Trees offer living memorial for beloved Sherman teacher - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Trees offer living memorial for beloved Sherman teacher

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Family and friends of Gerald Plumlee planted trees in his memory. (KTEN) Family and friends of Gerald Plumlee planted trees in his memory. (KTEN)
Family and friends of Gerald Plumlee planted trees in his memory. (KTEN) Family and friends of Gerald Plumlee planted trees in his memory. (KTEN)
Family and friends of Gerald Plumlee planted trees in his memory. (KTEN) Family and friends of Gerald Plumlee planted trees in his memory. (KTEN)

SHERMAN, Texas -- Trees are being planted as a symbol of respect for a man who has planted love in so many hearts across Texoma.

Piner Middle School teacher and coach Gerald Plumlee, 42, died last Wednesday in a tragic farm equipment accident as he was digging holes to create an orchard on his family's land in Sherman.

"He was always willing to go the extra mile for somebody, very selfless," said brother John Plumlee who is still reeling from the sudden loss. "It comes in waves, you know: One minute you're okay and then the next minute it feels like someone hit you in the gut."

On Saturday, family members and friends made sure that Gerald Plumlee's unfinished orchard was completed.

"We just wanted to make sure the trees got planted, the project gets finished," John Plumlee said. "This turnout is a testament to what people thought about him."

"It's amazing, it really is," sister Kala Plumlee Meyering added. "You knew he was a great guy, and you knew the love and everything he would give out to people, but to see this and the impact he had on the community, it's just amazing."

Students, teachers and Sherman Independent School District administrators all pitched in to help in posthumously realizing Gerald Plumlee's vision.

"He's the ultimate teacher," said Superintendent David Hicks.  "He didn't just teach physical education and coaching; he was all about teaching kids to grow up and be good people, and we just can't ask for anything better."

Not long from now, you'll see apple trees and peach trees fill this yard, along with plenty of plum trees -- for Gerald "Plum"-lee -- that the family plans to plant everywhere they can.

"I have one to take home to my house and plant," Meyering said. "There's going to be plum trees everywhere!"

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