Tag Archives: Jeannette Atkins

Staples Class Of 1950 Honors Last Teacher

This is a photo of 2 longtime, now-retired, Westport teachers:

The photo has an interesting back story.

It comes courtesy of alert “06880” reader — and Staples High School Class of 1950 member — Karl Taylor. Out of his graduating class of 123, almost half — 60 — are still alive.

Karl writes:

This was taken recently on Cape Cod. It shows Jeannette Atkins Louth, age 94, former Spanish teacher at Staples and the last remaining teacher of our class.

With her is Darrell MacFarland, member of the Staples Class of 1950. He became a teacher himself, and spent his career at Bedford and Coleytown Junior High and Middle Schools.

He traveled to Cape Cod with Ethel Keene Ritch MacFarland, also a 1950 graduate. Ethel and Darrell were married last fall, after their spouses passed away. Darrell introduced me on a blind date to Lois Jane Mead of Wilton in 1954. We married in 1955.

As for Ms. Atkins: After retiring, she became friends with her Guilford neighbors Bill and Ellen Louth, Ellen died in 1989. A strong friendship turned into love. Jeannette and Bill married in 1992, and moved to West Harwich on Cape Cod. Bill passed away in 2006.

The Class of ’50’s 50th reunion in 2002 — yep, 2 years late — included Ms. Atkins, art teacher Vivien Testa and English instructor V. Louise Higgins. Ms. Testa died in 2014, age 102. Ms. Higgins died in 2016, at 94.

Thanks to Karl Taylor, their memories — and the Class of 1950 — still live.