Shorewood Senior Campus Hosts a Retired Teachers Luncheon

Jul 7th, 2017

Shorewood hosted their first luncheon in a series for retirees. This luncheon was held on June 26th and included more than 20 retired teachers. Teachers shared their years of service, the discipline they taught, and advice to students who are currently in school. All together we had over 850 years of experience in one room!


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  • Fran Robb taught school for 30 years. She raised four children while obtaining her bachelor’s degree, master’s degree and Ph.D. She taught fifth grade in the Rochester Public School District and later became a principal. Fran took a moment to thank her friend, Jeanette Benson, also a retired teacher, who encouraged Fran to become a teacher. “I would have never done any of this without her encouragement,” Fran said. Jeanette Benson retired from teaching after 30 years. She taught at numerous schools in the Rochester area and loved being a teacher.

  • At the age of 22, Carol Carlson taught biology in California and became the head of the science department. She later moved to Rochester and taught at Kellogg Middle School and Mayo, John Marshall, and John Adams High School. Carol was a substitute for a variety of subjects in Rochester. “I even subbed for the sewing teacher on occasion, and I have no idea how to sew,” Carol chuckled.

  • The jack of all trades, Diane Tenoff, taught for 30 years in a variety of subjects. She taught band, choir, writing, speech and physical education. She was even the librarian for a brief stint.

  • Margaret Schaeffner grew up in Auburn, Alabama. She met her husband in Alabama and after the Korean War, she and her husband moved to The Cities. She went to the Minneapolis Technical Institute and began teaching word processing, typing, and shorthand. She gave 29 years of service as a teacher.

  • Dorothy Lundquist went to the University of Minnesota. Her first job was as a substitute teacher in Duluth. She taught physical education, swimming, and synchronized swimming. She later went on sabbatical for a year, traveled to Hawaii and worked at a boarding school. From Hawaii, she went to Fargo and continued teaching synchronized swimming. She also taught in Nebraska. Her career spanned 25 years.

  • Teaching was a second career for Irene Jameson. She was a nurse in the Navy for 22 years and served in WWII. She went back to school after her stint in the Navy and then taught 3rd and 4th grade. She taught in inner city Phoenix, Arizona for 22 years and loved every minute in the classroom.

  • The Stewartville wrestling program was started by Life Sciences teacher Howard Sloneker. He taught in Stewartville for 36 years. He also taught in Mankato’s upper elementary school for a brief period.

  • Molly Pingel started teaching in the fall of 1958 in Illinois. She later moved to Stewartville with her husband where they raised their children. Molly was a substitute teacher at the school district in Stewartville. Molly finished her career at Head Start. She said, “Many of the children came to Head Start in the fall not speaking English, but by December the children were all speaking English.”

  • Sue Krueger was a long-time substitute teacher in Wisconsin. She subbed for 20 years in the same district that her husband worked as the superintendent. She said she enjoyed the long-term sub positions when teachers went out on maternity leave.

  • Jack Youngstrom was the Assistant Principal at White Bear Lake, St. Peter and Winona. His career in education spanned 35 years. Jack’s wife, Peggy, raised two sons and followed her husband to White Bear Lake where she taught for 3 years.

  • Jean Tamminga lost her husband in 1970, so she went back to college at the age of 41. She taught kindergarten through eighth grade art in Cicero, Illinois. She also taught reading when the art program was cut from the curriculum. However, she believed art was important, so she included art lessons in her reading curriculum.

  • Ardis Witte plays the piano at Shorewood for the residents at dinner time. She is a retired piano teacher and church organist. She taught lessons for 20 years in Detroit Lakes and Moorehead. She feels blessed to be able to share her music with residents at Shorewood.

  • Phyllis Olson taught Kindergarten in a small town named Hopkins and later moved to Rochester to teach. She taught for 30 years before retiring.

  • Pat Mapel grew up in Minneapolis and said she experienced culture shock when she moved to a rural community in Kansas and began teaching. Pat taught special education, and she also earned her master’s degree. She retired with 36 years of teaching under her belt.

  • Bob Mapel went to Fort Hayes for his bachelor’s degree and Emporia State for his master’s degree. He taught fifth grade, and he was also certified in Environmental Sciences. Bob dedicated 33 years to teaching, and has more than 5000 hours of volunteer work with Quarry Hill Nature Center.

  • Harold Herried taught elementary and Junior High Math and Science in Illinois. His career spanned 34 years.

  • Wanda Espeset said she was very happy as a teacher. She taught for 20 years in Mankato.

  • Shirley McLean taught elementary school in Massachusetts. She obtained her Master’s in Guidance Counseling, and spent four years in a high school setting. Then, she went on to obtain her Doctorate in Educational Psychology and taught education at a university. Altogether, Shirley taught for 34 years.

  • Chuck Nelson jokingly said he taught for 35 years, 4 months and two days. He was a seventh through twelfth grade math teacher. He taught special education, and mediation and conflict resolution. Because mediation and conflict resolution were new opportunities, he wrote the curriculum in these areas. Chuck’s wife, Nancy, started her career in Marketing and later began substitute teaching as a second career. Nancy was a substitute teacher for about 10 years.




As the luncheon neared the end, a few of the teachers shared some advice for today’s students. Chuck Nelson emphasized the need for technical skills. “I encourage the youth of today to get trained in something they enjoy doing,” he said. Chuck believes college isn’t the best option for everyone, “do what makes you happy.”


Carol Carlson said, “There are two reasons you should go to college and that is if you have the ability and the desire, but you should do what you love.”


Bob Mapel said, “Never give up on your dreams whether it’s a vo-tech school or college.”

Pat Maple said, “Education cannot be taken away from you, so don’t be afraid to go after it.”

Jean Tamminga said, “Never stop learning.” She has been learning all her life, and loves that Shorewood offers so many educational programs.


“Teaching isn’t easy, but if you like kids, it’s the best job in the world,” Fran Robb said. She also quoted Marc Anthony, “If you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life.”


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After the luncheon, we celebrated teacher and resident Wanda Espeset’s 101st birthday. We surprised her with 2 large, round chocolate cakes that included 101 lit birthday candles. Wanda’s beautiful smile lit up the room as she blew out all the candles. And yes, she blew all the candles out on her own.



Written By Nicole L. Czarnomski