Tuesday, February 25, 2014

In Loving Memory Northeast Times February 19, 2014

In Loving Memory

By Tom Waring Feb. 19, 2014

Arch­bish­op Ry­an High School re­cently ded­ic­ated a stained glass win­dow in its chapel to the memory of Timothy Con­nors, a 15-year-old fresh­man who was hit by a car and died on the af­ter­noon of May 17, 2011.

Timmy would have been a seni­or this year, and the class of 2014 raised money for the win­dow through a bake sale and flea mar­ket.

“We’re very happy. It’s mean­ing­ful. This is something that will stay with the school forever,” said seni­or Jes­sica Kow­al­ski, who also at­ten­ded Our Lady of Port Rich­mond with Timmy.

“Everything we put in, we got twice as much out, maybe even three times,” seni­or Tyler Kradzin­ski said of the ex­per­i­ence. “A lot of teach­ers fun­ded it, and that helped a lot.”

The win­dow shows a pic­ture of St. Timothy, with God pla­cing his hands on him. The words read, “In Lov­ing Memory of Timothy Con­nors.  Class of 2014.  Take Hold of the Etern­al Life to Which You Were Called.”

Mar­tin and Geor­gette Con­nors, Timmy’s par­ents, at­ten­ded the ce­re­mony, along with their daughters Alaina and Char­lotte.

“It’s a fit­ting im­age,” Mar­tin Con­nors said. “It’s a me­mori­am to Timmy, and it’s a leg­acy to what these kids are about. It’s the class of 2014’s leg­acy.”

Sis­ter Frances Ant­oinette ar­ranged for mem­bers of the class of 2014 to sign a gi­ant card in Timmy’s memory, and she helped the seni­ors raise money for the win­dow.

“It was a very up­lift­ing ex­per­i­ence for me,” she said. “Their heart was there. Their soul was there.”

Mike McArdle, Ry­an’s pres­id­ent, was in at­tend­ance.

“It’s a great trib­ute to Timothy, and a sign of the strength and cour­age of the class of 2014,” he said.

The Rev. John Donia offered pray­ers and blessed the win­dow.

“As the light shines through that stained-glass win­dow, we will al­ways re­mem­ber the gift of Timothy Con­nors,” he said.

Timmy was leav­ing school for the day when he was hit on busy Academy Road as he ran to catch a bus.

Since then, fam­ily and friends have marked the first two an­niversar­ies of his death by plant­ing trees in his memory on the grounds of Ry­an.

Timmy at­ten­ded Nativ­ity of Our Lord Ele­ment­ary School from pre-kinder­garten through sixth grade, then spent two years at Our Lady of Port Rich­mond after a neigh­bor­hood con­sol­id­a­tion of Cath­ol­ic schools.

Mar­tin Con­nors, a po­lice de­tect­ive, writes a blog, “Forever Fif­teen,” in memory of his son and hopes to bol­ster a schol­ar­ship fund named in his memory.

Con­tri­bu­tions can be made to the Timothy Con­nors Me­mori­al Schol­ar­ship, 11201 Academy Road, Phil­adelphia, PA 19154. ••