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Mishawaka teacher tributes

August Baetsle: by Terry DeMaegd, '68
Emily K. "Miss Emmy" Davidson: by Frank Cackowski, '61
Charles Karst: by Marilou Karst Gilman, '68
Thelma Martin: by Randi Sue Baker, '68
Thelma Martin: by Alice Marie Beard, '68
Don Portolese: by Frank Cackowski, '61
Margaret Powell (Bingham): by Mary Rhoade Spratt, '68
Earl Stine: by Judy Greenlee, '68
Helen Stoddart: by Alan Stafford, '68
Rosa Weikel: by Michael S. Bell, MHS student 1961-62
Marvin Wood, from the South Bend Tribune



Short Notes of Praise for MHS Teachers:
from Robert Steele (rsteele AT pike.k12.in.us) (Class of '70)
Mar 3, 2005


After finding this site, I felt compelled to write something about two of the main teachers I had while in the Mishawaka system. First, Mr. Robert Ernst, Main Junior High. If I had to pick one teacher that made a difference in my life, it was Mr. Ernst. Science had always been an interest for me, but his teaching and caring gave me a reality check that I will NEVER forget. When I was at the Hoosier Science Teacher's Convention a few years ago, I sat down next to someone who hadn't changed since High School; that was Mr. Braunsdorf. He awakened in me an interest in math and science that led me through 3 college degrees and into my present position as the Director of the Academy of Science and Engineering in Indianapolis. It was quite interesting sitting next to him now as a colleague, a fellow physics teacher. He was exactly as I remembered him. I wonder how much like him I am today; that would not be a bad thing.
   
from Jody Simmons (Class of '87)
Jan 29, 2005


My list of favorite teachers (In no particular order):
1.) Mr.David Robertson - Just a wonderful person. ... I still have some flags I "borrowed" from him.
2.) Mr. Manuzak - Wow! what a teacher this guy is! Not to mention the person.
3.) Mr. Al Smith - enough said!
4.) Well, not a teacher...but the custodian Kenny! He gets a hi-5!
5.) Mr. Jerry Shaw... great Auto shop teacher! Not to mention his after school activities "buzzing" around him.
6.) Mrs. Willa Cunningham ... boy she was tough! Didn't like the class at the time, BUT later in life I realized how good she really was.
7.) Mr. Tom May ..... Hmmm....yeah, he gets a hi-5
8.) Mr. Tom Urbanski .... great man there!
9.) Anita Nash..... she was tough...but I liked her.
10.) #1 of all time!!!....a teacher, a counselor, a coach, a father, ....a "GOD" to me... Mr. MARVIN WOOD .... What can you say about this guy! Man I give him two HI -5's!!! What a direction in life this guy gave me...thanks, Marv! Rest In Peace
   
from Dennis Ward (Class of '72)
Aug 7, 2004


Favorite teachers 1968 to 1972:
1. Mary Hess -- so special to our family that my sister and I had her inducted on the MHS Wall of Fame.
2. Marvin Wood -- Other than my father, Mr. Wood was the adult male who had the biggest influence on me as I was growing up.
3. Bruce Chamberlain -- I gained tremendous confidence from his Speech and Debate classes.
4. Ward Baker -- Reiterating what others have said about him.
5. Suzanne Kamm -- She actually made freshman English enjoyable and meaningful. She was also a plain old nice lady.
6. Thelma Martin -- Demanding and challenging, just what seniors who knew it all needed.
7. Bill Phillips -- Great geometry and biology teacher, but perhaps my memories are skewed by the situation -- summer school biology class in 1969: me, Mr. Phillips, the boy who sat behind me, and 22 girls!
   
from Cheryl Shutes (Class of '63)
Sep 30, 2002

Mr. Badre
(History), who thought enough of me to tutor me after school.
Miss Koch (Music, Music, and MORE Music!), what great love she had for the subject and wanted to pass that love to us!
Mary Nicholson (Sewing--Home Nursing): I wonder if I should apologize for the "cutting up" I did in her classes? What fun we had coming in at 8:00 with our hair in those great big rollers 'cause we had just left the "Y" and swim class!
Miss "Emmy" (Davidson): Senior English, but especially the school plays!
   
from Mary Lou Houston (Class of '52)
Apr 26, 2002

MHS had the greatest of all teachers. One of my favorites was Ruth Foulke, who we kept in contact with until her death in 1992 in her retirement home in Richmond, IN. Also Darl Wood, for whom I did clerical work in my junior and senior years and spent many years with following, with him and his wife. Spent time with both of them in nursing home until their passing. Two great people and we are glad they were able to see our two children growing up. Husband, Class of '52 also, thought the world of Frank Firmani. So many more that we could mention - we will never see any more like them!
   
from Donald Dinius (Class of '51)
Jan 20, 2002

Favorite Teachers from 1947 to 1951:
Ken Armel: Print Shop (always smiling)
Roy Broman: Math (well prepared)
Dorthy Green: US History
Ruby Perkins: US Goverment
Helen Stoddart: English (Shakespear)
Darl Wood: Science (do it my way)
Russal Myers: Principal (ran the school like his ship)
Frank Chapman: Dean of Boys (always very encouraging)
   
from James Gannon (Class of '82)
Mar 7, 2001

I was always a big fan of Mr. Robertson and his International Relations class.
   
from Mark Firmani (Class of '81)
Dec 16, 2000

I would add Betty Favorite to hall-of-fame all-star list. We did not know it at the time, but she was pushing us well beyond what was expected of a typical high-school English student. When I went on to college, I was able to test out of four freshman- and sophomore-level classes, thanks to her. She also did a great job of instilling what has become a life-long love of literature (please excuse the alliteration). It became obvious to me that two types of teachers (and administrators) existed at MHS: those who were there for the twice-monthly paycheck and those who had a true love for teaching. Betty Favorite falls squarely in that second group. To this day, I still have my copy of Warner's Handbook, a grammar and style guide she gave us before graduation. If I were wearing a hat, I would take it off in her honor.
   
from Paula Spart (Class of '78)
Jun 29, 2000

It is hard to decide on one favorite teacher. I thought Mr. Long, the high school choir director, was my favorite, but I have a whole lot of favorites myself.

Mrs. Favorite and Miss Hess were a couple of mine because they really seemed to enjoy what they taught and I enjoyed the classes too -- Latin and Literature. I liked Mr. Blue because he always had a joke for us each morning and also seemed to enjoy teaching government, another favorite class of mine. Mr. Bottorff seemed to be down to earth and caring as well as being interested in the social interactions of others. (Tied in with the subject of sociology which I took from him.)

I liked Mr. Schroer as a homeroom teacher because he would always pick a topic and ask the class what our opinions were on it.
   
from Edward Fleming (Class of '60)
Jun 24, 2000

Terri Martin
certainly did tell it like it was -- and to a 23-year-old 3rd-year teacher (beginning in Fall of '66) she was a God-send. All the salty but absolutely correct advice and direction she gave me.
   
from Alice Marie Beard (Class of '68)
Jun 15, 2000

I'd include, among others, Thelma Martin and her senior English class taught at an Ivy League school level; Ken Armel and his jokes by number as he taught that printing is an art and a craft worthy of the mind of Ben Franklin; Mildred Harden who ate lunch at her desk every lunch hour, on duty to help any student needing help with math; Ward Baker and his massive knowledge of history; Merle Blue and his doughnuts to explain supply and demand; Charlie Karst and his perserverence to teach even those who wanted to give up; Miss Mary Hess, because every student deserves the experience of a "Good Witch of the North" once in a lifetime! (Remember? "Are you a good witch, or a bad witch?" ... And Glinda stood before Dorothy sparkling and said, "I'm a good witch," and the Munchkins teetered in the background.)


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