Allison and Michael Tevlin Remember their Son, Brendan Tevlin, in an Interview with FOX News' Greta Van Susteren
by Carolyne Volpe Curley / Carolyne@WestEssexNOW.com
Updated: Thursday 8:35pm
WEST ORANGE, NJ - Allison and Michael Tevlin were interviewed this week by Greta Van Susteren, a commentator whose show airs on the FOX News Network. Part one of the interview was broadcast on Wednesday and Thursday night's interview was pre-empted but is expected to be seen on Friday.
During Wednesday's interview broadcast, the Tevlin's recalled the night they were both made aware that their son, 19 years old Brendan Tevlin, was not coming home.
Both of Brendan's parents spoke about the need to remember him notfor the way he died, but instead for the way he lived. They spoke of their hopes of having his playing field at Seton Hall Preparatory School, from where he graduated in 2013, being named in his honor. For further information on how to join their efforts and make a donation, see online here.
The two videos attached here are not the property of West Essex Now; they belong to FOX News Network.
Alumni, Students, Family and Faculty Save a School; Immaculate Conception High School Will Stay Open
MONTCLAIR, NJ - One month ago, on June 10, in the middle of final exams, Newark Archbishop John J. Myers announced to the faculty and students of Immaculate Conception High School, Montclair, that come September, the school would be closing by the end of the month. The bishop stated that the reason for the closure was the school's debt of over $500,000 and the dwindling student enrollment. Only ten days before, the school had celebrated its 85th graduation.
Students and faculty set to work establishing a plan of fundraising events which would help to offset the school's debt. Two members of the faculty, Carlos Franco and Ryan Horan, set up a Go Fund Me "Keep Immaculate Conception High School Open" online account which allows anyone to make a contribution to the school.
The two teachers, along with their co-workers, immediately began phoning friends and alumni to make the school's predicament known and to direct everyone to the donation site.
Class of '84 Alumna Barbara Hughes has remained active with the football teams over the past 15 years. She got together a small group of other alumni Kevin Kinney '79, of West Caldwell, Suzanne Alworth '79 , of Verona, Sean Morris '94, of Bloomfield, Tim Fox '94 of Clifton and Omar Mitchell '96 of East Orange, so that they could strategize on a series of upcoming fundraising events.
During the first week after the announcement, the students held a car wash and bake sale, and a few days after that, the NJ Jackals donated 300 game tickets which the students sold with all the proceeds going to the school.
"I am a proud graduate of Immaculate and I treasure the experiences and friendships forged through my association with the school,"
Additionally, the school's Board of Trustees met and individually wrote checks totaling over $103,000. Many local businesses contributed to the effort and companies including Horizon, Sealed Air, Prudential and PSEG each gave matching gifts of $5,000.
Alumni and friends quickly came to their assistance and slowly money began to accumulate in the online account set up to receive the contributions. In the first week alone, the school raised over $211,000.
By June 17, the Archbishop conceded that if the school could put in place a proper financial plan, and increase enrollment, then by July 15, the diocese would consider keeping the school open this coming fall. Faculty, alumni, parents and friends of ICHS made phone calls and actively publicized the fundraising efforts through social media. Students also wrote moving letters to the archdiocese, expressing their love for the high school.
Video Credit: Amy B. Popp
On July 4, the school marched as a unit in Montclair's Independence Day Parade, handing out postcards which announced the school's fundraising campaign and selling school t-shirts. Marching alongside them were many supporters including
the district's Assemblyman Thomas P. Giblin who had put his own children through the school and is an Immaculate Board Member. By July 8, the school had raised $342,126, meeting 68% of their goal.
At every fundraising occasion, all food, beverages and entertainment were entirely donated, in most cases by alumni and parents of students. The effort really grew with a "Family Reunion" gathering at the Friendly Sons of the Shillelagh Club in West Orange on July 12.
"At the Shillelagh Party, we had over 200 attendees, from almost every decade that the school has been in existence," Hughes expressed.
But the bulk of the fundraising came simply from online contributions, and they are still needed. On Tuesday, Kevin Cummings, President & CEO of Investors Bank, announced "The fight is not over!" and pledged that the bank was matching the next $30,000 added to the fund.
At present, the high's school online account has accumulated over $488,000 from 949 contributors. Donors decide the amount that they want to give and no amount is too small; donations can even be made anonymously. Many have donated $5, $10 and $15 and some have donated thousands, including two anonymous donations of $10,000, a couple who gave $15,000 and two individuals who each donated $30,000 anonymously. Many gave in the name of family members and others donated in gratitude for their own time spent at the school as students.
John Nolan of Caldwell commented, "I hope they reach their goal and stay open. My two sisters, my mom, and both of my mom's parents went there.
On July 14, the school was granted a reprieve. A letter addressed to Immaculate Conception Board of Trustees Chair William C. Slattery was sent from the archbishop stating: "Immaculate Conception High School will be open in September."
"You have achieved something we do not often see
"I am gratified by the Archbishop’s confidence in Immaculate," commented
The school still needs to meet it's goal of $500,000; donations are being accepted and welcomed.
To access the site online, click here.
Checks by mail may be sent to:
Save Immaculate Appeal
Immaculate Conception High School
33 Cottage Place, Montclair, NJ 07042.
In addition, Barbara Hughes explained that the school will be bringing the booster club back to life over the next few months to help with fundraising and scholarships for scholar athletes. Going forward it will be known as the Blue Lion Boosters.
"Immaculate was a big part of who I am today!
Myers was installed in Newark in 2001; since 1999, his diocese has closed 78 schools. This year Newark Schools Blessed Pope John XXIII Academy in West Orange, Most Sacred Heart of Jesus School in Wallington, St. Agnes School in Clark and Saints Mary and Elizabeth Academy in Linden all closed their doors.
Immaculate Conception High School, located at 33 Cottage Place in Montclair, NJ, strives, within the context of family, to develop the whole person: morally, intellectually, socially, and physically. Recognizing the worth and uniqueness of each individual, the school prepares students for life beyond high school, so that as responsible Christians, they will make a difference in the world of today and tomorrow. Admission to Immaculate Conception High School is open to young men and women of any background who fulfill our academic requirements. Please call Ms. Kathy Badillo, Director of Admissions, 973-744-7445, ext. 24.
by Carolyne Volpe Curley / Carolyne@WestEssexNow.com Published 11:10am
WEST ORANGE, NJ - The Order of the Friendly Sons of the Shillelagh - Essex Chapter has teamed up with Holy Trinity Episcopal Church to support their Food Pantry on Main Street in West Orange. The pantry supplies Christine's Kitchen which is a program that serves free hot lunches at the church weekly.
The summer can be a challenging time for the food pantry and the families that they support as donations usually drop while the number of people they serve continues to grow. One reason for the greater need is because the children who are usually fed two meals a day through school programs turn to the pantry to be fed during the summer months.
The Shillelagh Club is using the site "Amp Your Good" to enable the community to purchase specifically requested foods which will be delivered directly to the pantry. Those interested in making a donation should click online here.
"We only have a short period of time left until this campaign comes to an end," commented Shillelagh Club President Scott Harrington, of Verona.
Click Here to make a Purchase to be Sent Directly to the Food Bank
The Shillelagh Club, Essex County Division, was founded in October 1967 by Irish leaders John Cryan, Bart Dougherty and Harry Knox. In 1971, the Essex Division of the Friendly Sons purchased the existing club building which was then known as the West Orange Women’s Club. The Friendly Sons is an Irish-American social and charitable organization dedicated to the purpose of promoting and enhancing the fraternity and good fellowship of its membership. The organization is non-sectarian and non-political and is located at 648 Prospect Avenue in West Orange, N.J.
Amp Your Good is a social networking site designed to help people and organizations Amplify their Good so that their good intentions have the greatest impact.