My husband’s aunt died suddenly this past weekend and it has been a whirlwind of a week since then. She was an actress and a drama professor at CUNY Staten Island for more than 30 years. Last night we held a memorial for her and it was inspiring to see more than a dozen of her students attend the memorial. One of her students, a young woman, spoke and brought so many of us to tears. As this young woman spoke, I realized I hope to be a teacher who inspires and brings out the best in her students.
Below is the actual text that was shared about my husband’s late aunt.
“I write this with teas in my eyes. I never would have expected that May would be the last time I’d ever see you on earth. I remember your warm smile and hearing the sound of your rolling backpack coming into our classroom like it was yesterday. I remember you as being such an uplifting, encouraging, amazing woman. Not only were you an amazing drama professor, but a beautiful soul inside and out. I never got to tell you this in person, but I was never suppose to take your class. I now know when I did arrive at your class, God planned it that way because you truly saved me from myself. You helped me find myself. I will always cherish our heart to hearts we had after class. I remember you smiling and hugging me with tears in your eyes after I sung in front of the class. You told me to never be afraid of being myself. Before your class I was a timid anxious, not confident girl. I didn’t believe in myself at all. I was depressed and so unhappy. Because of you, I am now not afraid to be myself. You truly saved me, and for that, I am forever grateful. You brought out the real me, and like the song I sang in class, this is me. I will forever promise you that I will continue to put my heart and soul into everything I do. I will always be myself and never hold back. You will be a part of everything I do. “