Friday, May 22, 2009

Mr. Hudson

While being busy and wrapped up in the hub-bub of today, my thoughts kept drifting back to a person from long ago in my life. When I read the newspaper this morning, I noticed the obituary for my high school speech and debate coach and history teacher. After a long battle with Parkinson's, he finally succumbed to the disease.

Mr. Hudson was certainly a teacher that you could never forget. I'll always remember him:

-Getting excited while talking about Louis XIV, the Hapsburgs, and the Kings of England

- Wearing a purple sweater

-Somehow managing a speech and debate speech class which contained 9th-12th graders working on a myriad of projects

-Putting up with students who could be very full of themselves, and not always in a good way, at times

-Having a classroom with a door that connected to the office

-Being brave, or maybe clueless, enough to take male and female high school students on overnight trips

-Loudly announcing that we were "going down the mountain" on the way home from the Appalachian debate tournament

- Making a bus full of high school students be absolutely quiet while ascending and descending the mountains on said trips; perhaps this is the root of my fear of mountain driving

-Somehow not losing students at speech and debate tournaments when we were all in different buildings on college campuses

-Getting lost and going through the same intersection four times while trying to find our way to Independence High School in Charlotte

-Administering the only exam I had to take in high school when I got mono and missed too many days in my first period class

-Giving me the confidence to speak in front of a group of people; how I wish that skill could have translated into making small talk at social functions

-Being married to the typing teacher who had to teach on actual typewriters and use correction tape

-Always being supportive whether you won or lost your debate

-Always giving me a hug and speaking to my children when we ran into him around town in the years before he became ill

- Being a good sport about the roastings at the year-end speech and debate banquets at Quincy's

- The sweet-sounding way he said my name

Here's to you, Mr. Hudson! Thank you for everything you did!

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