A teacher’s dying wish touched hearts across the world.

On her deathbed, she asked loved ones to bring backpacks full of supplies, instead of flowers to her funeral for students in need, her cousin Dr. Brad Johnson tweeted.

“My cousin’s final request at her funeral was Backpacks full of supplies for needy students instead of flowers. A teacher to the end,” he tweeted last year, along with a moving photo from the funeral that showed backpacks lining the aisle.

Dr. Johnson also tweeted what he referred to as “honorary pallbearers” and said they were teachers who had taught with his cousin for years.

Sharing in her memory again twelve months later Brad wrote, “Can’t believe its almost been a year. My sweet cousin’s last request was to take care of her kids! A Teacher to the end! Teachers, Never forget you leave a legacy too!”

Tammy Waddell died from cancer. According to an obituary, she worked at Sawnee Elementary in Cumming, Georgia.

Share your comments below

  • What a beautiful legacy to leave behind.


  • A lovely gesture, inspiring to the end and a reflection of what a caring person she was.


  • A giver even in the end a beautiful gesture


  • Flowers are much prettier on the bush! These supplies will go towards changing lives forever. If only flowers were changed out for other things (food for the homeless, supplies for others) more often. Truth of teaching, even death doesn’t stop you from reaching your students

    • Absolutely agree with your comments – flowers are pretty in a garden.
      Gifts that make a difference and help others are surely a wonderful legacy.


  • So caring, thoughtful and selfless.


  • Absolutely beautiful! An enduring legacy!


  • Beautiful !


  • A wonderful dying wish. The now late teacher, Tammy Waddell thought of children in need.


  • Such a beautiful thing to request


  • Oh wow, how sad, but so amazing that they requested this instead of flowers. I think its a great idea, and they must have been a thoughtful and loving person. RIP


  • Very thoughtful


  • How thoughtful and it will help so many.


  • This is beautiful. A lovely way to be remembered.


  • such a wonderful request


  • Amazing. And sad and unfair, cancer is just cruel.


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