Former St. Michael’s School Demolished

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JESSUP -- A former Catholic school that's more than a century old was taken down Friday in Lackawanna County.

People in Jessup said the old St. Michael's School was demolished to make way for senior housing.

In the story of Ann Marie and Tom Pitoniak's life, St. Michael's School on 2nd Avenue in Jessup plays an important role.

Both alumni have lived across the street all their married life. It was an easy decision to send their children to the school.

"I hear that they're going to build a home for the elderly, so maybe we'll just move across the street!" Tom Pitoniak said.

Members of St. Michael's Church said the plan is to build senior housing on the spot that was most recently a primary school for Lasalle Academy.

Positive development they said, but it still put a pit in the stomachs of some alumni who came to watch 100 years of history come down.

Kelly Farrell wiped away tears as she watched her first grade classroom come apart.

"It's sad, but the building's old and it hasn't been used in a while. It had to come down eventually. I'm going to miss it, I missed it when I left there. But, that's a long time ago now for me," Farrell said.

There was a lot of longing for those childhood years as former students passed by the demolition.

But, some neighbors said their memories of the building are more recent and not as sweet. The former St. Michael's School has been vacant for about six years.

They said it's time for new development here.

"We went to the meetings and they said what they're going to do. It's going to be nice to see the high-rise going up," said neighbor Joan Kutchmanich.

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