St Eunan's past pupils return for 50th anniversary reunion
The 5th and final year class of 1969 of St Eunan's College, Letterkenny, came together for a 50th reunion series of events last weekend.
It started on Saturday when participants gathered at the college at 10am in glorious sunshine for a meet and greet session at the main entrance.
This was followed an hour later with a Mass and remembrance service in the college chapel conducted by Fr Kieran McAteer, a member of the 1969 class.
One of the organising committee, James McMonagle, referred to the members of the class who had passed away, three who were students for the full five years namely Patrick K. Boyle, Michael Oliver McIntyre and Brendan McDaid.
There were a number of others who had been students for one or more years at the beginning or end of the five year cycle.
He also referred to those class members who had to ensure the deaths of wives or children and asked colleagues to remember the deceased members of staff.
Next up class members went to the college canteen where they were greeted by the outgoing college president, Chris Darby and current president, Damien McCroary.
Mr Darby referred to the development and expansion of the college over the years and to the major building and refurbishment programme that was anticipated over the next few years.
Light refreshments were served after this where some former pupils noted that many of the items on offer 50 years ago!
Afterwards attendees were able to stroll through the various floors and corridors within the building and to reminisce about their times as students. They spoke of memories and stories of great times ...and not so great times.
In what was a nice touch Mr Darby had invited Conor McMonagle, a current prefect to act as a guide for the past pupils who included his uncle, James, who had been the first day boy prefect 50 years before.
On Saturday evening, the class of 1969 went to Dillon's Hotel for a reception and meal.
After this Mr McMonagle addressed the gathering and referred to those who could not attend for various reasons.
He also thanked him those who had helped him organise the reunion and contact the various members of the 1969 class. He referred in particular to Henry Shannon, Michael Strain, and Sean Coll. He also introduced a number of other speakers including Brucxe McLennan, Henry Shannon and Joe Varilly. Brina Quigley read a poem he had composed referring to his time as a student.
Later that evening the former students used their combined talents to provide some entertainment with Brian Quigley on the keyboards, Paddy McIntyre and Henry Shannon on guitar while Martin McIntyre played a few tunes on his bagpipes. Others sang including Paul Cannon.
Those who attended the reunion were Columba Bonner, Sean Bonner, Edmund Boyle, Patrick Boyle, Martin Byrne, Paul Cannon, Sean Coll, Andrew Coyle, Christy Early, Denis Gallagher, Eamonn Gillespie, Noel Harvey, John G. Kelly, Kevin Kelly, Martin Kerr, Kieran McAteer, Christy McCafferty, Manus McCarron, Aidan McGill, Martin McGlynn, Martin McHugh, Enda McDonnell, Martin McIntyre, Patrick McIntyre, Bruce McLennan, James McMonagle, Dermot O' Carroll, Martin O' Donnell, Michael O'Meallaigh, Brian Quigley, Henry Shannon, Jerome Sheerin, Michael Strain, Sean Sweeney, Peadar Thomas, Joseph Varilly with apologies from other class members who could not attend. The attendance rate was over 75% of the original class group.
The members of the class of 1969 wish to thank the outgoing and current presidents of St Eunan's College, Chris Darby and Damien McCroary, and former staff member, Eddie Harvey, for their welcome and for facilitating the events at the college. They also appreciated the excellent service provided by Dillon's Hotel.