Huggins & Wolff Memorial Garden – Provides a Place to Reflect & RememberJune 21, 2022 News Story, School Activity
Staff at École J.B. Mitchell School gathered on June 20, 2022 to pay tribute to their beloved colleagues whom they suddenly & tragically lost this past December.
Megan Wolff, who passed away Christmas morning, was the much-loved Nursery/Kindergarten teacher at École J.B. Mitchell School and she is forever remembered for her caring nature and her great love for teaching young children.
Paulette Huggins, who passed away December 29, 2021, was the cherished and beloved Principal of École J.B Mitchell School and she will be eternally remembered for her warm heart and for her outstanding educational leadership.
Paulette and Megan were not only remarkable individuals at École J.B. Mitchell School, but they were also highly valued members of Winnipeg School Division. The loss of these two individuals left an irreplaceable void not only in the school, but in the community as a whole.
Following the loss of their colleagues, the tight-knit school community found itself even more united than before, as they leaned on one another to process the significance of this loss. Through that supportive process it became instantaneously clear that there was a concentrated interest, as well as a profound commitment, in developing a memorial to honour the invaluable contributions that each educator had made to the community.
Knowing how much pride both Paulette and Megan had in the school, and knowing both of their love for the outdoors and nature, it seemed a perfect fit to create an outdoor memorial garden.
With incredibly generous contributions and support from Ron Paul Garden Centre as well as donations from the community, the JBM Parent Advisory Council was able to break ground on the Huggins & Wolff Memorial Garden in early June.
Now completed, the memorial garden boasts a beautiful bench and planter perfectly situated at the front of the school to welcome all students and families with a sense of tenderness, pride and care – the same manner in which both Paulette and Megan welcomed all their families to the classroom and to the school.
The strong sturdy nature of the concrete bench and planter represent Paulette and Megan’s steadfast unwavering commitment to the students, staff, parents and community of J.B. Mitchell (JBM). Lining the perimeter of the garden one will find rocks beautifully decorated by the dedicated students of JBM.
The charming and uniquely imperfect manner in which each rock has been hand-painted represents the beauty that Paulette and Megan always found within all imperfections and within every individual who crossed their path. In the weeks to come a mature evergreen tree will be planted alongside the garden.
The towering nature of that tree, and its incredibly powerful roots, symbolize the strong educational foundations that Paulette and Megan helped to build in the community. Furthermore, as the winter months come and go, the evergreen will continue to boast its beautiful vibrant green colours thus representing the everlasting nature of Paulette and Megan’s contributions.
The bench, the hand-painted rocks and the evergreen tree, all surround a planter which is now adorned with flowers that were planted by JBM staff after a ceremony and held and honorary moment of silence.
In the years to come, the school community looks forward to honouring both Paulette and Megan annually, as new life and new flowers are planted each Spring. Representing how the lessons that they each taught their students and their colleagues will continue to forever grow.
Engraved on the front of the planter are the words "Thoughts of you Forever Bloom" … a perfect quote to memorialize how the contributions and memories of these two incredible educators will be forever cherished and never forgotten!