Reflections: Favorite teachers are never forgotten


With Teacher Appreciation Week being celebrated all across the United States this week, I think it is best to use this time to recollect on those educators who graced the halls of Cardington-Lincoln Local Schools to cultivate young minds.

In August of this last year, I posted on the Cardington-Lincoln Alumni Association Facebook page for those to comment their favorite teacher in honor of the school district’s open house taking place that night. You cannot help but notice the cross-generational admiration and support of those who taught in Cardington. Some of them were alumni, while others found the village of Cardington, and its school district, like a diamond in the rough.

Our formative years are some of the most precious ones we live. We learned not only how to read, write, and think from our teachers, but the ability to get along with one another and how to build connections and relationships with classmates and adults. What amazed me about the comments on favorite teachers were the stories that were willingly told for the reasons behind the favoritism.

Many mentioned the name of Billy May, the longtime social studies teacher at Cardington-Lincoln High School, who was active in the community and, later, became the mayor of Cardington. Fortunately, I got to know him as my neighbor for the last 10 years of his life. A favorite amongst those who attended Cardington-Lincoln between 1942-1982 was Nelda Akron. She taught math courses from eighth grade up through the upper levels of the subject area. Her 40 years in education spanned across families; she taught all five of the Smith children (Larry, Cindy, Chris, Margie and Phil), many of the Ullom cousins, the Fricke sisters, and the first generation of Maceykos.

The likes of Helen Fowble, Lori Cardiff, and Heidi Walton made multiple appearances, too. All three were fixtures of Cardington-Lincoln Elementary School at some point in their careers. Fowble spent her time teaching first grade for over three decades; Cardiff split her 19-year career between first and second grades; and Walton began her educator career in fifth grade at Cardington-Lincoln before leaving for Olentangy in the late 1980s.

Joyce Landon was remembered for not only her teaching style and superior knowledge of American history and French, but her antics, and those are what made her classroom environment. Her guiding of the annual NHS trip to Washington, D.C. and dressing up in costume for Halloween were especially memorable.

Hazel Miller, Rick Shelton, Sally Dye, Carroll Cooley, Guy and Pat Flora, Pam Frysinger, Helen Wuescher, Bill Clauss, Neil and Misty Swonger, Lawton McClintock, Ethel Bond, Lillian E. James, and list of phenomenal and impactful teachers at Cardington-Lincoln Local Schools could go on to fill up this week’s entire edition of the Morrow County Sentinel.

This week, consider making your children or grandchildren’s teacher(s) feel appreciated (whether that be with a card, gift, or the traditional apple) along with reaching out to one of your own former teachers to reconnect with them and let them know how much impact their classroom has had on your life.

Looking Back:

• 90 years ago, May 1934: Roselyn Kelly, 1934 graduate of Cardington High School, placed second in the English IV central district scholarship examination. Cardington High School’s Class of 1909 celebrated their 25th reunion with “The Nite Club of the Silver Spoon” at the Curl Funeral Home.

• 80 years ago, May 1944: Alice Crum would be crowned May Day Queen at the annual program. The Cardington Board of Education bought two brand new school buses at $2,900 apiece to be delivered in July of that year.

• 70 years ago, May 1954: Richard Rush and Gene Levering received their FFA state degrees. Rev. Ralph Earle was set to address the Class of 1954 at their commencement.

• 60 years ago, May 1964: Marlene Renz and Rita (Radel) Barton were valedictorian and salutatorian for Cardington-Lincoln High School’s Class of 1964. Elections for student council for the 1964-65 school year were held. Those elected were Betty Stillings, Gary Ratliff, and Stephen Conaway, seniors; Shirley McElroy, Carol Rhineberger, and Lonnie Beckel, juniors; Judy Lamson, Brenda Ratliff, and David Linstedt, sophomores; and Janet Yake, Scott Breckner, and Jeff McCutchen, freshmen.

No posts to display