In September of 1948, Nick Childs ’52, the first member of the Childs family to set foot on Cory’s Lane, began his family’s close association with the School and Monastery. His three younger brothers, two nephews, and several grandchildren all followed in his footsteps as Ravens. One brother, Sandy ’57, joined the monastery to become the Rev. Dom Luke Childs. Another brother, Dan ’53, married Margaret, the sister of ‘Priory Boy’ Carter Burden ’59, and their son, Rick ’75, continued the family tradition of attending Portsmouth. “Getting to study with great men and Catholic educators, like Dom Hilary, Dom Damian, Dom Philip, and Dom Ambrose is something that I will always cherish,” Rick fondly recalled.
That generational appreciation for an Abbey education fell to Liz as well. Rick continued, “I believe my grandfather, Frederick Childs, wanted a good, strong Catholic education for his four boys. That strong faith in the Portsmouth Catholic education was passed down to the next generation. And when Liz was looking at schools, Beezie and I gave her the choice. I think my father helped Liz in making her final decision!” Liz added warmly, “Teachers played a huge part in my experience at the Abbey. As teachers, houseparents and coaches they got to know my strengths and weaknesses, and I genuinely feel like they wanted to see me succeed.”
So when the Science Building Steering Committee approached Rick and Liz asking them to help secure the School’s academic future through a leadership gift in support of the School’s new science building, their response was immediate and impressive. Rick and Liz partnered on a gift that will allow them to name the Physics Classroom for Daniel R. Childs ’53. “My father’s long standing commitment to the School as student, parent, grandparent, and head of the Board of Consultants in the early 1970s helped to shape the School. To have the chance to honor his service while helping continue his work was an opportunity that we had to take,” said Rick. Liz agreed, “I love the Abbey and I want it to continue to be around and relevant for years to come. I have been able to follow in my relatives’ footsteps at the Abbey, in part, because of their generations’ generosity. I feel very lucky to be able to give back to a place that has had such a positive impact on who I am today and that continues to be a big part of my family.”
Like Rick, Liz, and Dan, you too can help “shape the School” by supporting the single largest project in the School’s history – our new science building. Please visit the “Giving” tab for more information about this transformational undertaking and to learn more about ways you can help to secure the academic future of Portsmouth Abbey School.