Burchards are Top Crusaders

Top Crusader Award to be Presented at Heelan Auction
Posted on 03/30/2022
Brendan and Martha Burchard, fixtures in the Heelan family for more than 50 years, will receive our “Crusaders of the Year” award at the April 6 "Field of Dreams" Heelan Auction.

Martha is retired from 42 years with Mercy Medical Center. Brendan will retire this May, capping 53 years of Heelan teaching – a record at Bishop Heelan High School.

Brendan is a 1960 Heelan grad who joined the high school staff in 1969. He has taught physical education, world history and religion, He a coached football, wrestling or track for 42 years. 

He has headed Knights of the Altar, served on school committees, and helped schedule special religious and patriotic assemblies for school. He has received an "Excellence in Education" Award at the Bishop’s Dinner and our Memorial Field grandstand is named after Brendan.

Brendan is a proud Vietnam veteran and has retired as the Command Chief Master Sgt. with the 185th. Always disciplined, today he still lifts weights and swims a mile every day before attending daily Mass, usually at Heelan. 

Some might say behind this dedicated teacher is the better half.

Martha Burchard has been a Siouxland health care leader, a busy mother and behind-the-scenes support of countless Heelan activities.

She dedicated 42 years to Mercy Health Center as a registered nurse, Director of the ER and Trauma Center and Director of Child Health, Volunteers and Auxiliary Services. She helped develop Mercy's regional Level II trauma center, Mercy Air Care, the hospital's Same Day Surgery program, the Mercy Child Advocacy Center and more. 

With Bishop Heelan, Martha has organized Heelan Auctions, donor parties and mystery dinners, solicited countless gifts and served with Brendan as a chair couple -- all to raise funds for our Catholic schools! 

Today Martha volunteers her talents to Mary's Choice, Holy Spirit, Eucharistic Minister at Mercy Medical, and countless Holy Cross Parish activities.
In addition to their 6 children, the Burchards are grandparents of 17 including 3 in our schools. 

Brendan and Martha Burchard are devoted to their family, their faith, the wider Catholic community and Bishop Heelan School. They are true Crusaders of the Year! 
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