Growing into the new decade: Alumni reflect on their time at Piper

Zoey Pudenz and Audrey Menzies

Zoey Pudenz and Audrey Menzies

Piper High School has had many changes occur in the past 100 years. The first graduating class, 1919, consisted of six students whereas the 2019 graduating class totaled 131 students. 

The growth rate of students is only going up from here leaving alums reminiscing on their time at Piper. Proud Piper alum and 94-year old Marge Scott-Englehart was one of the seven students in the graduating class of 1943. Scott-Englehart’s ancestors were some of the founders of Piper. 

“My dad owned a store in Piper and whenever he went out for groceries my mom would set me in a box on the counter,” Scott-Englehart said. “When anyone would come in, I would cry.” 

Another Piper alum is Bob Yunghans from the graduating class of 1959. Bob was part of the track and basketball team.

“I think the school’s growth is great until I sit down to fill out my property tax bill,” Yunghans said. 

Many of Yunghans’ relatives attended Piper including his four older sisters. Two months out of high school, he joined the Navy during the Vietnam War. 

“If I were to give any advice to a current Piper student it would be to study hard and to have fun,” Yunghans said. “It’ll go by quickly and you want to enjoy it while you’re here.”

One Piper alum that decided to stay in the community is 2004 graduate and history teacher Matthew Reitemeier. He was apart of the basketball and baseball team and was drum major his junior and senior year as well.

“One of my favorite memories as a student was my sophomore year going with the band to Chicago,” Reitemeier said. “One of my favorite memories as a teacher and coach is going to state with the baseball team.” 

It has been 15 years since Reitemeier graduated and since then school and society have changed immensely. 

“Regardless of the class I think there will always be a struggle with bullying,” Reitemeier said. “The difference is the form of bullying where my class would mostly say things to you face-to-face whereas now most bullying is on social media. I didn’t have that platform; social media was just starting when I got into college,” Reitemeier said. 

Though all of these alum lived different lives one thing they all have in common is their love for our ever-growing school. 

“I am a proud Piper alum,” Yunghans said. “Our class, whenever we can, we meet once a month at restaurants to eat a meal together which I think is pretty neat.”

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  • Sophomore Audrey Menzies and alumni Marge Scott-Englehart from the class of 1943 take a stroll around the school.

  • Alumni volunteer Sandy Hennessee points to past memorabilia in the trophy case.

  • Alumni Bob Yunghans from the class of 1959 and sophomore Zoey Pudenz glance at past class pictures.

  • Alumni Marge Scott-Englehart looks at her class pictures and points out her former classmates.

  • Alumni’s Marge Scott-Englehart and Bob Yunghans share a laugh while reminiscing on their time at Piper High School.

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