Meadowlarks Annual Dinner at Knights of Columbus

By Patrick Gecoya

Members from Lynn English and Lynn Classical – (Front) Ron Bennett, former Lynn English coach, Norm Bennett, Bill Manias, Joe Marino, and Nick Mennino; (Back) Jim Demonte, Fernando Medrano, David Solimine, and Fred Santangelo.

In 1946, the Meadowlarks organization was formed to bring back the individuals who grew up at the Meadows behind Lynn English High School, now known as Memorial Park. Before World War II, many youngsters gathered at the Meadows from early morning to late afternoon playing pick-up baseball and football games. Players like Jim Hegan who played professional baseball for the Cleveland Indians and later with the New York Yankees and George Bontaites who was one of the outstanding athletes from Lynn English in baseball and football were the original Meadowlarks. Gus Daum was the park instructor in the 1930s who saw these youngsters playing during the summers. After long days playing at the Meadows, many of them would gather under one the large maple trees to rest and sing songs. While Gus was listening to the boys singing in harmony, he gave them the name “Meadowlarks.” After WWII some of the boys did not return home. The ones who returned home agreed to have an annual gathering each year and it is still continuing to this day. Former Superintendent of Lynn Public Schools, Jim Leonard, organizes this event each year. Now this annual dinner encompasses not only Lynn English, but classmates from Lynn Classical, St. Mary’s, and Lynn Tech. Each year at this annual dinner, friendships are reunited with joy and happiness to see each other once again at this annual reunion.

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