Lehigh Valley

Students throw birthday party for their 99-year-old former teacher

WHITEHALL, Pa. - A former school music teacher celebrated a milestone birthday Monday and her former students helped her celebrate.

Elizabeth Gehring turned 99 years young and even though she’s far removed from her career as a teacher some former students aren’t letting her forget the many years she spent in the classroom.

"I love them, they're wonderful kids. They were wonderful kids. They were in an age when they showed respect for teachers and parents, and I appreciate that,” said Gehring.

Gehring, who taught at the former Wolf Elementary in Bath, celebrated her birthday at the Fellowship Community in Whitehall with the help of some former fifth grade students, many of whom are now in their early 80s.

"We were apart for many years and just like that this thing turned into a yearly thing," explained former pupil Howard Fogle.

The students started getting together in 2010 and during one reunion wondered if any of their former teachers were still around.

"They decided to look up their teachers and Mrs. Gehring was the only one,” said former fifth grader Elise Carraghan.

Gehring admits she doesn't remember all her students.

"This was how many years ago when they were just little kids and suddenly they've grown up. Of course they've changed in every feature so it's difficult for me to remember who they were," said Gehring.

But Gehring’s thankful for the ones that are helping her ring in age 99.

"It brings back many memories and all of them happy. I love these kids," said Gehring with a smile.

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