After 46 years, a teacher made good on his 1978 promise to watch 2024 solar eclipse with students

Here's a feel-good eclipse story that's just too awesome to let slip through the cracks. In 1978, earth science teacher Patrick Moriarty made a promise to his students: to reunite for the 2024 solar eclipse. And he actually pulled it off!

Moriarty was a first-year teacher, at just 22 years old, when he made the pledge. He gave his 9th grade students a list of solar eclipses and told them to circle the 2024 solar eclipse slated to pass over their hometown near Rochester, New York. He then promised they'd watch it together.

Last Monday, over 100 people, including many former students, attended a backyard gathering organized by now-68-year-old Moriarty through a Facebook group.

While clouds covered the view of the eclipse in Rochester, the group took joy in being together again for the once-in-a-lifetime event.

"Everybody got so quiet and just let the environment around them take over, and it just seemed very magical," Moriarty said. "It's not about the eclipse anymore to me. It's all about the reunions."

Now, Moriarty is joking that maybe he'll plan another reunion for the 2044 eclipse in Wisconsin. He will be 88 years old by the time it rolls around.


Protect this man at all costs! [via KPTV, NBC News]

Previously: After the eclipse, get ready for a once in a lifetime nova