Saturday, October 22, 2011

Memories of OLM in Kinnelon

Herb O. Fisher Jr.'s family: Baptism at OLM
Cornie Hubner's latest Didja Know about Our Lady of the Magnificat, generated several Memories of OLM that I share with you here.

Special thanks to Herb O. Fisher Jr. and Kim Vawter.

Herb sent in this photo from his and wife Jan's daughter Jenny's baptism at Our Lady of the Magnificat Chapel. [HOF, what year is this?]

From left to right: Margret Galmiche (Jan's mom), Mitzi Yucknat (HOF's grandmother on Emily's side), Francis Galmiche (Jan's Dad), Cindy (Jan's sister), Herb Fisher Sr., Jan and Jenny, Emily Fisher (HOF's mom) and behind her, HOF himself. Behind them is The Chapel.

What a great photo! Thanks, HOF.

Kim Vawter sent me this message:

"I forget if I shared this with your readers, but my first substitute teaching job was at the Our Lady of Magnificat school. I had just completed 60 college credit hours and was able to substitute teach in those days. I think that this was January of 1970. I was 19.  I taught several days- weeks? not sure but it was a long term job since the nun who had the first grade lost her voice. The class was quite full; over 30 kids who seemed to never be absent themselves! They all wore the cute little school uniform and were well behaved. The youngest little Connelly girl attended and she wore nylon stockings. First grade! Her sisters probably were responsible for dressing her. (The Connelly family lived up the street from me on Orchard Road.)

If I had any trouble getting them to pay attention I asked a little boy in the front row to "lead the class in prayer" since I was a lay teacher and not a Catholic. We had the daily mass for the kids and I lead them down to the auditorium and they followed me in a long line like little ducks follow their mother.

I remember that the nun who had the first grade was very young.  She met with me every day where she graded papers and gave me the lesson plans for the day. At my college I had the whole month of January off so I was able to do this. After I returned to college in Kansas City I got a large yellow envelope in the mail. The nun (wish I knew her name) had the kids write me thank you letters! I read them all and I still have them--somewhere.)

Mother Superior (?) who was a very wonderful, large woman ran the school with a great sense of humor and a lot of love. She still wore the full white habit.  My mother and I both had jobs. She had the 5th grade. I don't remember how long she had a substitute job there but I do remember how much fun it was to work together. She had a degree in chemistry but went back for a second degree in education to be able to teach.

I remember Father Ryan. My friend Joanie asked me to go with her to a Youth function in the late 60s. Father Ryan was there. We went roller skating and Father Ryan strapped on the skates and went out into the ring with all of us. He was such a nice friendly person to looked like he was enjoying his time with us. It changed my perception of what it is to be a Priest.

I also attended Mass with my Catholic friend Lynn Byles. It was all Latin and I had to bring along one of my Grandma's nice lace trimmed handkerchief to put on my head. The Mass at OLM was in Latin and when they rang the bells Lynn whispered to me "Good Humor!"  I think she was trying to crack me up. The Catholic Mass was so intimidating since my home church was the little Smoke Rise Community Church.

Thanks for sparking these memories."

Kim, thank you! These are marvelous memories.

If you have stories or photos you'd like to share, just let me know in the comments or send me an email to
Added 10/23/11:


I don't know if you remember but you have heard from my family before. My name is Paul Kabis. We lived on North Road in Smoke Rise from about 1960-1986. My sister, Patty Hopkinson wrote to you with some Kinney photos from Narragansett, RI.

Anyway, I attended OLM for all 8 years of grade school and in 1970 would have most likely been in the 1st grade. The principles name was Sister Beatrice. I think our regular 1st grade teacher was Sister Patrick. I may even be able to find an old OLM school photo. I can't say that I remember Kim as a substitute but the timing seems to right.

Please pass this along to Kim and have her contact me directly and maybe we can share a few photos and other memories.

I had two sisters married in the OLM chapel so I know we have lots of those photos still around. I was the youngest of 7!

Also wanted to let you know how much I enjoy your blog. Always brings back lots of great memories. Keep up the great work.



Anonymous said...


Jenny turned 32 yesterday. So, picture was taken in summer 1980.


CB Whittemore said...

HOF, thanks for that detail and Happy Birthday to Jenny.


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