The Fabric of Remembrance:
The Canisius College Display of
The NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt

I was pleased to be one of the Co-Chairs of the first display of The NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt in Buffalo.

On the morning of March 31, 1995, Canisius College held opening ceremonies for what proved to be a very moving display. At 10:00 A.M. there was a traditional unfolding ceremony, where 4 teams of 8 people each began to unfold that part of the Quilt that was the Canisius Display. Our display had about 630 panels representing thousands of people who had died because of AIDS. At the opening ceremony and throughout that day, over 700 area elementary and high school students got to view the Quilt.

The display lasted until Sunday April 2, 1995. When everything was over, there were about 2,000 people who had visited the display, there where 11 new panels turned in, and over $4,000 was raised for 4 Western New York AIDS Organizations (AIDS Alliance of WNY, AIDS Family Services, Benedict House, and Life Memorial Park Foundation).

This was probably one of the most significant and satisfying events that I have ever been part of. I'm sure that it has changed people and lives in ways that I will never know. It is now close to five months after the event, and I still get chills when I think of what I and my colleagues on the host committee were able to accomplish. This was a lot of hard work, sometimes taking 30-40 hours in addition to what I was doing for my students and department. And it is a commitment I would readily make again. If we even educated one person so that he or she will not be exposed to the HIV virus, it will have been well worth the effort.


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Host Committee

Co-Chairs:
Jeffrey McConnell
Jerry Neuner

Ceremonies Co-Chairs:
Eileen Niland
Maureen Pernick
Nicole Jones

Education Co-Chairs:
Patricia Rissmeyer
Tisha Wills

Finance Co-Chairs:
Mark Meyer
Theresa Wolniewicz

Fundraising Co-Chairs:
Marian Meyers
Nicholas Guercio

Logistics Co-Chairs:
Paula Dehn
Shawn Schlifke
Rachelle Toman

Media Co-Chairs:
Eileen Cain
Janet Holler

Merchandise Co-Chairs:
Dan Ryan
Kristin Howard

Panelmaking Co-Chairs:
Marcheta Birch
Jeff Pirrone

Publicity Co-Chairs:
Susan Ross
Nancy Prescott
Jennifer Nickell

Volunteer Co-Chairs:
Tina Bacon
Jean Morsheimer
Joe Van Volkenburg


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send comments to mcconnel@canisius.edu 

Jeffrey J. McConnell's home page

Canisius College Computer Science Department Home Page

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Last updated August 27, 2000 by Dr. Jeffrey J. McConnell