“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.”
Such are the words from the King James Version of Ecclesiastes 3:1 — and we see so much of the life of Ronald Montgomery in those words. And it is to him and the seasons of his life that we pay tribute today.
Montgomery was taken far too soon from us last week, a young 67-year-old man who loved life, cherished his family, lived by his faith and served his church and community well. He was the epitome of a kind, genteel spirit, a man who walked through the seasons of his life serving a tremendous purpose each step of the way.
A lifelong educator, Montgomery will always be remembered for his dedication to children, from those in Guilford County who learned science and math under his tutelage and youngsters at Rena Bullock and Jamestown Elementary, where he was lead administrator to the thousands in Clinton City Schools who he fought for day after day as assistant superintendent for the school system. He was such a strong advocate of children, that Montgomery began another season as chief of Hyde County Schools, leading the entire system and supporting its children for eight years.
Although he retired from public education after leaving Hyde County, Montgomery never retired from supporting children or their educational well being, and because of his love of one and belief in both, he accepted a job as headmaster of Harrells Christian Academy, staying their 10 years before he accepted the challenge of starting Elizabethtown Chyristian Academy as its first headmaster.
At Harrells and ECA, Montgomery opened his heart and his faith to the youngsters who walked the halls each day, and he led by example, always willing to lend a helping hand, a listening ear or a needed smile. The two schools flourished because of him. Only a myriad of health problems kept Mongomery from returning for the 2016-17 school year.
Such was the season of Montgomery’s educational life.
But he was so much more than an educator. Montgomery was a selfless human being, a devout Christian who served his Lord throughout the seasons of his life. As Sunday school teacher, deacon, minister of music, choir director, song leader and moderator, Montgomery used his God-given talents in the ways he believed were the Lord’s will. And hundreds, if not thousands benefited from those gifts.
Then there was husband, father and grandfather, perhaps the names Montgomery cherished being called the most. He relished each role. He was over the moon in love with his wife of 44 years, Bennie, and he loved each of his children immeasurably.
And then there were his grandchildren, the loves of his life. To say he cherished them would be an understatement. In them, Montgomery saw the future, a bright promise of tomorrow.
Montgomery touched a lot of people over the years, each in a special way. His spirit will live on in those lives, but he will still be sorely missed.
QUOTE OF THE DAY
“Some people come into your life and you just know you could never replace them if they left.” (Unknown)