Heelan Gym is O'Gorman Fieldhouse

New Gym Celebration is Dec. 3
Posted on 12/03/2019

Bishop Heelan High School celebrated the completion of its new $3.7 million gym, the “O’Gorman Fieldhouse,” with a blessing, ribbon cutting, cheers and the school fight song Tuesday, Dec. 3.

The Fieldhouse is named in honor of Terry and Mary Lou O’Gorman, a former long-time Catholic school teacher and 1961 Heelan graduate. The O’Gormans provided a Catholic education for their four children, including, Mark, a 1991 Heelan graduate who donated $1.5 million to the Heelan PRIDE Campaign for the gym and the school.

“Our beautiful new gym offers amazing features, many of them firsts for Heelan, including air-conditioning, state-of-the-art scoreboards, an indoor track, windows and skylights, extra seating and better visibility,” says Bishop Heelan Catholic Schools President Dr. John Flanery. “The old Pit was loved by many but was one of the oldest in the state and deficient in many areas. We are thrilled with our new gym and deeply grateful to our donors.”

The fieldhouse, which features a top-loading design, will welcome fans and athletes from 25 area school districts for boys and girls sports. It will also host physical education classes, intramurals, pep rallies, show choir competitions, school system family events, sports camps, food assembly days and more.

“O’Gorman Fieldhouse” Features:

• 1600 seats
• Air-conditioning
• 6 hoops (for 2 practice courts and main court)
• Indoor track looping the top of the gym
• Athletic training room
• Locker rooms
• Coaches offices
• Video and statistics scoreboards

The O’Gorman Fieldhouse represents the third phase of construction to build a new Heelan High School -- a $32 million project envisioned by Heelan supporters who launched the PRIDE Campaign in 2007. The fine arts section opened in 2014 and the academic classroom addition opened in 2018. While the Heelan PRIDE campaign has been largely successful, funds are still being raised to support the new school.

About the Naming Gift Donor

Mark O’Gorman played basketball all four years at Heelan. He will not attend the Dec. 3 gym celebration but shares these thoughts on his experiences at Heelan.

“Going to Heelan sporting events as a young kid with my dad were where some of my greatest memories were made. We went to everything. I still remember watching many of my heroes play for Heelan.

 “In basketball I was near the end of the bench on all those teams, but it was a great experience and a lot of fun. It taught be so much about hard work, nothing comes easy and knowing your role. I coach my 5th and 8th grade boys’ teams today and use some things I learned from each coach I had at Heelan. 

 “Angelo James was a high energy guy, always positive, always pushing the ball up the court.  Joe Burkhart instilled toughness to our sophomore team that I will never forget.  Doug Moody was really organized. His practice plans and attention to detail were phenomenal. Denis Hirschman, my math teacher for four years, was the basketball scorekeeper for all of our games. He was such an outstanding teacher and helped me learn how to break down problems logically.  

 “I’m glad to be able to give back to the school that helped me so much growing up.  The new Fieldhouse is going to be fantastic and I am excited to see us create the same home court advantage that we have had in the “Pit” for so many years.”

O’Gorman, a businessman in Illinois, is married with three children.

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