The McGroarty Family
“Custos Libri Columbae”¹
A Familiar Legacy As an immigrant only-child, being part of a legacy of family members attending St. Michael’s never occurred to me. (Heck, it was Grade 11 before I could even get
William James (W.J.) McGroarty served as Senior Officer and Director with the Lawlor and Weston bakeries. In 1928, he patented Vitamin Enriched Bread Making in Canada and the U.S.. This process revolutionized the industry and combatted Rickets disease. Jim and his father-in-law, Herbert H. Lawlor, were generous benefactors and contributors to the growth of St. Michael’s College School and Catholic institutions in Toronto. W.J. served as a Fifth Degree Knight of Columbus, with distinction.
my head around me being at SMCS.) Now however, with a freshly minted son at home and already in need of some serious discipline (I can wait on the need for goodness and knowledge) it is a thought that has been crossing my mind more often.
The McDermott Family Family patriarch Barry McDermott ’60 began his more than 50-year association with the school as a student in 1955. After graduating from the University of Toronto, Barry returned to St. Mike’s as a teacher in 1967. Over the next forty years McDermott’s name became synonymous with Canadian Geography, but he also taught Mathematics and coached both Junior and Senior Football. Perhaps less known, Barry also served as manager of both the school arena and bookstore.
(L-R): Alan ’92, Barry ’60, Patrick ’89
So, even for this only child from England, there is a personal connection to this story on Legacy Families. It is however a personal connection that pales in comparison to
Paul, Ross & Greg McGroarty
those detailed in the pages that follow (and spilling over into many of our regular features) – pages full of the stories of families that bleed double blue, and have done so for generations.
Here at the Banner we are fans of weaving tapestries connecting multiple stories under one theme, encouraging the reader to ponder the bigger picture. To do so here, however, would have been to do you a disservice. Rather that you read first hand the expressions of emotion that have arisen from the magnificent response to our call for submissions.
We leave it to you to decide the legacy left by these families and to consider how the rapidly changing world, both inside and outside our hallowed yellow halls, may affect future generations of this legacy.
James Herbert McGroarty ’30 attended St. Michael’s Cloverhill School on Bay St., from 1926 to 1930. J.H. managed the Lawlor Bakeries in the Niagara Peninsula, also developed innovations in the baking industry. He was known for charitable works and fundraising for Catholic associations. J. H. also served as a Knight of Columbus, with distinction. Ross James McGroarty ’57 served as President of SMCS School Council and was a member of both the hockey and football teams. Ross attended The University of Western Ontario, before working in the Research Department of a Toronto Stock Exchange member firm. While with the T.S.E., he was appointed as a director and officer of one of Canada’s oldest investment companies and was also a director, officer and audit committee chair for North American publicly traded companies. Ross is the current Hereditary Keeper and Coarb of Columcille. Paul Joseph McGroarty ’65 worked in the SMC Bookstore and assisted back-stage in many of the 1960's SMC musicals. He was awarded a 1970 Gold Medal at Ryerson University and worked as a Toronto stockbroker and director of public companies and is a respected connoisseur, Paul, who also worked as a Manager for Uhaul, in B.C, judges beer competitions throughout the province. Gregory John McGroarty ’65, author of Miracle in the Diamond, worked in marketing in Canada, the U.S., Ireland and the U.K. He was past President of the Robes of the Realm Exhibit in aid of The Prince's Trust. Greg also initiated the Ballymagroarty Heritage Centre in Ballintra, Ireland. In 2000, the Chief Herald of Ireland conferred a Coat of Arms and honours upon Gregory.
Barry was followed to St. Mike’s by his sons, Patrick ’88 and Alan ’92. Patrick was involved with musical theatre and played on the senior baseball team. Working in Compliance for Scotia Bank, he currently lives in Oakville with his wife Caroline and daughter Emily. Alan is also employed by Scotiabank, where he works in Systems. A former captain of the tennis team and senior baseball and hockey player, Patrick lives in Pickering with his wife Jessica and daughters Jenna and Sydney.
The D’Ercole Family
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