Graduating class pays tribute to late teacher - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports


Graduating class pays tribute to late teacher

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It was a bittersweet night at Dade County High School. The night was about celebrating the graduating class of 2017, but also paying tribute to a beloved educator.

It was standing room only inside Dade County High School, with the exception of one empty chair.

“Everyone knows she was there and was a part of everything we are today,” said senior Jodi Daffron.  But before walking across the stage a touching tribute to a lady who helped get them there.

“She really genuinely cared about what we were soaking in and the knowledge we were getting. It was, she was just the sweetest woman,” said senior Taylor Cox.

Sandy Bradley was the graduation coach.  She helped increase the school's graduation rate from 71% to 95%. Three days before graduation she lost her battle to cancer. “In memory of Ms. Bradley every one of us are going to put a white flower in the vase in honor of her. I am glad we are doing that in memory of her.”

Three seniors won a scholarship in memory of Mrs. Bradley. A humbling moment for Taylor Cox. “It was a very special moment, I kind of teared up. Because wow, Sandy Bradley was an amazing woman.”

Mrs.  Bradley became very ill quickly, but it didn't stop her from continuing to help students. She stayed in touch over the phone and online. “She always did the most to make sure her students were happy and graduating and on track on where they need to be,” said senior Allie Haney.

Days before her passing, she gave her final lesson. “I think she said it best when she put it in her Facebook post. She didn't just dream of things, she did it.  I hope people see her as a doer and she accomplished all those things. And someone who cared about this class and this school system,” said Cox.

A lesson the Class of 2017 will cherish forever “Joy and pride in everything you do. Not to hold anything back,” said Daffron.


School Patrol

David Carroll covers education news and issues at schools across the Tennessee Valley.


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