1960s graduation ring brings back memories

    DEFIANCE – A 1964 graduation ring from Saint Peter and Paul Parochial School in Defiance has brought back many memories for a former Defiance woman who remembers fondly her years growing up in the small Shelby County community.
    Shari Mutchler said she inherited the ring from her sister, Norma Jean (Bieker) Pycha, who passed away two years ago.
    “Her ring was from her high school graduation in 1964 from the parochial school in Defiance,” said Mutchler.  “The school ceased to exist long ago, of course, but the church is still there.”
    Mutchler is one of 10 children in the Bieker family in Defiance – eight girls and two boys born to Jerry and Alice Bieker.  The age difference between the youngest (Shari) and oldest (Norma Jean) is about 20 years.
    “All of us attended Saint Peter and Paul Parochial School at one time or another,” Mutchler said.  “Many of us graduated from Harlan High School when the parochial schools no longer provided education beyond eighth grade.”
    Mutchler attended the school for 5th grade, 1977-78, which was the last year the school remained open.

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