Every day, our crossing guards are out working tirelessly to make sure we can cross the street safely, and intact. Cristina Cuevas has been working for the district for about two and a half years, Marian Hamry for 15 years and Nadine Meade has been at Lowry for two years. Elizabeth Lyon and Elizabeth Carrillo are crossing guards as well. Some even cross with Shelley Bare at the corner of Palisade and Highland. She has been with the district for 14 years, and at French Ford for 7. Many of us cross with a crossing guard every day.
“Every year it varies on the number of students I cross,” said Hamry. “I do enjoy seeing the kids though and getting them across safely.”
No matter the day, there are always crossing guards on duty, even in the harshest of conditions.
“A day as a crossing guard is good until you get bad weather and you’re standing in the rain or snow,” said Cuevas.
Each day, they go out with a smile on their face.
“I like to see the kids first thing in the morning,” said Bare. “I always smile and say good morning because most are still half asleep. Some have had a rough start to their day so a smile and a bit of conversation goes a long way.”
As for crossing guards, they’ve seen some crazy things.
“I’ve had a parent go around me while trying to get students across,” said Meade.
Some of the stories the crossing guards have to tell are extremely rich.
“I've seen many very animated conversations play out with full hands flying around in an empty car,” said Bare. “There has been some pretty good lip syncing, some with air drums. I've seen people eating breakfast, like from a bowl, while driving, and lots of girls putting on makeup. I've had parents scream ‘I love you, have a great day,’ and you just watch the kid melt and the parent laugh. Mrs. Mattson did it to her son at least twice a week.”
Of course, there are also stupid things.
“One thing I will never understand is the honkers,” said Bare. “Parents don't understand that their horn sounds like everyone else's, so when you honk half the kids look around. The only reason the other half don't is that they know no one is coming to get them.”
Being a crossing guard isn’t always the safest job, but that doesn’t scare our crossing guards.
“I’ve seen kids, or even crossing guards, almost get hit by cars when drivers aren’t paying attention,” said Cuevas.
“In all the years I've been crossing kids, I’ve only had a few close calls with people talking on cell phones,” said Hamry.
Sometimes it almost seems pointless to have crossing guards. We are high schoolers, after all, but everyone deserves to be safe.
“Kluncy Canyon is an extremely busy road every morning,” said Parks. “We thought it was in everyone’s best interest to help students cross the street safely.”
The crossing guards do so much for us. They deserve appreciation.
“I always try to remember their names and say hello, have a good day or weekend,” said Cuevas. “I think that may force them to say something back.”
Let’s start a movement of thanking our crossing guards. Some very generous people have already had marvelous ideas.
“An older gentleman stopped and gave me hand warmers,” said Bare. “A very nice lady that lives across the street from the school brought me a scarf, and I have used it for three years. She doesn't even have kids that go to school here. Chad Peters brought me coffee one day for standing in a blizzard. It was a pity coffee, and it was great.”
Next time you see your crossing guards, make sure to tell them thank you, and to have a nice day. Maybe even bring them a coffee or two. Anything to show some appreciation of how hard they work for us.