Diane (Hehmann) Hollowell '72 returned to Scecina Memorial High School in 2015 to teach math.
Name: Diane (Hehmann) Hollowell
Year of Scecina Graduation: 1972
College/University: Butler University
Degree: Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics
Current Position: Math Teacher, Scecina Memorial High School
By Beth Murphy, Director of Marketing Communications
Diane (Hehmann) Hollowell '72 fondly recalls how well her Scecina teachers taught her in class. Some of her other high school memories go beyond the classroom, like Coach Leffler bringing his kids to games and Father Riedman walking around school with a hammer in his belt.
“Mr. Ken Leffler was my English and chemistry teacher. He was a great teacher and made class fun,” she recalled. “His children were little at the time and I remember how he would bring them to a basketball game and they would all sit on the stage. This year (Scecina teacher and coach) Brad Purcell had his little boys on the stage, and I couldn’t help but think how life changes and yet so many things stay the same.”
Diane has returned to the same halls and stage that were so familiar when she was a teenager. In 2015, she took a math teacher position at Scecina. Since her return, she’s taken command of the school’s chapter of National Honor Society and she initiated Scecina students’ participation in Catholic Math League, a national math competition.
“The Catholic Math League is known for preparing students to analyze questions, skills that are needed when taking standardized tests such as the SAT or ACT,” she said. “The competition element makes it more interesting. The students want to represent Scecina well and a little friendly rivalry between the students is never a bad thing.”
Diane met her husband, Joe Hollowell ’72, in geometry class at Scecina. Joe and Diane have 11 children. Two of their sons are priests in the Archdiocese of Indianapolis. Father John Hollowell is pastor of two parishes near Terre Haute and the chaplain of DePauw University and Putnamville Correctional Facility. Father Tony Hollowell is finishing up his studies in Rome and will be back in June. Diane attended Little Flower Catholic School and Parish, where she was baptized, confirmed and married. When she went to high school, her faith and values were reinforced at Scecina.
“The teachers and staff demonstrated their faith daily,” she said. “I was blessed by the many priests and religious sisters who taught here.”
“Father (Joseph) Riedman was the guidance department when I went to Scecina,” she said. “He also fixed anything and everything that was broken around the school. He was always available if I had any questions, but he usually had a hammer tucked into his belt.”
Diane (Hehmann) Hollowell and her husband, Joe '72, with their 11 children, their spouses and grandchildren.
Sister Teresa Marie Boersig cultivated Diane’s affinity for math.
“She was such a great teacher and I learned so much from her,” said the math teacher. “My junior year she went back to Purdue and earned her PhD.”
Diane’s road to Butler University from Scecina was helped by Ott Hurrle ’70, when he brought her a college application from Butler.
Now Diane and Ott are together again in the halls of Scecina.
“Life changes and yet so many things stay the same.”