Yearbook Students Honor Alumni-Staff Members in 50th Anniversary Dedication
That Was Then & This is Now
This past spring, the HCA high school yearbook class honored 12 alumni staff members by dedicating the 50th Anniversary yearbook to them! The brief excerpts which follow are only part of what makes these alumni’s stories unique. They all share one thing in common: their faith in Jesus Christ and their service to Him at HCA. Along with the student yearbook staff, the HCA administration and entire HCA family thanks these teachers and staff members for sharing their lives and dedication to Christ.
Mrs. Bethany Attard (Lopez) attended HCA for K4-12th grade and graduated with the Class of 1999. She is one of HCA’s Lifers. Bethany teaches elementary art and also coaches elementary and junior high cheerleading. She says, “HCA is truly my home! I love working with children, sharing Christ’s love with them, and giving to them what was given to me.” Bethany’s favorite teacher was Mr. Keith Falde who taught her Bible class. She relates, “There are so many favorite memories, especially my senior trip to Colorado, as well as all the homecoming activities each year. I also enjoyed chapel each week where godly men and woman shared Christ with us.”
Bethany is married to Phil Attard who teaches math and science at HCA. They have two sons. Levi is going into 2nd grade, and Jonah will be starting K3 in August. Bethany is the second daughter of HCA headmaster and his wife, Mr. and Mrs. Ken Lopez. Bethany’s favorite Bible verse is Ephesians 4:32 – Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
Mrs. Brittany Brown (Morris) attended HCA for 10th-12th grades and graduated with the Class of 2005. She returned to HCA in August 2014 to teach secondary English. She says, “HCA was, and still is, a place of safety and learning. To return as a staff member and teach what was my favorite subject in high school is a great gift!” Brittany’s favorite teacher was Mr. Bill Canning. Brittany recalls a memorable event when her class went to Rome during their senior trip. “The group went to the Trevi Fountain late one night and watched the stars. Laying on the cold stone so far from home, looking up at the beautiful sky, and realizing just how big the world is, was a life-altering moment. It is one of my favorite memories ever!”
Brittany is married to Patrick Brown, who also attended HCA. Their daughter, Claire, will be in K4 in August. Brittany shares, “There are many times we want to fight our own battles, and we lose sight of relying on God.” Her favorite Bible verse reminds us that God is always on our side. Exodus 14:14 – The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.
Mrs. Cheryl Caldwell (North) attended HCA for 3rd-8th grades. Cheryl taught HCA 1st grade for six years and was very involved with drama productions. She says, “I have loved serving alongside others who share both a passion for the Lord and for instructing young people, whether that student is 6 or 16.” Cheryl’s favorite teachers were Mrs. Shannon Ratzlaff and Miss Julie Method. She shares, “I will always remember our times in chapel. Whether it was spiritual emphasis week or just a normal chapel week, it was always a time I looked forward to. We had so many wonderful speakers, dramas, and staff-led time of worship and Bible study.”
Cheryl is married to Eric Caldwell, aka EJ, who also attended HCA. Their daughter Olivia was born shortly after the last day of school this year! Cheryl’s favorite Bible verse is Psalm 91:1-2 – Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.
Mrs. Stephanie Fonseca (Barnard) attended HCA for 4th-12th grades and graduated with the Class of 2006. She began teaching secondary English in August 2014. She says, “I enjoy working with students and teaching a subject that I love. I love the opportunity that I have to make a positive impact on the younger generation while doing something that interests me greatly.” Stephanie’s favorite teacher was Mr. Keith Falde who taught her Bible class. She shares that her favorite memories include, “being on IMAGE trips and performances, musicals – especially Cinderella, youth group at Grace Baptist, and her senior trip to Rome, Paris and London!”
Stephanie was just recently married to Diego Fonseca. Stephanie’s favorite Bible verse is John 15:5 – I am the vine, you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.
Miss Alexi Rivera attended HCA for 9th-12th grades and graduated with the Class of 2011. She returned to HCA in August 2015 to teach secondary math and robotics. When asked why she loves working at HCA, she says, “It feels like a family, and that makes it really enjoyable.” Alexi’s favorite teacher was Mr. Bill Canning. Her favorite memories include singing in the choir and competing with the academic quiz teams. She also shares, “Cheerleading was a great way to spend time with friends and do something I enjoy.”
Alexi’s favorite Bible verse is John 20:3 – But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
Pastor Luke Still attended HCA for 10th-12th grades and graduated with the Class of 1999. He began serving here in May 2010. He is the school chaplain and youth pastor of Grace Baptist Church. Luke says, “The opportunity to impact the lives of others the way that my own life was impacted is one of the greatest things I can think of. I am excited about teaching our students not only the unconditional love of Christ, but how they can live their life for the glory of God daily.” Luke’s favorite teacher was Mr. Keith Falde. He recalls, “My time at HCA was truly incredible. I enjoyed everything that HCA had to offer but my favorite memory would have to be my senior trip to Colorado to go skiing.”
Luke is married to Elizabeth, and they have seven children: Landon (6th grade), Keira (5th grade), Malia (2nd grade), Caden (K5), Nicole (K5), Bilal (4), and Brandon (3). Luke’s favorite Bible verse is 1 Corinthians 9:16-18 – For when I preach the gospel, I cannot boast, since I am compelled to preach. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel! If I preach voluntarily, I have a reward; if not voluntarily, I am simply discharging the trust committed to me. What then is my reward? Just this: that in preaching the gospel I may offer it free of charge, and so not make full use of my rights as a preacher of the gospel.
Mr. Scott Lassen attended HCA for 4th-12th grades and graduated with the Class of 1992. He began working here in January 2008 as the student accounts specialist. Scott coaches the junior high girls basketball team in addition to being a vital part of many special events, especially fall festivals. Scott also serves in various areas of the children and youth ministries at Grace Baptist Church. Scott says, “I enjoy having the opportunity to interact with the kids. I also enjoy being able to see my own kids in the hall at school during the day.” Scott’s favorite teachers were Mr. Fite and Miss Dix. His favorite memory was getting to ski while on his senior trip to Colorado.
Scott is married to Lori Lassen (Steinkamp) who graduated in 1990. They have four children. In August, Kyle and Kayla will be seniors, Ryan will be a sophomore, and Ashley will be in 5th grade. Scott’s favorite Bible verse is Psalm 37:4 – Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Mrs. Amber Ross (Smith) attended HCA for 1st-12th grades and graduated with the Class of 2006 making her another one of the HCA Lifers. She began working at HCA in August 2011. Although she is currently the athletic secretary and volleyball coach, she has taught PE for both elementary and secondary, home ec, and worked as the main office receptionist. She says, “I love working with my family and close friends who have impacted my life over the years. Now I get to do the same in return.” Amber’s favorite teachers were Mrs. Shannon Ratzlaff and Mr. Bill Canning. Amber says her favorite memory was the senior trip to Rome, Paris, and London “that built new relationships and life-long friends.”
Amber is married to Jordan Ross. They have a son, SJ, who is 1 year old. She is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Larry Smith. Mr. Smith is our secondary principal, and Mrs. Smith teaches Bible, science and PE. Amber’s favorite Bible verse is Proverbs 3:5-6 – Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.
Mrs. Leslie Shein (Spear) attended HCA from 7th-12th grades and graduated with the Class of 1999. She taught 2nd grade for 4 years beginning in 2003. She returned to HCA in 2012 and currently serves as the elementary principal’s assistant. Leslie says, “This school had such a tremendous impact on me and my family. I am so excited to be a part of that impact on future generations.” Leslie’s favorite teacher was Mr. Kevin Snyder. Her favorite memory was something quite dramatic. Leslie shares, “Once in psychology class, Coach Reg Cook was being taunted by a mouse, so using only a dry erase board eraser he nailed the mouse from across the room. It was AMAZING! I don’t remember anything from psychology, but that epic moment will be with me forever.”
Leslie is married to Blair Shein who graduated in 1997. They have two children. In August, Lily Kay will be in 4th grade, and Corbin Mitchell will be in 2nd grade. Leslie’s favorite Bible verse is Philippians 2:9-11 – Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Mr. David Padgett attended HCA for 9th-12th grades and graduated in the Class of 2014. He began working at HCA in November 2014 in the IT department where he uses his skills behind the scenes at various school and church functions. David can also be found in classrooms assisting teachers with computer-related issues, or in the sound/light booth during chapels or special programs. David says, “Knowing that I can help people with my skill-set and help further development of the school and church is satisfying.”
David’s favorite teacher was Miss Julie Method. He says, “During my last two years of high school, I joined drama thinking that I just needed a class to attend. At first I thought it would be another elective to pass. As I got involved with acting and tech, I found out it was more than that, and it changed me from being shy to being more outgoing and confident. I enjoyed being in the plays on stage acting and behind the curtain helping tech.” David’s favorite Bible verse is Luke 6:37 – Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.
Mr. Calvin Smith attended HCA for 1st-12th grades and graduated with the Class of 2008. He is another one of the esteemed HCA Lifers. Calvin began working at HCA in June 2011 serving in the maintenance department, while studying paramedicine for his career as a paramedic. Calvin says that working at Highlands has been “great because of the great staff at HCA.” Calvin’s favorite teacher was Mr. Derek Parker, and he recalls that the senior trip was his best memory.
Calvin is the oldest son of Mr. & Mrs. Larry Smith. Mr. Smith is the secondary principal, and Mrs. Smith teaches Bible, science, and PE. Calvin’s favorite Bible verse is Ephesians 3:20 – Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
Mrs. Jennifer Wiegman (Chambers) attended HCA for K4-2nd grade. She began working at HCA in August 2014 serving in various areas of the daycare and housekeeping departments. Jennifer says she loves working at Highlands because “people know me and are so friendly to me.” Jennifer’s favorite teachers were Mrs. JoAnn Scriver and Mrs. Rita Lubbers. Her favorite memory was something that happened on an elementary field trip when her class “went to an alligator place and a classmate jumped into the alligator pit to go after his hat that had fallen in the water!”
Jennifer is married to Christopher Wiegman. They have a son, Colton, who will be in K4 in August. Jennifer’s favorite Bible verse is Psalm 23:1 – The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.