Jim Luepke Retires After Long Career at HC
Jim Luepke will be retiring after 40 years of teaching at Holy Cross and 44 total years career in education. Mr. Luepke accepted the call to Holy Cross in 1977 when Bob Scheimann was the principal. He taught fifth grade for 33 years, middle school for two years, and K-8th grade art for the past five years.
“I have loved teaching art because it involved doing hands-on activities with the children, which I feel nurtures the unique God-given talents of each student in the area of art,” he says. “I have always believed that children learn best when they are allowed to experiment and create something with their hands.”
Before teaching art, Mr. Luepke enjoyed doing hands-on activities in his fifth grade class to help students learn science, social studies, and math. Some of these projects included archaeological digs on the school grounds, making silly putty, experimenting with electrical circuits, growing plants, doing erosion activities, learning math with M&M’s, and experimenting with white rats.
He was the first teacher to become involved in the “Design an Ad” competition, and even won a computer when a student from Holy Cross placed first in the contest. He also encouraged students to enter the Allen County Poetry Competition and frequently had students place in the top spots each year.
Mr. Luepke’s years at Holy Cross also included a faithful commitment to coaching sports. He spent 22 years coaching track, 17 years coaching football, and 14 years in wrestling.
Besides the good memories of his coaching years, Mr. Luepke said that other fond memories include the holiday parties at school (where he admitted he enjoyed the treats as much as the kids!) and the Christmas music and worship program.
His ministry at Holy Cross also includes serving in the care ministry where he has been impacted by the many stories of those who are homebound.
“They touched my life by sharing their stories and how their strong faith in Jesus carried them through the many storms of their lives.”
Mr. Luepke is especially proud of his two daughters, Katie and Megan, who are using their God-given talents and abilities they learned at Holy Cross and Concordia High School to serve others. Katie is a teacher in a Lutheran school in St. Louis and Megan is an RN at Barnes Jewish Hospital In St. Louis.
"I am also thankful that the Lord has blessed me with my wife Jan, who has been my partner through all these years. I thank God that He has used her to inspire me and encourage me in my teaching career. I have been so blessed to have been a member of the staff at Holy Cross for these past 40 years. I will certainly miss the smiles and hugs of all of my wonderful young art students.”
Please join us on May 14th as we celebrate Jim Luepke’s retirement during and after our 10:30 church service.