I don’t know if you remember me or not…I took over for Joy Krause at W.T. Elementary School when Tony was in second grade. I remember several distinct things about Tony. The very first was scanning the class list and coming to his name and looking at Joy. She smiled and said, “It’s easy. Just say”, “Where’s your house key?” Talk about something sticking with you forever! There have been several times over the past many years when I have searched for my house key and that saying (and Tony) went through my mind! Isn’t life strange?
That second grade year was a very difficult year. Partly I’m sure, since I took over in November and that type of transition is hard on young children but MOSTLY due to the characters that were in that class! Seven were on behavior management programs. I felt like I spent a lot of time putting fires out. All through that…Tony would look at me with a closed, straight-lined mouth, raised eyebrows and eyes that said, “Jeez I feel sorry for you with these nuts.” I often compare people to animals and Tony was a little owl. He was wise way beyond his years. I felt like I had another adult in the room with me. He never once joined in with the ridiculous antics that were daily occurrences. The really odd thing was…he was very well liked and many peers looked up to him. Usually, at that age…most of the well-liked kids are the ones who are class clowns and such.
It seems like you lived in the Summerside area but for some reason Tony came to WT. I remember your husband working, I believe, for the county? Maybe as a surveyor? At any rate, Tony spoke very highly of him. Much of his sharing revolved around the things they did together…father and son things. I remember being so impressed that a blended family was SO healthy and functional…since that wasn’t the norm. I also remember you being VERY pregnant although I can’t remember when you had your daughter. I DO remember how Tony was “quietly excited” about it all and how touched I was by that.
When I heard about Tony I was in total shock. What didn’t shock me at all was how successful and magnificent he had become. Believe it or not…you can usually look at kids as young as kindergarten and tell whether or not they will be successful. Tony was one of those that had A+ stamped on his forehead. What a treasure.
“…I very much believe in God and I very much believe people like Tony have an everlasting life…not here but someplace better…much better. He also will live on in many hearts…including mine. May God carry you in his hand as you heal.
Very, very sincerely,