Hugh Merkle Team - COMPASS RE

Longtime School Secretaries Retire

Posted August 30th 2021

The Avalon Stone Harbor Schools is bidding a fond farewell to two friendly faces this summer: secretaries Fran Richardson (left) and Jackie Bradley (right), who worked in the Avalon office and greeted students, parents and staff throughout the school year.

Richardson was involved with the school for more than 20 years, starting with having her three sons, Chris, Tim and Pat graduate from the school. Starting as a substitute teacher while her twins were in eighth grade, she first went full-time as a classroom aide, then as an administrative assistant to superintendent Stacey Tracy, who also retired this year.

“The highlight of my time here has been the introduction of the PreK program by Stacey Tracy four years ago,” Richardson said. “Watching and being with the little ones, especially at lunchtime, has brought joy and much laughter, not only to me but the entire school.”

Bradley, who left the office after 18 years, said: “My favorite part of the job is the people I have met, the good friends I have made, and the opportunity to be a part of the lives of so many children over the years, if only as a minor player.”

And minor players, they were not! Parents needing to pick up a student, file paperwork, register incoming students and more, first crossed the threshold of Bradley and Richardson! They were the face of the front door, and always a friendly greeting.

Bradley has some sage advice for the incoming office staff: “Enjoy every day you get to work at this school, and appreciate the uniqueness of the towns, the professionalism of those you work with, and the kindness of the many people you will meet during your time at Avalon Elementary School.”

So now that they’re retired, what do these two friends plan to do with their free time?

“My husband and I would like to travel when possible, and go out West to be with our five grandchildren,” Richardson said. “But first I will finally tackle my garage after saying I’m going to do it every year.”

“Do the things I’ve put on hold,” said Bradley. “Spend time with the family, continue my volunteer work with breast cancer survivors, work on my writing, visit with friends, take in Broadway shows again, and read the hundreds of books I promised myself I would someday. That should keep me busy for the next 20-plus years.”

The Hugh Merkle Team - COMPASS Office: 609-368-9100
374 96th Street, Stone Harbor
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