School Officials Speechless As They Receive Substantial Gift From Devoted Special Needs Teacher After Her Passing
Feb 28, 2019 by apost team
Teachers work hard for little pay to educate the next generation of thinkers, making them the backbone of society. A good teacher can be life-changing by inspiring students to be the best they can be, which can echo far into a person's future. However, many teachers have trouble paying their own bills with their low salaries. There have been many news stories of teachers working in underfunded schools who provide for their students with their own money, from buying snacks to school supplies.
Such selfless teachers are celebrated and lauded, but a systematic change can be not only helpful but important for the wellbeing of teachers across the country. Some teachers are known for going above and beyond for their students, and they usually receive some recognition for their actions in their lifetime. However, one teacher from Dumont, New Jersey, changed the lives of hundreds of people after her passing.
The members of the school were taken aback when they learned that Genevieve Via Cava had left them a fortune after she passed away in 2011 at age 89. Via Cava left $1 million of it to New Jersey’s Dumont School District to fund college scholarships for special needs students, and it is clear that this amount of money is certainly significant!
No one had known that Via Cava had so much money saved up over her life, and the fact that she gave it away to better the lives of others even after her passing showed that she left an incredible legacy that will be appreciated for years to come.
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PEOPLE reported that Via Cava had worked at the New Jersey school for 45 years. Throughout her life, she had rarely spent money on small luxuries, like dining out at restaurants or buying expensive clothes. She was a special education teacher who was known for her strong bond with students and she genuinely loved working with students and would often come visit the school even after retiring to catch up with old students and coworkers.
After over four decades of teaching, Genevieve retired in 1990 but still stayed close to the school community. Unfortunately, she passed away in 2011 at the old age of 88. This was a major loss for the school and people who knew Via Cava. However, even after her passing, Via Cava lent out her support for the school she had loved so much.
The district’s superintendent, Emanuele Triggiano, was taken aback when he saw a check addressed to the school and saw the hefty sum of $1 million!
"We never could have imagined that she’d amassed that kind of money," Triggiano told PEOPLE. "She’d told me once that she planned to leave something to help students, but $1 million? It’s incredible."
Triggiano also said that her gift to the school would fund one or two annual $25,000 scholarships, thus "making a huge impact in the lives of the kids she loved."
PEOPLE reported that Via Cava had been widowed since 1990, and had no other family when she passed away. She also lived in a modest home that was previously owned by her parents in Oradell, New Jersey. However, though she did not leave behind any family, she did develop a close bond with Richard Jablonksi, a man who used to run a clothing store that she often visited to browse through the "70 percent off" rack of clothing.
"Her family went through the Depression, and I think a lot of that had a big influence on her life, being so frugal," Jablonski told NY Times.
"When she told me seven years before she passed away that she had money and wanted me to handle her will, I was floored to learn how much she’d saved," Jablonski told PEOPLE. He added, "She’d call and say, ‘I want to leave $100,000 to the Salvation Army,’ and ‘I want to leave $100,000 each to county animal shelters,’ and ‘Let’s add a $100,000 donation to the hearing center.’ She certainly had a generous heart."
It took seven years for her will to be settled, but in the end, her generous donation changed the lives of many. Jablonski told NY Times that Via Cava was always devoted to her students, and that she would be "delighted" that the plans for her estate went exactly as she planned.
"She didn’t have too many people. She was a rough-exterior type of a person. But she could light up a room. She had a killer smile," Jablonski added.
"And her name will live on forever in this scholarship fund. It’s unbelievable that she’s going to have this effect."
Show this inspiring story to your friends to keep Genevive's memory alive. Out of everyone in this world, somebody like this wonderful teacher deserves to be remembered.