Our area was recently struck by a disastrous flood that has impacted the entire region. One of my colleagues suggested a plan to help fellow teachers from our school recover by helping to clear and clean out flooded and damaged basements. This band of educators became a construction crew that any foreman would be proud of. They worked without complaint, even when faced with the possibility of getting sick from contaminated floodwaters.
As we moved from house to house one of the teachers heard that my own father's place was flooded and asked if he could come over and help out. Before the week was over seven more teachers signed up. We totally gutted the basement in 2 1/2 hours, ripping, tearing, prying and dragging material to the curb. My father sat in the driveway and watched as each of us carried armfuls of his past to the street for pick up. He never complained but the pain was deep in his heart. I know that my friends at the Jennie F. Snapp Middle School made a difference that day and my dad felt a little easier about the difficult situation.
(Jim McAndrew is a member of Endicott Teachers Association)