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Tolle Lege!

“Take Up
and Read”

The St. Rita of Cascia High School Alumni Magazine

Valentine’s at the Ritz: IN THIS ISSUE

Dinner Dance Success Once Again 1
Dinner Dance

Letter from
the Principal

Mustangs in
the News

Winter Sports
6 -7

8-9 Advancement

10 Keeping Track

11 In Memoriam

Fr. Tom McCarthy, O.S.A. ‘83 (left) with Tolle Lege Community Service Award winner Dr. John Donahue and Couple
of the Year Jacqui and Mike Zunica. View the full photo gallery at What do you think
of our new look?

t was a cold February night in down- hing’ at the amazing selection of silent Email comments to
town Chicago, but the Grand Ballroom auction items. Some highlights included
at the Ritz-Carlton was warmed by the guitars signed by The Eagles and Pink
conviviality and fraternity of alumni, sup- Floyd, collections of fine liquors, and a
porters, and friends of St. Rita of Cascia variety of autographed sports memora- Advancement since 1997 as Director of
High School as they gathered for the bilia. Along with the silent auction, Keith Development and Special Projects, and
19th Annual Valentine Dinner Dance. Jones of Sayre and Jones Auctioneers has also led the baseball team to many
A gourmet dinner from the hotel, ran a fast-paced live auction with his championships as head coach during
along with great music from The Con- crew to gather bids on a guitar signed by that time. His hard work over the years
nexion (, set the Rolling Stones, tickets to the Oprah has helped the Valentine Dance grow to
the scene for a night of ‘oohing’ and ‘ah- show, resort getaways, and a special its current level of success. His wife Jac-
“fund-a-cause” to raise money for new qui is constantly behind him, supporting
science labs at St. Rita. him and their children. The awards were
It was not all frenzied bid-watching, preceded by an incredible speech from
however. The true prizes of the night senior student Andrew Smialek, which
came from the awards presentation. visibly illustrated the strength of the St.
Dr. John Donahue was honored with Rita family.
the 2008 Tolle Lege Community Ser- The Dinner Dance, a perennial ma-
vice Award. Donahue has served as the jor fundraiser for the school, brought in
Chairman of the newly formed Board of $230,000 this year. The all-time total is
Directors of St. Rita of Cascia High School now over $2.5 million. Deep thanks to
since its inception in 2006. The 2008 Cou- all of those who attended. Your support
ple of the Year Award was presented to and commitment to Catholic Augustin-
12 Ritamen clean up well as they help with the auc- Mike and Jacqui Zunica. Mike has been ian education at St. Rita is paramount to
tion at the Dinner Dance. with St. Rita in the Office of Institutional our continued success.

Veritas † Unitas † Caritas 1

Tolle Lege! is a publication of


the St. Rita of Cascia High School
Office of Institutional Advancement
7740 S. Western Ave., Chicago, IL 60620
St. Rita is sponsored by the

March 2008 Augustinian Order and has been serving

Dear Ritamen, Families & Friends: the Chicago area since 1905.
Telephone: 773-925-5029
We are just completing the third quarter of E-mail:
the school year, and are reaping the results of the Administration
hard work and efforts put forth by both faculty Rev. Thomas McCarthy, O.S.A. ‘83
and students during the academic year thus far. I President
am pleased to be able to tell you that our seniors Mrs. Sally Deenihan
have earned over $5 million in scholarships to Principal
college, and it is only mid-March! We anticipate Rev. Walter McNicholas, O.S.A. ‘44
that this amount will grow to $7 million by the Alumni Chaplain
end of the school year. Bro. Gary Hresil, O.S.A. ‘86
Alumni Moderator
In the athletic area we have also excelled. Office of Institutional Advancement
Steve Zimmerman won a first place medal in the individual state finals for Mike Brennan - Director of Advancement
wrestling. Kevin Galeher, John Majka, and Taylor Osborn also placed. Coach Michael Zunica - Advancement Officer
Craig Ferguson and our skating Mustangs have won the prestigious Kennedy
Craig Ferguson - Director of Admissions
Cup in hockey for the first time since 1992. Jamere Walton won the state
John Schmitt ‘84 - Director of Annual Appeal
3-point shoot-out, defeating three other class winners in the King of the Hill
Michael Maione ‘56 - Director of Alumni
finale. Our football team was honored at the March meeting of the Chicago
Adam McGrath - Director of Public Relations
City Council for their victory in the Prep Bowl at the conclusion of their
Trish Harrington - Asst. Director of Annual Appeal
season, and we are looking forward to great seasons for all our spring athletes.
Javier Solorio II ’02 - Director of Graphic Design

All of these accomplishments would not be possible without the com- Alumni Association Officers
mitment of everyone involved, including our alumni and friends who so Nicholas Calarco ‘73 - President
generously donate to St. Rita High School. Without our benefactors, we Sye Majka ‘64 - 1st Vice-President
would never be able to place before our students the opportunities to develop William Lynch ‘91 - 2nd Vice-President
and excel which are currently available to them. Thank you, to each and Patrick O’Malley ‘77 - Secretary
every person, who has donated services and/or monetary contributions to Sean Carney ‘74 - Treasurer
this great community. Each one of you shares in the credit and honors our Board of Directors
students bring home to St. Rita of Cascia High School. Ronald Abramowicz ‘60
Anthony Colosimo ‘63
Dr. John Donahue, Chairman
Sincerely yours, Michael T. Georgopulos ‘72
Patrick M. Graber
Thomas M. Harrington ‘74
Bro. Gary Hresil, O.S.A. ‘86
Gregory Jania ‘89
Sally E. Deenihan Mark A. Kelly ‘84
Principal Very Rev. William Lego, O.S.A.
Timothy McArdle (Hon.)
Rev. Thomas R. McCarthy, O.S.A. ‘83
Ernest Mrozek ‘71

Calendar Bryan O’Connor ‘70

The Honorable Noreen Daly Reilly
Edward J. Schmit, Jr. ‘63
April 17 & 19 The St. Rita of Cascia Theater Group Presents Rev. Bernard Scianna, O.S.A. ‘83
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead | 7:00 p.m. • 3:00 p.m. Terrance R. Stefanski
April 18 Alumni Banquet “Coming Home” | 6:00 p.m. Emeriti Members of the Board of Directors
Patrick E. Mahoney ‘54
May 1 Perpetual Novena to St. Rita | 7:00 p.m. Michael McArdle ‘54
May 13 - 21 Nine Day Solemn Novena | 7:00 p.m. James Miller ‘47
Donald A. Petkus ‘58
May 18 Commencement | All Day
Michael Schneider ‘46
May 22 St. Rita Feast Day Mass | 7:00 p.m. Arthur R. Velasquez, ‘56
Secretary to the Board
Sr. Ardis Cloutier, O.S.F
2 Tolle Lege! Spring 2008
Mustangs Making News
John Majka Appointed to Naval Academy
Egan told Majka that he roomed with the
Naval Academy’s Assistant Coach, Scott
Owen, at Northern Illinois, that opened
ers were also required.
John said of his acceptance, “I am
very excited to have been accepted into
the door for the move to Annapolis. the Naval Academy. Once I visited, I
The application process for the Na- knew it was the right place for me. I’ve
val Academy is more intensive than other never lived on the East Coast before, so
universities, as it requires a physical test, it will be an adjustment, but I’m looking
medical examination, and a nomination forward to the change and experienc-
from a Congressman or Senator. Majka ing new things. It won’t be easy, but I’m
was nominated by U.S. Representative ready to accept the challenge.”
Daniel Lipinski of the 3rd Congressional The St. Rita community is very proud
John Majka (Chicago - Beverly) will be attending the District of Illinois. Letters of recommen- of John’s accomplishments, and wishes
United States Naval Academy next year. He has been dation from his Math and English teach- him the best in Annapolis.
on the Gold Honor Roll each of his seven semesters
at St. Rita of Cascia High School, and won his second
Catholic League Title in Wrestling this year.
NHS Teams Up with Rebound Sports
to Help Kids Play Ball

t was the realization of years of hard ecently, members of the St. Rita torcycle tours through Mexico, Central
work for St. Rita of Cascia High School Chapter of the National Honor Soci- America, and South America, where small
senior John Majka when he opened the ety teamed up with Rebound Sports villages have been identified for the initial
official-looking letter from the Superin- for a week-long collection of used inflat- phase of this project. Often the children
tendent of the United States Naval Acad- able sports balls. Wes Benak '81, Assis- in these remote areas have little more
emy, which told him he was selected to tant Principal and NHS moderator at St. than an empty water bottle to play with.
the Academy’s Class of 2012. The selec- Rita, heard about the charitable organi- The difference is instantaneous once the
tion comes with a $300,000 scholarship. zation founded just a year ago by Mount joyful delivery is made.
Majka, who lives in Beverly and at- Prospect resident Victor LaPorte. Junior Dave Fashingbauer said, “I’m
tended St. Cajetan Elementary School, “I saw the Rebound Sports story on
has been a consistent honors student my local news,” said Benak, “and thought
at St. Rita, making the Gold Honor Roll this was a cause the boys at St. Rita could Continued on page 4...
each of his first seven semesters, which really get behind. I knew we
requires a 4.00 GPA or higher. He also had a good chance to make
earned the Heeney Award for Fall 2007, a big difference for children
with straight A’s for the semester. He was who do not have any sports
inducted into the National Honor Society equipment.”
in November, which requires not only ex- And a big difference
cellent grades but fosters an attitude of it will be, with the St. Rita
service as well. community donating 425
Majka just finished his fourth year as a used and new sports balls
Varsity wrestler, and took home 3rd place over the week-long drive.
in the individual state championships this Included were basketballs,
year at 135 lbs., improving from his fourth footballs, soccer balls, vol-
place finish in the 125 lb. weight class last leyballs, water polo balls,
year. He also won his second consecutive and a range of other balls
Catholic League Title this season. that will be given new life in
When he was initially considering the playgrounds of under-
applying to colleges this year, Majka was privileged children. Five St. Rita High School juniors, members of the National Honor Society,
help collect and deflate the 425 sports balls they collected during a
leaning toward the University of Iowa or LaPorte and Rebound
week-long drive for Rebound Sports. Standing (from left): Kyel White
University of Wisconsin-Madison, largely Sports have formed a part- (Chicago-Ashburn), Dave Fashingbauer (Chicago-Beverly), Pat Hogan
because of their wrestling programs. But nership with MotoDiscov- (Chicago-Beverly), and Mr. Wes Benak '81. Kneeling: David Huang
when former St. Rita Wrestling Coach Ryan ery, an outfit that leads mo- (Chicago-Bridgeport) and Ben Richardson (Oak Park).

Veritas † Unitas † Caritas 3

...Continued from Page 3

glad we did so well with this collection. With all the

athletics in our school and in our country, it’s easy
to take for granted something as simple as playing
with a ball.”
Rebound Sports is looking to expand to collect-
ing all types of sports equipment, but for now the ef-
forts are focused on collecting inflatable sports balls,
which can be deflated for more efficient shipping.
If you have questions or would like to volunteer for
this worthy cause, visit

Students from St. Rita High School attended and participated in the 30th Annual
African American Heritage Mass at Holy Name Cathedral on February 5th. Pictured
(left to right): Kyel White (Chicago-Ashburn), Christopher Simms (Chicago-Morgan
African American Heritage Mass Park), Mike Haas (Chicago-Mt. Greenwood), Ben Richardson (Oak Park), Damon
Waddy (Chicago-Brainerd), Chris Chaney (Chicago-Ashburn), Nick Ardolino (Oak

Lawn), Joe Campagna (Chicago-Mt. Greenwood), Mr. Ray Knight. Kneeling: Rashad
n Tuesday, February the third principle of Kwan- Spells (Chicago-Morgan Park), Melvin Shaw (Chicago-Ashburn), Mike Basic (Chicago-
5, 12 students from zaa. Ujima refers to “collec- Midway), Dan Dillon (Evergreen Park).
St. Rita of Cascia High tive work and responsibil-
School, along with Brother ity,” and this idea permeated from Archdiocesan elemen- an active Ritaman, having
Jerome Sysko, O.S.A and Mr. the speeches in the celebra- tary and high schools, were been involved in the service
Ray Knight, of the Campus tion, including the remarks moved by the passionate fraternity Knights of Augus-
Ministry Department, at- of celebrant Rev. David display of community, and tine, Student Government,
tended the African Ameri- Jones, Pastor of St. Bene- delighted in the celebration Football and the Hispanic
can Heritage Mass, celebrat- dict the African, and hom- of African culture through Club. He said of the expe-
ed at Holy Name Cathedral ilist Rev. Roy Lee, of Atlanta, music, song and dance, pro- rience, “I really like being a
at 735 N. State St. The Mass GA. The general interces- vided by a special choir and part of this Mass. It is a great
has enjoyed a 30 year tradi- sions were also tied into the a local dance group. way to highlight the posi-
tion within the Archdiocese other principles of Kwanzaa. Three St. Rita students tives of the African Ameri-
as a way to celebrate Black They encouraged all those – senior Rashad Spells, and can community, instead of
History Month, and the role in attendance to continue sophomores Dan Dillon and some of the headlines we
of Black Catholics in the to build community and Christopher Simms – actu- usually see. The Mass was a
Church, as mentioned by rely on each other to make ally participated in the Mass fun and enlightening expe-
Cardinal Francis George in progress for themselves and as altar servers. It was the rience that can help inspire
his welcoming letter. those around them. second year in a row doing people to work together to
The theme of this year’s The Rita students, along so for Simms. A parishioner better our communities.”
Mass was “Ujima,” which is with hundreds of others at St. Walter Parish, Chris is

Augustinian Values Institute

n late January, several St. Augustinian values of Truth,
Rita faculty and staff mem- Unity, and Love in their own
bers attended the 5th An- schools. Many great ideas
nual Augustinian Values In- have been generated at this
stitute, hosted this year by St. Institute.
Augustine High School in San
Diego, CA. 29 members of St.
Rita’s community have now Pictured (left to right): Mike Gallagher,
completed this weekend Chief Financial Officer; Adam McGrath,
workshop that offers teach- Director of Public Relations; Fr. Tom
ers and staff from Augustin- McCarthy, O.S.A. '83, President; Jerry
ian high schools all over the Pazin '90, History Teacher and As-
world an opportunity to meet sistant Dean; and Javier Solorio II '02,
and discuss ways to apply the Director of Graphic Design.

4 Tolle Lege! Spring 2008

Exchange Program Members Attend Opening of Berlin Wall Exhibit

n Saturday, January 19, four students and one teacher more for my trip to the country in June. It was definitely a great
from St. Rita of Cascia High School attended the open- idea to bring that piece of our, and more importantly, their his-
ing ceremony for the new Berlin Wall Exhibit at the West- tory to Chicago for everyone to see.”
ern Avenue Brown Line Station, in the Lincoln Square neighbor- After the ceremony, the students were treated to an au-
hood on the north side of Chicago. thentic German lunch at the nearby Brauhuas, where they were
The students were invited by Mayor Daley because all of immersed in the culture they will be experiencing at the begin-
them participated as host students in St. Rita’s first ever Inter- ning of the summer.
national Exchange Program in the fall of 2007, during which
12 German students from
Emilie Wüstenfeld Gymna-
sium in Hamburg visited
Chicago for three weeks.
The Ritamen will go to Ger-
many in June 2008, and
Band Lacrosse
will make a special visit to
Berlin. Baseball Recreation
On this bitterly cold
Saturday, hundreds of Ger- Basketball Soccer
man-Americans were pres-
Four student participants in St. Rita High
School’s International Exchange Program, ent as an indelible symbol Football Volleyball
who will be spending three weeks in of the Cold War was put on
Germany this June, attended the unveiling permanent display at the For Full Schedules, Questions, and to Register, Call
ceremony of the Berlin Wall Exhibit in the Western Avenue ‘L’ Station. Director of Admissions
Lincoln Square neighborhood of Chicago. The Lincoln Square neigh-
Pictured (left to right) are: Rich Qualter (Ev-
Craig Ferguson at (773) 925-7482
borhood was once known or Register Online at www.
ergreen Park), Pat Boline (Mt. Greenwood),
Brian Allen (Palos Heights) and Tom Qualter
as ‘Germantown’.
(Evergreen Park). 47th Ward Alderman
Gene Schulter worked with
German leaders, including Consul General Wolfgang Drautz,
as well as the Chicago Transit Authority and the McCormick
Tribune Freedom Museum to help bring this three-ton, grafitti- Perpetual Novena to St. Rita
marked section of the Berlin Wall to Chicago. Wife, Mother, Widow, Augustinian Nun, Peacemaker
Schulter was quoted as saying, “The Berlin Wall exhibit will
help connect thousands of transit riders to this important sym-
bol of the 20th Century.”
Brian Allen, a junior at St. Rita, said of the experience, “The
unveiling of the Berlin Wall Exhibit was very interesting. Being
able to see all of the German-Americans have so much pride
and patriotism towards Germany and Berlin excited me even

Schools in Attendance 2008:

Malvern Preparatory School Malvern, PA 1842

Providence Catholic High School New Lenox, IL 1918
St. Augustine High School San Diego, CA 1922
Villanova Preparatory School Ojai, CA 1924
Cascia Hall Preparatory Tulsa, OK 1926
Monsignor Bonner High School Upper Darby, PA 1953 Solemn Nine Day Novena
St. Augustine College Prep School Richland, NJ 1959
Tuesday, May 13 - Wednesday, May 21
Villanova College King City, ON Canada 1999
St. Augustine’s College Sydney, Australia 1956 Feast Day Mass
St. Augustine’s College Dungarvan, Irelan d 1874 Thursday, May 22nd
Good Counsel College New Ross, Ireland 1890
St. Monica’s School Carlisle, England 1985 All Masses Start at 7:00 p.m. | Confessions 6:00 p.m.
Blessed Roses Will Be Distributed at Feast Day Mass

Veritas † Unitas † Caritas 5

Winter Sports Re
The Bowling team was reunited with a familiar
face this year, as Head Coach Katie Curran
returned to the team after a two-year hiatus.
Her experience and determination helped
inspire some great performances throughout
the season, while allowing for plenty of fun
on the lanes. Senior Vernell Gaines earned
a trip to the Individual State Championships
this year, though unable to advance past the
first round. Senior Darius Fleming proved he
is a dual-sport athlete by winning the Chicago
Catholic League Lawless Award.

Five members of the Fighting Mustangs, St. Rita of Cascia High School’s football
team, signed national letters of intent on Wednesday, February 6. Pictured (stand-
ing, left to right): Athletic Director Bob Conlon, Dan Smith, Darius Fleming, Principal
Sally Deenihan, Head Football Coach Todd Kuska. (Seated): Drew McGowan, Kenny
Stoklosa, Kevin Galeher.

Five members of the Fighting Mustangs, St. Rita of Cascia

High School’s football team, signed national letters of intent
on Wednesday, February 6. These Ritamen have the distinc-
tion of being members of only the second team in school his-
tory to have earned both a State Championship (2006) and
a City Prep Bowl ring (2007). The players’ family members
were present for the signing, along with Head Football Coach
Todd Kuska, Athletic Director Bob Conlon, and Principal Sally
Brian Moore flies down the lane in the butterfly
Darius Fleming (DE) - University of Notre Dame Swimming
Kevin Galeher (RT) - Western Michigan University The Swimming Mustangs had a rather up-and-down season thi
Drew McGowan (TE/DL) - Cornell University with an even 5-5 record. Combating their underdog status, the te
Dan Smith (LT) - University of St. Francis rival Mt. Carmel and the Latin School, for only the second time in
Kenny Stoklosa (ILB) - Kentucky Wesleyan College finished 4th in the Evergreen Park Invitational, 8th in the Catholic
5th in Sectionals. The team looks to continue to build with young
next year.
Steve Zimmerman won the State Championship

In Head Coach Dan Carroll’s final season with the St. Rita Wrestling team, the
Grappling Mustangs did him proud with a strong season. Nine wrestlers quali-
fied for the Individual State Championships at the University of Illinois Urba-
na-Champaign. Steve Zimmerman won the State Championship in the 152
lb. class. He will be wrestling next year at Northern Illinois University, which
he chose over other schools because of his interest in their great Accounting
program. Kevin Galeher was runner-up in the heavyweight class, and John
Majka and Taylor Osborn took third places in the 135 lb. and 160 lb. classes,
respectively. The team did advance to State as well after great performances
over Mr. Carmel and Lane Tech in the Sectional round hosted at St. Rita, but fell
in Moline in the first round. Thanks to Coach Carroll, the entire staff and team
for a great run!

Alumni basketball players were invited to the Senior Night game for a
reception and special half-time dedication to Coach Barney Badke.
The Basketball team, in its second year under Head Coach Rob Sarmiento and Asst. Coach Mike
Brennan, looked to improve on last year’s record and make some noise in the Catholic League.
They started out the year strong, with a 3-1 record in the McGovern Classic, hosted at St. Rita.
They also did well in the Augustinian Tournament over Christmas, going 2-1 on their trip to New
Jersey, playing against several other Augustinian High Schools. The season was characterized by
All-Conference players Terry Johnson and Roshawn Russell, outside shooters Tony Rappold and
Steve Dudek, and Conference Honorable Mention Marcell Portwood working together toward a
16-10 overall record, 4-3 in the conference. The highlight of the season came in the final home
game, on Senior Night, when the Mustangs pushed Mt. Carmel to a thrilling 4 Overtime defeat,
97-94. Unfortunately, the team was eliminated by Morgan Park in the playoffs, but anticipates
greatness next year, with much talent returning.
Vernell Gaines
qualified for State

The Skating Mustangs, under Head Coach Craig Ferguson,
had an unbelievable 2007-08 season, finishing with an
overall record of 46-14-2. They set a new precedent for
the Catholic League by going undefeated in the regular
season, an amazing feat. The team made it to the State
Semi-Finals, finally falling to Glenbrook North. The result
is year, and they finished was better for the Kennedy Cup Playoffs though, where
eam had big wins against the Mustangs took out Marist in a heated three-game
n school history. The team series, and then handled Fenwick in three games as well,
c League competition and bringing home the Kennedy Cup for the first time since 1992.
ger swimmers moving up All Conference Honors were given to Chris Cimoch, P. J. Gross,
Ryan Carroll, Charlie Longo, and Kevin McGovern, with Cimoch
and Gross being named to the All State team as well. The Kennedy
Cup MVP was Jack McDonnell.

Band Ilinois Player of the Year

The St. Rita Competition Band participated in two events during the month Chris Cimoch
of February. The first was the State of the Art Catholic High School competi-
tion, which places bands according to the difficulty of their selections. The
Mustangs have consistently placed in the top 3 since becoming involved
in the very first year of this contest 27 years ago. The second event for the
band was the Midwest Music Festival hosted at Lemont High School. This CHECK OUT
competition is based on individual ability, and the Mustangs received a 2nd SPRING SCHEDULES
place rating in this contest of almost 50 schools. Look for the band to per-
form at the Alumni Banquet on April 18.
Tapping the Well: BP’s ‘Fabric of America’ Program

t’s never too early to start giving back.
When Jonathan Rendak of the class of
2005 heard about the “Fabric of America”
So, at the beginning of his winter
break, Rendak showed up on campus with
a $500 check and asked to see Fr. Tom Mc-
program introduced by BP this year, which Carthy. Imagine his pleasant surprise when
allows most employees of BP America to re- he heard about what Rendak had arranged
quest a company donation of up to $500 for with his employer.
a deserving organization of their choice, he “Jonathan was always a great student
immediately thought of his alma mater, St. and an involved member of the commu-
Rita of Cascia High School. nity while he was here,” Fr. Tom said, “and
Rendak, originally of the Garfield-Ridge it’s wonderful to see that he is still a true Ri-
area of Chicago, is currently a Junior at Pur- taman, who takes the time to think of the
due University, majoring in Chemical Engi- school and its mission.”
neering. While at St. Rita, he was an 8-time We'd also like to thank Mr. Brad Boko-
Heeney Award winner, meaning he had ski, father of Matt '09, for making this same
straight A’s all through high school. gift. While BP’s Fabric of America program
Rendak said, “I’ve had an internship is unique, many companies offer matching
with BP for two semesters now, and they gifts when their employees donate to the
made us aware of this fall’s initiation of the charity of their choice.
Fabric of America Fund, and I started to think
about who I could recommend for this $500
Jonathan Rendak ‘05 (right) is one of two Ritamen to donation. It didn’t take long for me to real- Do You Know Your Company’s
take advantage of BP’s ‘Fabric of America’ Program, in ize that St. Rita would be a great place for BP Matching Gift Policy?
which the energy company will honor an employee’s
request to donate up to $500 to a charity of their
to give back to. I wanted to help ensure that We can help you find out.
current students got the same great educa- Mike Brennan |
tion that I did.”

John O’Neill ‘79 interviewing him. equipment, but now with Mr. O’Neill’s gift
When asked how this gift came about, we can do all our work on our own ‘turf’.”
Upgrades the Ritan Office O’Neill replied, “These computers were pur- Senior Editor Mike Herbst said, “It is
with the Help of IBM chased as part of the IBM Company match- nice to have a place of our own to do work
ing grants program. This program allows as a staff, and to produce the Ritan on up-
IBM employees to make donations of IBM to-date technology.”
By Ritan Reporter Luke Bentley ‘09
computers and peripherals (e.g. laser print-
ers) rather than dollars to schools or organi-
zations of their choice.”

ne of the well-known things about John O’Neill worked for FileNet Cor-
St. Rita is its strong Alumni sup- poration for seven years until they were
port. Many alums feel they can give purchased by IBM in November of 2005.
back to their school by donating money or He recognized that “computer equipment
equipment. For John O’Neill of the class of is always in need, but oftentimes is not a
1979, father of current Ritamen Dan ‘09 and high priority in an organization’s budget.
Michael ‘11, it was no different. With the I’m glad I was able to identify the Ritan as a
help of IBM, Mr. O’Neill recently donated worthy recipient of this kind of aid.”
several computers to the Ritan, St. Rita’s Mr. Allocca expressed his gratitude as
school newspaper. well: “For the last few years, we hadn’t been
Mr. John O’Neill ‘79 (left) recently used a matching
The computers were placed in the Mel able to use the office for much besides stor-
grant program from his employer, IBM, to donate
Schreier Ritan Office, or room 214 ¾, as age, for lack of the computer equipment much-needed computer equipment for direct use by
its affectionately called by moderator Mr. needed to run our layout software and sub- the Ritan, St. Rita’s school newspaper. He is seen here
Michael Allocca. O’Neill’s generosity was mit electronic copy to our printer. Much receiving thanks from staff members Juan Barrios,
greatly appreciated by the entire staff, and thanks to Mr. Paul Harrington and the rest of Marty Malone, Joe Carey, Mike Herbst, and Luke
we put the machines to work right away by the IT staff for accommodating us on other Bentley.

8 Tolle Lege! Spring 2008

T Jasica Art Scholarship Fosters Creativity, Spirituality

he Fine Arts are alive and well at St.
Rita of Cascia High School, as evi-
denced recently when three fledg-
ling Van Goghs were awarded the Joseph
J. Jasica Art Scholarship. The program,
now in its second year, was founded by
Raymond Jasica, a 1955 graduate of St.
Rita, in memory of his brother, Joseph,
who was a 1953 graduate. “Joseph was
always a lover of art,” said Raymond, “and
ca, his wife Jeanine, and Karen Omastiak,
daughter of Joseph and mother to two
current Ritamen, Mark ‘08 and Brian ‘11 –
were so taken with a third piece that they
declared three winners at the January all-
school Mass. Art teacher Robyn Kurnat,
who helped coordinate the competition,
and Principal Sally Deenihan were on
hand to congratulate the winners.
Brandon Parkison ‘08 was chosen for
his painting of a blood-red sunset with
a single bird perched in the foreground,
representing the need to remember the
natural world in our daily life. Jesus Alva-
I wanted to do something that would rado ‘08 was chosen for his vividly colorful
honor that memory as well as benefit the representation of the school’s Dia de los
current Rita students.” Each winner was Muertos altar, which has been a staple for
awarded a $500 prize that goes toward the Hispanic Club in recent years, and em-
the current school year’s tuition. phasizes the multicultural heritage that is
The Joseph J. Jasica Art Scholarship found at St. Rita. Augustine Esterham-
Competition encourages students in Art Three students at St. Rita High School were chosen as mer-Fic ‘09 was chosen for his portrait of a
classes as well as the entire student body winners of the Joseph J. Jasica Art Scholarship Compe- young friar accepting the flaming heart of
to create a piece of art that reflects their tition, and were awarded $500 off the current year’s St. Augustine, which represents his teach-
tuition. The program, in its second year, was founded
personal perspective on the history of St. ings and the restless nature of man’s soul
by Raymond Jasica, a 1955 Rita graduate, in memory
Rita High School, or on the lives of one of of his brother Joseph, a 1953 graduate. Seen here (left
until it comes home to God. Each of the
the saints, such as Rita or Augustine. to right) are: Raymond Jasica ‘55, Karen Omastiak, three paintings was beautifully framed
There were a wide range of entries, Jeanine Jasica, Brandon Parkison ‘08, Jesus Alvarado and is on display in the school’s main hall-
and though only two paintings were sup- ‘08, Augustine Esterhammer-Fic ’09, and Art Instructor way. They will become part of St. Rita’s
posed to be chosen, the judges – Ray Jasi- Robyn Kurnat. permanent collection.

Sophomore Kevin Yerkes Wins Petkus Science and Engineering Scholarship

rincipal Sally Deenihan, of St. Rita of Cas- Illinois or Marquette University. At St. Rita, Kevin ing Advisory Council, the Kellogg School of
cia High School, recently announced that is also involved in football, volleyball, and the Management’s Alumni Advisory Board, the Big
Kevin Yerkes, a sophomore, was awarded service fraternity Knights of Augustine. Shoulders Fund Board, and an Emeritus mem-
the Donald A. Petkus Science and Engineering Upon receiving the news that he was cho- ber of the St. Rita Board.
Scholarship, in the amount of $1,500 towards sen for the Petkus scholarship, Kevin said,“It is a
his school tuition. great honor to receive this award. I’m grateful
The Petkus Science and Engineering for Mr. Petkus’ generosity, and I look forward to
Scholarship, which is coordinated and distrib- continuing my studies at St. Rita.”
uted through the Big Shoulders Fund, is made Donald Petkus ‘58 was born and raised
possible through the generosity of St. Rita on the south side, and attended St. Brendan’s
alumnus Donald A. Petkus, class of 1958. Very grammar school. After graduating from St.
involved with his alma mater, Mr. Petkus want- Rita, he followed his interest in the sciences to
ed to provide aid for a current Rita student who Marquette University’s College of Engineering,
not only had outstanding academic, athletic from which he graduated in 1962 with a BSME.
and extracurricular involvement in the school, He would later go on to matriculate from the
but who also showed an aptitude and interest Kellogg School of Management at Northwest-
in a career in engineering and the sciences. ern in 1968 and again in 1980 as part of the first Mr. Donald A. Petkus '58 (right), Board Member Emeri-
After being nominated by Honors Chem- class in the Advanced Executive program. tus of St. Rita of Cascia High School, presents a $1500
istry teacher Sue Krystof and completing the During his 36-year ComEd career, he ex- scholarship award to Kevin Yerkes '10 (Chicago-West
application process, Kevin Yerkes was chosen panded his technical interest to include suc- Lawn), in the inaugural installment of the Petkus Sci-
by the scholarship committee as an ideal can- cesses in advertising, public relations, and man- ence and Engineering Scholarship, created to aid those
students who not only have outstanding academics
didate to receive the inaugural installment of agement. He then launched DAMP Associates,
and extracurricular involvement, but who also show an
this award. Though only in his second year at Inc., a multi-dimensional consulting company. interest in pursuing a career in the sciences.
St. Rita, Kevin has maintained Gold Honor Roll Through his careers, Mr. Petkus has given back
status for each of his first three semesters, hold- to the community through involvement in
ing a GPA above 4.0 while being enrolled in many not-for-profit boards, some of which in- What is your favorite cause at St. Rita?
several honors courses. Kevin is a member of clude WTTW, Museum of Contemporary Art, Will your picture and story
Queen of the Universe Parish, and attended the and Cancer Society. He now focuses much of be here next?
Ted Lenart Regional Gifted Center. He hopes to his efforts on education, remaining a member
pursue studies in the sciences at University of of Marquette University’s College of Engineer-
Contact the Advancement Office
Veritas † Unitas † Caritas 773.925.5029 9
KEEPING TRACK George Strnad ‘46
Inducted into
Bill Ruzgis ‘57
East Suburban
Bill Ruzgis and his wife Trudy recently returned
from a week of skiing with their ski club in
Catholic Conference
Whistler, Canada. Hall of Fame
Pat Flanagan ‘59 George Strnad was one of 11 in-
Loras College dedicated the Pat “Flash” Flana- ductees in the third Hall of Fame class for
gan wrestling room in the Graber Sports Center the East Suburban Catholic Conference. George was a coach at St. Joseph High School in Westchester for
on Thursday, February 7, 2008 before the final almost 30 years (1979-2007), and Athletic Director for 13 of those. He was a former college football player
Loras wrestling meet of the year. (U of I), head coach (U of C), and a WWII veteran. A teacher, coach, mentor, and friend to many, George
truly deserves this honor, and is seen here celebrating with family and friends.
Flanagan, a 1959 graduate of St. Rita of
Cascia High School and a 1963 graduate of
Loras, served the college in various capacities Queen of Apostles Parish in Pewaukee, WI. company. He has also been a member of a
throughout his employment with the institu- He says, “I must say, the education and professional theater company, ‘Night Blue
tion, including: professor of physical educa- spiritual development I received at St. Theater’, for 3 years, where he performs in
tion, wrestling coach, director of intramurals, Rita was instrumental in my vocation as a several musicals, plays and showcases in
women’s tennis coach, and men’s tennis coach. Deacon, and I extend an open invitation to the south suburbs as well as downtown
Flanagan was also inducted into the Loras any Ritamen who would like to come north Chicago.
Varsity Hall of Fame in 1996, received the Fr. and sample ‘farm life’.”
John Nauman Award in 2001 and was a Loras
Brandon Williams ‘05
College Distinguished Alumni Award recipient David Radtke ‘68 Morton College’s Brandon Williams was
in 2006. David Radtke retired in 2006 from Chicago the NJCAA Region IV Men’s Basketball
Public Schools after teaching Spanish and Player of the Week in Division II District B
Gregory Price ‘67
E.S.L. for 34 years. He currently lives on the for the period ending January 22.
Gregory Price retired from the Chicago Police East side of the Big Island of Hawaii with The 6-4 sophomore forward from Chi-
Department in 2001, after 32 years of service. his wife, Diane. He teaches Spanish part- cago’s St. Rita High School made game-
He graduated from the Catholic Theological time at St. Joseph High School, Hilo. winning free throws in Panther victories
Union in Chicago with a Master’s Degree in Mike Carey ‘90 over Prairie State and the University of St.
Divinity and was ordained a Deacon in the Francis’ junior varsity. The two-year start-
Catholic Church in 1998. Mike Carey has fallen on some hard times er, who scored 55 points in three Morton
and asks for your thoughts and prayers. College games last week, is shooting 82
After his retirement, he and his wife relocated
to a semi-rural area about 30 miles west of Joseph Keblusek ‘95 percent (81 of 99) from the free-throw line
Milwaukee, where they bought a 10 acre this season.
Joseph Keblusek recently celebrated the
“farmette” to raise horses. birth of his second son, Patrick James. He is the first Morton College men’s
Greg has been employed full-time as a pastoral basketball player to be honored during
Sean Janda ‘01 the 2007-2008 season. Region IV’s District
associate in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee for
the past six years, and is currently assigned to Sean Janda is working as a Human Re- B includes eight community colleges from
source Assistant for a nationwide recycling Illinois.

Class of ‘61 Alums Donate Bill Bosch and Jerry O’Sullivan, Ritamen from the Bosch and O’Sullivan were in Auto Shop class

Piece of Rita History class of 1961, paid a special visit earlier this week to Fr. as freshmen in 1958, which was taught by Mr. Charles
Tom McCarthy, O.S.A. ‘83, President Rhienschmidt. It was one of many technical courses
of St. Rita of Cascia High School. from that era, when hands-on learning and mechanical
Bosch, while sorting through some aptitude comprised a major component of St. Rita’s
of his father’s things, dug up a buried excellent education. While those classes may have been
treasure from St. Rita’s past: a pair of phased out, the core of the school’s Catholic education
coveralls from St. Rita’s Auto Shop remains, and the fact that Bill Bosch would think to
class. donate his Auto Shop coveralls to the new campus
“My mouth dropped open demonstrates the strong tradition of a true Ritaman.
when I saw them. I was looking
through some of my father’s things,
as he passed in October 2007, and I
can’t believe he kept these coveralls
for 50 years. I was so surprised. I
We want to hear from you!
thought they should belong at St. Letters: Office of Institutional
Rita, in order to keep a unique piece Advancement
of the old campus alive.” Emails:
10 Tolle Lege! Spring 2008
In Memoriam
The St. Rita Alumni Office has been Robert Miles – 1941 Kenneth York – 1949 James Dziedzic – 1958
notified of the following deaths of James Powers – 1941 James Beranek – 1950
Brother of Robert Dziedzic ‘56
Alumni and / or family members for Father of Daniel Dziedic ‘89
the period January 1, 2008 - March William Putzbach – 1944 James Cliff – 1950
John Neblo – 1958
10, 2008. Sympathies are expressed Robert Bona – 1940 John Lang – 1950 Raymond Sullivan – 1959
to the families of the following:
Dr. Jerome Bona – 1946 John Rowland, Jr. – 1950 Dennis Zvinakis – 1961
Brothers of Adolph Bona ‘44 Brother of Al Zvinakis ‘58
Joseph Tobin – 1952
Bill Hillmert – 1924
Ed Gedraitis – 1946 James Gibbons – 1963
Russell Soch – 1953
William Walsh – 1931
Robert Hyhanek – 1946 Joseph Perveneckis – 1964
Ronald Litoborski – 1954
John Dunn – 1937
Thomas Ries – 1946 Ralph Basile – 1965
Jerome Szott – 1954
Arthur Bastian – 1940 John Marketak – 1948
Patrick John Kenelly – 1955 Anthony Melilli – 1976
John Cullinane – 1940 Frank Perrino – 1948 Brother of Ed Kenelly ‘52 Raymond Lukas – 1983
Al Steffek – 1940 Eugene Chovanec – 1949 Joseph Doyle – 1957 Robert Gikas – 1987

Mary Akel – Grandmother of Maxx Irene M. Kaczorowski – Mother of Samuel Mostardi – Father of Fr. Joe
Akel ‘11 Ronald ‘64, Mother-in-law of Charles Mostardi, O.S.A., Augustinian Volunteer
Junkroski ‘57 Director
Christine Anderson – Mother of
Connor, Brendan ‘07 and Colin ‘09 Cal Kurek – Son of Rich Kurek ‘99 Marion O’Brien – Mother of Tom ‘64

Mrs. Bickart – Wife of Joseph ‘55 Eileen O’Ryan

Joseph Kuska – Grandfather of Coach
Donna Bochenek – Grandmother of Todd Kuska Carol Polehouki – Great Aunt of Joe
Enright ‘11
Mike Kolecki ‘05 Howard Landstrom – Father-in-law of
Counselor Terry Landstrom Lauren Ryan – Daughter of Joe Putz ‘50
William J. Bosch – Father of Bill ‘61
Daniel Sobczak – Grandfather of Ryan
Peter Brackin – Uncle of Brendan ‘11 William Larman – Grandfather of Jim
Foley ‘06
and Connor ‘06 and Dan Kerr
Martha Spells – Grandmother of
Roy Darling – Grandfather of Dan ‘11 Mildred Lowe – Grandmother of Rashad Spells ‘08
Charlie Longo ‘08
Tommy Finnegan – Son of Brian Elnora Spratte – Grandmother of Tom
Finnegan ‘81 and Brother of Brendan Anthony Manzella – Uncle of Dan ‘03 Spratte '06
Florence McCain – Grandmother of Jack Standring – Father of Coach Jay,
Janet Gallagher – Mother-in-law of Mike Parker ‘10 Father-in-law of Julie, Grandfather of
Craig Ferguson J.J. ‘97 and Paul ‘03
Andrew J. McGann
Irene Garson – Aunt of the Garcia Julie Tracy – Widow of George '30,
Brothers Matt McPharland – Uncle of Mike Burke Mother of George ‘65, Grandmother of
‘11 Mike ’90 and Joe ‘96
Jim Hayes – Friend of the Quinn Family
Sophie Murawski – Mother of Dennis Charles Walsh – Brother of John ‘47
Don Jakubowski – St. Rita Maintenance ‘71 and Ronald ‘73 Margaret Witowski – Mother of John
Staff Frankovich ‘59

The following Alumni and / or family members should have All attempts at accuracy are made prior to publication.
been included in the December 2007 Tolle Lege! If there is an error with a listing or an omission, please
contact the Office of Institutional Advancement at
Our apologies for the omissions.
(773) 925-5029.

George K. Witry - 1950

Brother of Jack Witry ‘53
Grandfather of Michael Patrick ‘06 and Daniel Patrick ‘08
Zora Chuick - Mother of Julie Chuick (Mustang Store)
Grandmother of Doug Chuick ‘01 and Martin Chuick ‘05

Veritas † Unitas † Caritas 11

Do You Know the Difference You Can
Make By Leaving a Gift?
Two men - Frank Kosik ‘44 and Bob Fennell ‘53 - made
lasting impressions by remembering St. Rita High School in
their wills. Their contributions, totaling $1.8 million, are of
paramount importance to the growth and success of St. Rita.
The generosity of alumni keeps pride and tradition alive.

Bob Fennell

Above: Bob Fennell ‘53, (first row left) is seen with many of
his fellow Ritamen at his class’s 50 Year Anniversary during
the 2003 Alumni Banquet. He was an active alumnus, and his
unrestricted gift to the school enables St. Rita to continue to
offer an excellent Catholic Augustinian education.

Left: The 100 Year Museum in the front entrance of the

Tom Zielinksi school was dedicated in October in memory of Frank Kosik,
class of 1944. His gift made the construction of the museum
To become an inaugural member of the 1905 Guild or for possible. Present at the dedication was Tom Zielinski,
more information about making a planned gift nephew of Frank Kosik, and he expressed his gratitude to St.
Rita President Tom McCarthy, O.S.A and those gathered for
Contact Mike Brennan
773.925.5029 remembering his uncle. Mr. Kosik’s niece, Joanne Michalski, could not be present that evening.

St. Rita of Cascia High School Non-Profit

7740 S. Western Avenue Organization
Chicago IL 60620
Tel: 773.925.5029 | PAID
In February of 2008, Fr. Tom McCarthy and other ADDRESS SERVICE REQUESTED Mailing Solutions
Augustinians, along with Cardinal Adam Maida,
the Archbishop of Detroit, broke ground on a future
Augustinian high school, Austin Catholic Academy, in
Macomb, Michigan, due to open in 2009.

Save the Date | 33rd Annual Alumni Golf Outing | Green Garden Country Club | Friday, August 1 , 2008