This branch of the Austrian Hesch family is descended from Johann Hesch and his wife Marya (Schlinz) Hesch, who came to America from Oberschlagles, Bohemia with three sons: Paul, Mathias, and Anton. +++Johann & Marya settled in Buffalo County, Wisconsin but moved to Pierz, Mn in about 1885. .+++Mathias settled in Waumandee, Wisconsin and moved to Pierz in 1911. +++Anton never married but farmed with his dad in Agram Township, where he died in 1911.+++And Paul, my great grandfather, settled five miles away, in Buckman, Minnesota. He died there in 1900.

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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

An interesting e-mail

(And a follow-up post from a month later, here)

This was in my inbox yesterday.  If you have an opinion one way or the other, contact S Kara, ok?

Dear Marlys,
Sister Laura Hesch is buried in the cemetery of the local parish church in Vineland, Minnesota.  She has rested there since her death in 1972.  Her classmates, especially Sister Theodora Nelson long for her to be buried in our Monastery cemetery.  We are looking for S. Laura’s relatives and wonder if you are related to S. Laura?

Do you think that S. Laura’s family members would agree with our wish to move S. Laura back to St. Benedict’s?  We are working with a funeral director to make sure that this is done correctly and respectfully.  I have contacted Bishop Kinney and Elisse Aune of the Tribal leadership and both have agreed that we can move S. Laura’s remains.
Can you reply with your thoughts?  Can you let me know if I am to contact other relatives too?  I am happy to answer any questions or provide any additional information that you need.

Thanks you very much for giving this your consideration.

Sister Kara Hennes
Treasurer/Director of Finance
(320-363-7005 direct
    320-363-7130 fax
Description: Description: cid:image001.jpg@01CA53DA.53084FB0

(Whew--"Her classmates...long for her to be buried in our Monastery cemetery"  Sr Laura would have been 130 years old this coming April--class of 1910.  Incredibly old classmates!)

  Sounds like a done deal to me...

Next day:  Ahh, here's who Sr. Theodore is--from the Fall, 1958 Stray Lamb newsletter:

My apologies: I remember Sr Mary George, but not Sr Theodore, tho I do remember two nuns there with Sr Laura.  OK, now things make more sense.  She wasn't a classmate, and she had Sr Laura's respect because she could take it at the Little Flower Mission.
Evidently, Sr Mary George is living, too, at St Scholastica's in St Cloud.  Is this enough reason to unearth Sr Laura?


  1. I think you can officially speak for the family on this matter. She must have liked you, or you wouldn't have gotten so much art chalk off of her. I wondered about the classmate thing, too, and this is one aged classmate. Some niggle in my memory says she wanted to be buried where she is. I think they have set their bonnets to moving her,don't you think?

  2. I'd say so, yeah. We think it may have to do with this: the tribe gets the land back once there's no religious purpose any more. The church IS a pretty non-Ojibwe institution right before the casino on 169.

    Still, asking relatives AFTER the bishop and the tribal leadership approved sounds a lot like posterior covering to me. Neither party knows the history, probably.

    LOL...I wouldn't have had an opinion either way if they hadn't asked.

  3. Classmates? Seriously?
    The parish just fixed up the Church so I know they aren't moving that...I wonder if they want the land to expand the casino??? I think she should stay with the Little Flower church cemetary myself...

  4. Hey, Sue!
    If you or Kathy feel strongly about this, you need to e-mail Kara at the address on her letter. I sent her my two cents worth.

    Larry found that there IS a Sr Theodora. She's 90 and lives at St Bens....but who is she, and why would this make a difference to her?

  5. Sr. Laura died almost forty years ago. Very soon there won't be any people left in Onamia who remember her nor any relatives who remember her. Even if the casino wants the land (although it seems unlikely that they'd want that little extra bit of land), why not let her remains go where she will be remembered? She got her wish to be buried at the mission. All that's left now is the memory of her and that would be cared for best in St. Joe.

    Just my two cents...


  6. Leave her to rest where she asked to be laid to rest for all eternity, at the cemetery on the Little Flower Missionary grounds.

  7. Hello! My Great Aunt is Sr Mary George and she will be 100 this year and celebrating 80 years as a nun. Sr George may not be of any help if you would like to ask her. She has had dementia or Alzheimers for years now. But she may, you never know what will be remembered. I don't know Sr Laura Hesch, most nuns take a different name when they become a Novice, but I do know that nuns are a stubborn lot and say what they mean. If those relatives want to move her, they may get a ruler across the knuckles! LOL!

    1. Hi! Thanks for this. Sr Laura was born Theresa Hesch, which is why the mission is St Theresa's, (the Little Flower). As things turned out, the diocese decided to leave her grave in Vineland, providing the community there keeps the graveyard in good condition and adds a crucifix. Evidently, that was the problem ☺, not "classmates". Hug Sr Mary George for me, will you?