In October, several faculty and staff gathered at the home of Pat and Terry Walsh, grade 5 math teacher and Harker archivist, respectively, for a special poker event to commemorate the passing of beloved Harker U.S. history teacher John Near one year earlier.
The event also acted as a fundraiser for the John Near Resource Center, raising a total of $945. Funds were donated by visitors and those who were unable to attend but wanted to contribute nonetheless. The center, located in Shah Hall, adjacent to Near’s former classroom, reflects the late teacher’s love of American history. Near taught at Harker middle and upper schools for 31 years prior to his passing in 2009. His legacy includes many hundreds of students left with a love of learning and history as well as the John Near Excellence in History Education Endowment Fund.
Two tables of Texas Hold ‘Em were run for the poker competition which was won by recently retired 30-year lower school geography teacher John Zetterquist, who pocketed a $200 first prize. Casey Near ’06, Dickinson and Near’s daughter, cleverly called Zetterquist’s bluff on one hand, which netted her a $75 prize.
“Casey did an amazing job for her first time playing poker,” said host Terry Walsh, Harker’s archivist.