Planning Committee..........

The next regular meeting of the Imlay City Schools Alumni Association Planning Committee is scheduled for Thursday, April 18, 2024 at 1:30  p.m. at the American Legion Hall on East Third Street. Attendance by any and all alumni is welcome.  Please come and join us.  If questions phone Marilyn at 810-724-1904.

Spartan Yearbooks

There are extra copies of the Spartan yearbook available for sale.  The years available are 1977, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 2004, 2007, 2008, and 2013.  If you are interested in purchasing one of these yearbooks contact Marilyn Swihart at 810-724-1904.



November, 2016 -- Class of 2002
Congratulations to alumni Brian Badder on his appointment as Imlay school district's transportation director.  

October 5, 2016 -- Class of 1982

From the Tri-City Times:  Teresa (Moya) Gilbert has been lauded by the federal government for her work to keep members of the military and their families safe.  She received the 2016 Public Servant of the Year Award from the U.S. Office of Special Counsel last week.  She was recognized for bringing to light serious violations at the Womack Army Medical Center in Fort Bragg, North Carolina, where she worked as a civilian infection control analyst.  Gilbert and her husband, Jay, reside in Parkton, North Carolina, where they plan to enjoy their retirement years.

June 23, 2016-- Class of 1968
Congratulations go to class of 1968 graduate Chester Marcol who was inducted into the National Polish-American Sports Hall of Fame recently.  Chester kicked in college at Hillsdale where he was a four-time All-American.  Drafted in the second round of the 1972 NFL draft, he was the second-highest draft selection in league history at his position.  During his nine year career, he kicked 129 field goals. He twice led the NFL in scoring for the Green Bay Packers, was named NFC Rookie of the Year and was selected to the Pro Bowl in 1972 and 1974.  Chester currently makes his home in Dollar Bay, Michigan.

February 2016 -- Class of 1999

Class of 1999 grad Amalia (Monroe) Aguinaga has written a children's book entitled God Pieces Me Together, which was inspired by her deep faith and trust in God.  The book revolves around a little girl named Molly who is about seven years old when she comes across a puzzle.  As the story unfolds, its essence becomes clear.  The message is that life is like a puzzle.  To learn more about the book visit

January 2016 -- Class of 1960

Class of 1960 grad Elizabeth Homer has written Pioneers, Reformers & Millionaires, a narrative of Michigan's capitol city, Lansing, and its developments through the views of its key settler families:  the Turners, the Dodges, and the Longyears.  She has been telling the story of Michigan's history to audiences for decades and is a well-known expert on the founding generations of Lansing and the greater mid-Michigan region.

August 2015 -- Class of 2004
From the Tri-City Times -- "Becoming Ironman -- Imlay City grad tests limits of physical fitness in triathlon races."  Last year Eric Schwalbe competed in IRONMAN Louisville and this year took part in a July 5th IRONMAN 70.3 Norway in Haugesund, Norway.  He now is setting his sights on the IRONMAN Muskoka slated for August 30 in Huntsville, Ontario.  Schwalbe is employed at Sola Life and Fitness in Rochester Hills, a fitness center owned by Beaumont Hospitals.

June, 2015 -- Class of 1983
Jeff Mulder, Director of Airports at the Tulsa Airports Improvement Trust, took office this month as Chair of the American Association of Airport Executives for 2015-2016.  He was recently elected at the AAAE annual conference held June 7-10 and hosted by the Philadelphia International Airport.  The AAAE is the world's largest professional organization representing the men and women who work at public-use commercial and general aviation airports.

Feburary 2015 -- Class of 1981
Check out the Chamberlin's Ole Forst Inn of Curtis, Michigan.  The resort inn is owned by 1981 grade Kelly (Orlowski) Chamberlin and her husband!

October 29, 2014 -- Class of 1970
After 28 years as an Imlay City firefighter, including 13 as fire chief, Kip Reaves is retiring in December.  He worked as an engineer for the Chrysler Corporation for 31 years and retired from there in 2002.  In 1980 he attended the Police Academy and worked part time as a Lapeer County sheriff's reserve deputy and part-time police officer in Almont.  He joined the Imlay City Fire Department in 1986 and took the fire chief position in 2002.

October 30, 2014 -- Class of 1987
Don Heeke, Imlay City High School science teacher is in the running for Michigan Lottery's Educator of the Year Award.  He is one of 20 educators from around the state selected to receive the Excellence in Education Award from Southfield-based WXYZ, (ABC) and the Michigan Lottery.  This past spring Don coached Imlay City High School's FIRST Robotics Spartronics Team 5048 in its inaugural season with a strong finish and earned the team a trip to Ypsilanti for the state finals.  He has started robotic teams at the Borland School, the middle school, and the high school.  He also sponsors a summer camp for robotic teams.

Don is headed to East Lansing to meet MSU baskeball coach Tom Izzo and get a little recognition.  The award recognizes public school employees who represent the very best of the Michigan public school system.  Don will receive a $500 grant and the high school will receive a $500 grant.  He is also in the running for Michigan Lottery Educator of the Year Award and a grand prize of $10,000.

October 2014 -- Class of 2005
Angela (Krumholz) Zehr was recently featured on Channel 7's "Mom's a Genius" show.  Angela is the mother of three and started a home business, of personalized signs, made from recycled barn wood.  Last year she sold 434 signs from her business called "Angtiques."  The business is truly a family affair with her husband Nick and other family members in charge of finding old barns to dismantle for the wood.  Angela personalizes signs from customer specfications with significant dates, quotes or phrases.  Angtiques has shipped orders to Italy, Australia, and the United Kingdom and to 48 states in the U. S.  You may visit her website at www.angtiques.etsy.

September 2014 -- Class of 2009
Just "GrowIt!"  --
Mason Day,
co-valedictorian of the class of 2009, has launched a gardening app, with the help of co-worker Seth Reed.  Both are employed with Ball Horticulture.  After completing high school Mason jetted off to Cornell University in New York where he majored in agricultural sciences with a concentration in applied economics and management.  He's been with Ball Horticulture for the last two years, where he has worked on things like social media, account planning and new product releases.  This new GrowIt! app allows users to access local plant ratings, similar to the way users rate restaurants and businesses.  New gardeners can search for highly rated plants based on color, light requirements and other factors.  The app also lets expert gardeners show off their skills and knowledge by contributing to the database.  Currently, the GrowIt! can be downloaded from the iTunes store for operating systems of 7.0 and later.

August 2014 -- Class of 2013
Heather Brode participated in a summer intern program at the Detroit Zoo.  She was one of 12 U.S. college students to be selected for the internship.  Heather is currently a sophomore at Northern Michigan University pursuing a career in zoology, while also taking pre-veterinary courses.

July 2014 -- Class of 1973

Veteran firefighter Terry Maxwell retired from the Imlay City Police Department after 36 years of service.  While at Imlay City Fire Department he was commended twice for lifesaving actions.  Ge was also recognized with the American Red Cross "Everyday Heroes Award" and named Imlay City Firefighter of the Year and the Lapeer County FIrefighter of the Year in 2009.  Terry and his wife Mona are enjoying their retirement in their northern Michigan home.

 Class of 2006

Matt and Michael Romine -- were recently featured in the June 4th edition of the Tri-City Times.   The caption reads Pig represents passion for twin Imlay City chefs.   Michael and his brother Matthew—the Chef de Cuisine—opened the hyper-local eatery six months ago, called Mulefoot Gastropub.  Since then, it’s become a destination place for people from around the area and beyond.

Mike learned the fine craft of making dishes by hand; how to butcher and age meat, collect wild yeast for breads, forage for edible delights and basically take food from its original source—the farm or the woods or the fields—to the table.  After gathering knowledge and experience at spas and resorts around the U. S. and Denmark, the brothers decided it was time to do their own thing—in their own hometown.  They have a commitment to creating delicious food from the best quality local, seasonal ingredients.  They raise their own mulefoot breed of pigs, which are known for their quality of meat.  They feature signature cocktails and more than 50 varieties of Michigan craft beers.  The Mulefoot Gastropub is located in the former Countryside Banquet Center (or former American Legion building) at 596 South Cedar Street (M-53).

Classof 2000
Dr. John T. Schmitz hasgraduated with his Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering from the University of NotreDame.  The title of his dissertation was “Experimental Measurements in a HighlyLoaded Low Pressure Turbine.”  The research was conducted with a $2 millionfacility that he designed, built, and commissioned.  A paper on this work waspresented at the ASME Turbo Expo in Glasgow, Scotland, in June of 2010.  Johnhas accepted a job as Senior Mechanical Engineer for Pratt & Whitney in EastHartford. Connecticut.

Class of 1985Christopher Ankley enjoyed a successful career as a veterinarian and animalsurgeon in Kalamazoo.  On the weekendof August 9, 2009 he changed his career path with his ordination as a Catholicpriest and was assigned to his first church in Kalamazoo. Father Ankley said his first mass in his home church in Imlay City.

Class of 1998 – DavidKircus Dave has signed to play in the Canadian Football League for the2009 season.  The former Imlay CityHigh School and Grand Valley State University standout has joined the roster ofthe Montreal Alouettes.  Prior tosigning with the CFL he appeared on the roster of the Miami Dolphins for the2008 campaign.  His NFL career alsoincluded stints with the Denver Broncos (2006) and with the Detroit Lions(2003-04).

Class of 1977 – Ken (Swihart)Hart – Footsteps in fifty states! Grandmas Marathon in Duluth, Minnesota was the culmination of Ken’s goalof running 50 marathons in 50 states before he turned 50 years old in December2008.  He accomplished this feat intwo years and nine months.  The AirForce Marathon in Dayton, Ohio in September of 2005 was his first marathon thatstarted his challenge to run the 26.2-mile marathons. Ken is an architect and the Director of Design for the firm of ChambersUSA in Baltimore, Maryland, where he lives with his two sons. Ken is a graduate of Kansas State University’s School of Architecture.

Class of 1984 – Mark Thompson Mark has earned Teacher of the Year honors in Kent County, Michigan. Mark, a math teacher in Kent City for the past 14 years, was presentedwith the award during a banquet in May. As a member of the Kent County Education Association, he was among 7,000teachers and paraprofessionals eligible for the award. He was the only high school teacher to be selected in Kent County. Mark says, “My math teachers, Jerry House and Don Swayze, encouraged meto keep working and were big influences on me.” Mark resides in Kent City with his wife, Nancy and sons, Austin 13, andRandy 11.

Class of 1982 –  Ed Brown, president and founder of theDealerflow Corporation, has landed a $1.48 million state technology grant forhis Indiana-based company.  The financial award from the 21st CenturyResearch & Technology Fund represents a business coup for Brown and Dealerflow,which designs computer software for automobile dealerships.  The grant will beused to complete software design and development of Dealerflow’s flagship“solution,” which is expected to hit the market in the fall of 2008.

Class of 1990 – Chaelynne Pope was recently recognized by theAutomotive Hall of Fame, as one of five people to receive the 2007 YoungLeadership and Excellence Award.  In October 2004, Chaelynne was appointedSenior Manager, Manufacturing Planning and Program Management for DaimlerChrysler Corporation.  She is responsible for all manufacturing program planningand program management activities.

Class of 1990 – Mitchell Blonde has accepted the position of VicePresident of Advancement at Siena Heights University in Adrian, Michigan.  Mitchleaves his position as executive director of the Jackson Community CollegeFoundation on January 21, 2008.

Class of 2003 – Scott Hedges hasgraduated with honors from Michigan State University and earned his Bachelor’sDegree in Marketing.  He has accepted a job with National OilWell Varco inHouston, Texas.

Class of 1993 – Nate Topiecontinues his career in acting with a recent appearance on the hit televisionseries Dirty Sexy Money.  Natestudied at Oakland University and spent two semesters studying at the NationalShakespeare Conservatory in New York and at Oxford University in England. Nate also attended Specs Howard School of Broadcasting. He has performed at MeadowBrook Theatre, with The Village Players inBirmingham, as well as at the Michigan Opera Theatre.

Class of 1998 – Milagro “Milli”Martinez The new softballcomplex scheduled to open spring of 2008 at the Blacks Corners Road athleticsite has been named Milagro Field or Miracle Field (Milagro in Spanish meansMiracle) in honor of Milli.  Thefield will include a two-story structure with press box on top and concessionson the bottom.  Two cement dugoutsare already complete and include benches and bat racks. A tiled infield, new scoreboard, customized backstop and padding, abatting cage, customized fencing, two sets of bleachers and roofing willcomplement the field.  The athleticcomplex will eventually house two baseball fields, two softball fields and apermanent soccer field, football stadium and track. Millie and her husband, Los Angeles Clipper Corey Maggette, donated fundsthat will allow the school to build the state-of-the-art softball field. Milli is currently playing ball for Puerto Rico and will try out for the2008 Olympic softball team.

Class of 2001– Eric Gebhardt is Head Golf Pro at Arroyo Golf Club in LasVegas.  The Arroyo course is locatedbetween Las Vegas and the Red Rock Canyon country. The rugged terrain is stunning as the fairways weave around the plannedcommunity of Summerlin.  The courseis an Arnold Palmer signature course. Eric received his training in course management from Ferris StateUniversity in Big Rapids.

Class of 1989 – Dale Lockwood was selected Grand Champion at the2008 Ribs N’ Soul Festival held in August at Hart Plaza in downtown Detroit.  Heis the owner of Hickory BBQ & Grill in Westland and took first-place honors inthe categories of Best Ribs and Best Sauce.  Lockwood is 2008 Vice President ofthe Great Lakes BBQ Association.  He has created his own unique BBQ sauce andbottles it for purchase at his restaurant.  Lockwood is also a graduate of theculinary arts program at Lapeer County Voc-Tech Center.

Class of 1996 – Dr. KarenStewart appeared on the TV show “The Doctors” on January 5, 2009on local channel WXYZ-TV.  Shedemonstrated on a live patient techniques used in “Freedom Laser Therapy,” a LosAngeles-based clinic that helps smokers kick the habit. Karen received her bachelor’s degree from Michigan State University andcompleted her education at the California School of Professional Psychology,where she earned a Ph.D. in clinical psychology. She runs a private practice in Santa Monica, California. 

The Alumni Association salutes the above accomplishments of ICHS alumnae and would like to share your news.  Please e-mail the alumni secretary and keep your friends updated. 




Unveiling the historic marker are Eric Ventimiglia, Rep. Kevin Daley and Ann Grettenberger King. Historic Marker
Back Side of Grandstand. Ground plantings are school colors blue and gold. Front of Grandstand

What a story and what a journey! The grandstand at the R. A. Grettenberger Athletic Field was constructed in 1935-36 in the midst of the Great Depression, under the federal Works Progress Administration (WPA) jobs creation program. It originally included a grandstand, ice skating rink, and football field. Baseball games and school track meets were held at the field in later years. In 1947 the field was dedicated to Imlay City school superintendent Reuben Arthur Grettenberger to honor his many years of public service.

In March of 2008 the Board of Education received a report from their insurance company that indicated the grandstand was unsafe for use and suggested it needed to be condemned and board up. The grandstand had seriously deteriorated to the point where it was no longer safe for use. The District was facing serious financial restraints and funds were not available for restoration of the structure. The Board discussed options for dealing with the building.

After much discussion and meetings with board representatives the alumni association undertook the challenge of raising funds to restore the grandstand at an estimated cost of between $15,000 and $30,000. Alumni stepped up to the challenge and raised over $33,500, which came from over 168 donors, including grants from foundations, challenge grants, fraternal organization gifts, etc. Donations ranged from $1 to $10,000.

Bids were accepted and work started in August of 2008 with Rick Duthler as the builder. Work was completed and a dedication ceremony planned for September 12, 2009. On Wednesday morning, September 2, 2009 tragedy struck and our community was stunned by the news that the historic grandstand had been completely destroyed by fire. We were devastated beyond words.

Fortunately, the structure was completely insured and once again Rick Duthler was called on to build an exact replica of the destroyed building. The re-build was completed by the end of 2009 at a cost of over $81,000.

A re-dedication ceremony was held on Saturday, May 22, 2010 and the State of Michigan Historical Marker was unveiled. The mistress of ceremonies for the program was Dr. Barbara Klocko. The Harry F. Hovey American Legion Post 135 Color Guard presented colors and the National Anthem offered by the Imlay City High School Chorale. Alumnus (Class of 1954) John Herrera presented the invocation. Dignitaries and special guests were introduced and the story of the grandstand told by alumni secretary Marilyn Swihart. Ann Grettenberger King (Class of 1954) offered remarks and thanked the community for honoring her late father. Eric Ventimiglia of US Representative Candice Miller’s office present the historical marker, alumni president Bob Rider (Class of 1950) officially presented the project to the school district, and board president Sharon Muir accepted on behalf of the district. The crowd then adjourned to the back of the grandstand where State Representative Kevin Daley, Eric Ventimiglia and Ann King unveiled the marker. A small plaque placed below the marker explains the journey of the grandstand (the plaque was donated by friends of alumnus James Schirmer, Class of 1952).

It has been a journey – a journey to save one of our local treasures. A journey that included many alumni along the way and we are forever grateful to each of you. Thank you and GO SPARTANS!


The Alumni Associationis still attempting to complete the collection of class composites on display inthe High School.   There are a few missing classes.  If you know of anyone whomight lead us to securing a photo for the following please contact alumnisecretary Marilyn Swihart at 801-724-1904.

Needed –

Class of1927 – Members were:

ElizabethSlating, Laurence Baer, Francis Spaulding, Belle Utley, Maxine Clark, HelenVarblow, Ruth Walker, Charles Kempf, Alta Weese, Bernice Major, Louis Martz,Archie Moore, Beryl Rayment, Olga Godden, Christine Worthy, Frank Retz, MyronRowley, Mabel Betcher, Madlyn Appleton Millikin, Dorothy Dahn, Florence Large,Monica Goodman, Kenneth Lierman, Clifford Martz, Isabel MacVicar(Valedictorian), Ada Perry, Velma Linekar (Salutatorian).

            Class of 1923 –Members were:

Hazel Moore, Grace Lee, Howard Lee, William Hoisington, James Thiemke, Earl Carlow,Herbert Schirmer, Ruth Flansburg, Harold Buike, Otto Buike,  Lorraine Butler,Roy Priehs, Cash Smith, Eugene Johnson, Ella Murdie, Arline Bahling, NellieKesselring, Harold McKillen, Lawrence Varblow, Elizabeth Marshall.

            Class of 1920 –Members were:

JosephineWelton, Ruth Cross, Vera Stoldt, Burt Sisson, Reid Belle Moore, Mary Ferguson,Burrows Rathsburg, Kenneth Michaels, Harry Hoisington, Morris McMullen, StanleyRoss, William Wagonshultz, Edith Walton, Chester Hanna

            Class of 1918 –Members were:

AliceFenner, Vera Greenman, Francis Muma, John Lierman, Bernice Thick, Ione McKillen,William Blanchard, Viola Foster, Florence Carlow, Elizabeth Lengemann, EthelWinn, Clara Millikin, Harold Shumar, Scott Ferguson, Ruth Titus.

            Class of 1917 –Members were:

IrvineWelton, Mervyn Muir, Elizabeth Foster, Herbert Foster, Earl Zimmerman, DanielWinn, Edwin Squires, Edna Pinel, Beatrice Walker, Estelle Churchill, RuthMcKillen, Clark Oliver.

We also continue to searchfor information on honor graduates who were selected as valedictorians andsalutatorians. Please see the Academic Excellence web page.