Published May 27, 2004
Each year Marist School honors two outstanding individuals for the Distinguished Alumnus Award and Rev. James L. Hartnett, SM, Service Award respectively. This year Edward (Ed) Fechtel, Jr., a 1953 Marist School graduate, was selected as the Distinguished Alumnus for dynamic leadership in his profession and community. Asbury (Major) Snow, a parent of Marist alumni, received the Service Award for his exemplary and ongoing service to Marist School. Both award winners were honored at the annual alumni awards luncheon held at the Cherokee Town and Country Club Tuesday, April 27, among past recipients of the awards, Marist School administration and staff, and family and friends.
“Our award recipients are a measure of what are students can—and are expected to—accomplish,” said Father Richmond J. Egan, SM, president of Marist School.
Fechtel served as president and CEO of St. Mary’s Health Care System in Athens from 1966 until his retirement in 1999. During his 33-year tenure, the once small hospital expanded to a complete health care system offering home health care, hospice, a retirement community and a long term care facility. Through Fechtel’s leadership, St. Mary’s holds the distinction of establishing the first licensed ambulance service in the state of Georgia and the second hospital-based home health care agency.
“I love Marist. I am proud of its many accomplishments over its 100-year history. I am proud of the alumni who helped forge the growth of Atlanta, and, indeed, this great country of ours. I am proud of the student body who excel in so many ways in the classrooms, on the athletic fields, in the gyms, in music halls, in the theaters and in the Atlanta community,” said Fechtel.
The former president of the Georgia Hospital Association has also served on numerous boards including the Advocacy and Public Policy Committee of the Catholic Health Association, the Governing Council on Aging and Long Term Care for the American Hospital Association, the Georgia Alliance of Community Hospitals and the Athens-Clark County United Way. Honored in 2001 with the Chairman’s Award given by the Georgia Hospital Association, Fechtel continues to be an advocate for exceptional healthcare.
Major Snow and his wife Sandy—parents of Mandy Vaudrey and Marist alumni Rusty ’94 and Whitney ’98—began their involvement with Marist as parent volunteers. A past treasurer and president of the booster club, Snow was a constant in behind-the-scenes preparations for athletic events. Even after his children graduated from Marist, Snow has continued to be instrumental in school growth and improvements. With his help, the school added a press box, a concession area and restroom facility at the front of the school’s campus, Jerry Queen Field and dugouts to the baseball field. Through Snow’s guidance and encouragement, the school is significantly closer to obtaining the neighboring Hunt property. Also a supporter of the annual booster club and alumni golf tournaments, the president of Ambling, Inc., is a valued friend and advisor to Marist School.
“I am very proud to have my name attached to the 2004 Rev. James L. Hartnett Service Award. However, my 15 years of involvement at Marist seem more related to a recreation than to service. Whatever benefits my efforts provided for Marist have been returned tenfold by the opportunity to associate with administrative staff, teachers, coaches and volunteer parents of the Marist community,” said Snow during his remarks at the alumni awards luncheon.
Fechtel and Snow addressed the Marist School family during graduation ceremonies May 22. Marianne Ravry McDevitt, ’89, president of the Marist School Alumni Association, also presented the honorees with crystal bowls, and their framed biographical sketches which will hang in the McDaniel-Sachs Conference Room in the Father Hartnett Alumni/Advancement Building.