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St. Teresa's Catholic Church & School - Koppel PA

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A photo of the St. Teresa’s Catholic Church and School, housed in the remodeled former office building of the Koppel Industrial Car and Equipment Company. The parochial school (located in the back portion of the building) was first opened for classes on Tuesday, September 2, 1952, for about 125 students in grades one through four. (c1955)

Old postcard showing the original building when it was an office for the Koppel Industrial Car and Equipment Company. This card is portmarked Dec 13, 1924, and facetiously reads, “Russ, This place is so lively I go to bed with the chickens. H.S. Koppel Pa.” Ok, so Koppel was not all that exciting!

In this photo you can see where a new entrance (for the church) has been carved into the old building. You can see the different colored brick around the entrance. The far entrance, partially visible on right, was for the school. (2007)

The front of St. Teresa’s Church facing Arthur St in Koppel. Jul 2010.

A statue of the Spanish-born St. Teresa of Avila (1515-1582), for whom the church and school were named. (2007) (Photo by Tom Glasco)

Another view showing the front of the church and former school. Jul 2010.

The rear section of the church. (2007 – Photo by Tom Glasco).

Three school photos from the mid-1950’s at St. Teresa’s Catholic School. From left its my mom MaryAnn DeMarc in 1st grade, her sister Carol Jean DeMarc in the 3rd grade, and their cousin Ronnie Teck in the 6th grade. Full Size

My mom’s 1st grade report card from the 1954-55 school year at “St. Teresa and Monica School.” (1955)

Another of my mom’s report cards from the 1957-58 school year. Notice the card is marked as ‘St. Monica and St. Teresa School.’ (1958)

A view of the cafeteria in the basement. (May 1956)

My mom MaryAnn DeMarc, smiling in middle, in the cafeteria. (May 1956)

An old photo showing a gathering of kids during their First Holy Communion at St. Teresa’s in May 1956. My mother MaryAnn DeMarc is on left end of second row – standing against wall.

A gathering of students out front of St. Teresa’s on August 31, 1954. I believe this is the first day of school. My aunt Carol Jean DeMarc is standing front and center in darker dress.

Another photo from August 31, 1954. My aunt Carol Jean DeMarc is located on bottom left corner with white socks on.

Another similar photo from August 31, 1954. I want to find out who the kid with the crutches (and leg braces?) is.

Similar to pic #9 above, but this is the official group photo. First Holy Communion photo from May 1956. That’s my mom again – with the socks!

The Catholic school children are shepherded into position for the results captured in pics #9 and #13.

I believe I see my cousin Ronnie Teck in the middle of this and the next photo. (May 1955)

Donna Mineo is front and center in this photo. (May 1955)

A photo of St. Teresa’s school kids taken on the first day of school in September 1956. Full Size

Inside one of the old classrooms of St. Teresa’s School. (2007 – Photo by Tom Glasco).

My niece Elissa Bettencourt sitting in one of the old desks at St. Teresa’s. Look at those things! Your own writing desk is attached to the back of the chair in front of you. (2007 – Photo by Tom Glasco).

Elissa in the hallway of the old school. (2007 – Photo by Tom Glasco)

A Sunday morning view of the front of the building from across the nearby ballfield. (Jul 2010)

A fire on the afternoon of Friday, April 1, 2011, was contained by firefighters but extensive smoke and water damage was sustained inside the building. The fire, which was ruled accidental, broke out about an hour after a funeral had concluded. (May 2011)

After the April 2011 fire the local parishioners started attending mass at Holy Redeemer Church in Ellwood City while repairs could be made. However, due to budget constraints it now appears the Pittsburgh Diocese will not reopen this building any time soon. (May 2011)

(Dec 2011)

(Dec 2011)

(Aug 2012)

(Aug 2012)

(Aug 2012) Full Size

(Aug 2012)

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(Aug 2012)



  1. The kid with the crutches is Gregory Annarella. He had polio.

    Ron Teck · 03/12/2012 10:33 PM · #

  2. The kid with the crutches is Gregory annarella but he didn’t have polio.. He was born with Spinal Bifada..I was friends with his mom. Also his brother Angelo and my son Jerry Mount were the same age and good friend..

    Linda Thomas · 04/06/2012 05:19 PM · #

  3. (EDITOR’S NOTE) Thanks Ronnie and Linda. My mom said she remembered him but did not recall his name. What ever became of him? I will see if I can find out. Thanks!

    Jeff Bales · 04/08/2012 11:45 AM · #

  4. Nice pictures. I was one of the first students in this school in 1952. The picture of the first communion has my brother Steve Murphy in the front row. He is the one with the cape on. He led the communicants into the church. On either side of him are the Pavlovic twins. My brother Jim Murphy was in the 3rd grade when the school opened.

    Ron Murphy · 05/06/2013 10:15 AM · #

  5. Went to Sunday school there in the early 80s. Served mass there as an alter boy. Used to play baseball in the field across Arthur Street. Remember racing BMX bikes around the church with friends. Amazing pics and memories jogged by this. Thanks!

    Andy Frisk · 08/06/2013 05:01 PM · #

  6. The group picture of school opening was taken on bleechers right across the street from the entrance to the school. That is Father Edmund Sheedy with his back to the camera. I’m on those bleechers somewhere. Ron Murphy

    Ron Murphy · 09/01/2013 06:25 PM · #

  7. I went to this church growing up in Koppel. Many great memories.

    The funeral that was held an hour before it caught fire was for my Aunt. A kind of odd fact, her wedding was the first in that same church.

    Steven Burcik · 10/26/2013 08:42 PM · #

  8. (EDITOR’S NOTE) Thanks to Barbara G for pointing out that the statue in pic #5 is of St. Teresa of Avila, the namesake of the church and school. Jeff

    Jeff Bales Jr · 01/29/2014 09:43 AM · #

  9. Hi….Gregory Annarella was my mom’s, (jo ellen scarazzo gossard), first cousin….their mothers’ were sisters (ellen paparelli annarella and margaret paparelli scarazzo)…if you are still interested, i can put you in touch with my mom regarding gregory…she also has many, many great Koppel stories, having lived there all her life…mom will be turning 70 this december ♡♡♡

    julianne b · 11/18/2016 06:38 PM · #