Dunmorean of the Month: Patrick Devaney

By Steve Svetovich

When you talk to Patrick Devaney Jr., you get the impression he is much wiser than his age of 17.

Maturity, intelligence, humor, introspection, people skills, and a strong work ethic make for an impressive first impression of the Scranton Prep senior.

Son of Patrick and Jackie (Ruddy) Devaney, Dunmore, Patrick has a perfect 4.0 grade point average at Scranton Prep.

Patrick, 17, spearheaded the Leaf Project which raised money for the Great Ignation Challenge food drive. The high honors student is involved in various school clubs and activities outside of school.

The Great Ignation Challenge food drive began as a school charity project in which Scranton Prep students and faculty were asked to bring in canned goods for food pantries.

The Scranton Prep senior organized the project. “It is an organized service project,” said Patrick. “We bagged leaves in local neighborhoods. We raised a total of 1,200 pounds of food which was provided to local food pantries. Instead of pay, we took charity donations.

“I gained more satisfaction than I ever could imagine, better than if it was a for-profit project. The smile I witnessed from the little elderly lady on my block was something worth way more than money.”

Patrick, whose favorite academic subjects are math and philosophy, is a student leader in the Chess Club and Business Club leader at Scranton Prep.

The Dunmore resident has been playing piano since the first grade and enjoys kick boxing. He is a second degree black belt in karate. He will be going out for speech and debate at Scranton Prep this year.

Patrick also runs Paddy’s Lawn Care in Dunmore and surrounding neighborhoods.

“I have been involved in the lawn care business forever,” the young entrepreneur said. “Since I was about 12. We expanded our business last year.”

The articulate scholar said he has learned a lot from his parents.

Dunmorean of the Month Patrick Devaney is joined by classmates, from left: Max Snyder, Brendan Shaffer, Devaney, Isaac Diaz, and Patrick Shaffer, and Prep theology teacher Mrs. Catherine Casey.

“My dad always taught me to be a good man, but not in the traditional masculine way. He taught me how to communicate discomfort. That prevents problems. There are no solutions when slamming doors and shouting.

“My mom taught me not only to train the mind, but also the body. She has a strong belief that a balance between the two creates a well rounded individual. She’s the reason I do kick boxing and chess.”

Well-versed and ambitious, Patrick talked about his future goals. “I would like to attend Cornell University and study business,” he said. “I want to go into finance. Running a lawn care business has given me nuggets of wisdom. I have found out that compromise is always necessary.”

Patrick, well-spoken and personable, has thoroughly enjoyed his experience at Scranton Prep. “I would not trade it for anything,” he said. “I am constantly surrounded by such great talent. It pushes you as a person. It’s been a spectacular experience. It will be a sad day for me when I leave at the end of this year.”

Patrick also loves living in Dunmore. “I love Dunmore,” he said. “It’s my little bubble. I feel safe. There are so many nice local businesses. The borough is filled with nice people. There is very little crime.”

Patrick enjoys music and wishes he could have seen the late Michael Jackson in concert.

He has a positive view of the future. “It will not matter what I go into as an occupation in the long term,” he said. “Of course, having a good occupation and being ambitious is nice, but what matters most is surrounding myself with people who love and support me. No amount of money can provide that.

“I will always want to have people and relationships in my life.”

Scholar of the Month: Jack Maloney

The Dunmorean Scholar of the Month for January is Jack Maloney, son of Casey and Erin Maloney. A student at Scranton Prep, Jack’s activities include basketball, baseball, Spanish Club, Business Club, Chess Club, shadowing program, and freshman orientation guide.

Jack’s favorite sport is basketball, and he likes the following quote by Tim Notke: “Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.” Jack believes in working hard every day toward one’s goals. To prepare for a game, he listens to pump-up music, and does stretches and visualizations of the plays.

His favorite subject is English, and he loves to read and write. Jack says: “There is nothing better than reading a piece of literature and being in suspense, wondering what will happen next.”

His favorite place to visit is his grandparents; house, which is just a few blocks from his, and his favorite way to relax is is to out back to play basketball with some music. He also likes to hang out with his friends and younger cousins during his free time.

Jack’s favorite spot in Dunmore is Grande Pizza, where he goes often with his friends. “It is a fun, local place to watch sports and eat great food.”  

Jack says, “I love growing up in Dunmore because it is such a close-knit and kind community. I have made so many friends at Prep, but I am still so close with my buddies from Dunmore. When I reached sixth grade, I gained a lot more freedom to go out and walk around with my friends down near the Corners, where we would get food and just hang out. I love that we can walk around and have many businesses to visit within a short distance. 

Jack Maloney, Dunmorean Scholar of the Month is shown with his parents, Casey and Erin Maloney of Dunmore, and his sisters, Mollie, 8, second from left, and Ally, 13, second from right. Jack is a sophomore at Scranton Prep.

“I have learned many things from growing up in Dunmore, such as how to be a good neighbor, how to help others, how to be a good friend, and how important it is to have strong values and morals. It’s important to be willing to help others in the community when needed. People of Dunmore are tightly bonded together and root each other on in a positive way. 

Jack’s goal after high school is to attend the University of Notre Dame (“My dream school”), and then attend law school and one day join my uncle’s law firm, Maloney Law P.C. 

Jack’s high school plan is “to enjoy everything and not take anything for granted. I do not want to look back years from now and regret not doing something, which is why I try to get involved with anything I can and try new things. I want to make sure to excel, not only in academics and sports but also to help out in the community and contribute to something more important. “

Jack’s advice for others? “My hope for other Dunmore kids is to be selfless and just take a little time out of your day to help a neighbor or friend, who you see is struggling. Sometimes it only takes a second to listen or just be kind.  That can help turn someone’s day around.” 

Athlete of the Month: Lilly Reilly

By Steve Svetovich

Lilly Reilly is a classic example of a student-athlete who uses perseverance to excel in the classroom and on the field.

Daughter of Brian and Alyson Reilly, Dunmore, Lilly has a perfect 4.0 academic grade point average at Scranton Prep.

She is the captain of the Scranton Prep soccer team and has been the team’s leading scorer for the past two seasons. 

A four-year member of the soccer team, Lilly,18, is also a four-year member of the Prep Lacrosse team. Lilly is also a member of the Spanish Club, the Climate Change Awareness Club, and the Model U.N. Club at Prep.

A striker on the soccer team, she has seven goals and six assists this season. As a junior, she had 10 goals and eight assists in leading Prep to a 9-3 record before losing to Dallas in the district quarterfinals. Prep is 7-6 this season entering soccer playoff action. 

Articulate and well-spoken, Lilly talked about what it takes to be a good striker in high school soccer. “You need to be a very good overall player,” she said. “You can’t just be focused on scoring. You need to make passes and defend.”

The Dunmore resident was a soccer all-star as a sophomore and was nominated to play in a soccer all-star game for seniors this season. 

Her soccer coach at Scranton Prep is Douglas Kneiser. 

The talented senior, whose best academic subject is science, said she has learned a lot from her soccer coach.

“He taught us that hard work beats talent,” she said. “The other team might be more skilled, but the hardest working team will come out on top. And we have seen this actually happen a number of times this year.”

Lilly’s dad is a Dunmore graduate. Her mom graduated from Scranton Central. She has learned plenty from her parents. “My dad and mom are both hard workers,” she said. “They both grew up with single parents. They both started from the bottom and worked their way up.”

Humble and polite, Lilly said she is not sure where she will attend college. She has applied to about 15 colleges so far. “I’m not sure where I want to go yet,” she said, “but I want to go to college in the South. I want to study pre-dentistry and eventually become an orthodontist. 

“I am thinking about playing club sports in college.”

The scholar-athlete said she enjoys listening to music. She and her mom saw Taylor Swift in concert. “She was great and I would love to see her in concert again,” she said.

Lilly talked about what it takes to excel in both academics and sports at Scranton Prep. “You need to put in the work and study very hard,” she said. “And don’t slack. Never slack. Someone told me that. And it is the truth. That is the key to being successful.”

Lilly is a hard worker, but is also enjoying the ride. She has thrived at Scranton Prep. “It’s been a great experience,” she said. “COVID took our sophomore and junior years in the classroom away, but we are glad to be back in person. Prep handled the pandemic very well.

“There is a lot of school spirit now that we are back. We all appreciate being back in the classroom.”