Preparations for Super Bowl Sunday were put on hold as Cathedral Prep Seminary, Elmhurst, honored the six new inductees to its Hall of Fame on Feb. 4, the evening before the big game.
The school’s alumni and administrators joined the inductees’ friends and families at Immaculate Conception Center, Douglaston, for a night of reliving sports memories. Cathedral Prep’s Hall of Fame now has 70 members.
A Mass celebrated by Father Bill Sweeney, the Cathedral Prep Alumni Association president, preceded the induction ceremony. Concelebrants included Prep’s Father Fred Marano, rector-principal; Father Jim Kuroly, director of Recruitment and Apostolic Works; and Father John Cush, spiritual director and director of Development and Alumni Affairs.
Father Sweeney later was inducted into Cathedral’s Hall of Fame. A member of the Class of 1973, he attended St. Joseph’s parish, Astoria. While at the Prep, he played on the JV basketball team and was the manager for the varsity squad.
“It’s a great honor,” said Father Sweeney. “It was 39 years ago that I entered Cathedral. Cathedral really helped me grow up and be the person that I am.”
Father Sweeney was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Brooklyn in May, 1981, and has held many titles throughout the years. Currently, he is the priest chaplain at St. Francis Prep, Fresh Meadows.
Msgr. John Brown, who preached the homily at Mass, was also one of the inductees. He attended St. Michael’s parish, Sunset Park, and graduated from Cathedral Prep in 1975. He played on the basketball and handball teams.
“Looking back, I miss the basketball, but I miss the camaraderie of the travel and the friendships I made,” said Msgr. Brown. “That’s one of the reasons I would recommend sports to people.”
After being ordained a priest in 1983, he was a parochial vicar at St. Thomas Aquinas, Flatlands, and St. Clare, Rosedale. He’s also held the titles of vice chancellor and director of priest personnel of the Diocese of Brooklyn. He is currently the pastor of St. Francis de Sales, Belle Harbor, and a member of Cathedral Prep’s Financial Development Board.
Jim Flynn, Class of 1976, was a four-year letter winner in cross-country, indoor and outdoor track. Upon graduation, he held the school record for the 600-yd. dash and was a member of the record-setting mile relay team.
Flynn’s brother, John Flynn, Class of 1973, paved the way for Jim. Both served as captains of the track teams during their senior years.
“If you have an older brother, you know that they may only say a few words, but when they say something, it means something,” Flynn said. “He made sure I understood what I was getting into.”
Jim Flynn was also named team MVP and Sportsman of the Year during his senior year. In addition to track, he was captain of the school’s chess team, which finished third in the N.Y.C. Championship in ’76.
After earning an English degree from Fordham University, the Bronx, and a law degree from St. John’s University, Jamaica, Flynn is now a partner at the law firm of Harwood Feffer, LLP.
A product of Holy Rosary parish, Bedford-Stuyvesant, new Cathedral Prep Hall of Fame inductee Jason Harewood graduated in 1978. He was a captain of the school’s varsity basketball team.
Harewood scored his 1,000th career point against Cathedral Prep Seminary, Manhattan. He also was active in the school’s student council.
“It’s an awesome honor,” Harewood said. “I’m so grateful and blessed to have attended Cathedral Prep, Brooklyn. I just thank God for all my teammates and friends.”
Harewood attended Eastern Michigan University, Flint, Mich., and St. Francis College, Brooklyn Heights. He has continued his passion for basketball by coaching girls’ AAU youth basketball. He worked for American Express as a senior financial systems manager and project leader.
Tom McCarthy, Class of 1987, hailed from Resurrection-Ascension parish, Rego Park. Baseball and basketball played a key role in his life.
He played on both teams in high school and won Most Improved Player in both sports in 1985. McCarthy was an All-Conference athlete in 1986 and 1987, and he was also named Prep’s Athlete of the Year in ’87.
During that season’s city baseball tournament, McCarthy earned MVP honors by pitching two complete games. What’s even more amazing is that he pitched them both on the same day.
“All I know is that I came to the school auditorium that night to watch the play, and I couldn’t even move my arm over my head,” said McCarthy, who has no idea how many pitches he threw that day.
In addition to his work on the police force for the past nine years, McCarthy has remained involved with the Cathedral Prep community by being active in the Alumni Association and serving as the alumni dinner chairman.
Last but certainly not least, Jim Kelly of the Class of 1999 was honored. He travelled from St. Thomas More parish, Rockaway Point, to attend Cathedral Prep.
Kelly played four years of varsity soccer, freshman basketball, one year of varsity basketball and two years of varsity baseball. To say he was an athletic young man would be an understatement.
“Dedication and role models… that’s what Cathedral provides,” said Kelly. “They teach that if you’re going to do something, be dedicated and stick with it.”
He went on to play soccer at St. Thomas Aquinas College, Sparkill, and now teaches special education for third and fourth graders in Manhattan.