Retirements in June 2006
The Edgewater community has bid farewell to two men who have contributed to the development of our community and its citizens. The first retirement is Father Bill Kenneally of St. Gertude’s Parish on Glenwood at Granville. The second retirement is Mr. Roy Malone, the assistant principal of Peirce School on Bryn Mawr. Both have served our community with great dedication and strong leadership and both will be missed.
On June 3, 2006, the parish of St. Gertrude bid a fond farewell to Father William Kenneally who had been pastor for the last 22 years. The celebration included a wonderful dinner and then entertainment by many parish organizations. Over 400 people attended the event. Many held up fans that had a picture of Father Bill and the words “I’m a fan of Bill’s.”
Father Bill has been a longtime member of the Edgewater Historical Society. He answered the call for the establishment of an historical society in 1988. Through the years, Father Bill has supported many community activities. His years of service were outlined in articles in both the Chicago Tribune and the Chicago Sun-Times where he has often been quoted in matters related to the church. But little was said about his unique contribution to Edgewater. He was an active member of the Edgewater Community Religious Association, which was founded in 1960 as a way for community churches to work together in caring for the whole community of Edgewater. Their active support and work with the Edgewater Community Council to support “Care For Real” as a food pantry for the needy has been important.
Because of Father Bill’s commitment to the community, he often spoke of it as having a “sense of place,” a neighborhood feeling. About history, he said “When people live in a house they get a sense of history, but it is a little vague and limited. When they get the bigger picture of history and begin to care about the story of the place, the community of people over the years then they begin to care about the history and the stories passed on to each generation.” “Edgewater is an active community with people who are learning to work together. This working together is what’s important.”
Father Bill will be retiring to live in the Beverly community and will help out in a parish there.
On June 12, 2006, the Helen C. Peirce School of International studies declared Mr. Malone Day. The day honoring their Assistant Principal began with an all school assembly in the school yard. All the students and many of the parents and former Peirce School Principal Janice Rosales were there to thank Mr. Malone for his 33 years of service. He began at the school as a teacher and then moved up to assistant principal. The job usually includes dealing with discipline and student affairs. Mr. Malone went a step further by teaching the students the values of commitment to their school and their community. He created a pledge that the students and teachers learn. In reading this pledge, the values of the school community are clearly stated. “I will make education my number one priority. I will be the best that I can be to help us achieve our highest level. I will be honest and fair. I will set a good example for myself and others. I will treat all people with respect and dignity. I will come to school on time and be prepared I will help solve challenges without arguing or fighting I will treat my school and home with care and pride. I will make a contribution to our school, our community, our country and our world. I will believe in myself.”
Next, the school choir lead by Brooke Tippet Thompson, sang a song, “You are my hero.” Each class presented Mr. Leroy Malone with a gift. Following the assembly the students went to class and the parents were invited to a special reception in the cafeteria.
The reception, presented by the Parent Advisory Council, was to unveil two additional panels to the mosaic already installed on the cafeteria wall. They were covered in paper and all were waiting to see what these women had accomplished under the direction of Mirtes Zwicrzynski, who had done the original work. The PAC wanted to further the goals set forth in the Peirce School pledge with visual reminders of the commitment to the character traits of the pledge. Mr. Malone was asked to stand at the front for the unveiling. When the works were uncovered one of them showed Mr. Malone handing a young student a set of panther eyes which he used to hand to students when he found them “doing good.” Mr. Malone was surprised by the picture and went closer to see if it was really himself. He spoke to the group and thanked everyone.
In the crowd were parents of current students and some former students of Mr. Malone whose own children attend Peirce School Mr. Malone has shown us over 33 years of service to our community what real leadership means.