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Dear Saint Patrick – AJ Fitzpatrick ’20

Dear Saint Patrick,

My life has been forever changed by this unbelievable school. A school that contains people and ideas that would never come together anywhere else. I knew it was my home since I was 10 years old. I was a 4`8 kid with a lot of confidence in my abilities. I got invited to a top gun camp. A camp for quarterbacks and skill players. I walked onto the back field and it felt like they already knew me. It felt different. Coach Galante welcomed me as a son without even knowing who I really was, and of course Coach Fabs gave me the nickname “fitzy” (which has stuck to this day). There was never really another choice. I shadowed other schools, but nothing ever felt the same. Saint Patrick is a family built on pride and brotherhood. But, most importantly, two colors, green and gold. Nothing so arbitrary has ever meant so much to me.

My experiences at Saint Patrick seem unmatched. Like I am the only person in the world who got to spend four years in paradise, meanwhile sitting at a desk for most of it. But, every Shamrock feels the same way. Saint Patrick has given me experiences and emotions of all sorts. Every single experience developed me into the person I am today. Whether it was getting yelled at for not having a polo or getting cheered on for scoring a touchdown. Every single one makes it feel like they just want you to be the best. My favorite experience was one that happened every single day, walking into the school and hearing Dr. Schmidt, Coach Luke, and Coach Fabs greet everyone, and I mean everyone. It made everyone feel like they were special, and many kids replicated the greetings throughout the years. From my freshman year till now every Shamrock knew everyone’s names and if they didn’t, they would find out. It’s more than just a “morning.” It means that they care about you and everyone around you. Saint Patrick welcomes you into a home, and no one ever wants to have to say “goodbye.”

I was very involved at Saint Patrick. I was a three year varsity football and baseball player, NHS member, Chinese Club president, blood drive member, and many more. Saint Patrick pushed me to do more. I have so many great memories in my four years at Saint Patrick. Whether it was scoring the game winning touchdown against Notre Dame, hitting the walk of home run in our regional championship game, being ranked top 10 in our class, coming in second in Incubator, going to basketball games to be a part of the greatest Stud Section in the country, being named all-conference, and so on. The only way any of these glorious memories would have happened, is because of Saint Patrick. Saint Patrick gives its students the confidence and support to achieve their goals, while creating memories along the way that will last forever.

I have made connections that will last me a lifetime. People commonly say, “You won’t keep in contact with 99% of the people you meet in high school.” It just doesn’t apply to Saint Patrick. These are people that will be on your side for a lifetime. Transitioning into high school is different for all. One that comes flawlessly to some and to others it’s a struggle. I struggled at the beginning to find my group. I was confident in my athletic ability and it often led to arguments on the football field. I didn’t understand that just showing people what you can do is better than talking about it. I found a great group of friends from every aspect of the school. Saint Patrick allows you to branch out and find people who truly care about everything that is in your life. Saint Patrick has allowed me to find best friends that are inseparable. A group of goofballs that will live on for a lifetime because we are truly “brothers.” Brother or brotherhood is something that Saint Patrick puts on every single piece of clothing. It means something to every kid at St. Pat’s because it shows that the Shamrocks are a part of something so much greater than a school.

As a 17 year old young man, I know I am prepared for life because of the foundation that Saint Patrick has built for their students. I would like to thank each and every member of the Saint Patrick community, and especially: Coach Luke, thank you for being a mentor to me and all of my friends. Encouraging all of us to be men, teaching us how to treat others, and most importantly, all of the laughter that you gave me everyday for four years. Coach Fabs, thank you for seeing that a small kid could have some impact, for being someone I can talk to, for sharing the love of the bubble screen, Good Will Hunting, and everything about football. Mrs. Fiorante, Mr. Wojnar, and 老师, thank you all for pushing me to be a better student, and truly making me earn a grade. My college ambitions are a mixture of all three of your classes, and I can’t thank you enough. Thank you to Coach Guerra and Coach Ellis, for teaching me work ethic and life morals. Ms. Sloan, thank you for putting up with me in all of the videos and pictures you had to take of me. Finally, thank you Dr. Schmidt for teaching me and everyone what it means to be a lifelong Shamrock!

With love,

AJ Fitzpatrick ’20

To read other Dear Saint Patrick letters from the Class of 2020, please click here.

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