Classroom Champion: Principal’s ‘loving actions’ help students cope while their mom was hospitalized
MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) - It has been a tough year for two Horry County middle school students, and the COVID-19 pandemic didn’t make it any easier.
The brother and sister both attend Socastee Middle School and said when their mother was hospitalized in April, it was the loving actions of their principal, that helped them get through.
Eighth grader Logan Fuller and sixth grader Abby Fuller said while trying distance learning, they were also thinking about their mom.
“It’s been hard on us but we’ll get through it together. Only thing we can do is pray,” Logan said.
The children’s mother, Ashley Wales, said she suffered seizures, and also has severe asthma and allergies. At the end of April, her condition took a turn for the worse. The mother of four said she was hospitalized on life support.
“So the smallest thing can set my asthma into a big attack very quickly,” said Wales.
Socastee Middle School Principal Lisa Melchoine said she worried about the family during school but also during the pandemic.
"When I found out that mom was real sick, it was a weekend so I called and said, ‘If you need anything let me know; we’re here,’” Melchoine said.
The principal said she just wanted to offer support to the family and let them know they’re not alone.
“This is where I’m suppose to be. I love what I do and the children come from first,” Melchoine said.
Abby said her kind gestures meant so much to she and her brother.
“She offered us a bunch of food, and said if we need anything just like ask her, if we were like struggling with anything,” said Abby.
And for their mother, it means the world.
“It helped a lot when I couldn’t be there. She stepped in,” said Wales.
The siblings say they nominated Melchoine because the love and compassion she showed their mother and family meant so much to them.
“To me that shows what type of person you are inside and outside of school, to take time out of your personal life to check on someone you could have just pushed aside,” said Logan, reading the letter that he wrote to WMBF News nominating his principal.
"They say it takes a village to raise a child and I have four all together. Mrs. Melchoine, she knows everybody at the school by name, she’s always smiling, she’s always there to support the kids for sporting events and everything. My kids’ teachers are completely amazing. They know the situation and even when they were in school they could tell when something was wrong with my kids,' said Wales.
Melchoine didn’t want the credit, saying it really goes to all of the teachers who go above and beyond.
Copyright 2020 WMBF. All rights reserved.