Archive for the ‘Reunion Discussion’ Category

Last Call, Almost!

deadline-stopwatch-2636259_640You really should have your reservation to the Chester High School Reunion mailed by tomorrow! We need to give a firm lunch count by the end of this week and that means we should have all reservations no later than Wednesday, June 20, 2018.

If you lost the form, you can print one: 2018 Invitation.

Mail your reservation to:

Robert Goewey
Chester High School Alumni Association
1 Aldrich Avenue
Huntington MA 01050

Then start packing!



More Missing Mates!

milk-carton-31473_1280The following invitations were returned for various reasons (insufficient address, moved–no forwarding address, etc.) that boil down to the address we have isn’t working.  If you are on the list or know someone who is, please submit an up-to-date, correct address either by using this page on the site or by contacting Robert Goewey or Walter Boomsma. We don’t have a lot of time to resend invitations, so hurry!

Names are followed by the year graduated. Thanks for any help you can offer!

  • Cain M Larkin, 2012
  • Michael Canterbury, 1988
  • Amy Dipietro, 2005
  • Pam Engwer Gordon, 1980
  • Marcella Stenico, 1981
  • Korey Whitaker, 2010
  • Aaron Whitaker, 2012
  • Dorothy Webb Hamby, 1945
  • Jacquelane Boland Arnold, 2000
  • Molly Szkotat, 2000
  • Joan Hansbury Carpenter, 1960
  • Karl Baker, 1993
  • Neille J. Goszkowicz, 1990
  • Rex Young, 1982
  • Janice Butler Mangano, 1952
  • Sandra Cooper Cannon, 1988
  • Shirley Gleason Vitale, 1947
  • Jon Castagne, 1977
  • Ora Pease Lee, 1966
  • Keith Bailey, 1970
  • David W. Swicker, 1941
  • Stephanie Conway, 2002
  • Marion Stone Dueso, 1972
  • John Armitage, 2015
  • Beth Gemme, 2003
  • John Barrett, 2016
  • Sare G. Pandolfino, 2012
  • A. Ward, 2009
  • Sam Balakanus, 2013
  • Lori Beaudry Flint, 1981

Reunion Update…

I hate it when I see an old person and realize that we went to high school together.

I’m not sure who said it first, but suspect many of us have thought it–maybe more than once!

Reservations are coming in and, while I haven’t done a thorough analysis, it looks like we’ll have an interesting group again this year! I see a few reservations from folks who graduated in the 70’s and I think the “oldest” so far is from the class of 1942. I also see reservations from a few folks we haven’t seen in quite a while!

Do we have yours?

It looks like we are going to have an opening for a board position this year… it’s actually not a tough job but it is an important one. Board members are occasionally contacted by mail or email during the year when decisions must be made. The board also meets every year prior to the reunion (same day) with the primary task of electing the president and vice president in accordance with our by-laws. The position that will be open this year is a three-year term. While attendance at the board meeting every year is encouraged, it’s not absolutely necessary.

If you are interested in helping the Association by accepting this position, please speak up! You can send an email to Walter Boomsma or let any other officer or board member know. It’s particularly important to let us know that you’re interested if you aren’t going to be at the reunion. We try not to elect people who don’t want a position!

Hope to see many of you in a month!

Chester High Alumni Coming Home!

Chester MA 10Chester High School Alumni will be coming home to Chester this year for their 115th annual reunion and meeting on Saturday, June 30, 2018. The meeting draws a large group of people associated with the former Chester High School, including Chester Residents who graduated from Gateway after Chester High School closed in the late 1960’s. This year’s festivities begin with a social hour at 1:00 p.m. at the Chester Railroad Depot and continue informally throughout the entire weekend as “Blue Devils” and “Quarriers” wander around town visiting old friends and relatives. The Association’s annual business meeting will be held at 4:30 p.m. and Officers and Board Members will meet at 12:00 p.m.

Chester High has traditions dating back well over one hundred years, but the Association has no members from that long ago! Among the many mysteries every year are questions like, “Who will be the oldest member?” and “Who will come from the farthest away?” In the midst of all the reminiscing, prizes are awarded for the first local and first out of state reservation. There is never a lack of laughter, perhaps because the threat of detention is long gone even though former teachers frequently attend. All classes will be honored, especially the fifty-year class of 1968 and twenty-five-year class of 1993.

Association President Walter Boomsma noted that this reunion has been deemed significant and will include a reduced cost along with a few surprises. In addition to being the 115th Anniversary of the formal creation of the high school in 1902, this is the fiftieth anniversary of the last class to graduate from Chester High in 1968.

“It really is like a homecoming. Some can’t resist sitting on the church corner for a while and many tour the area to visit the places that were an important part of their lives.” Boomsma also reports that the Association enjoys the support of organizations like the Chester Foundation and Chester Historical Society. “The Historical Society has agreed to open the day of the reunion from 10 a.m. until 11:30 a.m. and again on Sunday for their regular summer hours. Alumni visiting the recently opened museum will be amazed at the amount of Chester High and Grammar School memorabilia on hand.”

Reunion invitations are mailed to Association Members in May. The reunion is not limited to graduates of Chester High. “Anyone with a connection to Chester is certainly welcomed to join us for socializing and reminiscing. This is really a town event.” Anyone who does not receive an invitation may simply send a check (tickets are $7.50 per person, payable to Chester High School Alumni Association) to Robert Goewey, 1 Aldrich Avenue, Huntington MA 01050. Please make reservations no later than June 20, 2018.

Officers of the Association include Robert Goewey, Vice President/Secretary and George A. Morey, Treasurer. Board Members include Judith Olson of West Hatfield, Brenda Budreau of Huntington, Jackie Conklin and Edith Whitaker of Westfield, Jack Young of Hinsdale and Tino Cardarelli, Diane DeMoss, and Janice Brown, all of Chester. Any one of these people may be contacted for information or to volunteer some help. The Association maintains a Facebook page where alumni can gather information and post comments.

The Alumni Association also manages a significant scholarship fund and Gateway Seniors are encouraged to contact their guidance counselors for additional information. Scholarship Custodians include Duane C. Pease of Chester and Mary Burkholder and Ed Woodis of Westfield.

Take a bus, a train…

2018 Reunion Teaser

Note that you can also provide your current mailing address using our online form:

Update your (or a classmate’s) address.

Download Invitation and Reservation Form.



How much do you know?

figure_help_wanted_400_clr_2561First, a word of thanks to those who have helped us locate more and more alumni! Keep those cards and letters coming in!

I recently made some enhancements to the site by adding and categorizing links to information about Chester area businesses and organizations. We’re hoping to have lots of folks attend the 115th Annual Reunion Gala and want to make your visit to Chester fun and easy!

You can help… I’m hoping we can include some additional information in this year’s invitation such as contact information and open hours for things like the Hamilton Memorial Library, Fire Department… we’ve already got some from the Historical Society and Chester Foundation. I’m also looking for nearby restaurants and lodging accommodations. Check out what’s already listed and share the ones I’ve missed. A lot of Blue Devils and Quarriers like to “go on tour” while they are in town–where are the cool places to visit?

A link to a website or Facebook page is great! You can just email whatever you have, or comment on this post (click on the headline and a comment box will open at the bottom of the post).

Stay tuned for more news… don’t forget to save the date: Saturday, June 30, 2018.

Felix Salzano ’44 Makes Honor Flight

January 25, 2018 Leave a comment

Many thanks to William (Bill) Giles ’51 for not only bringing this to my attention but for mailing me the clipping of an article in The Republic Plus on Wednesday, January 17, 2018. Try as I might, I’ve not been able to find a link to the article online and copyright restrictions prevent me from posting the article itself on our website.

I can report a few tidbits, including the fact Felix has the rare distinction of having served in both the European and Pacific Theatres during World War II. He was thrilled to be invited and the participate in the Honor Flight Program in September. Honor Flight is a non-profit organization that flies veterans to Washington DC “to visit those memorials dedicated to honor the service and sacrifices of themselves and their friends.”

The article suggests that it was an ambitious trip, beginning with a departure from Springfield at 3:00 a.m. A return to Logan arriving at 10:30 p.m. suggests he and his escort were likely not home before midnight, but Felix said, “I’m so glad I made it. I felt inspired.” While in Washington, he and his fellow participants were given a police escort where traffic was stopped at every intersection as they toured and visited the World War II, Korean and Viet Nam memorials.

Felix’s story is truly a great one–both the story of this trip and of his service. Let’s hope he makes it to this year’s reunion and we can convince him to share some of his experiences.

I know I speak for the Alumni Association and our members when I say we’re happy and proud he received this honor, and we are truly grateful for his service. He’s also been a strong supporter of our Association by attending reunions. I’ve sent a special invitation to attend this year–explaining that we can’t promise a police escort, but there’s not that much traffic in Chester anyway!

Read the letter to sent to Felix.