On The Silly Side
(The opinions and views expressed in the commentaries of The Somerville News belong solely to the authors of those commentaries and do not reflect the views or opinions of The Somerville News, its staff or publishers.)
Somerville has always had some of the best educators possible. My first teachers were Ms. Colbert and Mrs. Chiulli in Kindergarten at the Brown School. They began a tradition of superb Somerville teachers that touched my life and helped shape my future.
Philip Bassett , Pauline Lampropoulos and Eileen Morsett are retiring at the end of the school year. Three finer teachers Somerville has never had. Pauline Lampropoulous is the principal of the West Somerville Neighborhood School and Eileen Morsett is the assistant principal. Phil Bassett is the director of the Center for Career and Technical Education.
I am proud to call these three educators my friends. Phil and I , along with his wife and WSNS teacher Annette, have been lifelong pals and are all members of Somerville High School class of 1971. Pauline and Eileen have had my back many times keeping an eye on my boys and everyone else's kids as well. I have also been graciously allowed to use the school for my various theater and music programs including The Sunsetters. One of my friends also lists Pauline as one of his all time favorite teachers from when he had her at the Brown School , along with the very personable Mr. Steve Tucelli. ( Steve is now the principal of the Winter Hill Community School and a great buddy.)
As we bid a fond farewell to these three selfless molders of minds, I have called on the memories of my friends throughout the city to share some of their stories about memorable teachers they have had.
The Western Junior High School on Holland Street was run like a military academy back in the late 60's. Dr. Horne, and Mr. Mackey were at the helm. Dr. Horne was stern and serious, yet fair. Mr. Mackey was friendly and personable . We had to walk in single file through the corridors and our shirts had to be buttoned all the way up. Hey, I just noticed that Western also spells out "We-Stern." Kids today complain when they have to jack their trousers all the way up!
Some of the other "Western" teachers' names that came up were Mr. Lundy, Mr. Turner, Mr. Caliri, and Miss Hegarty. She drove a blue Mustang convertible. Mr. Kelly worked on Senator Robert F. Kennedy's ill fated presidential campaign. Mr. Kelly was a very cool guy. By the time I was a substitute at the Western, Dr. David W. Jones was the principal. He grew up with my dad and used to golf with him and my Uncle Sal. Dad called him Wendy, and I was in Project STAR with his daughter, Thelma. Dr. Jones called me personally to come and sub at the Western one day. He ended the conversation with, " ...and Jim, can you do me a favor and leave the leather jacket at home ?" He was a great guy.
A friend notes that she learned a lot about being a lady from Miss Ricci in the 5th grade at The Bingham School. She was soft spoken, refined, gorgeous and always smelled pretty.
Mr. Driscoll at The Conwell School was okay in one guy's book, and Agnes Murphy got one student her first job in the Cambridge City Courts Probation Office.
At the Proctor, Mr. Homsy stood out , and at the Southern it was a toss-up between Mr. Campana and Mr. Carroll. At the High School Mr. Sweet was also a radio personality on WBCN. His radio name was "Sweet Eddie."
Did you know that a lot of girls had crushes on Mr. Carroll at the Southern Junior High? I probably will get a C for spelling , but here are just some of the teachers that were part of our lives back in the day . Mr. Rogers, Mr. Fedele, Mr. Gordinier, Mr. Pignatello, Mr. Caliri, Mr Pietrantoni, Miss Charlton, Mr.Tighe, Mr. Walzak, Mr. Sorabella, Mr. Jackimzick, Mr. Allen, Mrs. Carafotes , Mr. Andrew Smith, Mrs. Marshall, Mr Limberakais, Mr. Rogers, Mr. Joyce, Dr Giroux, Mr. De Angelis, Dr. Buckley, Mr. and Mrs. Hrubi, Mr. Knight, Mr. Da Prato, Mr. Perno. Mr. Siggens, Mr. Brewster, Mr. Parrish, Doc Della Colli, Mr.Muzzioli, Mr. Cirame, Mr. Collozzo, Mrs. Flynn. Mr. Bennett, Mr. Lynch, Mrs. Brinley, Mr. Cronin, Mr. Nunziato, Mr. Kelleher ,Mr. Parella, Mr.Oneil, Mr. O'Brien, Mr. De Marco, Mr.Lonergan, Mr Fasciano, Mr. McGreal, Mr . Macero, Ms. Whittle and of course our great (very young and hip) Somerville High School headmaster, Mr. Tony Ciccariello. There are many others that I am sure you can think of .
Dr. Jones's daughter, Mrs. Thelma Davis will be taking over as principal of the West Somerville Neighborhood School next year , and everyone is thrilled.
As for Pauline, Eileen and Phil, thank you, good luck, and enjoy your much deserved retirement. Donna Wade can break you in on retirement protocol. We will miss you, but I'm sure we'll see you around the 'Ville.