Students, teachers remember late principal - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Students, teachers remember late principal

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BACON CO., GA (WTOC) -

Black bows and a black wreath helps show the sorrow of many at Bacon County High School as they mourned the death of their principal, Teresa Sermons, over the weekend after an extended battle with cancer.

"I'm used to walking in to Bacon County High School and seeing her smile and her joyful face ... always encouraging me, helping me," said Isiah Staten, who remembered her from her tenures as principal at the high school and, years earlier, at the elementary school.

Athletic director Michael Thompson knew her since the 1970's, when they were students at this very school.

"She was a hometown girl. She loved the school. She loved the community. She loved to see students be successful," he recalled.

"She didn't let nothing ever get her down. She'd see me and always say 'Keep your head up - you'll never fall down or fall short'," noted senior Shawn Philpot.

Her staff said her commitment and devotion didn't wane even through her fight with cancer.

"You'd feel whiney if you complained about anything because she came to work with such joy," said teacher Jan Cauley. "I've been a teacher more than 30 years and I've never seen anyone with such passion for education."

"Always had a smile on her face, no matter if she was in pain or not. What I looked at was her strength each and every day," said football coach Ken Cofer. "She's a hero to me."

"She's inspired me to never give up. To be strong in my faith and determined to the end and I respect her for that more than anything in this world," added teacher Tanya Bourdeaux.

Sermon's funeral and burial will be small and private on Tuesday.

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