Ms. Nancy Flexer clearly touched many lives during her 41 years teaching at Cole Elementary School in Tennessee.
Earlier this month, staff at the school joined together to throw the beloved first-grade teacher a surprise retirement party full of her former students. The former students' kind words, documented in the video above, will warm your heart.
"I believe it was 1994 when I was in your class. And you were always my favorite teacher," said one former student. "You also have my little cousins here now. "
"I was a timid little blonde, and your love for me gave me the confidence to grow into the woman I am today," said another former student. "You hold such a special place in my heart, and I will cherish the impact you've had on my life forever."
Flexer told TODAY.com that she was genuinely surprised by the party.
"I'm one of the luckiest people in this world," Flexer told TODAY.com. "I remember I opened the door to the classroom thinking no one was in there, and it was wall-to-wall people and banners and everything. It was the coolest thing that could've ever happened in my life. How many times do we really realize the lives we've touched, the manner in which we've touched them, and that these are memories that stay with them for life?"
She also told the outlet that she remembered all of her former students, even though it had been decades since she had last seen some of them.
"When I looked around and someone was going to say something and I said, 'Oh my gosh, there's Ashley,' or, 'There's her mother, and how are Desiree and Chandler doing?''' Flexer said. "I recognized everyone."
Thank you for your years of service, Ms. Flexer.