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Trigg County Schools Honors Teacher Who Died Of COVID-19 With Art Installation

Dalton York

A Trigg County teacher who died earlier this year of COVID-19 was honored Monday morning with an art installation at her school.

Forty-six-year-old Simone Parker of Cadiz died in January after a twenty-year teaching career at Trigg County High School (TCHS). Community members, colleagues, and students gathered Monday in front of the school to remember Parker and dedicate a painting that will hang in the building.

Parker’s sister, Candice Whipple, painted the piece before it was purchased in her memory by an anonymous donor. Whipple and other family members revealed the painting during the ceremony.

Trigg County Schools Superintendent Bill Thorpe, who began in his role in early 2020, spoke in remembrance of Parker at the event. He said even though he only met Parker recently, her impact on the community is obvious.

“It didn’t take me long to realize that she was the light of the room, she was important to every student, she was important to the community, and she was important to the success of many students that otherwise might not be successful,” Thorpe said.

Kim Adams, a science teacher at TCHS, said Parker wanted students to expand their horizons and experience life outside western Kentucky before returning to the area.

“Her impact, I just have no words to describe it. I have no words to describe how much I miss her,” Adams said. “She really had on her heart that kids in Cadiz needed to get out of Cadiz and see what the rest of the world was like...we did our best to make sure kids had that opportunity to go to the symphony or go to a foreign country.”

The painting in memory of Parker is joined by a plaque featuring a quote that school staff said Parker told her students every day at the end of class.

“Be good, be careful, come back to me tomorrow,” the plaque reads. 


Dalton York is a Morning Edition host and reporter for WKYU in Bowling Green. He is a graduate of Murray State University, where he majored in History with a minor in Nonprofit Leadership Studies. While attending Murray State, he worked as a student reporter at WKMS. A native of Marshall County, he is a proud product of his tight-knit community.
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