Father Tom's legacy of service lives on

Coach Ryan Keen (left) received the Father Tom Service Award from Scecina President Joe Therber.

Dear Scecina community, 

As we recently celebrated Veterans Day, it is an honor to thank all United States military veterans in our circle of family and friends, and in the wider circle of veterans we do not know. 

I often reflect on the fact that members of our military services share at least one common bond. They all have declared their willingness to place their lives in grave danger in order to serve and protect other members of the human family. The world may know of no greater example of generosity. 

On Nov. 4, Father Thomas Scecina, our school namesake and a deceased U.S. Army chaplain, was inducted into the Indiana Military Veterans Hall of Fame. I thank Scecina alumnus Tom Blandford ‘65 for successfully nominating Father Tom for this prestigious honor. 

At the induction ceremony, I had the unique, undeserved, and memorable honor of representing our school and receiving Father Tom’s awards. The audience of 300-plus veterans, family members, and friends were on the edge of their seats as master of ceremonies Rafael Sanchez told the amazing story of Father Scecina’s military service and Christian compassion that culminated as his life on earth ended at sea on October 24, 1944. 

On Nov. 9, our entire student body and staff celebrated Father Tom Day Mass. How fitting it was to thank our namesake during Vocations Week in the Catholic Church and two days before Veterans Day. We welcomed more than 150 East Deanery sixth- and eighth- grade students and their teachers as our guests. After Mass, we presented the Father Tom Service Award to long-time Scecina track and cross country coach Ryan Keen. Several members of our Scecina Veterans Committee were able to be with us and be recognized. The morning could not have been better. 

On behalf of our Scecina community, thank you from the bottoms of our hearts to all military veterans, as well as their families and friends who support their patriotism, service, and willingness to sacrifice. May the spirit of Father Tom and the loyalty of our military veterans continue to inspire us. 

Sincerely,

Joe Therber
President