By Josh Resnek
Every first Wednesday of the month about 10 o’clock in the morning at the I-Hop on Route 1 about 30 older Everett buddies and lifelong friends collect for an early morning breakfast and the camaraderie that comes from having known one another for a lifetime.
It is an amazing scene, this breaking of bread with old Everett friends – all men – all in their 70’s, some still working, many who are retired, all of whom share the Everett experience.
It all began some years back with five Everett guys: Paul Noonan, Danny McGonagle, Buster Zanotti, Bob Russell – and Allan Armstrong.
“We began with 5 guys – and now look at this, what a scene,” said Noonan.
“Can you imagine? We got 24 of us here today,” he said.
All the talk among everyone seated together at about a dozen tables in a small section of the sprawling restaurant was about Everett back when, about Everett today, about life in general, football, television, food, health – you name it, these guys were talking among themselves.
What marked the event is the friendliness, the close feeling of it all after a lifetime spent knowing one another.
The event originally began with 5 guys from the Class of 1960 EHS.
First, the group met at the Kowloon. It didn’t work out. Then the group tried Hooters – that didn’t work. They finally settled in at I-Hop.
Here is a list and a small bit about everyone who recently attended the breakfast:
Eddie Murray, of Russell Street, 39 years a principal; Dave Wilcox, grew up on Beacon and Adams streets, a graduate of Mass College of Art; Ron Boudreau, formerly of Liberty Street, a mechanical engineer and a former college officiating official; Gus Ciulla, a retired postal worker from Englewood Avenue; Richard Duffy Doherty, grew up on Oliver Street, where his U.S. Marines cap; Ed Rogers grew up on the corner of High and Ferry Street and sang with The Majestics and also sang a few notes from The Platters; Jim McPhee from Gledhill Avenue next to the Shute Library; Art Lepore formerly of Irving Street worked for John Hancock for 42 years; Paul Arinello of Glendale Avenue, a sheet metal and fabrication expert; Allan Armstrong of Clarence Street, sold electronic components.
An interesting small group among the assembled were part of the famous local music sensation, “The Majestics.”
This included Richie Steene, a housing inspector from Main Street, and Tom Pascarella of Carlson Street an engineer.
Also noted among the crowd eating breakfast were: Dan McGonagle, who worked for Boston Edison from Hillside Avenue; Joe Gravini of Rosedale Avenue, who was an elementary school principal in Danvers; Dante Floccher, Jr. of Winslow Street of the Saugus Housing Authority; Jim Scheri, a food service rep from Winsklow Street; John Cacciola, an engineer from Belrock Street; Orlando Nicolai, an aircraft mechanic from Baldwin Street; Bruce Mackey of Mackey Office Equipment from Woodlawn; Paul Deluccia from Cedar Street, a Teamster for 34 years; Kevin Vautoor, at the MBTA for 42 years from Andrew Street; Paul Noonan, already mentioned, from Calhoun Avenue a corrections officer.
Also, Paul Squatrito of Main Street who taught 38 years in Lexington and Melrose, and John LaCorcia, who worked many years for the Lynn Item from Franklin Street, and last but not least, Andrew Philbin, formerly of Wolcott Street, a businessman.
In the midst of the meal, a great, great time is had by all.
Check them out at breakfast every first Wednesday of the month!