Beloved Teacher Passes Away

Shiela Judkins loses her battle with cancer

Erin Rachel, Copy Editor

She was a friend, a teacher, and a warrior. She fought hard and fought with love. She knew her fate was sealed but continued to seek each day with positivity and grace. She was and will continue to be an inspiration to everyone who met her.
Junior high math teacher Shiela Judkins passed away the morning of Jan. 5 after spending two and a half weeks in in-home hospice care. Her celebration of life was held on Jan. 11 at First Baptist Church for family, friends, and community. Judkins was 49 years old and had battled inflammatory breast cancer for two years.

“Mrs. Judkins impacted my life the way she lived her life. She attacked each day. Mrs. Judkins loved people. She was a great teacher who not only taught junior high math, but she taught life.” -athletic director John Bachtel”

“Her smile was infectious,” junior high English teacher Jennifer Cruce said. “During her treatments, she rarely complained and kept a great, positive attitude. She preached to her kids to always do their best and to never quit, and she lived that out daily”.
Judkins earned her Administration masters degree while receiving cancer treatments. She obtained her degree after tumors had spread to her brain causing her to have brain surgery.

“Mrs. Judkins just had a way of making you feel like you were the most important person to her when she saw you,” athletic director John Bachtel said. “She has had a great impact on other lives in Fairfield and all the other places she taught. I will truly miss her.”
The Chamber of Commerce honored Judkins by awarding her Junior High Teacher of the Year. Her husband Timothy Judkins accepted it in her honor.
“Mrs. J was such a positive person throughout her entire journey,” junior high counselor Jennifer Chavers said. “She was always smiling, encouraging, and she never met a stranger. Teaching was her passion and you could see that not only in her teaching but her love for the students.”