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Waco ISD mourns the loss of longtime educator

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Posted at 4:47 PM, Jan 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-08 17:47:04-05

WACO, TX — Waco ISD is mourning the loss of longtime educator Lester McDowell.

McDowell joined Waco ISD as a teacher at Brook Avenue Elementary School in 1976 and continued as a teacher for 13 years, including time at G.L. Wiley and G.W. Carver middle schools.

He went on to serve as an assistant principal and principal at G.W. Carver, then as principal at Lake Waco Elementary School, Provident Heights Elementary School and finally G.L. Wiley Middle School, where he led the campus from 1999 until his retirement in 2003 after 28 years with Waco ISD.

Although retired from education and continuing his work as the owner of McDowell Funeral Home, Mr. McDowell became one of the district's "go-to" temporary or interim administrators when needed at a campus, proudly serving 8 campuses from 2014 to 2020.

Most recently, McDowell stepped in as an AP at Alta Vista Elementary School for the first 3 months of 2020.

Alta Vista Principal Lindsey Helton remembers Mr. McDowell as "always full of joy. He developed strong relationships with our students and staff and supported the school with a positive attitude and lots of energy."

Waco ISD says they extend their thoughts and prayers to Mr. McDowell's friends and family as they mourn.

"Undoubtedly, Mr. McDowell left a legacy at Waco ISD and made a profound impact on countless students and staff with his sense of humor, kindness, dedication, supportive leadership and caring service to his campuses and community."