28 years of crossing "her kids" comes to an end for Wickliffe's Vicki Hill
BY TIM SHIRER
For 28 years Vicki Hill has walked back and forth across Lincoln Rd. in Wickliffe approximately 250,000 times. She was the crossing guard at Wickliffe Elementary (formerly Lincoln Elementary 1923-1982). She crossed “her kids” in warm, hot, cold, blistering cold, sunny, rainy, and snowy weather with care.
Friday was the last day of school for Wickliffe Elementary School students and the end of the 28 year journey for Vicki. It was also the end of the road for venerable Wickliffe Elementary as the school will close after 101 years.
The pre-K through 4th grade kids who attended the elementary school will be moving to Wickliffe’s new pre-k through 12 Campus behind the current high school, demolition was to begin on Friday also.
Hill, a 1988 graduate of Willoughby South moved to Wickliffe after she married her husband 1986 graduate Don Hill in 1988. The couple has four kids, twins Michael and Megan are the first born. Their other two children are Melissa and Melanie. The couple also has two grandchildren McKenzie and Caleb.
Vicki has thousands of great memories from her years safely crossing kids across the street and making sure she did her part to get the little ones home safely to their families. One of those families was the Tucci family. Vickie crossed. Vicki commented on the relationship with the Tucci family, “I have had the pleasure of getting to know the Tucci family over the years of crossing. Seems like I have always had a student from their house to cross, whether it was one of the kids Debbie babysat or one of the Tucci girls Carolyn or Rose and now Teresa’s son James Drum.” Vicki went on to say, “One of the nicest families I have met. Hopefully I will continue to have James as a walker at the new campus.”
One thing that is very apparent is that Vicki cares about every child like they are her own. Vicki wanted people to know this saying, “One thing I always did with my walkers was treat them as if they were my own because it was important to me that they arrived safe to school and got home the same way.” She often has to verbally warn motorists who either forget or do not realize that they are driving though a school zone. She has no problem sending out the warning because in her mind the kids are all that matter.
Vicki has also served as a lunch monitor at the high school for years and also the girls high school bowling coach along with Don who is the boys bowling coach. The two started the Wickliffe bowling program.
While Friday was an ending, Vicki hopes to remain with the school in some capacity at the new campus when the new school year starts late in the summer.
So, the next time you drive down Lincoln Rd. in Wickliffe as the crosswalk fades as time goes on, smile and in your mind thank Vicki for 28 years of keeping Wickliffe kids safe as they crossed through “her crosswalk” on Lincoln Rd.
Publisher's note: This story is extremely personal as Lincoln Elementary was the school I attended as a child. It was the first place in my life I thought about being a journalist of some kind. I had wonderful teachers, Mrs, Adkins, Miss Hansen and Mrs. Coolick to name a few. We had an amazing Principal Domenic Mongardo and a great custodian Pete Christopher, who died a hero saving students’ lives during the Wickliffe Middle School shooting. Wonderful members that I will cherish forever.
POSTED 05/19/2023 21:26