Sunday, May 19, 2013

A Devoted Teacher's Refections on Kierra Mae Jones, Murdered Victim in Triple Shooting

Police Identify Victim In Triple Shooting 

By my daughter who was one of Kierra's teachers email the following to me:

Kierra “Twin” Jones was one of a kind. At just about five feet, ninety pounds, she had a huge spirit that was belying of her stature. With braids, tattoos, and oversized clothing it would be easy to look at her and assume the worst. But once she smiled, all of that melted away. And you saw her for what she was. A young woman who dared to be herself, a young woman who loved openly, a young woman who was just as quick to give an encouraging word as she was to crack a joke. And as she spoke--slow and measured, you could feel the reservoir of wisdom that was deep inside of her.

She wasn’t perfect, as none of us are. However, she was strengthened through every mistake, fortified through every failure. And throughout the revolving door that is night school, she remained constant. When her peers’ resolve weakened she said, “I have faith.”

 Twin exemplified everything that All City is supposed to represent. She dreamed through adversity. She strived every day; even in the midst of the complacency that surrounds us all. She was a leader, she was a peacemaker, so much so that it cost her life.

 And through her death, life continues. Old students are coming back through that revolving door. They’re saying they’re going to graduate for Twin. And though they may stumble, though they may never pass a Regents, or walk the stage, they have all LEARNED.

 Hopefully we too can learn from this. Our success as educators is not limited to test scores. Our success comes when we dig deep within ourselves and continue to hope. Our success comes when we look past the statistics and see our students as people who deserve dignity and respect. Our success comes when we forgive the students who disrespect and underappreciate us. Our success comes when we treat our students like we would want someone to treat our own kids. Our success comes when we don’t coddle students, but when we push them to excel. Our success comes when we lead by example.

Kierra’s family is requesting donations to buy her headstone. Please give as much as you can.

I am feeling better, death is a part of life and I am going to use her death as motivation. I love y'all :-)

Vera Richardson

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