VERY DISTINGUISHED CLASSMATE DISCOVERED
by Jeff Owens
The yearbook and graduation list both show that one of the graduates of MTHS 1961 included Andrew Von Coburg.
During the searching for members of the class, the leads for locating him were slim. He had never been contacted for any of the past reunions based on lists from all of the past reunions in possesion of some of the 50th reunion committee members.
Using the internet, a clue was discovered in the past issues of the Red Bank Register which for most of the paper's existence are archived online . In an article from May 1961, Andrew was listed among many of our classmates in a group which showed post high school education plans. He was listed as planning to attend Munich University.
At this point, a memory chord was struck. I had a vague recollection of being in German classes with 'Andy'. Specifically, I believe he sat next to me in German II or III. My recollection was that at one point he told me that 'he was a prince'. At the time I guess I just brushed it off as teenage bravado.
I began to focus my searching in German locales for clues to our missing classmate. Using my limited knowledge of German (95% of what I ever did know is now more or less just brain plaque.), I knew that "Von Coburg" means 'from Coburg'. So I set my search engine using Coburg and Andrew. What came up at this point became a total astonishment.
I found one, Andreas Coburg, but more specifically,
Andreas Michael Friedrich Hans Armin Siegfried Hubertus, Prince of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, Duke of Saxony.
Upon extensive searching about this individual I found a site where it indicated he had graduated from high school in the U.S. And upon further investigation, it was found that his mother had divorced her first husband, Andrew's father, and married a U.S. Army officer who was stationed in Germany. At that time, Andrew's grandfather held the royal title, and later his father. Andrew, more correctly, Andreas has been the head of the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and titular Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha since 1998.
You can't believe the excitment of realizing the possibility of this being our classmate. However, nothing specifially mentioned M.T.H.S. So I decided to write a letter for verification and to invite 'our' Prince to the 50-year reunion.
Within not too long I got a reply letter, and confirmation that Prince Andreas was indeed a graduate with us. Further details emerged indicating that after his mother married to his Army officer stepfather, at some point they were transferred to the U.S., at first to Louisiana when 'Andrew' was about seven years old. Later transfers brought him to Fort Hancock at which time 'Andrew' became our classmate.
For more details about HH Prince Andreas , and his post high school life, follow the links above and go to the following sites:
Information about his line of succession to the throne of England - see: Ducal House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha at:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Line_of_succession_to_the_former_Saxon_thrones
(some information about whether he is properly known as a prince or a duke is explained)
about him personally:
about his family castles and extensive properties:
this site has both a German and English version. The German version is much more developed with many additional photos:
MTHS 61 HOME PAGE