Over the past several years many of you have followed the journey of Damon Billeck...former Olympia and current Kitty Hawk Middle School student. Damon was diagnosed with a tough type of cancer in 4th grade, but through it all he has displayed an uncommon example of courage and perseverance. Recently Damon's latest visit at MD Anderson ended with finishing chemo and his full scans detected no disease. That meant he got to ring the bell at MD Anderson that signifies a patient leaving with "no evidence of disease."
But now, thanks to the San Antonio Fire Department and Chief Hood Damon has his own bell to ring for being cancer free. The firefighters at Station 11 made the bell for him and in a special ringing ceremony at the fire station Damon was able to ring his own bell. Folks from University Hospital, family, friends, media and of course fire department officials including Chief Hood watched the emotional moment that was a milestone.
Damon is keeping it in perspective of course, because the disease has returned before. But he continues to be an inspiration to his fellow students, teachers and beyond for his courage and his outlook on a journey that no one chooses to take. We hope he continues to ring that bell for a long time.
Converse Elementary received a grant from Walmart Neighborhood Market on Toepperwein Road for $1,000. Ms. Berry, a 5th grade teacher wrote the grant. The school will use the money to purchase new playground equipment for their students to enjoy.
Rick Dawdy giving board members and superintendent cabinet members a tour in 2015
Career and Technology Education (CTE) teacher Rick Dawdy is one of those teachers whose instruction, influence and mentoring will last for a very long time. He retired this year ('15-'16), but in a recent newsletter article in CareerSafe, his legacy regarding safety in the workplace was featured. While he spent many years in JISD, he spent the last several of his career at Wagner High School teaching the highly sought after skill of welding. But safety was always a high priority with him and his students. In fact, CareerSafe is an OSHA certification all of the district's CTE teachers now retain and Mr. Dawdy required all of his students to earn the student lifetime certification to support their chances for success in this career. We will miss his contributions to the district and of course his students, but are proud of his successes and wish him only the best in retirement to spend more time with his family.
Four JISD Employees were recently a part of a TV show feature as singers in a group called "Sixtas." All six members of the singing group are sisters, but four of them are members of the JISD family. They are: Paula Edwards, Marcie Edwards, Jaimee Edwards and Jeanetta Edwards. Take a look at the link below for the Great Day SA segment
KSAT Sports picks athletes across the city for its Scholar Athlete of the Week and recently Amari Borrego from the Lady Rockets Softball Team. She was chosen not just because of her athletic ability on the softball field (plays second base), but also because of her class rank, gpa and her community service. She is a varsity starter and was awarded an athletic scholarship to play softball at the University of Mount Olive...that's in Mount Olive North Carolina. She was also awarded a scholarship from the Judson Education Foundation. Congratulations.