Christopher Kreybig (68; firstname.lastname@example.org) has become a WHS e-pal with the following note, “Weekly newsletter brings back great memories. I was on the Weequahic soccer team with for four years varsity. I became a Boy Scout master at the Jewish YMCA. Graduated NCE in industrial engineering. Life was great growing up in Newark.”
Reaching out to W-Alums:
Bob Kleinberg (6/52)
As June, 2022 approaches, I was wondering if any plans are being made for a 70th anniversary reunion of the Weequahic Class of June 1952. Please let me know; email@example.com. Bob
Herb Silber (6/51).
I moved to the Lakewood/Brick, NJ locale in 2019 and have not met any alumni since I'm here. I would be interested in finding some for a lunch meeting. My e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org. Herb
Clark Lissner (6/63)
So many from Weequahic now living in Florida! But if you happen to be in the Charleston, S.C. area (living near or visiting the best city in the world to visit, according to Conde Nast), you are invited to attend our Shalom Y'all Club which meets the 3rd Sunday morning of every month in the 4 Seasons at Lakes of Cane Bay 55+ community in nearby Summerville. "Come on down!" as the TV ad used to announce. Clark (email@example.com)
Shirley Ezersky Friedman (56) gives a “heads-up” about movie:
I am happy to announce that “American Gangster” has been showing on Netflix since November 1st. It's coming back "big time." Our own Weequahic graduate Richie Roberts (6/56) is the lead character as played by Russell Crowe. I cannot wait to see it, as I know Richie from the very early days of our lives on earth till graduation night. He is an old friend of mine and makes me proud. Without a doubt, Richie Roberts is an American Hero of the highest level, never to be forgotten! Shirl
Frank Arenziano (6/62) and Jac Toporek (6/63) share Hawthorne playground memories:
I have read many stories of those who hung out at the Chancellor Avenue School Playground, but many of us NOLA (North of Lyons Avenue) people hung out at the playground and gym located at Hawthorne Avenue School. I think I spent almost every weekday night there during 1958, 59, 60 and 61, mostly playing basketball in the gym.
There were 2 half court games on the center courts. We called them the A Court and the B Court with 3 on 3 games being played on each. Winners stayed on the court and played the next three guys. There were other side courts for those who were just shooting around and not playing seriously.
The A court was dominated by Ollie Walker. Ollie was Wes Unseld before Wes Unseld was Wes Unseld. He didn't have to jump much, but controlled the backboards. Many times, Ollie's brother Billy would also play. Billy was another unstoppable force on the A Court. Some other "A" players I remember from those days were Frank Chakorski (sp?), who I think played high school ball, Bill or Phil (?) Taylor, who I believe played at St. Benedict's Prep and "Fu" Elson and his brother.
I played on the B court along with my good friend Mike Weisholtz. The B court was usually ruled by Ben Jones. On occasions I remember Wallace McCloud, Sy Yoskowitz (6/62), Fred Goldman (6/62) and Kenny Meyers (1/62) being there. Every once in a while, there would be a shout from the A court, "Hey you, we need another player in this game." That was how a player on the B court got summoned to the big game. When it was me, all I would do is pass the ball to one of the regulars in the A game.
I would like to hear from any guys who played in the A or B games at the time I am referencing (58-61). It would be great to recall the names of some other guys who played there. Frank
When my family emigrated from Montreal, Quebec, Canada to the USA and Newark in January, 1957, our first home was an apartment on Hawthorne Avenue, just below Bergen Street. Although we attended Bergen Street School during our short less than two-year residence on Hawthorne, twin brother Nor and I would sometimes walk up to Hawthorne Avenue School to make enjoyable use of the playground. Do not recall many specifics of our visits, but one memorable day stands out.
We took our soccer ball up to get in some kicks and refresh our skills in the absence of any regular games (none, really) with Bergen classmates and neighborhood kids who played the sport. Ya, the game of soccer was not a favorite among many youngsters of the area back then. But, just like street hockey, seems Nor and I were a game or party of TWO. By the way, those honed soccer skills paid off in some pretty decent games as members of Coach Joe Nerenberg’s WHS Soccer Team fin the fall months of 1959-62.
So, back to that memorable visit to the Hawthorne Avenue Playground. Nor and I were booting the ball around and hitting some hard shots against the playground fence. A sign of our prowess? Maybe? But it could also be to impress the two lovely young ladies playing ping-pong nearby? Some truth in both, perhaps, but we did get to meet the maidens, Ita and Hela Yungst, very pretty, indeed. Made a lasting impression on brother Nor and myself, a couple of socially awkward soon to be teens. In retrospect, it was the beginning of friendship of many years.
Since Bergen Street was our school and, I believe, the Yungst sisters at that time attended Hawthorne, our paths did not easily cross. But then came another meeting out of the blue, the Toporek and Yungst family cars next to each other in a heading down the shore Parkway bumper to bumper standstill. A few waves to each other as the cars proceeded to creep to the Bradley Beach exit, but nothing more.
And, nothing more through the many years that followed. Nor and I graduated Weequahic and continued our education, as did Ita (Hillside 66) and Hela (Hillside 68?). Along the way, though, our parents and Ita and Hela’s parents, all four survivors of the Holocaust and residents of Union, NJ, became acquaintances through Yungst neighbors and shared friends, also survivors, the parents of Shelley Lowenbraun (64).
Paths destined to cross on multiple occasions, Hela and I would run into each other as she became “Miss New Jersey” and fulfilled her responsibilities as “Hela Young,” spokesperson and numbers drawer for the NJ Lottery. Wonderful opportunities to hug and reminisce as to that first encounter at the playground. Unfortunately, Hela passed in the not too distant past. Ita Yungst Black and I remain Facebook friends. Jac
Maple Avenue School continues to be remembered:
Trudy Rohrer Golday (Maple/J. Dayton 60)
To Helene Reiss Kohn (Maple 60/Union 64), my mother was Mrs. Rohrer. Thank you for remembering her in your comments about the teachers at Maple Avenue School. Trudy
Enid Kesselman Gort (54)
I am grateful to Jackie Kaufer Klein (66) for writing her beautiful essay about Maple Avenue School. It is amazing how many identical memories we share. To begin with I, too, recall the heavy wet snowsuit I had to wrestle with in the kindergarten cloakroom. And also remember the botched corduroy vest my mother spent the night resurrecting prior to its delivery the next day to sewing class.
To this day, I can recite in order all the names of every teacher I had at Maple are clear to this day starting with Miss Cooper in Kindergarten and ending in 8th grade with Mr. Charnes. This goes without omitting the special subject teachers such as Grace Nolan (Arithmetic), Jean Smith (Art) and Zelma Brown, the “Auditorium” teacher who helped us create shows worthy of Broadway.
Jackie’s recollection of my mother, Rose Kesselman, touched my heart. She taught at Maple way past retirement age and loved every minute of it. And speaking of supermarkets, I remember frequenting the Acme with my mother at the end of the school day, where we were often approached by children accompanied by their mothers, who would seek her attention “after hours.” That was my time with my mother and I always resented sharing it.
Undoubtedly, my strangest memory occurred when, as an adult, I dreamed one night that Ann Healey had died. I called my mother in the morning to recount how disturbed I had been and to ponder why I was even thinking of Miss Healey so many years after the fact. I was more than rattled when hours later my mother returned my call to report that she had just found Miss Healey’s obituary in the day’s Star Ledger. That episode is one that remains one of my life’s strangest moments.
Presently, I have two young grandchildren, and my wish for them is they will remember their school days with the joy and intensity that Jackie Klein and I and undoubtedly many others seem to share. Enid
Gail Malmgreen (6/60)
Thanks to Jacqueline Kaufer Klein for her beautiful and accurate memories of Maple Avenue School. I, too, remember our brilliant 4th grade teacher Frieda Bornstein. She died far too young. I was so very fond of her that my mother took me to her funeral, the first I ever attended. Let's also remember the wonderful Miss Abelson (Arithmetic) and Miss Klayman (Music). Mr. Charnes (8th grade) was an object of great fascination to us girls, simply because he was a man.
The Newark Public Library was recently given a big collection of Maple Avenue scrapbooks produced by the PTA and some teachers. They have details of school history from the 192os to the 1990s. In addition, there are great photos, especially of school plays. Here's my description of the collection