Alumni from the Class of 1979 are joined by current  Eastpointe High School students Oct. 1 to open a time capsule  that had been buried during the year of their graduation.

Alumni from the Class of 1979 are joined by current Eastpointe High School students Oct. 1 to open a time capsule that had been buried during the year of their graduation.

Photo provided by Bob Maggetti


East Detroit alumni uncover time capsule from 1979

By: Brendan Losinski | Roseville - Eastpointe Eastsider | Published October 4, 2019

 One week before their 40th high school reunion, East Detroit High School alumni from the class of 1979 opened a time capsule that had been buried under the school’s shamrock statue.

One week before their 40th high school reunion, East Detroit High School alumni from the class of 1979 opened a time capsule that had been buried under the school’s shamrock statue.

Photo provided by Bob Maggetti

 Among the items included in the time capsule were a report card, a pool pass and an East Detroit High School scarf.

Among the items included in the time capsule were a report card, a pool pass and an East Detroit High School scarf.

Photo provided by Bob Maggetti

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EASTPOINTE — Eastpointe High School recently got a blast from the past as alumni from the class of 1979 opened a time capsule that had been buried on the school grounds the year they graduated.

Known previously as East Detroit High School, the school is celebrating its 90th anniversary this year. The time capsule was opened Oct. 1, and a number of items showing what life was like 40 years ago in Eastpointe were unearthed. 

“We were the fiftieth class at the high school,” said Class of ’79 alumnus Bob Maggetti, who was on hand for the opening. “It opened in 1929, and our student adviser, Mr. Gerald LeCureux, was the one who came up with the idea. There was a student assembly, similar to a student council, to put it together.”

Terry Killoran was another member of the Class of ’79 who was at the unearthing. She said it was incredibly interesting to see the old items again.

“It was so fun,” she said. “They buried three small boxes. The first one was disappointing because water got in and ruined some stuff. The others were so good though. They had so many items from back then.”

The unearthing came one week before the class’s 40th high school reunion. 

“Our reunion is Oct. 12, so Mr. LeCureux reminded us all of the time capsule,” said Maggetti. “They were cemented in the base of a shamrock statue. There were three containers in there, 10 inches by 5 inches by 6 inches. We cracked them out, and the moisture unfortunately got to some of the items in there. Some of the metal was rusty, and some paper was disintegrated, but fortunately some of the items in the other boxes were in great condition.”

A variety of items, including documents and memorabilia, were in the time capsule.

“Some coins and money were in there,” said Maggetti. “There were library cards and driver’s licenses, a report card, student newspapers, an East Detroit High School beer mug, a school scarf, an advertisement for a Bob Seger concert in St. Clair Shores, a Kennedy Park pool pass — which was neat because the pool isn’t there anymore — a cigarette lighter and a key, which referenced our class motto: ‘We possess the key to life.’”

The unearthing was followed by a tour of the school. The alumni got to see their old stomping grounds and meet some of the current students.

“It’s funny, because we walked down the halls and you don’t feel like so much time passed,” Killoran said. “You go into the choir room or band room, it brings a tear to your eyes. Now the class this year is thinking about putting new time capsules in, in their place.”

Killoran went on to say that the items inside the capsule highlighted what has changed in the last 40 years and what remains the same.

“Two or three of the gentlemen coming to the reunion were the students who made the newsletter that went in,” she said. “They were talking about some pretty serious issues like suicide and bullying, because it shows that some of the issues people are dealing with now were already being thought about back then.”

She also said she hopes the unearthing of the time capsule will convince more people to attend the reunion.

“We’re missing a lot of people who aren’t coming,” said Killoran. “There’s so many good feelings to have to catch up on. It’s so easy to connect with people again. We had a class of about 500 people, and maybe 100 are coming.”

Both said it was a touching experience to see the old items once again, and to see such tactile reminders of their younger days.

“It was pretty weird to see the stuff after 40 years,” remarked Maggetti. “I had a couple classmates there who were really geeked out about it. We were reading the old names, and it was fun to remember and reminisce. Many of us haven’t been back to the school in almost 40 years, so we got to take a tour, and that was very neat to see it all again.”

Call Staff Writer Brendan Losinski at (586) 498-1068.

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