Rose Robacker died a few days ago. She was my friend, but she was also an angel in disguise.
She loved retirement and not being required to do anything at any specific time. But that was only because she had so much else to do. Working with a schedule got in her way. Rose had so much to do to keep making a difference.
She loved teaching and had plenty of experience: Dean of Oberlin College and before that she taught in several high schools.
Rose heard that the Adult Literacy Program in Wayne County, her home at the time, needed help. She knew how to teach and because college and high school were her expertise, she wanted to learn how to teach people to read who didn’t know how. She took the course and hit the ground running. In a short time, Rose taught 16 men how to read and helped 185 get their GED – paying for most of their books out of her own pocket while these men were incarcerated.
After her husband died, Rose wanted to be closer to her family so she moved to Indian Land. Before she was unpacked, she was at Indian Land Elementary School tutoring the kids who needed help. She became active in the Friends of the Library at the Del Webb Library in Indian Land, and so many other things. She was always reaching out to say “hello.”
I didn’t know Ms. Rose long, but for the time I knew her, I loved her. Her respect and kindness showed everywhere she went and in whatever she did. No one was above her or below her – they were all equal. Friendships born in the heart stay in the heart forever. But how do you say goodbye to an angel?
Maybe angels are taken at Christmas time to remind us of what Christmas should be about. There is more to it than gifts.
Have a comment or column idea for Pat? Email her at email@example.com.