Peters board agrees to reinstall sign honoring late crossing guard
McMURRAY – Evelyn Jozefkowicz never had children, but when she died Aug. 10, well into her 90s, her obituary could have listed the names of thousands of children whose lives she touched as a 60-year employee of the Peters Township School District.
She began employment in the district in the 1950s as a playground monitor, eventually moving to the high school cafeteria and spending the final three decades, in all types of weather, as a crossing guard ensuring the safety of the students, teachers, staff and parents.
Her post was at the entrance to McMurray Elementary School.
To honor her dedication to the district, a small sign was erected at the school’s entrance, but due to a “glitch” in district policy, the sign was removed three months before her death.
Addressing the Peters Township School Board at its meeting Monday, Sharon Lutz of Bellwalt Drive told the board she was representing the family in an effort to have the sign designating Evelyn’s Way reinstalled.
“It was Evelyn’s way at Evelyn’s Way,” Lutz said, her voice often breaking with emotion.
She said the family was willing to pay to have the sign reinstalled.
Board member David Hvizdos said he was not sure why the sign was removed, referring to the act as “heartless” and adding “the right thing to do is to put it back.”
Board President Cindy Golembiewski told Lutz that it was never the district’s intention to be disrespectful to Jozefkowicz or to her memory. The sign, Golembiewski said, was put up without board approval and that removing the sign was “bad timing.”
The board is in the process of writing new policy on donations and memorials and was told that voting to have the sign reinstalled would not violate any policy.
At the end of a brief discussion, the board voted to have the sign reinstalled with the administration to determine if the sign would be installed on an existing or on a new pole.
The vote was met with applause from the audience.