Mr. Haaser’s 50th Anniversary


Leo Ontiveros, Writer

Mr. Haaser, a Cistercian legend, is a founding member in our school’s history. Best known to current students as the Form IV History teacher and middle school baseball coach, Mr. Haaser has held many positions throughout his time here. Let us congratulate Mr. Haaser for his 50th anniversary at Cistercian as we get to know him better.

As a student, Mr. Haaser was enthusiastic about sports. He used to be a quarterback for his school’s football team in Little Rock, Arkansas. Eventually, he found his way into baseball and became the pitcher for his very successful team. He moved to Texas to go to college at the University of Dallas and he played baseball there as well. His resident assistant (RA), who played second base, was going to graduate and then go to OCS (Officer Candidates School) in the Marine Corps. Since he was a middle school coach at the time, the RA was able to introduce Mr. Haaser to a “young headmaster by the name of Fr. Denis,” and Mr. Haaser was hired by Cistercian. What seemed different about Cistercian to Mr. Haaser was that the boys were less into sports than other schools, and were more intelligent and relaxed with themselves and with their teachers.

He coached for 15 years. In this time, Mr. Haaser coached both high school and middle school football, track, and also middle school basketball. During the last 7 years of coaching, he served as the Athletic Director. Then, he took the role of Director of Administrations for 14 years. There were few things he loved more than being the Director because he thought of himself as the face of Cistercian. He knew that his actions would reflect on the school, so he had to represent the school well.

Mr.Haaser even held a form master’s position. His first class was that of 1984. “[Being a Form Master] is a great position. I hoped to help the boys in many ways: personal, academic, athletic, social, and religious ways. If I had input in those areas over the next 8 years, maybe I could have done great things. But I found more to the job than just boys, they’re here as a part of a family, so I tried to build a community as well.”

The best events Mr. Haaser participated in were the elections of new headmasters or abbots. However, his favorite event is to see new “young men” enter the monastery. He recently enjoyed this experience again when Br. Samuel, from Mr. Haaser’s own class of 2014 (as Form Master), became a novice.

If there was something to remember Mr. Haaser by, it would be one word: stories. Stories were always fun to him, whether from his grandparents, father, or friends. Like his UD history professor, he always found things more interesting when they were told like a story.

I would like to congratulate Mr. Haaser for his hard work and his dedication to Cistercian during these 50 years. He has truly etched his name into the face of Cistercian history, along with many other great people. His advice: “I don’t care how smart a person is or how much he knows. If he’s not a good person, his life will be a mess.”