Hutchinson Public Schools - Perseverance, compassion, integrity, innovation

2023-24 Hutch High Alumni Honorees to be inducted into Wall of Honor Thursday

HUTCHINSON, KANSAS – The Hutchinson High School Alumni Association, in cooperation with Hutchinson High School, will induct the 24th class of honorees to the Wall of Honor on Thursday, September 28th during their annual banquet.

The 2023-24 honorees are Michael Gunther, class of 1962; Peggy Thorne Childs, class of 1967; and Bryan Miller, class of 1997.

Sponsored by the HHS Alumni Association, in cooperation with Hutchinson High School, the group will be honored during a banquet at 6:00 p.m. Thursday, September 28, in the HHS Career and Technical Education Academy, located at 800 15th Circle.Doors open at 5:30pm. The public is invited and encouraged to attend as the community celebrates these three individuals who have dedicated their lives to making Hutchinson and the world a better place.

Tickets must be purchased in advance for the banquet. Tickets cost $15 each and can be purchased weekdays in the Hutchinson High School main office, 810 East 13th, from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., through Sept. 27. Checks should be made out to “HHS.” 

These honorees and their families will formally take their place on the Wall of Honor during the pregame show of the HHS Homecoming varsity football game against Salina South on Friday, September 29. The pregame show begins at approximately 6:30 with a kick off time of 7pm.

Plaques for each honoree featuring the inscriptions below will be mounted in the Salthawk Activity Center for past, present and future Salthawks to visit. 

Michael E. Gunther- Class of 1962- Service to the Community

“I’m very proud to be both a citizen of Hutchinson and a Salthawk.” This pride is evident in Mike Gunther’s career path and service to his community.

After graduating from Hutchinson High School in 1962, Mike worked for Carey Salt. In 1969, he joined the Hutchinson Fire Department. While working for the Fire Department, he received a degree in Fire Science from Hutchinson Community College, and an EMT Certification from the State of Kansas. After 26 years of service, Mike retired as a Captain. He also served as the Treasurer for the Kansas State Council of Firefighters. To this day, Mike holds a lifetime position as Treasurer Emeritus. Following his career as a Firefighter, Mike continued to serve the community for 11 years as a Water Meter Technician with the City of Hutchinson. In 2005, Mike began taking Tae Kwon Do lessons. At the spry age of 70, Mike obtained his black belt, in which he is currently a 5th degree. He spent numerous years providing free lessons to area youth. Mike helped local children learn not only the fundamentals of Tae Kwon Do, but also how to be a respectful and productive member of society. The commitment to community service has been a reoccurring theme in Mike’s life. He has spent numerous hours working with children, facilitating the local Muscular Dystrophy Telethon, delivering Meals on Wheels and serving at the Soup Kitchen through his church. Mike has always been an avid supporter of Hutchinson High School athletics and was instrumental in establishing the signs coming into Hutchinson commemorating the 7 State Football Championships.

Mike Gunther’s belief in public service and mentoring the youth of our community ensures him a position of distinction on Hutchinson High School’s Alumni Wall of Honor.

Peggy Thorne Childs- Class of 1967- Service to Education- 

Peggy Childs, a graduate of Hutchinson High School in 1967, was a lifelong educator who made a significant difference in the learning experiences of Kansas kids. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from the University of Kansas and worked as a full-time and substitute elementary teacher for many years of her life. In 1987, Peggy was elected to the Hutchinson Board of Education and served on the Board for 23 consecutive years. She was re-elected five times and her tenure included several terms as the Board’s President and Vice President. During her service on the board, a number of initiatives were approved that transformed public education in Hutchinson, including: The addition of elementary school counselors, a $78.6 million bond project that allowed for improvements in every single school in the district, a summer meal program and re-designing Liberty and Sherman into 7th and 8th grade centers. Peggy was known for advocating for the education and well-being of all the children of Hutchinson, even when the decisions weren’t easy to make. She strongly believed that a quality education can change one’s trajectory in life, and that every child in Hutchinson was deserving of such an experience. Peggy also improved the lives of children in Hutchinson through her active membership on the Hutchinson Recreation Commission board, the Head Start Policy Council, and the Educational Facilities Authority of Reno County.

She took great pride in being a product of Hutchinson Public Schools and was a passionate champion for USD 308 students, educators, and staff.

Bryan C. Miller- Class of 1997- Leading lives through coaching

“Hutch High is a place that helped me grow as a young man, has given me lasting friendships, and sparked a passion for the game of basketball that has brought me back home.” Bryan graduated from Hutchinson High School in 1997. After he graduated from Wichita State University with his bachelor’s degree in Sports Management, he then went on to pursue a career in basketball that eventually brought him back home to his high school alma mater. His path to coaching wasn't a straight shot to the helm. He began his coaching career in grassroots basketball, where his program, the Kansas Select, won two national championships. That success opened the door for him to be able to coach at Butler Community College, where he eventually became the head coach. After his tenure there, Bryan moved back home to join the Hutchinson Blue Dragons men’s basketball team. The following year he came back to the Blue and Gold.

Bryan took the helm as Head Basketball Coach at HHS in 2020. The Salthawk basketball program has been transformed by his ability to inspire young players with passion, and sheer knowledge of the game. Leading with servanthood, hard work, and togetherness, the community has been impacted by the success.

 For more information, please contact (620) 615-4100.