Former Students Reminisce About Sacred Heart Catholic School

Former School Building Demolished

The century-old Sacred Heart Catholic School was torn down this spring, part of parish plans to rebuild a new facility to better serve its needs. OnFocus invited former students to share their memories of their time at the school, which was first built in 1916 and operated until 2002, to help preserve its history.

Learn more about the project here:

Sacred Heart Continues School Tear-Down Process



Sue Becker-Hargraves
Madison, WI

I remember my first two years (6th and 7th grades) in split classes with Sister Mark for both years. I was amazed at the difference the Franciscan versus Dominican nuns habits looked.

I graduated there from 8th grade in 1964. Each year the new graduating class had their pictures up in the hallway.

In 1964, an announcement came over the loudspeaker that President Kennedy had been shot, and the room went silent. Soon after that our principle, Sister Simeon, came into our classroom with tears to tell us our president had died. We were all dismissed for the day and it was the first time I ever heard nothing but the creaking of the old wooden floors as we all walked out.

John Godec
Phoenix, AZ

I was at Sacred Heart back when dinosaurs roamed Marshfield, from 1958 to 1966 – first through eighth grade – and graduated!

I still remember how the building smelled, particularly in winter – kind of a combination of kids and wet wool – it’s a comforting memory. I also remember the squeaky wood floors and singing in the choir as one of the ‘Littlest Angels’.

Speaking of aromas, I can still smell the disinfectant that the custodian used after cleaning up vomit; it sticks with me because it was used a lot. We were clearly big vomiters back then. It might have been fear of the aforementioned dinosaurs or, in my case, long division.

I have a clear memory of one particular field trip singing in the loft at the bank at Christmas time – the customers and tellers looking up smiling at us, the colored lights and decorations on the light poles, a heavy snow falling outside on main street – it was like a scene from ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’. It was a most innocent time.

Larry Grosbier
Marshfield, WI

I attended Sacred Heart (or Scared Heart as we called it when the nuns were not the nicest) from Grade 1 through Grade 8, 1959 to 1966.

I live in Marshfield in the home I grew up in, just two blocks from the school. Our class was the largest to attend and I can remember Fr. Timmerman organizing us into a choir he called the “Littlest Angels” to sing for special church events. Also, this is where I met some of my best friends who I still hold dear today.

Susan Hallet
Wisconsin Rapids

I attended grades 1-8. My dad’s family also went to school there and I remember seeing a picture of my mom’s dad with his graduating class.

There were so many memories! I remember looking forward to library time… my grandma volunteering there. We went to mass every morning when I first started.

The big Valentines carnival in the gym and also the Christmas shows we had up there – each class took turns singing Christmas Carols at the end of the day. For Christmas, each class would do a song or a short skit on the stage in front of the rest of the school. For Valentines we had the gym decorated and games set up, and you would win tickets for prizes. There also was the cake walk on the stage to win cakes and cupcakes.

My favorite teacher was Sister Mary Alice and Principle Sister Marie Celine was nice too. I also actually met my husband when I was in second grade.

1916 Time Capsule Uncovered at Sacred Heart Catholic School

News Desk
Author: News Desk