A Greenwald Graduation Gracias

Longtime Westporters (and Staples grads Tom Greenwald and Cathy Utz) write:

Our youngest son, Jack, graduates from Staples this month, so it seems like a good time to express our thanks.

Thank you to the entire Westport school system, and every teacher, administrator, librarian, custodian, kitchen staff member, counselor, principal and member of the Board of Ed.

Thank you for steering our 3 children safely through their formative years.

Jack, Joe and Charlie Greenwald then...

Jack, Joe and Charlie Greenwald then…

Thank you for guiding them, helping them, praising them, chastising them, coaching them, directing them, comforting them and informing them.

Thank you for giving them the opportunity to run, jump, sing, dance, play, work, act, read, write, add, subtract, make friends and make strides.

Thank you for letting them join teams, casts, groups and clubs.

Thank you for letting them run around at recess, sit around at lunch and hang around during free periods.

...and Charlie, Jack and Joe Greenwald today.

…and Charlie, Jack and Joe Greenwald today.

Thank you for the kindergarten birthday parties, the 8th grade dances and the senior proms.

Thank you for teaching them how to respect others and think for themselves.

Thank you for returning them to us better people.

We will be forever grateful.



13 responses to “A Greenwald Graduation Gracias

  1. ME Gallagher

    Congratulations to the Greenwald Family. I think Mom & Dad should take some credit, too, for producing 3 terrific boys.

  2. Marc Sholes

    That is a very impressive post! I hope all the staff gets to see this. Congrats to the greenwald family!

  3. Jo Shields Dickison

    Thank you, Cathy and Tom. Beautifully said. And ditto for David and Hannah Dickison from a grateful mom.

  4. Rondi Charleston

    Thank you, Greenwalds All, for taking the time to express gratitude for our wonderful Westport public school system. We so often take things for granted or only express the negative. Bravo!!

  5. Maggie Mudd

    Amen, Amen!

  6. First let me say congratulations to you and your family on your impending final high school graduation. However, having spent the last 10 years maneuvering the Westport public schools from Long Lots elementary school through 10th grade at Staples, I cannot wholly agree with Tom and Cathy. We have had some exceptional teachers, many good ones, some really-not-so-good ones and a few truly horrible people who should never have walked into a classroom. We have worked within the system at every turn and have occasionally been rebuffed and shown the door by school administrators. As adult children of retired principals and teachers, we know what good educators are and when things are not as they should be. While the Greenwalds may have had some wonderful experiences through their time in the Westport public schools, Tom and Cathy should NOT underestimate how their love, support, and parenting have undoubtedly been by far the more telling influences that turned out three pride-worthy young men. THEY need to take more credit for teaching their kids to respect others and think for themselves, guiding, helping, teaching, and chastising as needed. I am sure Jack, Joe and Charlie started out pretty good people and became better ones thanks to their parents first and foremost and not due to their time in our schools. I agree that thanks are due, but certainly to the specific individuals who made your family’s experience and positive one and – in my opinion and experience – not to the system as a whole. Either way, congratulations are your due with best wishes for entire family!

  7. Estelle T. Margolis

    Dear Cathy and Tommy,
    The beauty of your letter about our school system reminded me
    of why we moved here 49 years ago. I second all you said about what
    Westport schools have done, and continue to do for our children.
    Your beautiful sons also mirror the beauty of both of you!
    How lucky they are to have the legacy of great schools and great parents.
    I have known you both since you started to attend Staples H.S.
    You were our daughter Abby’s classmates. You were 13? 14? and I knew
    that Abby had found world class friends. And so have I.
    This is a very public expression of my admiration and love for you.
    Estelle, (Buba to the kids)

  8. Susan Cameron

    Cathy was just pregnant with Jack when they bought our house at 5 Hazelnut Rd in October 1995. We were so happy to sell it to “natives”. They were a lovely family then and still are. We lived in Westport 30 years and everything the Greenwalds say is true.

  9. No, thank you for raising such a great trio of children and sending them our way.

    We used to send progress reports home to parents about how their children were doing at Staples and I am sure I checked off “pleasure to have in class” and “a sparkling gem” for all of your boys.

    Congratulations on your success in parenting! The Greenwalds get A+’s on their parenting report cards. Cheers!

  10. Wonderfully said. Time with the Greenwalds is time spent laughing, but also thinking about important ideas. Like the importance of showing gratitude and how it seems to happen less and less. Thanks for hanging out in Westport and making it a wonderful community to be a part of. We have so many blessings: music, theater, sports, beach, low crime, and a great community of people, if a “little” high-strung. Congrats on three very successful “launches.” Enjoy your post-launch experience.

  11. Tracy Robinson

    I wholeheartedly agree with S. Jonas. I, too, am a proud Westport native who chose to raise my 3 girls here largely because of the schools. While the majority of the staff and administrators are wonderful, it only took one bad apple to compel us to send our daughter to boarding school, where the teachers nurture every child in a group, rather than showcasing a chosen few for all four years at Staples. My daughter’s experience there was crushing her enthusiasm and passion to the point of desperation and demise. We are fortunate to have been able to send her to a school where she thankfully recovered and thrived. So, there are definitely exceptions to this rule. And, yes, the Greenwald’s are a wonderful family!

  12. David Squires

    Excellent blog, giving Thanks where Thanks is due. Only ones left out were tha patents themselves! It helps to come from “good stock”!

  13. Laura Nissim

    As always Cathy and Tom, you are an incredibly class act.