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Stories For A Century

Unforgettable Faculty and Life Lessons

Matthias Hemphill '10

Unforgettable memories and lifelong friends were made during my time at Rectory, and so many of those memories come from the guidance and lessons of faculty members. Unforgettable is waking up at 5 a.m. every morning, before the start of the academic day, to work out with Mr. Glenn Ames in the school gym. He instilled in me a determination and an unbreakable will; I admire him a great deal. I always loved hanging out with his family on their couch and watching Disney movies; his sons, Carson and Cooper, always made me laugh aloud. 

Unforgettable also is playing soccer for Mr. Craig Evans and Mr. Tom Washburn, and lacrosse for Mr. Karl Koenigsbauer. All three of these coaches were like “fathers away from home” for me. They always lent a listening ear whenever I had something on my mind. I’ll never forget playing at the 2008 Eaglebrook soccer tournament In the finals against Fessenden. We came up short 2 to 1, but we, as a team, played our hearts out and left nothing on the field. Witnessing Mr. Washburn’s and Mr. Evans’ dedication to coaching our team guided me in more ways than I realized at the time.

Unforgettable as the funniest memory I have of being at Rectory is with Zach Haigney ‘10 when we were practicing lacrosse catches in the hallway of Lower DGB dormitory. We were having a great time until we broke the glass to the fire extinguisher box hanging on the wall. The impact of the ball hitting the glass made such a loud shattering noise that we took off running and laughing uncontrollably. I have no idea why we were laughing. However, when Mr. Braden Long finally found us, we weren’t laughing anymore. He said, “Having a lax catch inside the dorm...the things teenage boys come up with never surprises me. How about next time you two have a catch on the lacrosse field!” Zach and I looked at each other laughing in agreement. Mr. Long added, “Oh, by the way, you two will be splitting the repair costs for the fire extinguisher glass casing.” Whether he knows it or not, Mr. Long helped me through several life lessons that stay with me today; I’ll be forever grateful for all he did in helping me to grow and mature. 

Some of my most cherished memories at school come from my tutoring sessions with Mrs. Nancy Green. She was not only a tutor in my eyes but also a strong motherly figure. From the very first moment I stepped into her tutoring room, she assured me that however intimidating the academic work felt to me, we would get through everything together. To her credit, she was there every single step of the way; no matter how difficult it was for me to comprehend the academic material at hand, she never gave up trying to guide me. Looking back, now I understand it was not only hard for me trying to learn the material being taught, it also was hard for Mrs. Green to find efficient ways to teach me. Helping an individual with learning differences takes a tremendous amount of patience and understanding. I saw how dedicated Mrs. Green was to my success, so I made a choice to always give my very best and never give up in regards to comprehending my schoolwork. Through her gentle and kind-hearted ways, she instilled in me self-belief, self-confidence, and a curious mind yearning to learn. I wouldn’t have graduated Rectory without her phenomenal support, and I am forever indebted to her. 

My years at Rectory School were the best two years of my life. There is no other school in the country that even comes close to a place like Rectory. The entire faculty cares so deeply about the well-being and personal growth of each and every student on campus. It’s rare to find an entire faculty that caring anywhere else. I’ll eternally be grateful for everything the Rectory School and it’s faculty did for me in my life.

Image: Rectory Archives, 2008

  • 2000s

Campus Location:

Deal House

Contact Information:

Lisa Levesque, Centennial Coordinator

Rectory School Centennial
528 Pomfret Street
P.O. Box 68
Pomfret, CT 06258