Letter: Reader appreciates the smile of a crossing guard

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To the editor:

I was a bit apprehensive on Sept. 1 when I drove my kindergartner to her first day of school. Not that I do not trust the excellent teachers that we have in Southington, but our boys went to South End School and—since we had moved—our daughter was assigned to Kelley school.

We were starting anew. I was trying not to show her that mommy was nervous. She was ecstatic. After years of watching her older brothers leave for school on a daily basis, it was finally her turn.

My mood was a little iffy, but as I turned the corner of Hart Street and Ridgewood Road, I noticed the crossing guard that was waving enthusiastically to all of the parents and schoolchildren that went by. He made eye contact with each and every one of them, including my daughter and me.

I remember thinking that he was very passionate about his job on this first day of school, but that his eagerness would probably fade as the days went by. Nothing could further than the truth.

It is now March and although my daughter takes the bus on most days, sometimes I procrastinate in the morning and end up driving her to school but I don’t mind it. I look forward to seeing “Mr. Garrity,” as I have come to know him. He smiles and waves to all of us, without exception. He brightens up my day every time and I truly appreciate his kindness and devotion to our families.

It always makes me want to pay it forward throughout my day. It is difficult for me to put in words how I feel about the love and the joy that he is spreading in our town but I just wanted to take the time to thank him for putting a huge grin on my face, even on cold, dreary winter mornings.

Melanie Fortin, Southington

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