Second-Graders Seek Tribute For Classmate
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
May 2, 2003
VERO BEACH, FLORIDA--Students in the second grade at Thompson Elementary are looking for a permanent way to remember one of their own.
Some have suggested a rose garden for their friend Amy Rose McNew, who died on April 9, not only because of her middle name, but also because roses were her favorite flowers.
"We wanted to make a place where, if Amy were alive, she would want to go," Amy's first-grade teacher, Rebecca Palmer, told the Press Journal.
Amy had cerebral palsy and used a wheelchair. She talked to her classmates -- and helped them with their spelling lessons -- through an electronic communication device. Earlier this school year, the eight-year-old began attending the regular classroom where, according to school officials, she thrived.
Not long ago, Amy would have been kept separated from other children her age because of her disability. Her classmates and teachers say that would have been unfortunate.
"We were lucky to have her," said Palmer.