John, Keira and Sherry
After St. Cecilia’s, I went to high school at La Salle with Bob Kurz, Joe McGowan and Joe Miller, then on to Villanova to study pre-med. At Villanova I met, dated and ended up marrying one of the first co-ed students admitted to the college of engineering. Since I attended more of her engineering classes than my own pre-med classes, I graduated with a civil engineering degree much to the dismay of my family for failing to take over my father’s medical practice in Fox Chase.
I have enjoyed a great and at times, not so great, career in heavy civil construction building all kinds of interesting projects such as, part of the “Big Dig” tunnel in Boston, the Williamsburg Bridge in NYC, a commuter rail line in San Juan, numerous highway, bridge and pump station projects between Boston, Philadelphia and the Baltimore/DC area including the Woodcrest Interchange in Cherry Hill and the Great Egg Harbor Crossing in Somers Point, NJ.
I raised my first family, which consists of two sons and a daughter, in Margate in the 70’s and in Voorhees, NJ in the 80’s and early 90’s. In order to pay their college tuitions, I then went on the road living and working in various East Coast cities and lately the upstate NY area near Albany.
During a vacation in Hawaii in 2003, I eloped with a member of my staff, another civil engineer. For my 60th birthday, my wife Sherry and I were blessed with the birth of our beautiful daughter, Keira (4), who has her father’s eyes but thankfully her mother’s brains. Last year while passing through Philly, I took them to Fox Chase to see the old homestead on Rhawn Street, St. Cecilia’s, the Rec and pizza at Joseph’s. My young daughter loved playing with the other Fox Chase kids at the refurbished Rec, which brought back many fond memories of my own childhood and that of my older children’s visits to their grandparents, which always included a few hours spent at the playground.
My son, John Jr., lives in Hollywood, FL; my son Brian lives with his wife Cecilia and their two sons in Chestnut Hill; and my daughter Meghan and her husband Carlos live in Seattle, WA. My grandsons, Rory (12) and Tristan (9), go to St. Genevieve’s in Flourtown, PA and are avid hockey players out of Wissahickon Ice Skating Club.
For the past decade, I have had a second home in Ocean City, NJ which gives me the excuse to come back to the Philadelphia area every summer to see family and friends. Coincidentally, one of my neighbors on our street is the guy I sat behind for 8 years at St. Cecilia’s, John Linus - it is truly a small world.
I am looking forward to the 50th reunion of the Class of 1962 and renewing old friendships and acquaintances.