Curtis Traweek has been teaching woodshop classes at Ballinger High School for 49 years and is the first Teacher Tribute honoree of the 2013-2014 school year.
Several of Traweek’s immediate family members have also been teachers.
“I think it keeps me young,” Traweek said jokingly.
He was married to his wife for 47 years until he lost her to ovarian cancer two years ago.
“Whenever she died, he took a couple of weeks off and then he came back and was ready to work again with us,” student Amber Galvan said. “I just appreciate him for that because he would always talk about her, how they used to go on trips and everything and then whenever he lost her, he was still the great man he was before and he still taught us everything.”
Amber and her younger brother Cameron both nominated Traweek for the Teacher Tribute award.
“What I’ve taken from this class is how to work with other people,” Cameron said.
Traweek said students like Amber and Cameron helped him cope with the devastating loss of his wife.
“I'm glad I had this to come to,” Traweek said. “I could do three things in my life: I could be a good husband or a good father and teacher that does something—that does something positive for the kids—it's all worth it.”
He also wants each student to take away three lessons from woodshop.
“How to solve problems, how to make do with what they have and, you know, how to start something and finish it,” Traweek said.
If you’d like to nominate a teacher for Teacher Tribute, check the link on our website or pick up an application at your school’s front office.