Students pay tribute to former teacher
Published 12:00 am Saturday, September 6, 2003
More than 75 students who once attended a two-room school recently honored their former teacher.
The students who attended Rosenwald Union Graded School from 1953-63 honored Beatrice Reeves with a breakfast and dinner. Things started with a ceremony in Canaan Baptist Church, where she is a lifetime member, when Reeves was crowned &uot;Queen for a Day.&uot; That evening they gave a dinner in her honor at The Dining Room.
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Vice Mayor Leroy Bennett presented Reeves with a certificate of appreciation from the City of Suffolk and a dozen red roses from students for her service in the community, school and church.
Accolades were also given by former students and good friends, including Bettie Mayfield, Retired Col. Fred Cherry, Eunice Whitehurst, Joyce Mayfield, Ernestine Deloatch, Barbara Thomas, Gloria Eason, Carver Hyman, Aaron Boone, Marie Diggs, and Macy Darden.
Out-of-town attendees traveled from as far as New York City, South Carolina, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Washington, D.C.
Bettie Mayfield, chairman of the reunion committee, said that she is glad the reunion was a success.
&uot;I contacted 100 former students. I was very overwhelmed by the big response that I received because only a few people that I contacted could not attend.&uot;
Reeves graduated from the former East Suffolk High School, received her education degree Elizabeth City University, and certification as a reading specialist at Old Dominion University.
Reeves taught fourth- through seventh-grades at Rosenwald from 1953-1963. Then, in 1963, the school was consolidated. According to Reeves, students were sent to the newly built Florence Bowser Elementary School, Driver Elementary School, and schools in Dinwiddie County, Pughsville, and Huntersville.
Reeves taught for 39 years before retiring from Suffolk Public Schools.