Couple retires together after 40+ years with LPS
The confusing and difficult school year finally ended last week. Students can't go in the buildings and teacher have guidelines they must follow to retrieve their stuff.
For one couple, the end of this year marked more than just the end to a strange semester.
Bill and Jean Kechely have been married for 37 years, and they both share a passion for teaching.
"There comes a point in time when you say maybe it's time," said Bill Kechely. "We wanted to go out together, and I think my wife decided first , and I said ok I'll join you."
"It was a tough decision," said Jean Manning Kechely. "We both kept thinking we needed to go 45, and then we should each go 50 and finally we just needed to stop."
The Kechely's are finally retiring. Bill just finished his 45th year and Jean her 43rd. They don't want the recognition, but their daughters surprised them with a party on Thursday.
Bill taught special education, physical education and drivers ed at three different schools. he also coached football and baseball at Lincoln East.
Jean worked in middle school special education and first grade.
They say fellowship and family is what makes LPS so special.
Their final year didn't end the way they expected, but they're looking at the positives such as mastering zoom calls.
The couple didn't just retire together, but they also started together.
They met at Hayward School in their first teaching assignment.
"It's just been a wonderful experience and a great ride that I wouldn't trade for anything," said Bill Kechely.
The Kechely's said it was hard cleaning out their classrooms without saying goodbye to their students.
They plan on being substitute teachers in retirement, so they get to see their students again.