Monmouth Beach School Class of 2018
I took a small step back in time last week. I made my first visit to the borough’s school in 8 years. To watch as the:
The MB Public School conducted its 109th annual commencement exercises on June 22. A total of thirty-eight 8th grade students participated in graduation ceremonies. Members of the “Class of 2018” who received diplomas were:
Congrats to all!
Kirk Ruoff, the school board president, presented diplomas to graduating students. Ruoff, who owns and operates the excellent Turning Point Breakfast, Brunch & Lunch restaurants in our area, suggested that the students continue to study and work hard and they “might be lucky enough to live in Monmouth Beach when they grow up.” Good advice.
It was 20 years ago when borough resident Ruoff started his restaurant business in Little Silver with a modest 40-seat establishment. Today, he and his wife Pam successfully operate a dozen TP eateries around the state.
Michael Ettore, the school superintendent, directed the ceremonies with a nice blend of intelligence and humor. He spoke about how the strong bond between home and school in MB makes all student success possible. I’m so happy to hear that this link prevails in town.
The smartest person in this year’s class was the valedictorian, Regina Giordano. Grace Decker was salutatorian and won the distinguished Captain James R. Heimbold Award for citizenship. The ’18 class leader was president James Mazzacco.
“The person who goes farthest is generally the one who is willing to do and dare.”
It was 44 years ago this month that I too graduated from the Monmouth Beach Public School. A total of 51 students were in the Class of 1974 and I’ve determined that very few still call Monmouth Beach home. Our class president that year was Kathy Moynihan, who recently helped organize a full-of-fun SRHS reunion. Kathy also claimed the Heimbold Award that year (recipients tell me it’s the best honor).
Back then commencement exercises were held in the Precious Blood Church parish center. Leading the school at the time were two good and decent men (similar to today, thankfully). The principal was Joe Persiponko, who led the school from 1968 to 1993. The president of the board of education was Andy Cancalosi, who led there for 18 years.
One sad note — the valedictorian our year was Andrew Dean. Among the finest students ever produced in borough school history, Andy tragically died of cancer in October 1993 at age 32. His mom, Barbara Dean, was a devoted and respected MB school teacher for many years.