Corpus Christi librarian retires after decades of stories
CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (AP) — Saying goodbye to the generations of children Jean Meadors taught was the hardest thing she recently did.
The Corpus Christi Caller-Times reports the Owen R. Hopkins public librarian is known throughout the community for her popular story telling series “Miss Jean’s Story Time Kids,” which has been a tradition at the public library for more than 30 years.
Meadors, on a recent Saturday, celebrated her last story time event with dozens of families eager to listen to the librarian one last time before her retirement.
“Seeing all the kids I taught today means a lot to me. I don’t want to say goodbye,” she said with tears falling down her face. “I’m going to miss seeing the families ...just being around them a lot and watching the next generation grow.”
Meadors said her passion for teaching and books is what led her to become a youth librarian at the Corpus Christi public library.
“I just love getting to know people. I love to teach and I really love teaching children how to read,” she said.
Meadors said she first started her “Story Time Kids” series to introduce children to an interactive experience to reading books.
“I would sing to the kids and use puppets to tell the stories,” she said. “We would always end our story times with arts and crafts.”
Daniel Schwartz, the managing librarian at the city’s northwest branch, said Meadors impact on the community shows in the generations she has inspired through her passion for reading.
“Miss Jean has love for all her kids and personifies what all librarians try to be,” he said. “She has taught me that when you love what you do, you can see the impact it makes on others. Her impact speaks volumes.”
For 35-year-old Kenneth Martin, seeing his favorite librarian one last time was an honor.
“My parents used to take me to her story times when I was just 5-years-old,” he said. “I’m glad that my children had the chance to experience them as well. She’s going to be missed.”
Meadors said her last message to the community is to always keep reading and to always be curious about the world around them.
“When you read a book, you can go anywhere and do anything,” she said. “You can fly a dragon, do upside down somersaults, ride a roller coaster or even travel to outer space. That’s what I hope my families do — to continue the adventure and always be curious.”
Information from: Corpus Christi Caller-Times, http://www.caller.com