by Amani Anderson

Teachers are usually portrayed as boring and uninteresting, but here at Stuart we have some rather exciting teachers that are passionate about teaching and their own personal lives. Just how students have their own lives outside of school where they act and even look different, teachers are the same. Here are a few teachers that you might not expect to be so unique despite their profession.

Mr. Rogers:
I’ve been hiking for more than 50 years, it’s more of a personal hobby, and no one in my family did it. Ansel Adams influenced me into hiking because of his amazing pictures and love of being alone with nature. The longest hiking trip I’ve been on was 5 days and I hiked about 35-40 miles, not a lot, but I’m not a mileage tracker. The highest mountain I climbed was Mt. Bierstadt in Colorado, it was 14,000 feet. The coolest thing was sitting on the cliffs of the Chisos Mountains in Big Bend National Park, looking southwest into the Rio Grande Valley and watching thousands of swifts in a feeding frenzy. I don’t hike to try an accomplish something; the accomplishment is enjoying hiking and planning trips that my friends enjoy. So, continuing to hike and backpack, both alone and with friends, enjoying nature.

Rogers on top of Kings Canyon National Park in California.
Rogers on top of Kings Canyon National Park in California.

Mr. Dent:
My family has been in the commercial fishing business for over 80 years. I have been crabbing and fishing all of my life. When I was a young boy, I would go out and cull (sort or separate) the crabs into baskets with my father and my grandfather. As I got older I began to fish my own pots in high school. I wouldn’t classify crabbing and fishing as a hobby but more as my passion. There is nothing like working on the water. It has taught me many life lessons and I feel very blessed to be able to go out on the water and do what I do. Crabbing and Fishing runs in your blood. I was taught by my father and my grandfather. I crab during the summertime when I am not teaching. The season runs from April through October. We also sell our crabs to the public in Woodbridge. My grandfather has been selling crabs for over 50 years. Both my Father and my Papa (paw-paw) worked together catching catfish and crabs year around. I also catfish on the weekends commercially. It is very hard work but I love it.

Dent catching a huge catfish on one of his exciting weekend fishing trips.
Dent catching a huge catfish on one of his exciting weekend fishing trips.

Mr. Strom:
I’ve been playing paintball since the early 80’s, so about 35 years. After I graduated I went straight into the Marine Corp, when I decided to get married I realized that the Marines weren’t a good job for a family. So, I started to take some classes because I wanted to become a teacher. I noticed that all of the other teachers had second jobs and thought that if I have to have a second job it should be something I love, so I called up my long time buddy who served I served in combat with in the first Gulf War and asked him if he wanted to be a part of my paintball project. The new project I’m working on is a War Play laser tag, its military grade laser tag. It’s going to be like Call of Duty nuke town. My twin 12 year old sons play call of duty and I asked them which were the most popular guns, they quickly told me the SCAR, FN 2000, MP 514,LSD VSS ,and P90 so I ordered them. We’ll be the first to have those guns from overseas, ATF (Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives) is going to come and see them when they come because these guns will have the same firing characteristics used by NATO forces for training. Basically, I started War Play paintball so I could teach.

Courtesy Photo