Students and teachers at DelSesto Middle School, along with family and friends, gathered on November 6 to dedicate a swamp white oak “Tribute Tree” in honor of teacher William Glad, who passed away last summer in an accidental drowning. The tree was planted by the City of Providence with the assistance of DelSesto’s Gardening Club in front of the school building.
Mr. Glad’s parents and one of his students, Yanidia Rosales.
A granite marker, donated by Mr. Glad’s teaching and administrative colleagues, was secured next to the tree and includes the inscription, “Teacher, friend, brother and beloved son, he was always there to help those in need. Follow his footsteps and B. Glad.”
In August, teachers, staff and students of the DelSesto community welcomed the Glad family to the school to share in a night of remembrance. Music, songs, a poetry reading and speeches by colleagues, students and Principal Arzinia Gill and Assistant Principal Frank Cornachione, paid tribute to a teacher who will be dearly missed.
To end the evening, all guests were invited outside to partake in a balloon release ceremony. After a moment of silence, teachers Sabrina Antonelli and Kaleen O’Leary shared final words about their late colleague and his ability to give selflessly. Members of the Glad family, staff and students then released 37 white balloons into the sky, signifying William’s 37 years.
Mr. Glad was a secondary education teacher in the Providence School Department for 12 years. He was also the social studies department chair at DelSesto and coach of the city’s championship basketball team. He was previously an assistant football coach at LaSalle Academy for ten years.
Mr. Glad is a 1999 graduate of Norwich University in Vermont, where he played football. He earned his teaching certification at Rhode Island College and Providence College.