So before I was a realtor extraordinaire, I was a lucky to be a teacher. I was even luckier to be a teacher at Irving Elementary in Joplin, Missouri. I taught at Irving for eleven years. I taught there when my two kids attended school there. I taught some great kids there. I worked worked with extremely caring professionals. As a special education teacher, I worked closely with therapists, counselors and other teachers. I am proud to say that I still have the friendship of these great women. We get together a couple times a year to share food and some good conversation. As a matter of fact, we were planning to meet for a Christmas celebration. So when I heard that demolition had begun on Irving Elementary, I knew I had to stop by. Irving had been severely damaged in the tornado and was now coming down.
I stopped there and approached the workers and asked if I could talk to someone in charge. A man named Matthew stepped up. I told him that I needed a few bricks from the school, three to be exact, one for my son, my daughter and me. He got me three nice looking bricks as a machine with a big claw scooped up the rubble of Irving and dropped it in a truck.
As I drove away with my bricks and a tear in my eye, I decided that I had to drive back and get a few more bricks for my Irving teacher friends. Because even though we had decided that we were not exchanging gifts, I didn’t think they would mind me giving them an Irving brick. When I got back to the school, Matthew was eating his lunch. I apologized for being weepy and bugging him but I explained that I use to teach at Irving. I asked him if he could get me five more bricks, then I counted again and said make it six more. I told him I would wait in my car for him to finish eating. I was not in a hurry. He came to my car and said, I bought you seven bricks. My wife is a teacher also.
They are going to build a new Irving on a new location. It will be bright and shiny and have all the latest technology. But I am sure going to miss driving by the my Irving School.
Check out the new Joplin school plans in this Joplin Globe article.