BELLFLOWER – Much to the dismay of his students and fellow educators alike, St. John Bosco High School math teacher Patrick McMorrow is retiring after 40 years teaching.
McMorrow entered the teaching profession in August of 1969. At that time, he was teaching at Christopher Columbus High School in Miami, Fla.
According to McMorrow, who received his undergraduate education at Marist College in New York and his Masters at Seton Hall University in New Jersey, teaching was suggested to him by his peers.
“When I was 16, my buddies in high school sometimes wanted help in math and I would help them with math, you know explain it to them,” said McMorrow. “And they said, ‘Hey, you’re pretty good at this.’ It’s really my high school friends when I was a junior in high school that kind of planted the seed that maybe that’s something I should do. And not being very original, I just went straight down that path.”
After nine years in Florida, he traveled to Southern California in 1978 with the intent of earning a doctorate, however that never occurred.
McMorrow held several different positions during his time at Bosco in addition to his math classes, including head guidance counselor, basketball coach, and “Voice of the Braves” announcing at sporting events. McMorrow is also credited with helping to bring AP programs to the school.
In addition to his 40 plus years teaching high school, McMorrow also spent 35 years as a part time instructor at Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa.
McMorrow was described as a “great man” and a “mentor” by many of his fellow educators.
“He’s always kids first. He’s always been able to set his stuff aside to cater to any of these kids,” said Sid Davidson, the head volleyball coach at Bosco “…He’s definitely going to be missed.”
“The Philosophy of this school is ‘home, school, church and playground;’ we feed all those areas of a young person. We basically teach to the whole person,” said fellow math teacher Ernie Antonelli. “Mr. McMorrow is that to not only the students but to the faculty as well. He embodies what the man St. John Bosco was.”
According to religion teacher and head golf coach Jack Hastert, despite McMorrow’s departure his presence will still be felt within the halls of Bosco due to his impact on students and staff alike.
“He has shared so much of himself that I think we’re gonna be OK,” said Hastert. “Obviously we’re going to miss him…I think people have watched him teach and interact with the students for so long that they’ve picked up a lot of what he’s done. I think even though he’s not here, his legacy will still be here; his way of doing things will still be here just because he cares about the kids so much.”
McMorrow was honored by his fellow faculty on Sunday and presented with letters of thanks and well wishes from many of his former students.