Language Teacher Dies From Injuries
Bill Kromer taught Spanish level II and III classes.
By Tyler M
William Kromer, a cherished Spanish teacher at FFS died Wednesday October 3rd due to traumatic injuries from a motorcycle accident August 23 after being struck by a deer on Route 97 in Hancock.
Students and staff at FFS recall Kromer as a very special man with extraordinary talents and lots of blessings. Just as proficient in Spanish as he was English, he retired from Downsville Central School after 30 years and began working at The Family School, where he taught for 8 years.
“He was an honest, straightforward, trustworthy man. I could always trust him and he would try to help me every time we talked,” explains student Luke M. Students all say the same thing; everyone loved him and respected his knowledge on a great level.
A very diverse man who could speak seven languages, play the piano, and had a photographic memory made Kromer such a brilliant, interesting individual. “He was such a good guy, had a great sense of humor and was always outgoing, very willing to take a minute and talk to you, not to mention he was very talented musically,” said Coach Carlton Williams.
It isn’t until someone is gone that you understand how much they mean to you and that is what students at FFS are appreciating now. Whether it be giving moral or academic support or just a good friend, Bill was always there to count on. “Budget cuts years ago forced us to cut back on staff and William was the first one to volunteer to work, he loved helping people out,” says teacher Cindy Argiros.
“Besides his pervasive loving-kindness and compassion, I’ll remember him most for his stories. The man was incredible,” student Dani R says, remembering their conversations together in his classroom. He had a way of looking at you through his thick-framed glasses that showed genuine care for how you were doing. He would listen attentively, and somehow, he would always just understand. The absolute rawness, simplicity, and sincerity that Bill Kromer lived by remains unparalleled by any man I have ever met.
“Dios, me da la serenidad, para aceptar las cosas que no podemos cambiar, el corage para cambiar las que si puedo, y la sabidura para reconecer la diferencia,” Kromer would start every class with this Spanish version of the Serenity prayer; smiling and paying special attention to the true meaning of the words and the immaculate rolling of his “r’s.” He taught in a way that was enthusiastic and engaging, never giving up on even the most self-defeated and unwilling students. Consequently, the kids would gradually open up and learn the curriculum, and Kromer would be there to praise and encourage them right along. Nothing would make him absolutely beam with joy more than when a student would start to believe in themselves as much as he believed in them—except maybe his adorable little terrier puppy, Lupe.