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  1. Michael Reade

    My family had a long history with St. Mary’s parish schools. My grandfather, Francis L. Reade, entered the very first parish class at St. Joseph’s in 1888 (he was either in the 3rd or 4th grade) and graduated from LaSalle High School in either 1897 or1898. My father, Francis L. Reade, Jr., graduated from St. Mary’s in 1939. My younger sister, Christine, was in the last graduating girls class in 1971 (the only year the school was coed due to the small girls class size). We all went to St. Joseph’s, also. Basically, we have spanned pretty much the entire history of St. Mary’s parish schools.

    My grandfather’s home was originally right on the SW corner of Pond St. and Lexington St., right next to the school. The property was much lower than that of the school next to it and there was a very tall concrete wall in the backyard where the two properties adjoined. I remember that in elementary school I would occasionally walk over to my grandparent’s house for lunch and be served such delicacies as fluffernutter sandwiches.

    The property was eventually sold to the parish and the house torn down. Until I got older, my life revolved around the parish schools and church, my immediate neighborhood, the various athletic fields in town, Prospect Hill, the Boys Club, the library (I was so happy when I got old enough to go to the adult section), and stores along Main St. and Moody St.

    My father worked for many years in City Hall and it seemed he knew everyone in town. I could not go anywhere without someone saying “Oh, you’re Frank Reade’s boy.