I have had a lot of teachers in my career as a school student, some good, some bad, and some, like Mr. Willie, totally unforgettable. If I had to choose my favorite teacher of all time, Mr. Willie would probably win, hands down.
I had Mr. Willie (as we kids called him) two years ago, when I was in ninth grade. (I'm now a junior, getting ready to end yet another school year in just about a month from now. In the fall, I'll be a big-time senior!) Mr. Willie taught Science and it was clear just how much he enjoyed his job. He showed such joy, such verve, such passion as he taught us things like photosynthesis, the beauty of nature, and gave us a sense of appreciation for species of all kinds, be it mammal, avian, human, or marsupial.
If we were having trouble or needed help in any way, Mr. Willie would take time to show us an easier way to solve our dilemma and as a result, our grades would markedly improve, much to the delight of our parents. Mr. Willie made learning (and school, as a whole) FUN!!
Unfortunately, Mr. Willie isn't with our school any longer. He developed prostrate cancer and is currently too sick to teach. He has been in and out of the hospital for treatment and/or surgery. He just had surgery last week and is recuperating from complications; his wife has informed us that he will probably have to end up giving up the career he loved, which, in part, makes all of us sad.
Such devastating news to us kids who were fortunate to have had him as a teacher! We cannot imagine our school without a teacher like Mr. Willie: he was definitely one of a kind and he CARED, which is a lot more than I can say for some of the teachers here. We got so much out of his classes and in his style of teaching!
We are going to have to talk our parents into letting us go to the hospital to see Mr. Willie and let him know that we are thinking of him and that we are praying for him. He has done so much for us: now it is OUR turn to do something for Mr. Willie!
~End of part one.~