To make an impression
Students and their parents remember this teacher.By Les Huber
While taking my two young children years ago to the annual spring concert at their grammar school, I recognized a familiar face at the entrance door. Standing there was a former upstairs neighbor whom I hadn't seen in 15 years. Much to my chagrin, she didn't recognize me as I approached to say hello. Maybe it was the beard and mustache that I had grown recently.
We chatted for a few minutes about the past and about our present situations. As we parted, I promised to give her a call sometime and maybe go out to dinner for old time's sake. She said that was a nice idea. The rest, as they say, is history.
Mary Ann was an elementary teacher in the school district where I lived with my two children. After our brief encounter, I began remembering some of the stories she told when we had visited each other as neighbors way back then.
She hadn't taught my children, but it was fascinating to hear her tell about some of the parents of former students. Mary Ann would receive Christmas gifts, cards for other occasions, home visits and even invitations to high school and college graduations. What a show of respect to have a former student knock on your door just to say hello and thank you.
To this day, Mary Ann receives letters and Christmas cards from students whom she taught 25 years ago — and also from their parents. She even receives an occasional wedding invitation.
The opening of that spring concert occurred about 28 years ago. This April, Mary Ann and I celebrated 25 years of wonderful wedded bliss.
I want to leave you with one example of the respect and adulation a teacher can earn. We were invited to, and attended, the wedding reception of the mother of a student Mary Ann had taught the prior year. Approximately 300 guests attended the reception, and Mary Ann and I were a little concerned when we first arrived and didn't see any other Caucasian guests. Our apprehension was short-lived, however, when we found our assigned seats at the same table as the student's grandparents. Once the guests at our table learned that Mary Ann was the teacher that young Laura was always talking about, we were treated like royalty.
How fortunate I am to be married to someone who molded the lives of so many children.