Happy 75th Anniversary SJM!
San Joaquin Memorial High School is celebrating its 75th Anniversary this year! On October 1, 2020, a 75th Anniversary Mass with Bishop Joseph Brennan will be held for the entire SJM community which includes students, faculty, parents, alumni, and friends. This celebration will be followed by refreshments and birthday cake. Be sure to Save the Date on your calendars!
“We’re really looking forward to spending this upcoming school year celebrating our 75-year history,” said SJM Head of School Michael Burke. “I think our students will be amazed and proud of all of our alumni’s accomplishments as faith and community leaders throughout the Central Valley and beyond.”
A Little History
On October 1, 1945, the Brothers of the Christian Schools opened SJM as a middle school through high school facility with a total enrollment of 270. This was a cooperative agreement made with the Diocese of Monterey-Fresno, who owned and currently owns the school. The Brothers taught 7th through 9th grade boys and the Sisters of the Holy Cross taught 9th grade girls and 10th, 11th, and 12th grade boys and girls.
On October 1, books were distributed to the students and school was dismissed until Wednesday, October 3. On Wednesday, a Pontifical Mass for the entire student body was held at St. John’s Cathedral in downtown Fresno, with the school day beginning after Mass.
The faculty and key players included: Brother Albert, Superior; Brother Dominic; and Brother Pius; Sister Paola, Superior; Sister Alfreda Mari; Sister Teresa Claire; Sister Clarinda; and Sister Anselma.
1945-1946 Inaugural School Year Highlights
Oct. 1 - School opens
Oct. 3 - Pontifical Mass for entire student body at St. John’s Cathedral
Oct. 31 - First issue of school paper, “Red and Blue”
Nov. 2 - First student body meeting & installation of officers
Nov. 5 - School cafeteria opens, serving hot plates and incidentals
Nov. 19 - First football game vs. Roosevelt Jr. Varsity at Roosevelt, lost 37-0
Jan. 8 - School team plays first basketball game and wins
Jan. 19 - Open house for Brothers and inspection of school. Splendid banquet put on by St. John’s Mothers Club, about 40 Brothers attended
Feb. 27-28 - Senior Play, “Don’t Take My Penny” at St. John’s Hall
March 12 - Spanish Club and Latin Club organized
March 27 - First baseball game, lost 9-2 to Roosevelt Jr. Varsity at Roosevelt
April 22 - Junior Prom, Marigold Ballroom
May 2 - Yearbook “Spirit of 46” comes out
May 15 - Mass at St. John’s Cathedral in honor of St. John Baptist de La Salle
June 1 - Baccalaureate Mass for Seniors at St. John’s Cathedral at 8:00 am followed by breakfast at Hotel California
June 7 - Last day of school
June 7 - Senior Graduation, St. John’s Cathedral, 8:00 pm. Bishop Scher presided and presented diplomas
Upcoming 75th Celebration Events
September 12, 2020 - Holy Bowl
October 9, 2020 - Homecoming
November 7, 2020 - 43rd Annual Auction in celebration of SJM’s Diamond Jubilee!
February 2021 - A Service Day Celebration is being planned for the entire Memorial community.
Stay tuned for more 75th Anniversary updates in future issues of Memorial Connections!