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Friend of Education: Lynn Montgomery, a retired teacher, now volunteers in a Kindergarten class.

A woman who did so well as a substitute teacher that VS officials offered her a full-time position 20 years ago and a retired teacher who volunteered almost every day in an area classroom were among those honored by the Vinton-Shellsburg Education Association during its annual reception on Wednesday.

Lynn Mongomery was honored as the Friend of Education, after spending the school year as a volunteer in a 5th grade classroom which her grandson attends.

"She was there every Thursday with smiles, hugs and sometimes, candy," recalls Ann Gordon, the teacher.

Elementary reading teacher Jen Heckman is this year's teacher of the year.

VSEA President Mindy McClintock recalled that about 20 years ago, as a substitute teacher, Heckman filled in for a teacher known for being tough, yet quickly had the students in line.

"It's fun to watch the education that takes place in her classroom," said McClintock.

The VSEA Member of the Year is Lisa Dekowski, who serves as treasurer for the group.

"Whenever we need something done, she is the first to step up," said McClintock.

The VSEA also honored the following district retirees: Joyce Erickson, Steve McGrew, Danise Shannon, Teresa Matheny and Sheila Wendel.

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