St. George's College
Part 4 of 4
On the scene Report School Opening day - Sept 2009
You all made it Possible
O’Hare with flags flying on opening day
observed the students filing into 5th and 6th form classrooms on the opening
day, September 7th, some accompanied by their parents, it was obvious they were
pre-occupied with either listening to their teachers or choosing the best seat
(out of hearing or out of sight). Yet it occurred to me that they were acting
out a normal school day. They had no clue what took place over the summer in
I have to admit the renovation of the O'Hare building, by Jamaicans
standards, must be one of the most successful, low-budget, construction projects
undertaken in Kingston. And it could not have been done without the tremendous
effort of Rupert Johnson and his workers who all went about the task of
rebuilding as if they belonged to the school, and understood the urgency. The
masons, painters, carpenters, power washers and sweepers were outstanding.
Primarily, the basis for this unexpected and lengthy construction was the
expert examination by Tommy Lyew of the building itself, which turned up
dangerously weakened walls that separated the classrooms and bore the weight of
the second floor. These walls were built with bricks on a platform of wood and
this wooden base was badly termite infested. Much gratitude to Tommy, another
We cannot forget the generous suppliers of the materials who gave
significant discounts while at the same time having to wait to collect payment.
Mr. Ray Wynter, contractor, has been exceptional in this regard and
consistently ensuring that there is no shortage of materials. He is now
planning to finish the floors of all the classrooms on the weekends. We must
give special thanks also to Mr. Clive Johnson, a non Georgian, who
delivered loads of gravel and sand, estimated at JA$600,000 FREE OF COST!!!
Then there were Kenty's Blocks, Pokar Chandiram, Howard Mitchell, Donovan
Chen See and Lennox Robinson donating the much needed paints, etc.,
valued in excess of JA$800,000. And, of course, the 500 chairs/desks and 15
teachers' chairs/desks contributed by Food for the Poor - another saving
of over JA$2,000,000!!! We have also received free consultation on the
landscaping from Mark Martin and free installation of the blackboards by
Laurie Heffes who has also promised to redo the banisters on the
It is undeniable that were it not for Carl Chang, the key figure in
this renovation - negotiating for the best prices (or free), beseeching
Georgians and non-Georgians alike to give as they could - this project would not
have been completed in time for the beginning of the 2010 school year. He has
been our banker in advancing millions of dollars to cover the shortfall and
which has to be repaid. Over the last few months, Carl has spent days upon days
on site to ensure its completion and, for this we all owe him "nuff respect."
Carl, the school and its students, old and new, cannot express enough thanks.
Let me not finish this without giving some account of the collections
received and expenditure to date.
Contributions to date total approximately JA$16M. Expenditure (not fully
reviewed) includes estimated cost to complete totals approximately $25M. Any
shortfall incurred was advanced by Carl Chang, our involuntary Banker. We
estimate we will need at least another JA$9M, to repay our Banker; complete the
installation of doors and windows and lights for the corridors; and rendering to
the administrative rooms which also needs painting. The old desks and chairs
have to be repaired for future use, the staircase needs replacing and further
power washing needs to be done. And still there will be much more to be done
before it could be said the O'Hare Building is again "Good and True" … but we
are nearly there and hopefully it will all come to past in the schools' 160th
As I look at the bigger picture, I see an area of Kingston that is being
restored with an educational Icon, St. George's College, and the to-be-restored
Holy Trinity Cathedral and Alpha Academy, all of which, in this day and age,
exemplifies the good that is so needed in our communities and our lives. And
they will continue to remind us, Old Boys, of the environment that surrounded us
while we attended St. George's and which shaped our faith and developed our
sense of values.
To all you Old Boys, who have contributed and helped to renew the spirit
of our Alma Mater, St. George's College should be eternally gratefully. But we
all must continue to beg and beseech and continue giving to make this our way of
giving back … Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam.
Happy students entering refurbished O’Hare
Students, parents, with teacher in new classroom
O’Hare on opening day
Monsignor Gladstone Wilson Awards Banquet
Monsignor Gladstone Wilson Awardees L-R Patrick Knight
(accepting on behalf Cecil Knight);
Deacon Trevor Graham J.P; Neville Bell; Charles Williams; Peter Chavannes
( accepting on behalf Paul Chavannes).
Congratulations to the Jamaica old Boys on the excellent staging of their
Monsignor Gladstone Wilson Awards Banquet at the Mona Visitors Lodge UWI on Sept
Our Ontario Liaison Director Carl Chang represented us and provided
details of a most successful and entertaining event with Professor Barry
Chevannes shepherding the proceedings as Master of Ceremonies.
Dynamic young Jason Deer VP of The Jamaica Old Boys welcomed all
and Margaret Campbell, principal brought greetings and an update from the
Monsignor Mock Yen attended as a special guest, not to delight the
group with his beautiful tenor voice but on this occasion to be feted on his
Charles Williams, Jamaica Old Boys President and himself one of
this year's honourees assisted in the cake cutting along with Dr. Eve
Palomino, wife of Basil Lue.
Georgian Senator Dwight Nelson made the introduction for all five
This year's honourees were: Neville Bell, Paul Chavannes (dec'd)
represented by his son Peter Chavannes from Georgia, Deacon Trevor
Graham J.P, Cecil Knight (dec'd) represented by Patrick Knight
and Charles Williams.
Delightful entertainment was provided by the Alpha Boys' Band & Wayne
Armond and Friends.
The Awards are named after St. George's most accomplished graduate the
Rt. Reverend Monsignor Gladstone Orlando Stanislaus Wilson (1906-1974) Class
of 1921. Ph.D., M.A., B.A Hons., B.D., D.C.L., B.C.L., F.R.C.S, Dip. Soc. Sc.
Monsignor Wilson made contributions to several specialized Magazines and
Journals; was considered one of the most highly qualified Ecclesiastics in the
Roman Catholic organization and was at the time of his death on December 1,1974
deemed the seventh most learned person in the world. He travelled extensively in
Europe, and the Americas, and spoke several languages fluently, including
French, Spanish, Italian, German, Portuguese, Latin, Greek and Hebrew.
Rt. Reverend Monsignor Gladstone Orlando Stanislaus Wilson was inducted in
2000 into the St. George's College Hall of Fame and named St. George's College
Student of the 20th Century.
Just My Views
how proud of Archbishop Burke we Old Boys in Toronto are, is an
understatement. Not to mention the fact that he is also an Old Boy himself. They
say if he bleeds, his blood is of many colours, the brightest of which are Blue
and White. Archbishop Burke received the Order of Jamaica from the Governor
General of Jamaica at King's House, on Monday Oct. 19th, much to the joy of many
friends and family both abroad, and on the island. The day before, while saying
Sunday Mass at Stella Maris Church, when the service was over, and in full view
of the congregation, he also received the Knight of St. George medallion. What a
feat, Sir! Rub-a-Dub-Dub.
one other person who has ever received both these awards within a 24 hour
period. You can't!! And guess what, not to be funny, but only a Georgian could
accomplish such a feat, right? May the good Lord bless and keep you well,
Archbishop Burke, for many years to come.
you know that bats always turn left when exiting a cave; that all polar bears
are left handed? And the hyoid bone, in your throat is the only bone in the body
not attached to another bone…. This information, and 25 cents, will get you a
large cup of coffee at any coffee shop across North America. Guaranteed! So
don't forget it, as you may need to show off your knowledge one day to a KC or
JC Old Boy one day, for sure.
Neville Bell giving vote of thanks on behalf
at Monsignor Gladstone Wilson awards Banquet
View, Bertis Bell should take his team to the Manning Cup again this
year. Good heavens, the team has played 12 Manning games so far, won 9 and tied
2, scored 45 goals, with only 2 against. In one game against St. Mary's School,
StGC's team scored 13 goals, with school boy McKaully Tulloch, scoring 5
himself. Can anyone name me another Georgian (even one from the "Golden Years")
who ever scored 5 goals in a Manning match? Rub-a-Dub-Dub. What an
accomplishment!! Congratulations to him.
also went to the finals of the Walker Cup challenge 2009, but lost on penalty
shots to JC. Congrats also to our team for getting so far in the tournament. So
now... on to the Manning semifinals. But how times have changed, imagine, I
understand when our team goes into rough districts to play a game, opposing fans
standing behind our goal net, will taunt our goalie with death threats if he
saves the next shot from going in the net. Coach Bertis Bell and the rest
of the team also receive regular death threats as well, imagine that. So for our
team to keep on winning is a heck of an achievement, don't you think? May the
good Lord watch over and guide them through to the end of the Manning and Oliver
Shield season. Congratulations Bertis on your Monsignor Gladstone Wilson Award.
you know that it's impossible to hum, if your nose is plugged.
Archbishop Burke S.J.,D.D. with admirer Carl Chang
of all Carl Chang's great accomplishments in collecting money and
overseeing the massive repairs to the 5th form building, there is no truth to
the rumour that a petition is being collected, asking that the O'Hare building's
name be changed to the O'Carle building. No sir, not true at all! Fun and joke
aside though, there are many who, for months now, have promised Carl to offer a
substantial donation for the O'Hare restorations, and several have not paid
their pledged money yet. Come on guys!! You know who you are!! Please pay up
quickly. The job was completed early September, and a lot of money is still owed
to contractors. Carl has been left holding an empty bag.
If you have three quarters, four dimes, and four pennies,
you have $1.19. You also have the largest amount of money in coins, without
being able to make change for a dollar.
Conrad Lowe, (now living in China) wasn't well the other day, neither was
Minister Dwight Nelson. But, both have bounced back on a health track
once again. Glad to hear. Keep well Connie & Minister Nelson! Don't let your
worries get the best of both of you; Remember, Moses started out as a basket
beautiful funeral service was held on Oct. 14th for Carmen Bubb-Clarke,
dear mother of Heather Bubb-Clarke. I saw quite a few Old Boys present,
Danny, Buski, Robbie, Skedron, Lloydie, Sadat, Uncle P, Aaron Sani to name a
few. Sincere condolences go out to Heather and family.
is the tomorrow you were so worried about yesterday.
Canfield, one of the
largest law firms in Michigan USA, announced on Oct. 15th. that 71 of its
lawyers were named in Michigan Super Lawyers 2009 and in Illinois Super Lawyers
2009 list. Twenty one of the top up and coming Lawyers were named "Rising
Stars", one of whom is none other than Joe Vernon, son of proud mom and
dad, Heather and Robbie Vernon. Joe has also been offered, and
accepted a position as a visiting professor at his old law school, Detroit Mercy
School of Law. Congratulations, Joe. But be fully aware that it's not only your
Mom and Dad that are truly proud of you. Joe was our Ontario Chapter 2004
client came in to see a famous lawyer. "Can you tell me how much you charge?"
said the client. "I charge $500 for 3 questions," said the lawyer. Good Lord!!
Isn't that a bit much?" said the client. "Yes it is!", said the lawyer, "and
what is your third question?"
me leave you all with a profound statement: "Nothing Lasts Forever, Good or
Bad!!" So, for those of you who have been enjoying a wonderful social,
financial, healthy, or employment era in your life for a while now, then …. Do
yourself a big favour and savour it, wallow in it, appreciate it, and try to
change its direction if you can, to preserve its longevity, because, trust me,
it won't last long, and could end when you least expect it.
other hand, for those of you who have been in a terrible relationship, financial
situation, work environment, one that you just detest and can't stand, a
situation that is stressing you out totally, then trust me again, have faith,
because it won't last forever either. It might not change tomorrow, but it will
change, so that peace and happiness will eventually come around for you soon.
little old ladies are sitting in a restaurant one day, talking about this and
that. The first lady said, "You know, I'm really getting forgetful. This morning
I was standing at the bottom of the stairs and I couldn't remember if I was just
about to go up, or if I had just come down." "Oh, that's nothing," the second
lady said. "The other day I was sitting on the edge of my bed, wondering if I
was going to bed, or if I had just gotten up." The third lady smiled pleasantly
at the other two. "Well, my memory is just as good as ever, knock on wood." She
then rapped on the table with her knuckle, raised her head abruptly and looked
startled. "Who's there?" she shouted.
Ray & daughter Rosie Wong
Her name is Rosanne Wong (Rosie), daughter of Ray Wong, a
graduate of St. Georges College (1962) and the late Jennifer Wong.
It was a
bright, sunny Florida Friday afternoon. Rosie was full of excitement, having
just received word that she had been awarded a full scholarship to do Computer
Science at the University of Central Florida. This day she was going back to her
high school to teach and help some of the other kids. In her haste she made a
wrong turn and her car was T-boned by a tractor trailer, She was air-lifted by
air ambulance to Orlando Regional Medical Center. She was in a coma for ten
days, and remained in intensive care for three weeks. The doctors advised there
was severe trauma to the brain and compared it to scrambled eggs.
prognosis was that Rosie would be a vegetable for the remainder of her life.
But her parents
Ray and Jennifer never gave up as they watched Rosie fight back with all her
might for life and reason. Over the period of several years, she had to re-learn
to walk, talk, even how to eat. She was like a baby, learning all bodily
functions all over again. However, she never gave up,. She kept on trying.
several years of rehab Rosie felt confident enough to go to university. At
first she tried Information Technology, but failed. That part of the brain re.
math and science was gone, but she persisted. She then turned to Psychology,
but again kept on failing.
Eventually, after several neuropsychological tests, they concluded that she
could do essays & research. Rosie then switched to sociology, and in her last
semester, she got an A+ in the final exam. After seven years of really hard
work, she finally completed what should have been a three year course and
graduated with a BA in sociology.
Several newspapers including the Toronto Star, Caribbean Camera & others heard
of her story, came to her graduation and interviewed her.
learned well the Georgian spirit instilled by dad, Ray, “Never give up”.
Unfortunately space is limited so the full text of her story written by her mom,
who has since passed, is barely touched here. Mom’s story and other self-help
ideas especially for those with similiar experiences may be obtained by
contacting Rosie at email: firstname.lastname@example.org. She would love to hear
It’s another Helen Keller story - check out Rosie. Ray’s wife Jennifer Wong
(nee –Ainsworth) her mum Nov. 1949----20 Aug. 2006, was a Past President St.
Andrews Alumni Association Canada)