Russell Elementary School celebrated Field Day with plenty of events, awards and ribbons. But while the day was fun for the students and teachers, it was also bittersweet. This year’s Field Day was the last for PE teachers Cathy Sutton and Marcy Waugh, who are retiring at the end of the school year.
Principal Jo Hall said she counted the number of students combined the two taught at Russell Elementary in their careers. Sutton has taught for 32 years and Waugh for 25 years.
“They have made a difference, they have impacted close to 20,000 lives,” Hall said.
Two former students were on hand to speak about Sutton and Waugh. Scotty Kent, a senior at Warner Robins High School, and Marley Mills, a pre-K teacher at Russell Elementary.
“When you think about the people that have really cared about you, the first ones you think about are Mrs. Sutton and Mrs. Waugh,” Kent said. “They taught you how to play fair with other kids and how to treat each other with respect. They really taught us things that we will use in our lives down the road.”
Mills said that she speaking as both a former student and a current colleague.
“Starting in kindergarten and finishing in fifth grade with Mrs. Sutton and Mrs. Waugh was an honor and a memory that I will cherish forever. I can remember juggling with scarves and saying ‘Crisscross Applesauce’ and the smiles I would see on their faces every time I came to PE. The relationship that I created with them encouraged me to be a teacher. I knew that I wanted to make a difference in lives like Mrs. Waugh and Mrs. Sutton did in mine. They have a love for every student that comes through their door,” Mills said.
Warner Robins Mayor Randy Toms was there to present the two teachers a key to the city and commend them on their service to the school and the community. Also at the event were Houston County schools Superintendent Mark Scott and Michelle Masters, assistant superintendent for school operations.