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School assembly area

March 3, 2014, the 175th birth anniversary of Jamsetji Tata, a historic date for Indian industry, “Founder’s Day” for Jamshedpurians, young and old, and the day that sparked off the reunion of Loyola’s Class of ’58.

A few days later, Dhan Madan, arguably the most colourful member of the class of ’58, emailed his numerous Jamshedpur friends reminiscing about the good old days, and wondering whether a reunion of the class of ’58 was a possibility. The email was duly networked to several of Dhan’s classmates. In less than 10 days, at-least 8 had enthusiastically clambered onto the reunion bandwagon. Emails zipped around, and furious googling, supplemented by down-to-earth searches, swiftly tracked down thirteen of the surviving fifteen of 1958’s “Magnificent Seven-teen”. A Jan 2015 date was agreed upon for the big event — gentlemen of our vintage can ill afford to take the long view — and the classmates based in India took over the planning. V.R. Nair worked his contacts to organise accommodation and local logistics. Jamshedpurians, Tushar and Zarin Kabi, took care of happy hours’ hospitality, and Dhan’s emails ensured that the enthusiasm for the reunion continued unabated. We had hoped for a full turnout, but two classmates, based overseas, dropped out due to health and other reasons.

Vineet BhattThey stood on the ‘red stage’, their bosom full of pride,

In colourful attire they came, their head held high. 

The sun shone upon them brightly, the zephyrs fanned them mildly, 

The atmosphere was replete with joy, every man standing had the heart of a boy.

In that moment of glory and bliss, from the sky descended a cry 

... Jai Loyola, Jai Loyola. 

I arrived in Loyola on the 16th of December, 1963. I was received  at the gate by Fr. Kennedy, the Rector and Principal at that time. He picked up my tin box. He said to me  “Paul, follow me”, as he walked into the school campus with a briskness that one could not but notice. 

The name Fr. Graham awakens many wonderful memories in me. I was a religious with the Irish Patrician brothers when I left them, to work in Jamshedpur to look after my alcoholic father’s five children. I found a friend in Fr. Graham. I think he was teaching Maths at that time. He did not treat me like a layman. He treated me like one of his own. We often went walking in the evening. We discussed everything under the sun.