Pulaski County Elementary creates garden in memory of student

HAWKINSVILLE, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Pulaski County Elementary School planted a new addition to the school Friday morning, a space for kids to explore their five senses.

“I had always wanted to do a garden, a sensory garden because I wanted children to explore their world,” said special education teacher, Allison Hood. She wanted to do more with it, so she decided it needed to be dedicated to a student who didn’t get to explore much of his world.

“We’re a small community and a small school and Aidyn touched all of us,” said Hood.

Ten-year-old Aidyn Raiche passed away in February after being diagnosed with brain cancer. Aidyn was a third grader at Pulaski County Elementary. In his short time there, he touched the lives so many.

“He was joking the whole time,” said his third grade teacher, Ashanta Wallace. “It was like ‘Hey Mrs. Wallace’ and he would fake (high-five)  me. Then I was starting to catch on, like I got you. He joked all the time, he smiled all the time. It never failed.”

“Coming here this morning I didn’t expect to see all this,” said Aidyn’s father, Raymond Raiche. “People put a lot of dedication into all of this.”

Teachers, staff and the community worked on the garden for days. Aidyn’s family knows he would have enjoyed everything about it.

“He would have loved it,” said Aidyn’s mother, Crystal Raiche. “He loves to play and he’s an outdoor kid.”

Through the plants, dinosaur garden, sandbox and hopscotch, there was one piece his friends and family say that would’ve stuck out to Aidyn.

“The doughnut tires right there,” said Raymond, pointing at the tires. “He probably would’ve tried to see if they were real.”

Gardens need water, soil and sunlight to grow. But this garden, will have an extra light shining down on it.

“Through Aidyn, we want to keep his life alive and his light that he always had,” said Hood.

Aidyn’s family is very thankful for everyone who stepped up to make the garden happen. His little sister is a student at Pulaski County Elementary, so she will always have a piece of her big brother at school. Aidyn’s father also says he’s planning on making trips to the garden on his days off.

The sensory garden is also inspired by one of Hood’s students who is autistic. Hood says Jacob Pennone is the reason some of the pieces at garden are autism friendly.

Categories: Local News, Pulaski County

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