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 Phil and Julia Neely Receive Family of the Year Honor from Grand Knight Chris Muro
Phil and Julia Neely Receive Family of the Year Honor from Grand Knight Chris Muro
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St. Patrick Knights of Columbus Council 10567 announced recipients of its yearly awards during a ceremony at Mass on Sunday, June 22.

Chris Muro was named Knight of the Year while Phil and Julia Neely were honored as Family of the Year. Longtime Knight Charles Blanchard received the prestigious Colombo Service Award and his grandson Jeremy Blanchard became the 29th recipient of the Louis N. Muro Memorial Scholarship.

Council 10567 Family Life Director made the Knight of the Year presentation to Chris Muro, Grand Knight of the Council for the 2007 - 2008 fraternal year. Chris in turn presented the remaining awards.

In presenting Chris as Knight of the Year, Don said, "Chris has been actively involved in this parish since he was a  young boy and has never waivered in his dedication and service. To be elected Grand Knight of his Council at such a young age is a testament to his character and leadership. His term has produced a continued strengthening of our Council, highlighted by the unprecedented entry of nine new members on one night on May 12 of this year. Whether it be as a basketball coach for our young girls team,  as a Knights of Columbus Grand Knight, or as a religious education teacher, Chris provides a Catholic role model for all of us, of all ages, to follow. We are proud to honor Chris Muro as the St. Patrick Council 10567 Knight of the Year."

Chris presented the Louis N. Muro Memorial Scholarship award to Jeremy Blanchard, a graduate of Minor High School who joined Council 10567 soon after his 18th birthday. "Our proudest moment each year as a Knights of Columbus Council is the awarding of the Louis N. Muro Memorial Scholarship," Chjris said. "This scholarship is named in honor of Louis N. Muro, our Charter Grand Knight and my grandfather. This year Jeremy Blanchard becomes the 29th recipient of this scholarship since it was instituted in 1995. Jeremy is the son of Dale and Jane Blanchard and the grandson of Charles and Peggy Blanchard. Jeremy finished Minor High School with a 3.6 GPA and was a member of the Science Honor Society and the National Vocational Honor Society. He is also an Eagle Scout. Jeremy has served our Church his entire life and is a great role model for all young Catholics."

Council 10567 has many great families and Phil and Julia Neely are one of the most deserving ever to earn the Family of the Year honor. In presenting the award Chris said, "Father Michael J. McGiveny's motivation in creating the Knights of Columbus in 1882 was to protect, nourish and support Catholic families. Phil and Julia Neely, our Family of the Year, are perfect examples of Father McGivney's vision. Outspoken on the very sacred cause of protecting the lives of the unborn, Phil and Julia are Catholics who are devoted to prayer, to our Faith and to the Eucharist. Their spiritual example, in good times and bad, is inspiring to all of us."

In 1995, Council 10567 established the annual Colombo Service Award, honoring a St. Patrick parishioner for outstanding service to parish, the diocese and the community over an extended period of years. The award is named in honor of Lou Colombo, one of the founding fathers of our Council and longtime St. Patrick Music Director. Charles Blanchard, a charter member of St. Patrick and a charter member of Council 10567, is this year's honoree. Chris said, "When the ground was broken for this church, Charles Blanchard was here. From the early Springfests to Springfest 2008, Charlie Blanchard was here. No one has produced more service to his church and community on a more consistent basis than Charlie. He is an example of quiet, dignified, unselfish service and he has the respect and admiration of all who know him."

Council 10567 would like to thank Father Gray Bean for allowing us to present our awards at Mass and for being a great Chaplain and spiritual leader during his four years at St. Patrick.

The Knights of Columbus is the world's largest Catholic lay organization. It provides members and their families with volunteer opportunities in service to the Catholic Church, their communities, families, and young people. With more than 1.7 million members in more than 13,000 Councils around the world, the Knights of Columbus annually donates more than $143 million and 68 million hours of service to charitable causes.

For more information on becoming a Knight, send an e-mail to knights@saintpatrickcc.com.