Some well-deserved thanks to people who serve our community


Take some time to appreciate the people in your community who give of themselves to make your family’s lives so much better.

As the school year draws to a close, I remind you that National Teacher Appreciation Week is May 8 – 12.

Make an effort to send some appreciation to the professionals who improve your child’s quality of life. Likewise, do not let that appreciation stop in the classroom. Let the bus driver who patiently takes your precious ones to and from school and the kitchen staff and the janitorial staff know that you appreciate the work they perform for your child’s well-being.

At my age, I am beginning to see some of the teachers I have known and admired for years retiring from the school system. To them, I say “thank you” for the positive impact you have had on our community, well done. My time serving on the local PTO and school councils gave me a deep appreciation for your efforts.

As a youth sports and academic coach for a decade, I know how much time coaching can take out of your week. To all the recreation coaches and team moms, I say “thank you” for teaching our children sportsmanship, discipline, and how to have fun.

To the numerous volunteers who participate in clean-ups for our path system, lakes, and local parks, I say “thank you” for giving us a beautiful place to call home and raise a family.

Having formerly been responsible for the local public safety departments, I know the job can be tedious, sometimes frustrating, and always potentially dangerous. I say “thank you” for your professionalism under pressure and the protection against harm. Hopefully, local homeowner’s associations will set up a special day where they bring a meal to the local fire station covering their area like we used to do in days past.

To our mostly overlooked Public Works employees, working outside on the hottest and coldest day of the year, rain or shine, keeping the infrastructure usable, and the public grounds beautiful, I say “thank you.” You deserve much more recognition.

To those with the means who donate large sums of money to our local charities and the hundreds of people who volunteer to staff and operate worthy endeavors, I say “thank you” for not looking the other way, extending a hand of friendship, and aiding our neighbors who need help.

Take a moment to contemplate your role in our community. Are you setting a good example for your children and volunteering in the community? Do you have a list of excuses why you do not look for positive ways to engage?

Paraphrasing from President John F. Kennedy, Jr., “Ask not what your local community can do for you — ask what you can do for your local community.” Grateful hearts always make the greatest impact.

When our children leave the nest and venture into other parts of the state and nation, they undoubtedly recognize just how good they had it as a child.

You keep the good in the community by being the good in your community.

[Brown is a former mayor of Peachtree City and served two terms on the Fayette County Board of Commissioners. You can read all his columns by clicking on his photo below.]