[I will add additional photos at the post later; for now, I’ll begin with just one photo, of Mr. Talbot.]
In the following text, I have used just the first initial for a couple of students, in order to respect privacy of information. In the event we get the okay to publish the names, from the students who were mentioned, we will publish them.
[The items on square brackets are notes added by Jaan Pill.]
Please note: In the event we have infringed upon anybody’s privacy by mentioning names, for people who don’t want to be mentioned, please let me know at once and I will remove the names
Please note as well: The MCHS 60s Reunion & Celebration of the 60s REGISTRATION information can be accessed here.
The event, which is open to any student or staff who was at MCHS at any point in the 1960s, will take place in Toronto on Oct. 17, 2015.
Please make an effort to register sooner rather than later, so that we will have a good indication of our attendance, which will determine how many meeting rooms will be required for the reunion.
Graeme Decarie has found his copy of the 1962-63 Highlander
The following text is from Mr. Decarie:
I have found my 1962-63 Highlander – so I can fill you in on a few more people. [An earlier set of recollections can be accessed here.]
First, I issue a very belated apology to [B]. (He must have graduated in 1964 or 65). In grade nine, I punished him for swearing at me. He was always a likeable kid, and the punishment was unnecessary. (funny how that can stick in one’s head for over sixty years.)
Then there was [B2] who I kicked out of a YMCA day camp. We were at Mount Royal, and he went home without telling me. I spent hours looking for him on that damn mountain. But I shouldn’t have kicked him out. I should have had him shot at dawn.
Alan Talbot went on to become head honcho at the school board and, by all reports, was first rate. My memory of him was the first parent’s night to welcome them to the new school, and to set up a Home and School Association. There were about a thousand students that first year, so we set up almost 2,0000 chairs in the gym. We also line the wall from the back entrance to the stage with box after box of flowers. All us teachers got our academic gowns on for a ceremonial procession. After a delay of some minutes to make sure everyone had arrived, we paraded in.
There were nine parents there.
After the ceremony was over and people had left, we teachers took off our gowns and, one by one, left. Then, as I passed the gym door, I heard someone singing in the gym. I looked in. There was a trail of flowers on the floor that ran halfway to the stage. At the end of the trail was a happy Alan Talbot, brandishing a pair of shears. And as he clipped, he was singing….
“Where have all the flowers gone…”
[You can access the words to the song here.]
Jack Leroy I first met when I was a student at Montreal High. Jack had begun teaching there in the glory days when it had students like Oscar Peterson and Christopher Plummer – so Graeme Decarie was quite a comedown.
After MCHS, he became principal at Barclay. I didn’t see him for many years. In that time, he had become a priest and then a bishop at a sort of breakaway Anglican church in Niagara Falls, though he still maintained a home in Saraguay. Then, one evening – it must have been close to 1980 when I was working at Concordia and living in Point Claire, there was a knock at my door. It was Jack.
He grinned the old grin. But I knew at first glance he was dying. He knew it, too. We talked for a bit then – I’m not sure – either I took him to the hospital or I took him home to his daughter so she could take him to the hospital. He died within days.
Mrs. Jelinek and Mrs. Rosenberg
I saw Mrs. Jelinek sometime about 1990. She looked exactly as she had in 1963. The same is true of Mrs. Rosenberg (Soryl Shulman.)
Bob Hill went back to school, just as I had, to get either an MA or a PhD. I’m not sure which. Then he taught history at John Abbot CEGEP where he was the big force behind the teachers’ association. He also developed a sideline, performing Jewish music for Jewish weddings and other occasions. As always, he was a quick learner, and soon mastered singing in Yiddish. He’s a very versatile guy.
The last time I saw him was a good twenty years go – still looking youthful and cheerful, but pale and losing weight. He had been suffering bouts of cancer. When I moved to New Brunswick, he moved to some place in the townships. We corresponded for a time; but I haven’t heard from him for a good, five years.
I’ve had no contact with Mr. Kelly. But a long, long time ago, I taught his daughter at Concordia. Like her father, she’s quite tall. Unlike him, she was stunningly beautiful.
Students: Peter McAllister and Linda Colluci
I saw Peter McAllister about 1980 in a supermarket in (I think) the West Island. He turned into a very, very big guy. I was so happy I had always been polite to him in school. Peter was one of more than a few students I taught at Parkdale, too. I noticed Linda Colluci on the first page of the yearbook.
Lynda Spence and Barclay Allen
I last saw Lynda Spence a long, long time ago when she was a nurse. happily preparing to shave Mr. Saul’s (you know) for an appendix removal. Later, in the 80s, I think, we were in touch by either letter or phone.
She had married Barclay Allen, and had been in touch a student whose name I can’t remember I should because she became quite famous. (She had a very successful singing career with a group called The Bells. Received the Order of Canada for work done to help women with breast cancer,) And, Lynda told me she had recently married a childhood sweetheart, and was now living in BC. [It’s Jacki Ralph. Please see the Comments section below]
Diane Fagg was a student in some night course I was teaching. I recognized her immediately. She hadn’t changed a bit. This must have been in the 1980s, and she was, I think, living in Pointe Claire.
Marilynne Sinclair became, I think, a teacher at MCHS. Not sure about that. [Correct: She did become a teacher. A younger friend of mine was in her class at MCHS.]
[End of text from Graeme Decarie]