Ansonia parade ‘unites’ staff, students


By Linda Moody - DarkeCountyMedia.com



Marissa Dillman brought her blended family of five sons — a second-grader, two kindergarteners and two pre-schoolers — to the parade through town on Monday.

Marissa Dillman brought her blended family of five sons — a second-grader, two kindergarteners and two pre-schoolers — to the parade through town on Monday.


Linda Moody | DarkeCountyMedia.com

This was the decorated car of teacher Mrs. Brodbeck. It was one of many in Monday’s parade that “reunited” teachers, staff and students. The parade went through Ansonia as well as Rossburg and New Weston, which are in the Ansonia Local School District.


Linda Moody | DarkeCountyMedia.com

The three daughters of Sarah Prescott (shown in the background) made posters to ‘communicate’ with their teachers in the parade through Ansonia Monday afternoon.


Linda Moody | DarkeCountyMedia.com

ANSONIA — The Ansonia Parents Alliance (APA) hosted a parade for the students in the area on Monday afternoon, under the direction of April Billenstein and Kailey Hibner.

The parade started at the school, continued down Canal Street to the stoplight, turned left on State Route 118, went down to the Ansonia First Church of God and turned around in the parking lot there and then headed back up 118 and on to Rossburg and New Weston.

“It’s a small school so social distancing won’t be an issue,” said a spokesperson. “All the teachers in the district and other staff in the district were invited to participate by putting signs on their vehicles to say how much they miss them and we will get through this.”

Students as well held signs to shown their support for their teachers and other staff.

“We thought it might be a positive change from all these negative and stressful times that people can come together and show support that this won’t bring us down,” said the spokesperson.

Elementary Principal Ashlee Fourman said she didn’t count the vehicles in the parade.

“I wish I knew how many cars and staff there were,” she said. “I simply told my staff at our virtual staff meeting on Thursday morning and, in Ansonia fashion, they came through. There were so many cars! I had a very positive response from students and parents during the parade as well as comments on Facebook. I was ‘in charge,’ but it all came about when a staff member texted me and asked me if I had seen another school on Facebook do a parade. I said, ‘Yes, do you think we should do one,’ and she replied, ‘Yes’. Things just snowballed from there!”

Fourman said one staff member e-mailed her and wondered if the school’s resource officer, Kyle Yount, could lead the parade.

“I texted him Friday and he was on board,” she said. “Then, the rescue squad messaged me a few hours before the parade and wanted to join and I was, of course, on board with that. I went out over the weekend to buy window paint for our cars.”

She went on, “I know many of them said ‘We miss you’, ‘kindergarten rocks’, etc. My personal vehicle said ‘keep being the I in KIND’, ‘Let’s rock and…..’, ‘Always remember It’s a good day to have a good day’— these are things I say daily on our announcements when we are in session. I also had ‘we miss you’ and ‘keep working hard, tiger pride.’

The principal said there were quite a few people on 118 in Rossburg and New Weston.

“I was so thankful they braved the cold,” she said. “I have had so many teachers text me and tell me how awesome it was and how emotional they got seeing their students. This staff is truly amazing.”

Visit DarkeCountyMedia.com to read comments from the community.

Others who remarked on this endeavor were:

Stacy Kies: “Today, the Ansonia staff held a parade through Ansonia, Rossburg, and New Weston so we could see our students. It was so sweet to see them lining the streets, some with signs, smiling, waving and yelling hello. I miss them SO much. Thankful for my guys going along and holding my signs! I’m very thankful that our administration organized this for us. I think we all needed to see each other! It was so heart-warming seeing the families line the streets, the kids with their signs, waving, and smiling. It brought tears to my eyes! I miss each and every one of my kiddos, and it was awesome to see them…if even for a quick drive by!”

Stacey Barnt: “We are blessed to be a part of an amazing community with a wonderful faculty at Ansonia. My heart was full today as they took time to connect with our kids. You can tell they truly miss each other. We are proud to be Ansonia Tigers.”

Angie Brown: “The Meadow girls said they really enjoyed seeing their teachers, and Callen Hecht had the biggest smile on his face when the teachers said hi to him.”

Martha Everman: “I want to say thank them for doing this. I know my grandkids were outside and happy to see their teachers and thank you to Ansonia Police and Rescue.”

Julie Kimmel: “My kids all graduated from Ansonia. My daughter, Olivia Marita, and I enjoyed watching and waving at all the staff (and yelling out to a few). Was so nice to see the smiling faces. Great job, Ansonia School.”

Kay Jones: “I was out in my orange and black to support the teachers and students. The kids at our end town were cheering and waving.”

Angie Jones: “It was so awesome to see all the teachers and students getting to see each other. I am sure that is just what everyone needed. Thank you so much to all the teachers and staff. My kids were so happy to see all of you.”

Susan Kammer: “I want to thank everyone for their efforts. The children seemed to enjoy it. I know Jim and I did.”

Joanie Beam: “God bless the Ansonia teachers for having a parade so you all could at least see your students I saw many kids out waving. Thank you teachers.”

Kathy Rearick Hiestand: “It was awesome. My two grandkids cried when they saw their teachers.”

Rachel Morrison Jenkins: “It was awesome. The kids loved seeing the teachers. Hopefully, they can do it again. We love how the teachers decorated their cars.”

Christina Ann Dinkins: “Teachers are more than just educators, they are also raising our children in a way. I am beyond thankful for each and every staff at Ansonia that has made an impact in my kids lives. Our hearts were so full today.”

Susan Yagle: “It’s nice to see the teachers and the town still have spirit through all of this. It’s good everybody’s pulling together.”

Ashley Ryan: “My second-grader Layla said, ‘That was the most fun I’ve had in a while. I can’t believe I got to see all my teachers at once!’

Christa Hole Everman: “I am so proud that my children are blessed with the great staff in our school(s). I was moved to tears during the parade. Knowing that our kids are loved so much, and that they love so much in return, is touching. Thank you Ansonia Schools staff. Proud to be an Ansonia Tiger!”

Peggy Johnson Emerson: “I do not have children in the school but I still went out on my porch to wave and cheer. What a touching moment to see both teachers and students so excited to see one another! It brought both myself and my husband to tears.”

Stephanie Adkins: “I am proud that my son is a tiger! This moved me to tears seeing the excitement of teachers and kids and parents/Ansonians coming together to lift others up. Thank you all who put this together! You may never know how much it touched these kids hearts!”

Marissa Dillman brought her blended family of five sons — a second-grader, two kindergarteners and two pre-schoolers — to the parade through town on Monday.
https://www.dailyadvocate.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/34/2020/03/web1_VIRUS-ANSONIA-PARADE-DILLMANS.jpgMarissa Dillman brought her blended family of five sons — a second-grader, two kindergarteners and two pre-schoolers — to the parade through town on Monday. Linda Moody | DarkeCountyMedia.com

This was the decorated car of teacher Mrs. Brodbeck. It was one of many in Monday’s parade that “reunited” teachers, staff and students. The parade went through Ansonia as well as Rossburg and New Weston, which are in the Ansonia Local School District.
https://www.dailyadvocate.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/34/2020/03/web1_VIRUS-ANSONIA-PARADE-BRODBECK-CAR.jpgThis was the decorated car of teacher Mrs. Brodbeck. It was one of many in Monday’s parade that “reunited” teachers, staff and students. The parade went through Ansonia as well as Rossburg and New Weston, which are in the Ansonia Local School District. Linda Moody | DarkeCountyMedia.com

The three daughters of Sarah Prescott (shown in the background) made posters to ‘communicate’ with their teachers in the parade through Ansonia Monday afternoon.
https://www.dailyadvocate.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/34/2020/03/web1_VIRUS-PARADE-SMITH-SISTERS-POSTERS.jpgThe three daughters of Sarah Prescott (shown in the background) made posters to ‘communicate’ with their teachers in the parade through Ansonia Monday afternoon. Linda Moody | DarkeCountyMedia.com

By Linda Moody

DarkeCountyMedia.com

Contact Darke County Media Staff Writer Linda Moody at lmoody@aimmediamidwest.com or 937-569-4315, ext. 1749. Read more news, features and sports at DarkeCountyMedia.com.

Contact Darke County Media Staff Writer Linda Moody at lmoody@aimmediamidwest.com or 937-569-4315, ext. 1749. Read more news, features and sports at DarkeCountyMedia.com.