Lifestyle & Human Interest

For 2 Years, Teacher Walked 2 Hours Each Way to Work. School Finds Out, Surprises Her with Car


Few relationships in a young person’s life are more meaningful and impactful than a relationship with a teacher. From kindergarten through senior year of high school, teachers watch us socialize, dole out discipline when we act out, and teach us about the world.

So it shouldn’t come as any great surprise that every once in a while, a teacher comes along whose efforts are truly appreciated by students. Unfortunately, it can be hard to get young people to appreciate everything that a good teacher does for them.

One such teacher is Sue Campbell, a teacher’s aide at Spessard Holland Elementary in Bartow, Florida. Talk about dedicated; unbeknownst to many there, she was walking 6 miles — each way — to work at the school every day.

It was a 2-hour journey both home and back, all under the hot Florida sun! But, her car had broken down some time ago.

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Incredibly, despite her shocking, daily commute, Campbell was always at school half hour early. Clearly, this inspirational teacher’s aide is highly dedicated to both her students and her school.

When Assistant Principal Tammy Cress learned of Campbell’s startling conditions, she confronted the beloved teacher’s aide. “I don’t want you walking anymore,” Cress told Campbell.

Thus began the first act of kindness. Another teacher who lived near Campbell was tracked down, and the teacher began giving Campbell rides to work every day.

Already, Campbell was relieved of a time-consuming and exhausting daily commute, one which she also described as “embarrassing.” However, Cress knew that there was more she could do to help.

Cress entered Campbell into a free car giveaway through local dealership Regal Lakeland. Since there wasn’t much else that Cress could do, she forgot about the contest and went on with her busy and demanding job.

But on January 2, Regal Lakeland revealed Campbell’s status as a contest finalist. Cress then got to inform Campbell that she was in the running to win a car.

After speaking with Campbell, Regal Lakeland announced that she had far and away won first place in the giveaway. Campbell received a 2011 Chevy Aveo and plenty of gas cards from her friends and coworkers.

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Lots of teachers inspire kids. One great gal was retiring from Cole Elementary School in Tennessee when she received the surprise of a lifetime. Students from all 41 years of her teaching career were there to let her know how much they appreciated what she had done for them.

Do you have memories of a selfless teacher who went to great lengths for their students? Let us know in the comments!

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Nathan Harp is a former contributor to Liftable, a publication of the Western Journal.