The Ottumwa Courier

Local News

May 3, 2012

They’ll miss the kids: Retiring educators honored

OTTUMWA — After 34 years in the classroom, teacher Nancy Manson tells herself she’s leaving the school in good hands.

“It’s been my life. But it’s only fair that now a young person will have a chance to make it their life,” said the second-grade teacher Wednesday.

Manson and 14 other retirees from the Ottumwa school district were being honored at a reception with coffee, cookies and cards from colleagues.

These are people, said Superintendent Davis Eidahl, who have made a difference not just to the school district, but to the community. Many of the children who were influenced by these employees are still in Iowa as adults.

“I’ll miss seeing the littlest children, watching and listening to them as they progress,” said school secretary Debi Blew, a 20-year Ottumwa veteran retiring from Pickwick Elementary School.

Ottumwa High School librarian Melinda Quinn enjoyed seeing young people discover new things. And it meant a lot to her when students would give her favorite compliment: “Mrs. Quinn, you always know where to find just the right book.”

So is there anything these educators won’t miss?

“Getting up early,” admitted Quinn.

A friend said Quinn would rise at 4:30 a.m.

“I have for years,” Quinn said. “I felt it was important to have the library open before the kids arrived in the morning.”

These dedicated employees, said Eidahl, won’t be forgotten.

“As I look out, I see the faces of other retired people, people who I continue to see in our classrooms. So consider this an invitation to continue to be a presence in our schools.”

At Manson’s table, Eisenhower student Eli Moughler, 7, was paying a visit. Manson listened attentively to his comments. Later, she acknowledged the children would be the ones she missed the most.

“I can honestly say every day has been wonderful. I’ve never said ‘I don’t want to go to work today.’ There were children who needed me, depended on me,” she said through quiet tears. “It’s going to be especially hard when the aisles at the stores are filled with crayons and things for back-to-school time. But we’re leaving the schools in good hands. This is a good district.”

Text Only
Local News
  • 0417 OTT Earth day color photo 1 -T -M Cargill celebrates Earth Day by educating ALBIA — In honor of Earth Day on Tuesday, April 22, employees from Cargill Eddyville and Cargill Pork are visiting with students at Grant Elementary and Lincoln Center in Albia all this week. On Wednesday the Courier caught up with them as they went

    April 16, 2014 3 Photos

  • 0417 OTT Saving Center color photo -T -L -M Hedrick building has friends HEDRICK — The community wants a civic center, and they've been willing to work for it. "I'd say we have 15 to 25 volunteers each time," Tommy Smith of Hedrick said. "These are all good people." Smith was volunteering his services at the Easter Brunch

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Southern Iowa farmers preparing for planting OTTUMWA — Even though the winter seemed to linger like Iowa was going through an ice age and cold and wet weather has highlighted the early spring, farmers are starting to get out to their fields to put down fertilizer and get fields ready for planti

    April 16, 2014

  • 0417 OTT Camp Wapello fence photo -T -M -L Good fence irritates good neighbor DRAKESVILLE — For 82 years, Camp Wapello’s iconic entryway has welcomed people to peacefully coexist with nature. Now there’s a 400-foot barbed wire fence down the middle of the road. In February, Davis County Supervisors approved vacating of portion

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Carrying bookbags a balancing act OTTUMWA — Permission slips. Notes from teachers. School activity announcements, birthday invitations, report cards and homework to sign. Kids bring home a lot of stuff. But is it done fairly? The school board this week was asked by ranking members of

    April 16, 2014

  • Van Buren supervisors deny hog confinement permit application KEOSAUQUA — A proposed swine building in Chequest Township didn’t receive a seal of approval from Van Buren County Board of Supervisors. Supervisors voted Monday to recommend to the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to deny the permit. Supervisor

    April 16, 2014

  • 0417 OTT Beth Howard bw cover -L -T -M 'Ms. American Pie' tours with her new book ELDON — With many hours and countless miles on her RV "The Beast," Eldon's pie lady, Beth Howard, is celebrating the release of her new book with a tour of southwestern states. Howard's second book, "Ms. American Pie: Buttery Good Pie Recipes and Bol

    April 16, 2014 2 Photos

  • Van Buren to share FFA with Harmony KEOSAUQUA — Van Buren Community School Board approved a recommendation from its administration to share the ag program with Harmony for the 2014-15 school year. The decision means that Van Buren students would travel to Harmony to receive ag instruct

    April 16, 2014

  • Attorney withdraws after client disappears OTTUMWA — Authorities are still looking for an Ottumwa man who didn’t show up for court proceedings. When they find him, he’ll need a new attorney. Jacob Nordyke faces charges of interference with official acts and possession of drug paraphernalia. H

    April 16, 2014

  • Waste Management wants to stay in Keosauqua KEOSAUQUA — Waste Management told the city of Keosauqua that it was not interested in ending the contract it has for solid waste and recycling services it provides to the city. A representative told the city mayor that it intends to fulfill the contr

    April 16, 2014

Photo reprints


Obituaries

Facebook
E-edition