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Marian Catholic to honor Hall of Fame Class of 2014

Blesse  |  Supplied photo

Blesse | Supplied photo

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Updated: March 3, 2014 4:23PM



Marian Catholic High School in Chicago Heights will honor its 2014 Hall of Fame class on Feb. 6 at Olympia Fields Country Club, according to a press release from the school.

The Hall of Fame honors alumni, parents, faculty and friends of Marian Catholic who have distinguished themselves in their chosen field and have exemplified the Dominican traditions of unselfish service to others, the release said.

The 2014 class includes Athletes of the Year Mickey Griffin (Class of 1993) and Ruth Kmak (1988), Alumnus of the Year Dr. Thomas Fagan (1982), Fine Arts Distinguished Achievement honoree James Conroyd Martin, and Spirit of Marian honoree Sister Barbara Blesse, the release said.

Griffin accomplished something no Marian Catholic athlete ever had before 1992: He was crowned as a state wrestling champion at 125 pounds. He went on to wrestle at Purdue University and now is an attorney in Chicago.

Kmak is being recognized for her success as a softball player at Marian Catholic and at the University of Notre Dame. She played a key role as the Spartans claimed third- and fourth-place finishes in the state during her career. As a senior, Kmak also was a member of the girls basketball team that reached the Sweet Sixteen. For the past 14 seasons, Kmak has served as the head softball coach at the University of Chicago.

Fagan, one of 14 children of a Chicago Heights family, attended undergraduate, graduate and medical school at St. Louis University. He lives in the Denver area and is director of the cardiac catheterization laboratory and associate professor of pediatrics at the University of Colorado Denver School of Medicine.

Martin, an award-winning author, has been an English teacher at Marian Catholic for 30 years. Outside school, he is best known for his trilogy of Polish historical fiction. “Push Not the River” and “Against a Crimson Sky” were best sellers in Poland, and “Warsaw Conspiracy” was released in December 2012.

Blesse exemplifies Marian Catholic’s tradition of “Scholars with a Soul,” the release said. She spearheaded the campus ministry department at Marian Catholic when it initiated its Kairos retreat program in 1988. Since then, hundreds of students have participated in the spiritual experience, the release said. Blesse now serves in leadership in the Dominican Sisters of Springfield congregation based in downstate Springfield.

Olympia Fields Country Club is at 2800 Country Club Drive. Cocktails begin at 6:15 p.m., dinner at 7:15 and the program at 8:15. There is a cash bar after 7:15 p.m.

Tickets are $55. To see if reservations are still available, call (708) 755-7565 or visit marianchs.com.

Staff report



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