Scecina Memorial High School
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Mission & History

Mission & History 

Mission Statement 

Scecina Memorial High School, established by the Archbishop of Indianapolis, is a co-educational Catholic college and life preparatory school that motivates our diverse and gifted community of students to attain educational excellence, be lifelong learners, and live as servant leaders in the inspiring footsteps of Father Thomas Scecina.  


Welcoming all who desire our Catholic education, we are the school of choice for students and families seeking unique moments to learn, grow, and go forth to transform the world inspired by the light of Christ.  

Our Core Values 

Inspired by our Lord Jesus Christ and his servants, Father Thomas Scecina and the Sisters of Saint Francis, we embrace: 

  • Vocation:  Honoring and living according to the unique gifts that God has given us in keeping with the teachings and values of the Catholic faith 
  • Servant Leadership:  Following Jesus’ example of meeting people’s needs and helping them fulfill their highest destinies 
  • Stewardship:  Receiving, cultivating, and sharing God’s gifts gratefully and generously 
  • Excellence:  Living the Gospel and attaining the best possible results in all that we do. 

Our Namesake 

Scecina is proud to be named after Father Thomas Scecina, whose life story continues to inspire people throughout the world. 

Father Tom was a priest with the Archdiocese of Indianapolis who served God and country as a military chaplain during World War II before perishing at sea with other U.S. prisoners of war in 1944. 

While he was stationed in the Philippines during WWII, Father Tom ministered to U.S. soldiers as well as a large congregation of Filipinos. He served on the front lines, rescuing and ministering to the wounded and the dying. He survived the Bataan Death March and spent two years in a Japanese POW camp. 

In the fall of 1944, the Japanese prepared to move the POWs by ship for slave labor, a practice in violation of the Geneva Convention. Father Tom and his fellow POWs boarded a Japanese ship called the Arisan Maru. The ship was not marked as a POW ship and was subsequently fired upon by a U.S. Navy submarine on October 24, 1944. Father Tom spent his final moments in the sinking ship hearing confessions, offering absolution, and giving comfort. Nearly 1,800 POWs, including Father Tom, perished at sea that day. 

Father Tom posthumously received many military awards, including the Purple Heart, Bronze Star, and Silver Star with one Oak Leaf Cluster. In November 2016, he was inducted into the Indiana Military Veterans Hall of Fame. 

Our Founding

On September 21, 1953, classes began at Scecina Memorial High School for 128 freshman girls and 127 freshman boys under Father Harry Hoover, who, as founding principal, had overseen the construction of the school.

Scecina was dedicated on October 18, 1953. The first class of 219 students graduated in June 1957.


Keith A. Marsh Fall 1999-Spring 2003
Dr. Kevin Caspersen Summer 2004-December 2006
Maribeth Ransel December 2006 -October 2008
Joseph S. Therber October 2008 -Present


Father Harry S. Hoover Fall 1953-Spring 1969
Father Joseph McGinley Fall 1969-Spring 1971
Bill Kuntz Fall 1971-Summer 1973
Sister Hortense Fougerousse Fall 1973-Spring 1974
Raymond F. Riley Fall 1974-Spring 1986
Larry R. Neidlinger Fall 1986-Spring 1995
Stephen R. Papesh Fall 1995-Spring 2000
Rick J. Ruhl Fall 2000-Spring 2005
Tom Davis Fall 2005-Spring 2011
John Hegarty Fall 2011-Spring 2017
Joseph Brettnacher Fall 2017-Spring 2019
David Dellacca Fall 2019 – Spring 2023
Dr. Peg Dispenzieri Fall 2023-Present