Woody retires, says goodbye to WHSOver the last 10 years, the students and staff at Woodbury High School have had a dear friend in an unlikely staff member — the parking lot security guard.
By: Amber Kispert-Smith, Woodbury Bulletin
Over the last 10 years, the students and staff at Woodbury High School have had a dear friend in an unlikely staff member — the parking lot security guard.
Calvin Woody, affectionately referred to as Woody, has been patrolling the school’s parking lots and surrounding campus for the last 10 years, and has done it with a smile and a spirit unmatched by anyone, according to many teachers and students.
Woody has known each student, each staff member, by make and model of their car and by name, said English teacher Gina Carbone, who was once a WHS student.
“Woody’s probably one of the most visible staff members at this school — everybody has a ‘Woody’ story,” Carbone said. “He just has that genuine kindness and caring spirit that doesn’t come along too often.”
So when Woody suddenly retired earlier this month, only three days into the school year, students and staff alike were shocked and saddened to hear the news, principal Linda Plante said.
“It was just sadness when we found out since Woody’s been such an important part of the building,” Plante said. “Schools are very tight families, so what happens to one of us, happens to all of us.”
Woody has been battling colon cancer and this summer, Woody went through several doses of radiation treatment, which put him through a severe loss of energy and a lot of pain.
“It didn’t seem like I was getting any stronger and school was coming — I didn’t have the energy to get up and move,” Woody said. “That first day of school, the energy popped back into me. But that third day, I couldn’t make it, I had to tell them that I couldn’t handle it — even though I want to go back right now.”
Currently, Woody is in hospice care at his home.
Woody’s absence is definitely felt at WHS. Whether it’s not seeing his smiling facing cruising around the parking lot, or getting a friendly wave, Carbone said, Woody is missed.
“It’s not going to be the same around here,” Carbone said. “But nobody’s going to forget Woody.”
The entire story is available in the Wednesday, Sept. 30 print edition of the Woodbury Bulletin