Letter holds surprise

Published 10:45 am Monday, December 19, 2011

WINDSOR – Even the simplest task can be rewarding.

Bertie County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Debbie Harris-Rollins found out how true that was recently while opening her daily mail.

While opening mail, Dr. Harris-Rollins found a letter from retired Assistant Superintendent of Bertie County Schools Robert L. Horton. The letter talked about his service to the county and his desire to aid students still in Bertie County.

“I was employed by the Bertie County Board of Education for 31 years,” the letter said. “I enjoyed every year and I will never forget the wonderful people I was privileged to meet and work with. Frequently, I meet former students whom I worked with who thank me for having made positive changes upon their lives.”

Horton said because of how God and others have blessed him, his life motto has become “Pass it on!”

Illness for his now late wife caused Horton and to move to Knightdale after 74 years of living in Bertie County. He said after her treatment, his wife, Susie H. Horton, died on Dec. 24, 2010.

“My love for the institution compels me to give a small token to support some child in the Early College program,” he wrote. “Please see that some deserving student receives the enclosed $1,200.”

Horton asked that the scholarship be presented in honor of his late wife.

Dr. Harris-Rollins said the letter was a pleasant surprise and she was thankful to Horton for his generosity and remembering Bertie County Schools.

“Our gratitude to Deacon Horton,” School Board Chair Gloria Lee said.

She then asked for a moment of silence in recognition of the death of Susie Horton and her service to Bertie County Schools.

Board member Rickey Freeman said he believed it would be in order for the board to send a letter signed by Lee to express its gratitude for Horton’s gesture.

“He was a good principal,” board member Pamela Chamblee said. “He was my principal.”

“Mine too,” Freeman echoed.

Dr. Harris-Rollins said the district would decide the best way to award the scholarship funds and would do so later this academic year.