Yesterday we got the news as a staff that our head custodian Kevin passed away. I was stunned. There were no words. This morning after sharing the news with the kids in our pod we gave them a chance to share out their thoughts and feelings. We had the standard “He was nice,” and “I’ll miss him.” What I wasn’t prepared for was for a student who is always goofing around and clowning around for his friends to raise his hand. And as I braced myself for his comment I found myself trying not to let my jaw hit the floor. He shared out with us that Kevin was more than a janitor and that he was a friend to every one. He commented on how we didn’t deserve a guy like Kevin and we were so blessed that he was a part of our lives. He then shared that Kevin is in a better place now and that we can remember all of the wonderful things that he did for everyone in our school and that he would leave a lasting memory and a piece of Kevin will continue to be with us in our hearts.
I was floored. His thoughts were so well spoken and shared. It was beautiful and I had to remind myself to be more like Kevin. It didn’t matter who the kid was or what they looked like. He loved every single one of them. I love my students but how quick have I been to brush off someone because I’m tired or in a rush? Kevin took the time to have a relationship with anyone, student or coworker, that wanted one. He was an amazing man and his impact is already showing in the ripples our students are sharing. It was a touching tribute from a small voice that could have been easily overlooked but that we all needed to hear this morning.