JFK alumni commemorate former school before new subdivision moves in

Missouri

ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. – There were a lot of smiles and hugs at John F. Kennedy Catholic High School Friday night as alumni gathered for a final farewell to the campus.

The high school first opened in 1967, first graduating class in 1972. The school is going to be torn down for a new subdivision.

The St. Louis Archdiocesan high school was considered the first Catholic boys and girls combined high school. 

This Catholic high school closed in 2017 and Fontbonne University purchased the 22-acre site in 2018 to open a satellite west campus. 

But after a $3 million renovation, they sold the property due to what they called a rapidly changing environment in 2020, and instead focusing on their Clayton campus and offering up the property for sale. 

McBride Berra Land company is scheduled to build 68 homes for a new subdivision called The Arbors at Celtic Meadows. 

The main road through the subdivision will be named Kennedy Lane. 

But Friday night with food trucks and alumni from the ’70s, ’80s, ’90s, ’00s, and ‘10s, they’ll be walking down memory lane. 

“We’re creating our new scholarship the John f. Kennedy scholarship for kids in catholic high schools who are disadvantaged physically, mentally, or financially,” said Ben Toben, Manchester alderman, and Kennedy alum. “That’s why funds from this event are going towards that scholarship.” 

“Awesome community and has been and continues to be,” said Chuck Chiodini, longtime Kennedy High coach, and teacher.  

“It was a treasure then and the people who have come through here and graduated are a tremendous treasure for the community out there now making the world a better place as they were taught to do here.”    

One of the great things coming out of Friday’s reunion and going-away party, the money raised will help set up a John F. Kennedy Catholic High School scholarship to help underserved youth attend Catholic high schools in the area. 

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