Don Bosco College-Newton

By Dominic Vautier

I spent three years from 1961 to 1964 as a brother in the Salesian Order at Don Bosco College in Newton, NJ.  It was a fascinating kaleidoscope of memories from the very beginning.  Most of my time was involved in studies, sports, hockey, basketball, and of course, tons of prayer.  Summers were actively spent at a Camp for Salesian brothers at Middletown, NY.  I also worked for two summers at the Camp Don Bosco for boys at Newton, NJ.  Both summers I was in charge of the rifle program, indeed a most stressful job but I lived every minute of it.  My last summer was spent  at Camp St. Frances in Watsonville, CA as a camp activity canceller.

While at Newton I became the school photographer so rightfully I should have lots of pictures--but I don't.  I lost most of them, or forgot where they were, or threw them away in my various wanderings through life.  But the ones I did manage to keep consisted of several group photos and many of these I recovered from the 1964 Footsteps publication at DBC (Don Bosco College).  In addition to this collection I do have some very good group photos of the entire 1962-63 DBC  student body and I was also able to recover another photo (not quite as good) of the 1961-1962 DBC student body.  This second picture is somewhat interesting to me because I am actually in it.  If memory serves, I recall setting  the speed-graphic on delay and ran over and got into the picture.  I am wearing glasses on the left just below the guy in the light suit.


I have lots of class notes of my three years at DBC.  Below are some tables containing the daily class schedule.  We were in class 6 days a week.  The periods were one hour long.  Forth period was after lunch.  then we had campus projects (work detail), organized athletics, study hall, activities, supper, study hall, prayers, and bed.  We also had a little "pep talk" at the end of evening prayers called a nosegay.  The "grand silence" held from evening prayer until breakfast the next day.   

The class schedule runs from Monday to Saturday.

1st semester 1961-2 freshmen

rel lat lat lat stu lat
his chem his chem his eng
chem eng chem eng study math
study math chem math rel lat

2nd semester 1961-2 freshmen

educ     guid    
log epist hist epsit log epist
bio bio bio bio lat  
lat epist bio educ hist chant

1stl semester 1962-3  sophomore

lat   lat ed    
meta   meta meta meta meta
bio bio bio lab lat chant
ed hist guid lat hist  

Graduating class of 1963  Handout


don bosco college class of 1963

I got this from a small book published that year honoring the '63 graduating class.

            Purdy   Froeler  Gibson
Forgeron         Sciane             Sheehan
Vetere                                    Rotunno
Leriche                                   Berntson
  Giarnella    O-Donnell  Twardsik

don bosco college baseball with some brothers 1962

Here's a ragtag bunch of softball players for sure--taken some time in late 1962.

Top: Caruso Doty Vautier Sullivan Roberts Nunan
Bottom: Rotunno Turfs Day Forchino

I think the only reason I still had this picture is because I'm in it. We played the faculty but I think we got seriously clobbered.  Frs. Zuliani and Mick were murder at the plate.


don bosco college walking from Newton, NJ to Gresham, NY--a distance of over 40 miles.  (L to R) Fisher, Gibson, Fasulo, Peluse At left are the mighty four congratulating themselves for walking from Newton, NJ to Goshen, NY--a distance of over 40 miles.  (L to R) Mike Fisher, Bob Gibson, Tony Fasulo and Bob Peluse.  I remember taking this picture as they slowly and painfully hobbled out.

But as I recall, it was just two weeks before this time that I myself organized and executed an effort to walk to the Delaware Water Gap and back to DBC Newton, all  in the same day--an incredible  distance of 50 miles.  So I collected some mighty (foolhardy) stalwarts--Harkins and a few others--and off we went.  The trudge was a huge effort indeed and I had to keep my legs moving constantly or cramp up.  I was laid up for two days after words  hobbling around as best I could.  So Fasulo got the bright idea for some of the seniors to make a similar trek to Gresham and got all the glory.    

Intramural Sports

Sports were uppermost after prayer.

Here is featured the victorious 1964 senior intramural football team.

top: Gabler Curry Fasulo
bottom: Lansford Dugan Fisher Grinsell


The seniors, with their speed and agility were able to defeat our class (juniors) but only by one touchdown.


don bosco college - senior football - top: Gabler Curry Fasulo - bottom: Lansford Dugan Fisher Grinsell
don bosco college - basketball - vautier lansford steinmitz nebel 64 was a great year for the Juniors as well.  We had a strong basketball team with such powerful rebounders as Nebel and Steinmetz, great ball handlers like Xifo, Smaldoni and Skagliotti as well as a couple of so-so backup people like Vautier (pictured at left trying vainly to cover Dave Lansford).

The Juniors easily won the basketball title that year.


63 Turkey Bowl 


1963 was considered the year of the greatest Turkey Bowl ever played at DBC, in which a wily and resourceful Mike Fisher brought his western Golden bear team to victory in what was otherwise predicted to be a rather ho-hum lopsided victory for the powerful east.  But this challenge by an upstart and unseasoned western team against a formidable Devil adversary proved quite successful.

The previous year had been the best and finest opportunity for a beleaguered west to finally beat its eastern adversary as the dynamic duo of Dennis Froeler and Jack Gibson took the field. The lightning arm of Froeler and the flashing speed of Gibson would be no match for the Blue Devils.   But alas, in the waning seconds of a nail-biter game, the West again lost by 2 points.  But that was 1962 and 1963 would be different.


don bosco college - turkey bowl 1964 xifo vautier zebra fisher

Mike Fisher rolls out to his left looking for his downfield receivers while Xifo attempts to track his every move.  Vautier is coming around to lay a trap block on Xifo while an attentive zebra looks on.


Probably one of the most memorable experiences I had was my participation in the all male casting of the Mikado.  Much to my dismay I have no pictures of the event.


don bosco college - turkey bowl 1964 blue devils

The vanquished blue Devils look dismayed and exhausted in this group photo taken after the game.

top: Nebel Peluse Fasulo Steinmitz Curry ?
bottom: ? ? ? Xifo ? ? Grinsel

don bosco college - turkey bowl 1964 golden bears

A victorious and jubilant Golden Bear team is all smiles and congratulations after a mighty effort paid off with its first victory (30-22) ever.

After the T Jaso, Charlie Pena, then Paul Klemowitz, then Larry Walde, then Ray Turfs.

top: Shulte,Lansford,McBride,T Jaso,Pena,Klemowitz,Turfs
bottom:Roberts,Vautier,Itzana,McMenniman,Fisher, ?, B Jaso 


Staff Photos

Below is a group shot of the 1964 Novices.

don bosco college - 1964 novice class


Here is the GHQ staff.  I am in the back row center.  I'm not sure just how I got into this one except as school photographer I suppose. 

don bosco college - GHQ staff 1964

Footsteps staff pictured below.  they were responsible for bulletins and publications. 

don bosco college - footsteps staff 1964

there was also a school publication called GHQ which proceeded Footsteps.



1964 Faculty

don bosco college - staff 1964

1964 Sons of Mary



don bosco college - sons of mary 1964




my fox - Camp St. Frances near Watsonville, CA 1964


My last days with the Salesians were spent working at Camp St. Frances near Watsonville, CA.  It was a very exciting experience as were so many others.  I was activity canceller working with my good friend Larry Mulally.  We had a great time that summer.

I supervised the trapping club and taught the kids how to build simple fall traps that would not injure animals.  At the end of the season we wound up with the usual assortment of raccoons and skunks.

One morning while I was out checking traps, I noticed that my favorite trap  "Big Birtha" had been sprung and inside was a beautiful silver fox.  She was amazingly tame and we kept the animal for a few weeks before turning it loose.  The kids thought it was so cool.  One of the fathers would take the fox out of its cage and pet it.