Geneva, N.Y. - Sheila Cecere and Adam Palmer have never met.
The two were born decades apart but they share a common bond.
Cecere graduated from DeSales High School in 1966, Palmer would have graduated in 2014.Some of the most fun years of my life and it's a sad ending," Cecere said.
"I was heartbroken, it's a family, we go there and we're like brothers and sisters, it's just devastating, Palmer said. "I can't picture me being at any other school than DeSales."The news is even tough for the men of the gridiron.
Former football coach for the school, Larry Guererri was a 4th generation student, he graduated in 1989.
"This is like the first punch," Guererri said. "I'm sure when the sign comes down and things change it's going to be tough for the community here."
Even tough for the school board of trustees chairman, Peter Cheney, whose son is a senior this year.
Cheney says despite efforts to raise money and enrollment, the school just couldn't do it.
Enrollment was down to fewer than 100 students.
"When you're down that many students and you've allocated every penny and stretched it to the best of your ability and you can't find anymore money, 20 kids equates to well over $100,000," Cheney said.
The Board of Trustees announced the decision on August 1, via a press release which included a statement.
"We are saddened by this decision but we must make it given all the circumstances," said Peter Cheney, board chairman. "The decision to close DeSales was not made lightly, but through the hard work, objective analysis and heartfelt prayers of all of us on the board who dearly love this school. We wish to thank all those who have supported and sustained us these many years – the community as a whole, our generous donors, our families, our students and our staff. The memories we have of DeSales and its impact on our lives and the lives of many will live in our hearts and minds forever." Students can enroll in public schools in their hometowns.
Bishop Kearney and The Aquinas Institute of Rochester have opened their doors to DeSales seniors.
But it's what DeSales taught students and staff they say they'll carry with them forever - their faith.
"It's one of the most important values that I have," Palmer said.
Cheney added that the school tried many different means and public appeals to draw new students and additional resources, but efforts fell short of the minimum required to sustain the school now and into the future.
Earlier this year, the school raised $119,000.
Cheney says that money will be returned to donors.
The DeSales school and property will revert to Our Lady of Peace Parish because of its role in the school’s founding.