On Tuesday afternoon, May 25, dozens of cars gathered in Apollo Park's South Lot and dozens more gathered in St. Andrew's Methodist Church parking lot. They were forming a parade of cars in celebration of District 153’s Superintendent Dale Mitchell’s retirement.
They rendezvoused nearby, forming one parade, before driving to Churchill School for a COVID-19 safe drive-by. It seemed fitting since Mitchell’s last year with the district was getting Willow, Churchill and James Hart Schools up and running under COVID health and safety protocols.
Willow School Principal Melissa Lawson said the celebration took the form of a parade because, rather than a more traditional party, it was a safe and fun way to social distance.
Cars were covered with signs, such as “Congratulations Dale, We’ll Miss You” and “Happy Retirement, Dr. Mitchell.”
"We had anybody from the community, but it was largely staff members from all of our buildings that came out and participated," said Assistant Superintendent Scott McAlister.
“His service to the district has been fabulous,” said McAlister. “He’s been superintendent for 18 years and in the district for 27. This was a final goodbye and a final tribute to him – and a thanks for his service to us.”