My favorite teacher.

That would be Mrs. Jeanne Parrish. I really loved her. And believe it or not, she loved me. Here she is from my  Sea Cow High School Year Book, 1961:

And here we are fifty years later:

I have to say that she was not only my favorite teacher, but the favorite of a great number of everybody who went to school there. We stayed in contact over the years. I used to visit with her. Not long before she passed away, well into her nineties, I took her to lunch and then on a car tour of Bradenton and Anna Maria Island. She loved it. She told me that I was like a son to her.

I have to tell you a story about her. First, you probably won’t believe it,but I was the most honest kid throughout all my years in school and college. and that’s a lot of years. I never cheated. Well, almost. I did cheat once. It was in Mr. Anderton’s  eighth grade English class. We were taking a test and Sandy Mason, probably the prettiest girl in school, sat behind me. I felt a pencil poke my shoulder. I looked back, and Sandy whispered “What’s the answer to number three?” I told her. But that was the first and only time I ever cheated.

I was in Mrs. Parrish’s twelfth grade English class. She had returned graded tests to us students. I noticed that she graded mine wrong. After class I went up to her desk with my paper and said “Mrs. Parrish, you made a mistake. You gave me an ‘A’, but I missed two questions, not just the one.” She paused for a moment looking at me, and then she said “Bud, I’ll never forget you.” She never did.


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2 Responses to My favorite teacher.

  1. Mark Stoffel says:

    You totally got me on panel 4, this is a great one!

    I had a 9th grade German teacher, she taught us out of the ALM language series (they did French & Spanish, probably other languages too). We were subjected to the trite dialogue typical of all entry-level language study– “Wohin geht Peter?” “An den See!”

    “You’ll never forget these couplets for as long as you live, class…” she remarked more than once.

    Fifteen years later I encountered Frau Bjorklund during a visit to the hometown. The reunion went like this– “Entschuldigen Sie, gnadige Frau, wohin geht Peter?” “An den See, naturlich, Herr Stoffel!”

    Memory is a funny thing, and so much of it is wrapped up in what we learn in school.

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