A gray, overcast day didn’t dampen the spirits of the family, friends and former teachers of Shawn Nassaney ’94, who gathered outside the West building at Saint Raphael Academy this afternoon to dedicate the newly renovated cafeteria in Shawn’s memory.

About 50 people were gathered under cloudy skies, only a week after the 16th anniversary of 9/11, Shawn being one of the many victims of that terrible day.

In his opening remarks, Principal Dan Richard commented that while he never met Shawn, he felt sure he would have gotten along with him. A fellow runner, Mr. Richard had learned from Shawn’s friends and family that he was dedicated, self-disciplined and diligent. He especially thanked Shawn’s parents, Patrick and Margaret Nassaney, for being a part of the renovation project from the beginning.

Mr. Nassaney also took a moment to share his thoughts about the education his son received at Saint Raphael Academy. “Teaching is more than imparting knowledge,” he said, citing the importance of faith, service and community. “This is where Lasallian teachings come in … these are more difficult to find,” and it is what had an impact on Shawn as a student.

The couple then cut the ribbon outside of the West building to welcome all to the new cafeteria, which was festooned with a mass of purple and gold balloons, a display of photographs of Shawn and a plaque installed outside the cafeteria that declared Shawn, “Son, Friend, Saint.” Academy chaplain Rev. Carl Fisette gave a brief blessing, and attendees enjoyed a reception and the chance to explore the new space.

The cafeteria renovation was made possible by several donors, and transformed the room into a contemporary café-style eatery, with new flooring, windows and seating, and a modern food service area.

The Academy also awards a scholarship, the Shawn M. Nassaney ’94 Memorial Award, which is given to a senior who, through his or her actions and spirit, consistently embodies the values of fellowship, tolerance and respect for all — the traits that Shawn himself was most well known.

Mr. and Mrs. Nassaney pose with the plaque outside the newly dedicated Shawn M. Nassaney Cafeteria.

Rev. Carl Fisette gives a blessing over the new Nassaney Cafeteria.

 

 

 

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