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Wayne Powell

On October 18, 2019, a wonderful man, much loved by an extensive range of people, left us. His passing will have a profound impact on the greater Emmitsburg community for decades to come. His name was John S. Hollinger and his life’s journey touched many—in fact, many who likely never knew his name. Like his father, he managed the former Sperry Ford dealership in town, which at one time was the third oldest Ford dealership in America.

His family, including his late wife, Theresa, were fixtures in and around all of Northern Frederick County and southern Adams and Franklin Counties in Pennsylvania, too. And, just like his dad, John J. Hollinger served as Fire Chief of the Vigilant Hose Company (VHC), Emmitsburg’s local volunteer fire department. Both John and his dad later went on to also serve as presidents at VHC.

John owned residential rental properties that, for decades, provided affordable housing for hundreds of families and individuals. In fact, if not for his generosity, some of those folks could have been among the homeless that we hear so much about these days. No matter what one’s station in life, John treated everyone with respect and dignity. He was always willing to listen and to help whenever he could.

He collected anything and everything about the history of Emmitsburg and its inhabitants; plus, he once had one of the most amazing collections of old Ford parts that existed anywhere in America. Amazingly, a great many of those parts were brand new because rather than turning them back in for credit yearly, he, like his dad, simply kept them in an old building on South Seton Avenue. That building is as distinguishable as any in town due to the wording still visible, “Emmitsburg Motor Car Company.”

Some years ago, many of those vintage parts were sold at auction. When he sold off those parts, some 30 years ago now, people from all across the country came, hoping to find a new or slightly used part, unlikely to be found anywhere else.

John faithfully spent his mornings at the VHC fire station—the “fire hall” as many old-timers called it. His recall of area history was nothing short of amazing. John, often affectionately referred to as the “real” mayor of Emmitsburg, made it a daily practice to drive the streets and alleys of town, looking for things that needed repair. His efforts helped town officials, as well as area business owners and organizational entities, by alerting them to things needing attention of great importance, many of whom were unaware of the unsafe conditions or infrastructure issues that needed to be looked into. He read all area newspapers daily, cover to cover, including the Frederick News-Post, Gettysburg Times, The Catoctin Banner, Emmitsburg News-Journal, Record Herald, and others, to stay on top of the news that helped his beloved VHC fire company stay abreast of changing times and keep in step with timely events.

For over 70 years, John’s fingerprints were on nearly everything the VHC did, as he served on its board of directors for decades, as well as on nearly every major committee in the organization, while also staying close to evolving technologies in the field of emergency vehicles.

But, it’s his impact on people for which he will be most remembered. Several of his sons carried on the family tradition of community service with the VHC. One son, Steve, has faithfully served as company treasurer for some 35 years.

Back in the 1980s, John bought VHC’s ‘Old Engine 63’ (a 1945 Ford American pumper, which had served the community for nearly four decades) and set about restoring it.  Old 63 has been on display for years now at the Frederick County Fire Museum on South Seton Avenue in Emmitsburg. Visitors from far and wide have treasured seeing it. For a great many years, that old engine proudly carried Santa Claus to the town’s annual holiday celebrations, arriving with lights and sirens ablaze to the amazement of youngsters and even their parents who once saw the identical spectacle back when they were kids.

In his last days with us, he graciously donated Old Engine 63 back to the VHC, where it will be lovingly cared for. A little-known fact is that John’s great-grandfather, also John S. Hollinger, a respected orchardist in this region, once ran a business in Chicago that was destroyed in the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 (each October, National Fire Prevention Week commemorates that event from American history).

The VHC has always had a commitment to “it’s most important service”: Fire Prevention. So, it can be said that knowing the dangers of unwanted fire has long been in the DNA of the Hollinger family. The men and women of the VHC humbly and proudly salute our friend, Chief John S. Hollinger, and all that he did for our community. He is greatly missed.

Photo shows John J. Hollinger in the driver’s seat of the 1930 Engine, which was Emmitsburg’s first motorized Engine and which is now owned by the Rocky Ridge VFC.

James Rada, Jr.

Cunningham Falls State Park is a Thurmont treasure that all of Frederick County appreciates. This can be seen in the fact that the park recently won Best Place to Camp (Regional) and Best Place for a First Date (Non-Food) in the Frederick News Post’s annual “Best of the Best” contest.

During a March town meeting, Thurmont Mayor John Kinnaird called Cunningham Falls State Park “a great attraction for a lot of people who come to our community.”

The park isn’t resting on its laurels, as Park Manager Mark Spurrier told the Thurmont Commissioners during a recent meeting.

“We have a whole bunch of construction going on,” he explained.

The park has 300,000 to 400,000 visitors each year, with most of them coming to the lake to swim during the summer. Because many of the projects are targeted to improving the visit for these people, some inconveniences could happen during construction. The park service is trying its best to complete as much work as possible during the off season.

Some of the projects have already started. For some, it may be two years before they are complete. Many of the upgrades are needed since the park is over fifty years old.

Here are the improvements the park is making:

•    Dual lane entry and new contact station. Since nearly all of the visitors to Cunningham Falls head to the lake, the line to enter the park often backs up. Adding a new entry lane and pay station should speed things up.

•    Rehabilitated picnic pads. Forty picnic pads will have new tables and a grill all on a concrete slab. Some of the pads will be enlarged to fit more than one table.

•    Nature center. The former beachfront store, which had originally been a bathroom, will now become at 334-square-foot nature center with a canopy that will allow for classes to be taught in warm weather.

•    New bathroom. The bathroom near the boat rentals will be demolished and replaced with an entirely new facility. This project could cause headaches for visitors this summer because the materials being used in the new construction are taking up parking spots, which can be scarce in the summer.

•    New beach. The south beach will have a new beachfront that will be designed to better hold the sand on the beach and not have it wash away. This will also include better stormwater management for the area.

•    Museum of the Iron Furnace. The collier’s house at Catoctin Furnace will be rehabilitated and turned into a museum, with the help of the Catoctin Furnace Historical Society. The museum will tell the story of the community built up around one industry.

•    Stabilization of the Iron Master’s House. The work to stabilize the Iron Master’s house has been going on since 2014. The work is being done as grant funding is available. So far, $75,000 has been raised.

•    Renovated camp store.

•    Smaller projects. Smaller projects, or projects not so obvious to visitors, include a new storage shed, new water plant, sewer line repair, minor dam maintenance, and replacing the culverts along MD 77.

For the second consecutive season, the head wrestling coach at Catoctin High School (CHS), Ryan Green, was able to match a season-high record for coaching four of his wrestlers to the medal-winning rounds at the Maryland State Wrestling Tournament.

“That’s not a bad thing for this still very young team, a team in transition,” said Green, who has collected 139 dual meet victories and 76 losses during his nine-year shift at Catoctin.

Together, Green and his dedicated assistants, Richard Gialanella, George O’Brien, Tyler White, Garrett Baer, and Brad Maze, have enjoyed great success in the past, including, but not limited to, coaching all but one of the school’s seven state champions and twenty-two individual state medal winners, not to mention the numerous county and regional tournament champions and place winners. Once again, this unique and diverse collection of wrestling knowledge and philosophies has demonstrated why they are considered to be among the premier programs in the state. Last year Green’s freshman wrestlers occupied nine of fourteen varsity weight classes, and this season he had only two seniors in the paper-thin line up and was forced to forfeit four weight classes, giving up 24 points in each match. Despite these odds, the team was still able to win more than 50 percent of their contests, compiling a 14-12 overall dual meet record, with six of those losses falling within the 24-point margin deficit, resulting in the possibility that a 20-6 total might have been attained with a complete squad. The 6-8 regular season dual meet record was also affected, as three of those losses came within the same 24-point shortfall.

Although the club fell from the Maryland State Wrestling Association’s rankings for the first time in four years, slipping from number sixteen as a ranked dual meet team and from being ranked nineteenth overall in the state, they were able to capture an honorable mention bid as a tournament team. Catoctin wrestlers continue to be regarded as hard-charging, well-trained, aggressive and scrappy foes, demonstrated by the impressive results posted at tournaments this season. The Cougars finished in third place, with a record of 5-2 at the Bauerlein Duals. Ethan Fuss, the 106-pound sophomore, was the only undefeated wrestler representing Catoctin in that contest. Freshman Wyatt Payne (138 pounds) and fellow sophomores, Zachary Bryant (113 pounds), Joshua Small (132 pounds), Gage Randall (145 pounds), and Dennis Pittinger (195 pounds), each had only one loss during the two-day event.

Catoctin earned a fifth-place team finish out of a field of twenty tough programs at the 2016 Hub Cup, arguably one of the most competitive tournaments in the state. Zachary Bryant posted a perfect 4-0 showing at 113 pounds and was the team’s only Hub Cup champion. Dennis Pittinger and 285-pound-senior Payne Harrison both placed third, each losing only one match along the way. Joshua Small, Ethan Fuss, 152-pound-sophomore Jarryd Rosenberry, and Wyatt Payne rounded out the remaining medalists, finishing fourth, fifth, seventh, and eighth, respectively.

As a team, the Cougar wrestlers were able to post a 3-2 record at their annual home dual tournament. Although the contest saw a reduction in team entries by about half, the Catoctin wrestlers set a record at the tournament. Five individual wrestlers, more than a third of the line-ups athletes registered perfect 5-0 records, the highest number of undefeated Catoctin wrestlers in the history of the tournament. Zachary Bryant, Ethan Fuss, Joshua Small, Ryan Springer, and Payne Harrison were flawless on the day, while 160-pound RJ Monaghan suffered only a single loss.

The Cougars managed to hold on for a fourth-place finish in a field of ten teams, dropping from third last year, at the Frederick County wrestling championships. The Cougars advanced seven wrestlers to the medal rounds and declared two County champions: Ethan Fuss and Payne Harrison. Fuss recorded three first-period pins, two of them in under a minute, en route to his first county title; Harrison collected two pins and a 6-2 finals victory, also claiming his first county title. Zachary Bryant made it to the championship round for the second consecutive year, but lost a tough 9-2 finals match. Dennis Pittinger bested his fifth-place performance of the previous year with a third-place finish. Freshman Wyatt Payne and sophomores, Gage Randall and RJ Monaghan, each secured regional berths by finishing in fourth place. Ryan Springer, the 220-pound senior, and Joshua Small were unable to rise to the placement rounds. However, both wrestlers were able to advance to the regional tournament based on their total seeding points obtained by match victories throughout the season. Jarryd Rosenberry, wrestling in the 152-pound slot, was unable to compete in the county tournament due to illness. He ends his tenth grade season with a 16-15 record.

For the third consecutive year, the Cougars captured a fourth-place finish out of nineteen teams at the 1A-2A West regional championships, arguably the most dominant region in the state. Of the fourteen 1A-2A state champions, eight hailed from the West, as well as thirteen of the twenty-eight finalists. There were thirty-four place-winners representing the region, seven weight classes with three place-winners from the west, six weight classes with two, and only one weight class with a single representative. Furthermore, the last eight team state champions have belonged to that region. Catoctin managed to qualify five wrestlers for the state tournament, including two regional champs, one regional finalist, and two fourth-place medalists. Lightweight Ethan Fuss and heavyweight Payne Harrison both celebrated their first regional title victories. Zachary Bryant lost by decision in finals to an undefeated, soon-to-be two-time state champion. Joshua Small bounced back from an uncharacteristic and uneventful county showing and went 2-2, finishing in fourth place to claim a seed in the state bracket.  Also finishing in fourth place and with a record of 2-2, Dennis Pittinger was able to grab his first state tournament bid. Gage Randall, 145 pounds, was eliminated from the competition in a close 4-1 decision ending an impressive sophomore year. He had a 10-4 regular season dual meet record, lost only one match at the Bauerlien Duals (finishing 7-1), and posted wins at the Hub Cup, the Catoctin Duals, and the county and regional tournaments. He bested his freshman record by four wins and earned a Frederick News Post honorable mention bid to the All-County Team. He concludes his season with a 22-15 record and career record of 40-31. Wrestling out of the 160-pound slot, RJ Monaghan continues to improve match by match. He, too, was denied a state tournament seed, with a 6-0 loss in consi’s and finishing 1-2 at regionals. Monaghan had a 9-5 regular dual meet tally, went 4-3 at the Bauerlien Duals, and won four out of five matches at the Catoctin Duals. He posted notable wins at the Hub Cup, and the county and regional championships, earned a Frederick News Post All-County honorable mention selection, and wraps up his sophomore season with a 20-16 record. Freshman Wyatt Payne was unable to advance in the 138-pound weight class at regionals, going 0-2. He won a total of twenty-one matches in his debut season in a very deep weight class, and registered sixteen loses. He was recognized by the Frederick News Post with an All-County honorable mention endorsement. He had a regular dual meet record of 8-6, posted a strong 6-1 showing at the Bauerlien Duals, went 3-2 at Catoctin Duals, and placed eighth in the Hub Cup and fourth in the county tournament. Senior Ryan Springer was also halted in his first regional appearance. He had a regular dual meet record of 5-5, went 5-2 at the Bauerlien Duals, and was undefeated at the Catoctin Duals, posting a perfect 5-0 record. He won matches at both the Hub Cup and the county tournament, received an honorable mention bid to the Frederick News Post All-County Team, and ends his senior year with a 17-11 record.

Once again, the Catoctin wrestling squad occupied a top-ten space in a field of ninety-eight 1A-2A teams, finishing sixth, dropping from fifth the previous year. For the first time in twelve years, the Maryland state wrestling championships took place at a venue other than Cole Field House on the campus of the University of Maryland in College Park. Fresh off of winning county and regional titles, and coming in as the top seed at The Showplace Arena in Upper Marlboro, Ethan Fuss made his debut to the state tournament. He quickly overwhelmed his initial opponent with a first-period pin. His second contest was one of more memorable bouts that evening. A total of 22 points were scored in a fast-paced, back-and-forth clash that left spectators on the edge of their seats. When the dust had settled, Fuss had bested his opponent by two points and guaranteed himself a state medal. He lost his semi-finals match by fall then edged out a familiar foe by 6-3 decision. Losing again by fall in consolation finals, Fuss settled for a fourth place finish. The sophomore went 13-1 in dual meet action, was undefeated both at the Bauerlien Duals (5-0), as well as the Catoctin Duals (5-0), and placed fifth at the Hub Cup, winning four matches along the way. He secured Frederick County and regional titles and added three wins and a fourth place finish at the state tournament. Winning 88 percent of his bouts, Fuss was chosen for the Frederick News Post All-County 1st team and enjoys a number fourteen ranking in the state. His outstanding 38-5 season record brings his career totals to sixty-one wins and sixteen losses.

Zachary Bryant made his second appearance at states in as many years, placing fourth last year as a freshman. A heavier Bryant made quick work of his first opponent, winning by fall, and squeaked out a tough 4-2 decision in his next bout. A hard loss by decision in semi’s forced Bryant to the wrestle-backs, where he displayed his signature excitement and unpredictability with a huge 18-5 victory. He lost a saddening 6-4 decision and would settle for a fourth place finish. Bryant concludes his season with a 12-2 dual meet record and a 6-1 showing at Bauerlien Duals. He remained perfect for his first Hub Cup championship, and had an unblemished record at the Catoctin Duals. He placed 2nd at both the county and regional championships, is ranked number nine in the state by the MSWA, and was selected as a first team All-County wrestler by the Frederick News Post. He ends his year with a total of thirty-three wins and seven losses, winning 82 percent of his bouts, and a career total of 68-15.

Rounding out the three sophomores, and no stranger to the tournament, 132 pound Joshua Small also appears among the state competition for the second time in as many years. Small was forced out of the challenge last year, but made strides to better his chances this time around. Bumping up two weight classes and displaying a methodical, conservative wrestling style, Small won his first two matches by decision, 10-4 and 8-4. He lost his next bout against a defending two-time, and soon to be three-time, state champion. Two more losses by decision placed Small solidly in fifth place. A 10-4 regular dual meet total, a 6-1 finish at the Bauerlien Duals, a fourth place finish at the Hub Cup, and an undefeated 5-0 showing at the Catoctin Duals propelled him to a Frederick News Post All-County 2nd team nomination. He is currently ranked twenty-first in the state and ends his season with a 31-13 record and a career mark of 60-26.

Weighing 182 pounds as a freshman, Dennis Pittinger occupied the 220-pound spot this year and qualified for his first trip to states by placing fourth in the regional tournament. Pittinger lost his opening match by a 3-0 decision and his second match by a very narrow 3-2 margin, eliminating him from the tournament. However, Pittinger has an extraordinary sophomore season, winning twelve of fourteen regular season dual meets, going 6-1 at the Bauerlien Duals, and posting a 4-1 record and a third-place finish at the Hub Cup. He was unable to participate in the Catoctin Duals due to a concussion, but had a pair of victories in both the county and regional tournaments where he placed third and fourth, respectively. He earned a Frederick News Post All-County 2nd team nomination, had a winning percentage of 71 percent during the season with a record of 25-10, and sports a career total of 47-23.

Senior Payne Harrison made his second foray to the big stage. As a junior, Harrison was denied a trip to the podium, narrowly missing the placement rounds by a single point, but finishing 2-2. This year, however, things would be much different for the bigger, stronger, and more polished 285-pounder, occupying the number one seed. Out of the gate, Harrison stunned his first opponent, and the crowd, with a 36-second fall. He triumphed in his next two bouts, winning both by decision and propelling him to a finals match-up against an undefeated challenger. The outcome was disheartening, as Harrison was scoreless in a 6-0 loss, settling for a second place finish. The state finalist enjoyed a phenomenal senior year with an undefeated, 14-0 regular season dual meet record, as well as an undefeated 5-0 Catoctin Duals record. He posted a strong 5-1 showing, wrestling through the consolation bracket after suffering a second-round loss and earning a third place medal in the Hub Cup. An injury sidelined him from competition during the Bauerlien Duals. He swept the opposition and secured titles in the Frederick County and 1A-2A West regional championships, is ranked number ten in the state by the Maryland State Wrestling Association, and was named to the Frederick News Post All-County 1st team. Boasting a 94 percent winning percentage, the team captain concludes his season with a remarkable 32-2 tally, and a career total of 79-32.v2016-states

Pictured are the four state medal winners (from left): Zachary Bryant, Joshua Small, Payne Harrison, and Ethan Fuss.

CHS Baseball Alumni Vinny Healy Memorial Gold Tournament

The Vinny Healy Memorial Christian Outreach Fund and Catoctin High School (CHS) Baseball Alumni are pleased to announce the 2nd Annual Catoctin High School Baseball Alumni Vinny Healy Memorial Golf Tournament on Saturday October 24, 2015, at the Carroll Valley Golf Course in Fairfield, Pennsylvania. If you are interested in golfing or sponsoring our event, send an email to Vince Healy at [email protected].

Catoctin High School Junior Named Frederick News Post Athlete of the Week

Catoctin High School junior Julien Webster was named Frederick News Post Athlete of the Week after her performance at the Brunswick Invitational on Saturday, September 5, 2015.

Webster ran a 19 minute, 43.9 seconds time on the Brunswick course to win the girls small school division of the Brunswick Invitational.

Her winning time helped her team finish third in the team standings with 61 points.

Catoctin’s Bella Kreiner and Lillie Perella finished fourth and fifth, respectively, in the girls small school division. The Cougars’ Sienna Caselle was twenty-second.

On the boy’s side, Catoctin’s Paul Slotwinski finished fourth (17:22.5). The Cougars were fourth as a team (83).

Other Catoctin boys in the top twenty-five were Joseph Zygmunt (thirteenth), Keith Gasior (eighteenth), and Jack McCarthy (twentieth).

CYA Basketball Registration and Competitive Tryouts in October

Catoctin Youth Association (CYA) Basketball online registration is now open. Register online at

In-person registration dates and locations are as follows: October 14-15Instructional Clinic (grades kindergarten-second) and Recreational teams (grades third-fifth) in the lobby at Thurmont Elementary School, from 6:00-8:00 p.m.; October 15-16—Recreational teams (U14 boys and girls, U16 boys and U19 girls) at Thurmont Middle School, from 5:00-7:00 p.m.

Competitive Travel tryout dates and locations are as follows: October 16- 17—Mid-MD Girls JV and Varsity (grades sixth-eighth) at Thurmont Middle School, from 5:00-7:00 p.m.; October 18 and 20—U12 MYBA Boys (grades fifth-sixth) at Thurmont Middle School, from 5:30-7:00 p.m.; October 22 and 24—Mid-MD Boys JV and Varsity (grades sixth-eighth) at Thurmont Middle School, from 5:00-7:00 p.m.; October 23 and 25—U12 MYBA Girls (grades fifth-sixth ) at Thurmont Middle School, from 5:30-7:00 p.m.; October 28 and 30—U10 MYBA Boys (grades third-fourth) at Emmitsburg Rec Center, from 7:00-8:30 p.m.; October 29—U10 MYBA Girls (grades third-fourth) at Emmitsburg Rec Center, from 6:00-7:30 p.m.; October 31— U10 MYBA Girls (grades third-fourth) at Emmitsburg Rec Center, from 2:00-3:30 p.m.

Deb Spalding

Sab Kids“Quality education,” “a comfortable learning environment,” and “friendly atmosphere” are some of the descriptions former students have used to reference the education they received at Sabillasville Elementary School (SES). Current student, Lillian Coles of Foxville, who experienced her first day of kindergarten at SES on August 24, said, “It’s fun and I like to paint.” Although she had just arrived at school and hadn’t yet had the opportunity to paint, she was definitely having fun.

SES is a single-level school that sits amongst a beautiful mountain setting in Sabillasville. When construction on the school was completed in 1965, Frederick News-Post writer, Richard Shafer, reported, “Residents of Sabillasville won their fight with local officials to get funds approved for a new elementary school, and they are happy about it. The struggle to get plans and appropriation okayed has taken at least ten years, said one Sabillasville resident. Foxville residents are happy about the new school. Their children had attended the new Wolfsville school, but traveled by bus over a dangerous mountain road.

Rev. Claude Corl, St. John’s Reformed Church, thinks area residents will be satisfied with the eight-room school. The new school will enroll an estimated 200 students and will relieve crowded conditions at Thurmont.”

In the coming months, generations of students who have attended the school since its opening will share memories and reconnect in celebration of the school’s 50th anniversary. SES’s Principal, Kate Kreitz, said, “I’m very excited for this wonderful celebration, where we will pay tribute to fifty years of quality education of several generations of students from the Sabillasville-area community.”

Fourth grader Garret Worth’s dad, Jason, attended SES, and Garret’s grandmother, Faye Worth, is a volunteer there. Garret said, “I like having a fun teacher (he has Mrs. Mortensen this year), playing with all the kids and stuff.”

Mason Newcomer, in third grade this year, said, “I like the teachers, learning new things, and meeting all my friends.” His mother, Barb Messner, also attended the school and serves on the Parent Teacher Organization (PTO).

Another PTO volunteer, Angie Hahn, said that her husband, Gus, and his siblings attended SES. Their two children, Nathanael and Elizabeth, currently attend the school. Jen Mullenex is the current president of the PTO.

Tradition has always been important for staff and students at the school. Many students may recall a single sapling of pine that was given to each student on Arbor Day, others remember the hand-made Christmas ornaments that are still hung on some student’s Christmas Trees each year. Some of these, and other traditions (including the paddle that hung on the principal’s wall), have been removed as our world has changed politically and spiritually.

The school’s custodian, Jody Miller, holds the honor of assuming the position that his late father, Jack Miller, held for over thirty years. Jody’s brother, Rick, also worked in the position, and Jody has been at SES for fifteen of his twenty years with FCPS. Jody said, “There have been three Millers in the fifty-year history of the school. It’s my honor to continue the legacy that my father started.” Some may remember the maze Jack Miller made out of boxes during the school’s Fall Bazaar. Boy was that fun!

For a long time, SES had staff cooks in the kitchen. Locals Millie Eyler and Imogene Smith served savory meals for students every school day. Students who experienced their cooking still yearn for a favorite dish. Frederick County Public Schools (FCPS) switched to centralized meal distribution years ago. Since then, the meals have been prepared in Frederick and trucked to schools throughout the county.

Despite the replacement of Millie’s and Imogene’s personal touch at lunch, the underlying family feel, overlaid with a relaxed kindness, can still be felt. Perhaps the feeling exists because of the school’s location in such a serene place. But for many, their memories of the place where they learned their arithmetic and ABCs are special. In recent years, the school has been on the chopping block to close for FCPS budget cuts. The general consensus of the community is that the school is much too valuable to close. If you stroll through SES on a normal school day, it is evident on the students’ faces that they are happy and comfortable in their classes. They are meeting and exceeding education benchmarks set by the Frederick County Board of Education. Their teachers are effective in nurturing a supportive, family-like learning atmosphere.

History of the Present Sabillasville Elementary School from 1924

by Joan Fry (article is part of her book, Part 2 Plus — The State Sanatorium At Sabillasville From 1908)

Sabillasville Elementary School was the culmination of years of work and hope for residents of the area. Actually, students from two former elementary schools in the area, Sabillasville and Foxville, were served by the new school. Foxville School, built in 1924, was closed in 1961. The 60 students enrolled there were transferred to Wolfsville Elementary School until a suitable facility could be provided for the Sabillasville-Foxville area. The former school building at Sabillasville, erected in 1927 with an addition in 1934, housed 140 students through the close of the 1964-1965 school year. Because of the limitations of the basic building, many services, which have come to be regarded as necessary and desirable, were unavailable to these students.

It was with great enthusiasm, therefore, that residents of the area greeted the announcement that a new school would be built. The school opened in 1965. This school is still serving area students currently despite multiple attempts from Frederick County Public Schools to close the school. Each time, support from residents and students has helped save the school from being closed.

sabillasville school in 1964The present (1965) Sabillasville Elementary School building is pictured. It combined the top two schools pictured left.


sabillasville school up to 1964



(right) Sabillasville School is pictured. It was built in 1927 with an addition in 1934, and served students through the close of the 1964 school year.


foxville school to 1964(left) The Foxville School is pictured. It was built in 1924 and closed in 1961.





sabillasville school to 1927The building pictured far left (now a house on Harbaugh Valley Road) served as Sabillasville School until the next school house was constructed in 1927.

2014-2015 Season Achievements of Some of Catoctin’s Talented Wrestlers

Joshua Small, the 113 pounder, qualified for the state tournament in his first year, no easy feat for a freshman. But Small is not your average freshman wrestler. He has wrestled, and placed, in large tournaments before, even at the national level. He has a relentless, aggressive style that is exciting to watch: no surprises, just straight forward and basic. He faced the Eastern regional champion in prelims, but was unable to upend his opponent, losing a very close 9-8 decision. A second loss in consolations bumped him from the contest. The stats he posted, however, were exemplary, including a perfect 13-0 dual meet record, 4-4 at Bauerlien, 6-1 at the Catoctin Duals, and an eighth place finish at the Hub Cup. He placed second in the county tournament, losing in finals by two points to the eventual fifth place finisher at states, and fourth at regionals. He received a first team MVAL All-Conference nomination, a Frederick News Post All-Area 2nd team bid, and received the Maryland Minds-in-Motion Scholar-Athlete award. He is ranked No. 24 in the state, and wraps up a fine freshman year with an impressive 29-13 record.

Payne Harrison, the 220-pound junior, made his first appearance at states, overcoming a narrowly missed opportunity last year with a close defeat at the regional tournament. Harrison wrestled a dominating match, winning a 9-2 decision in prelims against the Eastern regional champion. The next round found him in consolations after suffering a defeat by the eventual sixth place finisher. A determined Harrison, knowing that another loss would eliminate him from the competition, won a hard-fought 1-0 decision to advance. Harrison was unable to continue his quest for state placement after an equally hard-fought 2-1 loss stopped him from moving forward. Harrison was one win, just a couple of points away, from a guaranteed medal. His improvement is evident with a 9-3 regular dual total, a 4-4 showing at Bauerlien, an impressive third-place finish, going 4-1 at the Hub Cup, and an equally impressive 6-1 tally at the Catoctin Duals. He placed fourth in the county, winning two matches, and earned his first state bid with a 3-2 record and fourth-place finish at regionals. He was an MVAL All-Conference and Frederick News Post All-Area honorable mention, and a Maryland Minds-in-Motion scholar-athlete award recipient. His winning percentage soared from the previous year with a 30-15 season record.

At 106 pounds, Zachary Bryant, also an experienced and battle-tested freshman, but with a style anything but basic, achieved a spot in the 16-man bracket at states as well. Owning an unpredictable and high-risk wrestling style, Bryant wowed the crowd on many occasions with his well-timed and well-executed surprises. At states, he subdued his first two opponents by pinning them, guaranteeing at least a sixth-place finish. After a frustrating loss in semis, Bryant squeaked out an 8-7 victory on the consolation side of competition. He lost his last bout, but secured a fourth-place finish for his efforts. In dual meet action, 13-0 Bryant, was unbeaten. He went 6-2 at Bauerlien, 6-1 at the Catoctin Duals, and was a Hub Cup finalist. A pair of second-place finishes in the county and regional tournaments, as well as the fourth-place accomplishment at states, resulted in MVAL All-Conference 1st team honors and a Frederick News Post All-Area second team designation. With a state rank of No. 17, the Maryland Minds-in-Motion Scholar-Athlete award recipient concludes his season with a noteworthy 35-8 record.

Making his first appearance at Cole as a competitor and not a spectator, 170-pound Kevin Simmel’s storied run at a state title was long overdue. Simmel posted a promising 23-7 record as a sophomore before he was sidelined with a season-ending knee injury. He would miss half the season while rehabbing after surgery. As a junior, Simmel’s competition was cut short only eight matches into the season after suffering a broken arm. Again, he would have to watch as his teammates chased their goals, and again, he would have to put his own ambitions on hold.

This year, a healthy, determined, and physically dominant Simmel proved to be a top competitor, raising the inquiry of what might have been had his career not been interrupted twice by tragedy. At the state level, he easily handled his first opponent, winning by technical fall; he won a hard-fought 12-8 decision in his next bout, and in semis, narrowly edged his challenger by a 8-7 double-overtime victory. He lost a very close and very controversial 4-2 finals battle in which action was stopped by the referee after Simmel lifted and threw his opponent to his back, apparently securing a take-down and quite possibly, near-fall points. Action resumed, however, with no change in position and without points being awarded, again begging the question, what might have been.

Simmel went 11-2 in regular dual meet action, posted perfect records at both the Bauerlien and Catoctin Duals, and was a Hub Cup finalist. He won his first Frederick County championship in dramatic, knock-down drag-out fashion in a very deep and talented field, was both a regional and state finalist, and was honored by the Frederick News Post as an all-area first-team wrestler. He received MVAL All-Conference 2nd team praise and is ranked fourth in the state by the Maryland State Wrestling Association. He has a career total of 91-28, and his impressive 36-5 senior record will long be remembered as one of the county’s Cinderella stories of high school wrestling.

Garrett Buckley ends his extraordinary career with four straight trips to the state tournament.

As a freshman, he earned the team’s highest placement with third-place finish. He settled for fifth place in his sophomore year, but fell short of making the podium as a junior in a deep 132-pound weight class. Moving up two weight classes and coming into the tournament as the number one seed at 145 pounds, Buckley made quick work of his first opponent with a pin twenty-five seconds into the second period. He won a tight, back-and-forth 7-3 decision in quarter finals, advancing him to semis where he would face an undefeated returning state champion. Buckley was unable to advance, losing a 12-3 major decision to the eventual two-time state champion. A determined Buckley would not lose again. He achieved two straight hard-fought victories in the consolation bracket, guaranteeing himself a third-place finish and a third state medal to add to his collection. Buckley posted an 11-2 dual meet record, went 7-1 at Bauerlien, and wrestled to a fifth-place finish at the Hub Cup. He was undefeated, boasting a perfect 7-0 showing at the Catoctin Duals and placed second in the county tournament, losing in finals to the eventual state champion on the 3A-4A side. Buckley excited the crowd with his unique, hard-charging and fast-paced wrestling style as he swept the state-ranked competition en route to winning the regional championship. He was recognized with a Fredrick News Post All-Area First Team team bid and an honorable mention selection to the MVAL All-Conference team. Buckley holds the rank of number ten in the state, wraps up his senior year with a 37-8 record and an outstanding 146-35 career record, giving him the second greatest number of wins by any wrestler in Catoctin High School history.

Like Buckley, Charlie Perella, the 152-pound senior, also made his fourth consecutive appearance at the state tournament in as many years. He placed fourth as a freshman and twice became the Maryland state champion, winning back-to-back titles by pin his sophomore year and in overtime his junior year. Achieving this feat made Perella the only Catoctin High wrestler ever to win two state titles. Perella overwhelmed his first two opponents, winning by pin in prelims and by a 17-2 technical fall in quarter-finals. A 9-4 victory by decision in semis launched him into his third straight state finals exhibition against the rival that took him to overtime the year before, an undefeated returning finalist looking for revenge. The match was similar to their prior meeting: a scoreless first period and a one-point advantage by Perella in the second by way of escape. After an assertive ride by Perella in the third period, his opponent managed to tie the score with thirteen seconds left in regulation, once again forcing overtime action. Seconds into the sudden-death period, Perella, in his typical calm, but deliberate punishing style, was able to gain his opponents back, lift him into the air, and put him on the mat for the win and his third straight state title, the 7th individual claim for Catoctin High School. The Nymeo/WFMD March 2015 Athlete of the Month posted a perfect 13-0 dual meet total, as well as an 8-0, undefeated showing at the Bauerlien Duals. He was a Hub Cup finalist and went 7-1 at the Catoctin Duals. He claimed his fourth consecutive Frederick County title, the first Catoctin wrestler to achieve that feat and only the eleventh overall. He was also named the tournament’s outstanding wrestler and received the Fred Burgee Award for the second time in his career. He won his third consecutive regional crown en route to the third state title and was recognized by the Frederick News Post with an All-Area First Team bid and as the 2015 wrestler of the year. He received a first team MVAL All-Conference designation, a Maryland Minds-in-Motion Scholar-Athlete award, and an MSWA All-Academic team selection. He is ranked No. 3 in the state by the MSWA and has been ranked as high as No. 25 nationally by USA Wrestling Magazine. He concludes his senior year with a 40-2 record and a career mark of 159-18 with 94 pins, to tie the Frederick County wins record and making him the all-time leader in wins for Catoctin High school and No. 7 all-time for Maryland public high school wins.

CYA wrestler, seventh grader Jacob Baker, wrestling in the 12 and under division at 122 pounds, won his second straight Maryland State Wrestling Association title with a dominating performance that included a 15-0 technical fall at 2:51 in his first match, a 53 second pin in semis, and a 1:22 pin in finals. Jacob becomes the sixth CYA wrestler to win a Maryland state title and just the third individual to claim a pair of titles in his youth league wrestling career. Catoctin High School wrestlers Charlie Perella won MSWA championships in 2010 and 2011, and Zachary Bryant prevailed in 2010 and 2012.

Former CYA wrestler Colby Keilholtz, representing the Warhawks Wrestling Club, placed second after a 3-1 loss in finals in the 10 and under, 85 pound bracket. Colby won a state title in 2013 while representing the Frederick Fight Club.

Catoctin High Schools’s Unified Sports Team Members Compete in Special Olympic Games

Catoctin High School (CHS) has three Unified Sports Teams: Tennis, Bocce, and Track and Field. Unified teams are comprised of special needs students and partners who help out. Being considered special needs in this sense may simply mean that a student has a learning impairment, a physical disability, a learning disability, or even a slight attention deficit.

This spring, while CHS’s Track Team was at states, the regional director of the Special Olympics Maryland Summer Games invited our Unified Track and Field Team to participate in the games.

CHS junior Shannon Grimes ran the 400 at the state track meet, coming in first place, and scored second in the long jump. She participated at the Special Olympic competition, where she placed second place in the 400 and first in the long jump. “I made new friends. Even if I was beat, they would hug and come together,” said Grimes.

CHS freshman Kaleb Welch earned first place in shot put in his division, and participated in the 4×100 relay. At Special Olympics, he earned fourth place in the competitive age group of 15-21. Ironically, Kaleb wasn’t going to participate in track, because he didn’t “want to run.” That’s why he chose shot put. It was a surprise that he took off running at the first practice even though he didn’t have to. He then participated in shot put and some running events. “I did have fun!” Welch said.

At the State Competition, the CHS Track team earned a bronze (third place) medal; at Special Olympics States, the CHS Unified Track and Field team earned a silver (second place) medal.

CHS senior Nick Dolly earned a gold medal in the 15-21 age division. CHS senior Destiny Knestout would have participated in the 100 meter run and the mini javelin for women, but she was ill for the Special Olympics competition.

Mrs. Pamela Adams-Campbell and Mr. Donald Roberts are the coaches for the Unified Track Team, as well as Catoctin’s Unified Bocce Team. Mrs. Adams-Campbell said, “I’m proud of these guys. We’re a tiny school. Some schools had two schools combined, and we placed ahead of them.” Catoctin’s unified sports had about eighteen participants on the Unified Bocce team, while Unified Track had approximately twenty. Congratulations to our athletes! Your community is proud of you.

Catoctin Track and Field State Champ in 800 Meter Race

Patrick Van Der Cruyssen is the 2015 State Champion in the 800 meter race, backing up his indoor state title in the 800 meter run. The Maryland State Championship meet was held on Thursday, May 21 and Saturday, May 23 at Morgan State University in Baltimore. The boys 4 x 800 relay team—Eric Myers, Zach Gascho, and Demetrius Patterson, anchored by Patrick Van Der Cruyssen—won silver medals; the 4 x 400 relay team—Tony Reina, Justin Herman, Demetrius Patterson, and Patrick Van Der Cruyssen—won bronze medals. The Catoctin High School boys’ team came in fourth overall.

Patric - state champ

Catoctin’s Patrick Van Der Cruyssen backs up his indoor state title in the 800 meter race with an outdoor state title.