Developers already interested in Mother of Mercy campus, civic leader says

CINCINNATI -- While some Mother of Mercy alumnae struggled Thursday night to cope with news of the school’s upcoming merger with McAuley High School, other community members turned their attention to the future of its historic campus.

Margie Zentmeyer graduated from Mercy in 1953, followed years later by her three daughters and two granddaughters. It’s a special place for her family -- which is why she and others stood together outside the building Thursday night to show their concerns.

"My heart literally sunk," freshman Savana Berhane said of the moment she learned about the merger. "I have never felt so sad in my entire life."

She and Zentmeyer aren’t ready to give up.

“There is something we can do to fix this," Berhane said.

Westwood Civic Association member Joe Corso was just as shocked as anyone when he learned about the merger. Most of the women in his life, he said, graduated from Mercy.

However, he said he was focused on the future of the building, in which some developers have already shown interest.

"The last thing we want is a building that sits empty for 10 years or for it to be torn down," Corso said. "If we can get it to be a school again, I think that’s in the best interest of the community."

The civic association will hold public forums so that community members can give their input on the campus' future, Corso said.

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