- Student Life
Jr. Bills March for Life
Story by Braden Kramer ‘20
On Thursday, Jan. 17, students and faculty embarked on an unforgettable trip to Washington D.C. to participate in the March for Life. They joined others from the city of St. Louis, Missouri, the United States, and the world, all united and motivated by a drive to protect all life. The event has been regularly attended by SLUH students with the school and their parishes for years now.
The group boarded a bus Thursday morning during second period and were escorted to the airport, where they caught a plane that landed in D.C early in the afternoon. After arriving, the students and faculty were taken to a hotel just a few miles outside of downtown D.C. where they would stay the night.
On Friday, Jan. 18, the group rode the subway into downtown and got out right were the march was taking shape. One member of the faculty in the group, math teacher Don Steingruby, noted that the amount of people was, “overwhelming to see. In every direction that you looked there were people.” He had estimated the amount of people there at a whopping 250,000, maybe 500,000. Although there was a sea of people as far as the eye could see, Steingruby explained that he never once felt crowded.
“The crowd wasn’t like that at a sporting event, but everyone there was courteous, kind, and were all there for the same reason” he said.
Even though the march only lasted around three hours, he noted that it seemed to go quickly.
Junior Ben Kennebeck described the crowds as being much bigger than he expected. “Everywhere you looked, people were holding up signs and chanting. It was just a crazy scene” said Kennebeck.
After the march, those from SLUH went to a reception at a hall on Capitol Hill with other St. Louisans. Later that night, the group grabbed a bite to eat at Union Station and went back to the hotel for the night.
When asked about his favorite part of the trip, junior Joe Callahan described an event that occurred after the march had taken place. The night after the march, Men for Life club moderator David Callon had called everyone into the hotel basement at 9:45 p.m. for an examen and a reflection on the day’s events.
“I was able to hear about what other people found most interesting and powerful at the march. Most of the time, I missed out on these events or quotes since I could not possibly see every sign or everything,” said Callahan.
On Saturday, the group went to the campus of Georgetown University to hear a series of talks by those who both influenced and were motivated by the topic. The Cardinal O’Connor Conference was headed by Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan, who gave a talk to everyone attending. Next, students and faculty had the opportunity to attend three breakout sessions, where they were given the chance to hear the views and experiences of many influential and powerful speakers.
On Sunday before the flight home, the group took a break from all of the talks and explored the city. Some saw Arlington Cemetery and the changing of the guard ceremony the day they got there, but never really had the chance to explore all of the famous buildings and monuments that D.C has to offer. The group got to see many sites, such as the Vietnam War Memorial, the exact place on the Lincoln Memorial where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. gave his famous, “I Have A Dream” speech, the Washington Monument, and the White House.
When asked about what he will remember most about the trip, Steingruby noted that he will remember the brotherhood.
“I liked the camaraderie between both the students and faculty that went and getting to know the students outside of class. Every one of these factors contributed to an overall positive experience,” said Steingruby.