Hunts, Ward senior recognized at Seton Gala

Lamar Hunt Jr. and Rita Hunt were the recipients of this year’s Seton Award, which is given annually to those devoted to Catholic education. Standing with the Hunts are Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann, left, and Bishop James V. Johnston Jr. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE NCEA

by Regina Garcia
Special to The Leaven

WASHINGTON, D.C. — As the undefeated Kansas City Chiefs hosted the Washington Redskins on “Monday Night Football” Oct. 2, there was one member of the Hunt family who was not at Arrowhead Stadium.

Lamar Hunt Jr. and his wife Rita were in Washington, D.C., instead, attending the 27th annual National Catholic Education Association (NCEA) Seton Awards Gala — as this year’s recipients of the prestigious St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Award.

NCEA’s Seton Award is named after Mother Elizabeth Ann Seton, SC, in recognition of her lifelong dedication to teaching and children. The Seton Awards commemorate individuals and organizations devoted to faithful service to Catholic education.

The Hunts have generously supported various elementary and high schools in both the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph and the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas.

Lamar Hunt served as chair of Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann’s private appeal, benefiting, in part, several Catholic schools in the archdiocese. In addition, the Loretto Foundation, created by Rita and Lamar Hunt, has assisted several Catholic schools in both dioceses with major capital projects.

The Hunts were instrumental in the building of the new St. Michael the Archangel High School in Lee’s Summit, Missouri, and also in the major renovation of the St. Thomas Aquinas High School facility in Overland Park.  

While the Chiefs game made for good conversation and occasional score updates among some attendees, Hunt’s acceptance remarks focused on the importance of Catholic education and the need to ensure that all families have the opportunity to attend Catholic schools.

“We really need to get shoulder to shoulder with Jesus and work. Everything counts. Every small thing we do, counts,” he said.

Both Archbishop Naumann and Bishop James V. Johnston Jr. attended the gala event, happy for the chance to see the Hunts acknowledged for their work in both dioceses.

“They want to support our Catholic schools,” said Archbishop Naumann of the Hunts, “to help our young people know Jesus and understand what it means to live a virtuous life.”

One such young person is Adrian Daniel DeHaro, a graduate of Resurrection Catholic School at the Cathedral and a senior at Bishop Ward High School in Kansas City, Kansas. DeHaro traveled to D.C. to receive the Rita and Lamar Hunt Jr. Seton Scholarship, which was awarded at the event.

Son of Juan DeHaro and Evelia Soto, he is the second of six boys. He is co-captain of the football team, participates in the REACH Mentoring Program, and is the head boy for the BWHS House Alliance System.

He also serves as a school ambassador, thus continuously sharing the good news of his Catholic high school with visitors and others in the community.

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