by Scott Boyle
The Monticello community was rocked this past week by the sudden passing of long time teacher at Monticello High School, Judy Barton.
Ms Barton was the tenured teacher in San Juan School District and was loved and respected by all.
Her death leaves a void at the school and communtiy that will be hard to fill.
We all appreciate the insistence, determination, love, and devotion Ms Barton brought to her chosen profession.
If you want to see the impact of Ms. Barton on the students of MHS, just go to a facebook account, Ms Judy Barton, where hundreds of former students and friends have written tributes, with every student proudly proclaiming Ms Barton as their favorite teacher ever, not because she was easy, but because she demanded and expected much from them, was fervent and zealous about doing so, while doing all she could to help students succeed, all with a sense of patience and humor unmatched.
She was an educator in the truest sense of the word.
One of my favorite stories told on the website is told by Matt Torrens, who came to Monticello with his family as a first year teacher.
Wrote Torrens, “I taught across the hall from Judy for only four years. The first time I met her, I introduced myself as the new football coach and she corrected me and said I was the history teacher.
“From that day on, she taught me that no matter the type of kids that walk through your door, if you have passion for your subject AND have high expectations, you’ll succeed in the classroom. She was my mentor and a wonderful friend.”
Vintage Judy... “you are the history teacher!”
Academics always came before sports for Ms Barton and I couldn’t agree more. A mentor and a wonderful friend. She will be missed. Drive by the high school to see the small memorial students put on her usual parking space in front of the school in a memorial tribute attended by a large crowd of students Friday night.
This is from MHS cross-country coach Jeff Hunt:
“The MHS XC team would like to dedicate our Pioneer Day 5k and Fun Run to Ms. Judy Barton as a memorial for all that she has done for the students of Monticello High School. Every one who signs up for our race will receive a memorial wristband.
“The race t-shirts will also have a special Ms. B. patch. We are also opening up the 1-mile kids fun run to anybody to wants to come run or walk to celebrate her life of dedicated service. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to a Ms. Barton memorial fund.
“Please contact Jeff Hunt at email@example.com
This is just a quick report on the Hillman Triathlon, the 31st year of the Hillman, which makes it the longest tenured triathlon in the State of Utah.
From long time race organizer Steve Olsen, “It was a great day to have a race. It had rained the night before and everything was cooler and very fresh smelling. The triathletes loved the weather.
“Steve Hiatt from Blanding took first overall with a time of 1:20:35. The top female is Jenna Woodbury from Moab with a time of 1:33:45. The first place team is Dustin Darrington, Walter Bird and Rick Clark with a time of 1:24:34.
“Donations were offered by San Juan County Ambulance, Sherriff’s Office and the Tourism office. We also had help from Clark’s Market and the wonderful awards from Cedar Mesa Pottery.
“In the Kid’s race the night before, a lot of fun and great triathlon experience was had by many kids.
“In the 7-10 age group Ella Lyman is first place female and her brother Edward is first place male division. First place team is Ashton Jones and Bethany Osborne.
“In the 11-14 age group Gavin Sherwood is first place male. The first place team is the Jensen Family with Cam, Sky and Spens competing wonderfully. We had such a great time.
“Next years kids race will be July 11 with the 32nd running of the Hillman Sprint Triathlon on July 12. Thanks to all that helped make it a success.”
Big Year Update
#72 rufous hummingbird, #73 red-naped sapsucker, #74 western wood pee wee, #75 evening grosbeak. About 25 “pelicans” were reported on Loyd’s Lake last week.