Abernathy teacher continues making an impact after retirement

ABERNATHY, TX (KCBD) - It's something as small as a note. Bettie Hardin sends out 374 encouraging prayer notes every week to people all over the country.

"It keeps me busy, keeps me out of trouble," Hardin said.

Hardin started sending notes when two elderly friends moved to Lubbock in the 60's. However, over the years, her list has grown.

"Somebody will say, I know someone that needs a note and I'll add them. That's how it's gotten so big. I wouldn't turn anybody down," Hardin said.

Every week Hardin heads to Abernathy High School, where she taught for 52 years, to print out the inspiring words.

"Either I make up something or I see something that would make a good note and so I write that down. Sometimes it's a Bible verse, just to remind people of whatever that verse says," Hardin said.

This, however, is just something to pass the time now that Hardin has retired from teaching in 2005 after 25 years.

"I just hope I had a good influence on the kids. That they learned something other than math," Hardin said.

The Texas Tech graduate came to Abernathy right out of college and planned on teaching there for just a short time.

"I wouldn't have had it any other way. If I would have know the way it was going to turn out, I still would have wanted it to be this way," Hardin said.

Hardin ended up teaching math in the same classroom at Abernathy High School for her entire career. She says she always ruled her classroom with an iron fist.

"I had to be big mean and ugly when I first started to keep discipline and I just think if you don't have discipline, the kids can't learn. That was an experience because I didn't smile or anything," Hardin said.

Looking back now, this woman who has taught three generations of Abernathy students says she has no regrets.

"I'm glad I stayed here, I really am," Hardin said.

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