety, I was touched to tears and found myself writing this letter to thank you for the memories and the accounts your shared.
I had no idea that the trips that I enjoyed to the various venues you mentioned had anything to do with the NYPD Anchor Club.
Being a lifelong New Yorker now living in Miami, Florida, I could have done anything possible to show my appreciation for their efforts.
I fully intend to do so.
I am never too busy to read about anyone that assisted in my upkeep and provision as a child at St Agnes Home and School for Boys
Thank you for your sharing and God Bell you and yours.
Ricardo C. Colón
Miami Dade Fire Rescue
9300 NW 41st Street
Miami, FL 33178
From: Gerald F.Merna
Sent: Monday, August 26, 2013 1:13 AM
To: Colon, Ricardo (MDFR)
Subject: Re: I am a House's Kid... just reaching out to say thank you
So nice to hear from another "House's Kid," lo these many years.
Great to see you are also one of our fine "Firefighters" down there in Miami.
I just returned from our Annual Reunion on the Piermont Pier where we had another good turnout of former Alumni.
I'm assuming you are familiar with our St. Agnes Alumni Website, but to be sure, will include it here: http://www.stagnesalumni.org/ . Brothers David and Pete Feliciano do all the work to maintain that great site.
I'm going to copy them on this reply to be sure they add you to the list of Alumni, as well as our St. Agnes Alumni President Pat Moriarity. Perhaps you can attend next years (2014) reunion?
Feel free to keep in touch, and thanks again for your note. That's what makes our writing and both our website and Alumni Newsletters so extremely valuable; they "connect" us no matter where we are.
The Feliciano's are preparing a special edition of the website so perhaps they can include this correspondence as well as anything else you may want to contribute to it.
Gerald F. (Jerry) Merna
PS: Pat Moriarity is our current St. Agnes Alumni President; his email address is included with the Feliciano's above.
On 08/26/13, Colon, Ricardo (MDFR) wrote:
Subject: Re: I am a House's Kid... just reaching out to say thank you
Hi again Gerald
I received your reply today and was happy to hear from you so soon after I wrote you. I am familiar with and I am also featured on the St Agnes House Kids List and the St Agnes Alumni Biography Page. I have been on the page since 2005 when I sent my first letter. I guess it may not be a bad idea to send an update and include my one living brother’s image and bio as well.
I did attend the Alumni association reunion once sometime between 1987 and 1990. It was so weird and heartwarming to see people that I didn’t have to explain my heartfelt gratefulness to St Agnes’ sister to. They shared stories and I left happy and sad at the same time. I never stopped dreaming of being home while I was at the Convent but when we did go home, I wanted to be back there more than ever and I never forgot how well I was taken care of there. I didn’t know how good my brothers and I had it while we were there.
I fully intend to make it to the Annual Alumni Reunion before long. I need it for so many reasons I can’t explain. Maybe… I don’t have to… You know?
Anyway, thanks a bunch for writing back and so soon.
PS. I am not a Fire Fighter but I am part of the Miami-Dade Fire Fighting team. The sisters at St Agnes planted a seed of goodness in me; time and life watered that seed and it has come to fruition. It took a long time but I am good guy because of the things I learned there and the people (House’s Kids) I learned those things with.
Thank you again and God Bless you and yours.
Ricardo C. Colón
Miami Dade Fire Rescue
9300 NW 41st Street
Miami, FL 33178
From: Gerald F. Merna
Sent: Monday, August 26, 2013 5:06 PM
Subject: Re: RE: I am a House's Kid... just reaching out to say thank you
Very well said, Ricardo. I look forward to seeing you at a future reunion. Meanwhile I'll make sure you are included on the web site list and the St. Agnes Newsletter when they come out.
“Home Kids: The Story of St. Agatha Home for Children,” By Nancy Canfield: "Book Recounts Author's Life in Orphanage:"
By Pat Sherman UNION-TRIBUNE COMMUNITY NEWS WRITER, March 10, 2006. "Nancy Canfield knows how a single, immutable event can forever alter a child's life.
In her recently published book, “Home Kids: The Story of St. Agatha Home for Children,” Canfield recounts the years she and four siblings spent at a Catholic orphanage in New York." (More....)
'Home Kids' By Nancy Canfield:
The story of St. Agatha Home for Children:
"We're going to take you kids," he pointed to each of us sitting on the couch and said our names in a sing-song voice "Jackie... Tommy... Hellen... David and Nancy," pausing between each name as if to prove he knew them, "to see a school tomorrow, a boarding school, see how you like it." He said this in a voice that implied it was temporary, like we'd have a choice about attending.
With those words the Canfield siblings began a journey that profoundly shaped their formative years. Home Kids is Nancy Canfield's courageous retelling of her family's dramatic story and the inspirational story of St. Agatha Home for Children.
Letters: 'Home Kids' By Nancy Canfield:
The Story of St. Agatha Home for Children: Sent: 01/19/2006
Photos: St. Agatha Home Keepsake Photograph.
Graphic by: www.Tribe360.com
Please eMail your Photos, Stories, Anecdotes, Letters, EMail, Biographies, Newsletters, News. Please read (Our Policy)