Retirement is Looking Good for Dr. Wood



Tyler Ray, Sports Editor

After 40 years in the teaching biz, Mr. John Loeser has decided that it’s time to move on to the next phase in his life- the wonderful world of retirement.

A hard-working blue collar guy from North East Philadelphia, Loeser graduated from California University of Pennsylvania in 1974 and began teaching soon after. He was hired at North Hills in 1975, and he’s been teaching Introduction to Wood Technologies and Advanced Wood Technologies in this building ever since.

I had the incredible opportunity to sit down with Mr. Loeser, ask him a few questions, and learn some wisdom along the way.

Q: What inspired you to become a tech. ed. teacher?

A: The Vietnam War. I was hoping to get a college deferment, but Richard Nixon ended that. He did reclaim himself and ended the draft two weeks before I would have gotten drafted.

Q: What is the best project you have seen a student make?

A: A hockey stick display case with glass. About 4-5 students make one every year.

Q: What will you miss most about teaching at North Hills?

A: My hearing, but since I cannot get that back, I will go with the finishing room and the sawdust.

Q: What will you NOT miss about teaching?
A: My 1994 Dell desktop computer in my office. I log on at 6:30 a.m. and my email does not pop up until lunchtime.

Q: Who is your protege in the Tech. Ed. Department?

A: Mr. Derby. The problem with me leaving is that he does not know all of my stories, so we have to get him caught up to speed with that.

Q: What do you plan on doing during your retirement?

A: Babysitting my grandchildren.

Q: What is your favorite wood and why?

A: Teak, because that is the type of wood they used for the upper decking on the submarines for the Marines. Teak wood doesn’t float.

Q: If you were stranded on a desert island, what would your action plan be?
A: I would get a log, heat up some rocks, and scrap the wood out of the log with the rocks. Then, I’d have a canoe and I could sail off the island.

Q: Who is your favorite student?

A: Kaylee Heintzinger. She is A+…great wood wonderful!

Q: What is the best piece of advice you have for students?

A: Real men work every day because real men eat every day. There is no free day.

Today is Mr. Loeser’s last day- be sure to stop by the basement and wish him well. An irreplaceable asset to North Hills’ Tech. Ed. Department (and a true character), the self-proclaimed “Dr. Wood” will be dearly missed by his students and colleagues.

Mr. Loeser’s Favorites:

hobby: “Auto repair. I have a lift in my garage. I got too old to lay on the floor.”

movies: Gran Torino, Blues Brothers, Joe Dirt

TV show: Ice Road Truckers

restaurant: “McDonald’s. Order the #1.”

spot in the ‘Burgh: “My garage in West Deer.”

Christmas song: “Feliz Navidad” and “Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer”

Technology issue at North Hills: “None- my VCR works great. You have an Apple TV, I have a banana TV.”

Twitter account: “Are you out of your mind?!”

Angelina Jolie or Jennifer Aniston? “Which one is the better wood worker?”

One Direction or Justin Bieber? “Who?!”

Pancakes or waffles? “Eggs and sausage with no seer-up.”

words of wisdom: “You can’t learn this in cyber school.” and “KISS: Keep It Simple, Stupid.”