by Paul Tennant, Eagle Tribune
Lorraine Kowalczyk and Angelique Alon are almost 80 years apart in age, but they have much in common: They're both "Lawrence kids" – and strivers, too.
Kowalczyk, who will turn 97 in August, and her late husband, Edward Kowalczyk, decided some time ago that they wanted part of their estate to benefit a graduate of St. Patrick Grammar School.
Edward, who died in March 2018 at 93, graduated from St. Patrick before he attended Lawrence High School. St. Patrick and Our Lady of Good Counsel schools were merged in 2010 and formed Lawrence Catholic Academy.
The academy is situated in the former St. Patrick School building at 101 Parker St.
The Kowalczyks were not going to give their money to just any student. They decided the recipient must be a Lawrence resident, earn excellent grades and help the community.
Lorraine Kowalczyk approached Central Catholic President Christopher Sullivan recently and asked him to recommend a recipient. He suggested Angelique Alon, who will soon begin her senior year at Central.
"She was the first one who came to his mind," Kowalczyk said.
Alon, who lives in Lawrence, attended Lawrence Catholic Academy before enrolling at Central Catholic. She has participated in the swim and gymnastics teams and theater.
Alon was instrumental in establishing SCOPE, which stands for Students Can Open People's Eyes. This club helps students who have problems discuss their situations in a confidential, nonjudgmental environment, Alon explained.
Part of the club's focus is on students from minority groups. The purpose is to assure them they are "not alone," she said.