Schools losing teachers to COVID-19

By Randi Hildreth| 

December 10, 2020 at 4:53 PM CST – Updated December 10 at 5:13 PM

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) – COVID-19 has taken so much from so many, including our loved ones. State Superintendent Dr. Eric Mackey said during a Thursday meeting more teachers have died due to the virus.

“We have lost two teachers this week, lost their lives after being in the hospital for quite some time due to COVID-19,” said Dr. Eric Mackey, State Superintendent.

A humbling reminder at Thursday’s state school board meeting that every COVID number we report is a real person.

“Cognizant of the fact that it has hit families really hard,” said Dr. Mackey.

Real people, with real families, friends, or students who miss them.

“First time he went to the ER was on Saturday. At 9:00 that Friday night, he was talking to me about what I needed to do to get ready for his kids,” said Bradley Hall, Odenville Middle School.

At Odenville Middle School for example, energy is a little off this year without Leo Davidovich – or as everyone called him, Mr. Leo. The special education teacher contracted COVID before the school year started and died back in September.

Staff say he had only been with the team since January as he worked to finish his education degree at Jacksonville State. But in that short time, he was a light during his time in the classroom for his students. His legacy continues to shine.

“Once Mr. Leo started working with this child, for the first time he started laying his clothes out the night before and packing his lunch because he was excited,” said Hall. “He didn’t waste his time with worksheets. And in an attempt to continue to honor him, the teacher who has taken his place has implemented a lot of what he developed.”

The family set up a fund in Mr. Leo’s honor to benefit his students at Odenville Middle School. If you’re interested in donating, you can contact the school.

The state superintendent announced Thursday he hopes vaccines will be available for school staff soon.