Teacher, teacher

Today is my late grandmother’s birthday.

There is rarely a day that passes when I am not reminded of my grandparents and the remarkable influence they had on the Biddeford-Saco region.

Alberta and Gilman Seaver

My grandfather, Gilman Seaver, was a teacher at both Biddeford High School and Thornton Academy. He was old school innovative: tough and uncompromising. He held high standards and valued original thought and critical analysis. He marched to his own drum and did not suffer fools lightly.

On the other end of that equation was my grandmother. One of Saco’s most beloved elementary school teachers, she was known affectionately to hundreds of her former students as Mrs. Seaver; to her husband and friends as Alberta; and to me and the rest of her grandchildren as Do0-doo. She spent nearly four decades teaching at both Fairfield and C.K. Burns School.

She was kind, patient and warm toward all of her students, especially toward those kids who may otherwise be overlooked. She cherished sharing the words of E.B. White with generations of Saco kids and befriended the author toward the end of her teaching career.

If you grew up in Biddeford or Saco, it’s more than likely that you were impacted by one of these teachers, and for that…consider yourself lucky, but not as lucky as the select few of us who had the privilege and honor of knowing her as Doo-doo, a proud matriarch with a smile that could melt glaciers.

Happy birthday, Doo-doo….

(Edited with apologies to my grandfather for reckless misspellings and poor grammar that is beneath even my own pitiful standards)


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