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Family Ties

September 14, 2018
By Deb Daley

Many people often describe Mercy High School as a family; a community of students, faculty and staff committed to educational excellence.   But the love of Mercy is also passed down through generations of family members.  Many of our students are legacies—their great grandmothers, grandmothers, mothers, aunts, cousins, sisters and more attended the school.  Emma Weis ’19 is a member of such a family.

Emma, a senior, is a Student Ambassador, a Senior Class officer, a member of Mock Trial, National Honor Society (NHS), Yearbook, Math Club, Baking Club, and plays soccer. She also was a student council representative her freshman year. Her older sister Lauren 17 went to Marian but Emma’s parents gave her the choice of Catholic schools to attend. She chose Mercy. 

“What I love about Mercy is the sense of community.  I came to the school knowing no one and in two weeks I was voted to be a Student Council representative,” Emma said. 

Emma’s choice was not surprising. Her mom, Francie Riedmann Weis ’81 attended as well as her four of Emma’s aunts.  Francie was active in the yearbook and newspaper and was a member of NHS, Concert Choir, and the Speech team. She was also Senior class president and was named Outstanding Senior. Francie is currently a judge on Nebraska’s Court of Appeals and helps coach Mercy’s Mock Trial Team. 

While Jayne Riedmann Mollner ’70 was at Mercy she was a member of the Sodality, Government and Mother McAuley Clubs.  She recently retired from Blue Cross, Blue Shield where she worked in customer service.

Jayne also said traditions are an important part of Mercy, even though they have morphed over time.  She recalls when she went to school there was also a spring and winter uniform.

“However, when you hear the terms PA or Mercy Day or laddies you immediately recall those good times,” she added. Jayne said, “Mercy lets you be you and I have kept ties to my classmates over the years.  I still have lunch with four of my classmates each month.” 

Her daughters Katie Baumker ‘94 and Anne Mollner Stanley, ’05, a Spanish teacher at Mercy, also graduated from the school.  And her granddaughter Jessica Baumkeris a freshman this year.  She and Emma compared notes before she enrolled.  

The other Riedmann girls who attended Mercy include Kathleen Riedmann Kemler ’78, Mary Pat Riedmann Greene ’73 and Margie Riedmann Sobczyk ’67. Their aunt, Margie Farrell Nicola SM ‘52, is also a Mercy graduate.  In addition, Francie married into a family of Women of Mercy.  Her mother-in-law Rita Ostblom Weis ’54, SJ and her mother Mary Caito Ostblom ’29, SJ also went to the school. 

In all more than 12 grandmothers, mothers, aunts, cousins, sisters and in-law family members went or are going to Mercy.

“Mercy lets you, be you even to the outside world, it is a tie that binds us all,” said Francie.