Barren County man gives back for National Family Literacy Day

Paying it forward, one Barren County man celebrates National Family Literacy Day by giving back to his community and honoring the teachers who showed him the importance of reading.

For Sam Terry, National Family Literacy Day was a day of celebration.

“We adopted a class here at Caverna Elementary to make sure that those students have books of their own and they will be able to select a new book every month for the entire school year to take home, to be theirs, and hopefully develop a joy of readying.” says Terry. 

Not only did Terry want to give back to the second graders at Caverna Elementary School, he wanted to honor his former teachers who showed him the importance of literacy.

“They have been not only my teachers, but mentors throughout my life. I started school 49-years ago and I have known these ladies and kept up with them the rest of my life so they certainly have shaped my life and many others.” added Terry.

Three of Terry’s former elementary school teachers attended the celebration, but they had no idea the celebration was to honor them.

“I did have him as a second grader and he was a very good student and has always been one of my special people.” says Vesta Dennison, Terry’s former 2nd grade teacher.

“It was a real total surprise and then having the second graders in here, the little kids. We love those, the little one, oh we love them, they are precious.” says Edith Bastin, Terry’s former 1st grade teacher. 

“My sister-in-law called and said ‘get your calender out and mark November the first at ten o’clock at the elementary school’ I said ‘why’ and she said ‘just be there’.” says Annetta Tohey, Terry’s former 5th grade teacher. 

The celebration was coordinated by the Caverna Family Resource Director, Wilma Bunnell. 

“It took of a lot of us to put it together because we were trying to keep it a surprise for the retired teachers. They do so much for us and we appreciate them so very much.” says Bunnell.