97-year-old Vivian Bailey of Maryland has enjoyed quite an amazing life, filled with world travel and stories that she could talk about for months straight.
But if Bailey had to pick just one place to visit over and over again, it would be the bench that was dedicated to her outside the main entrance to Running Brook Elementary School in Columbia.
Like many townships and cities, there are different classes of wealth. In the western part of Columbia County, for example, the children grow up in households where families earn over one million dollars a year.
And as a result, they get to take amazing trips throughout the school year.
But Bailey noticed that not all of the children were as fortunate because many of their families don’t have that type of money. So she has dedicated the better part of 15 years towards raising money that was ultimately used to help these less fortunate children enjoy the same field trip experiences.
And the reason why she does it is even more moving.
“I grew up in segregation, and then I went in the Army and we were segregated in the Army also,” Bailey said. “We had marvelous teachers, but we didn’t have field trips.”
You see, Bailey has never been a school field trip of her own. And so she was invited to take part in an outing to Washington, D.C.’s National Museum of American History with a group of fourth graders.
It was the first field trip this lover of education (and those children) had ever taken.
“At any age you can learn and have new experiences, so to me this was a very rewarding one,” said Bailey.
Inspiration for this article came from myfoxdc.com.