IRAAN -- Our crews were in Iraan today, speaking with friends of Liz Pope’s, and learning what the Braves are doing to honor her.
“The few, the proud, the braves” – that’s the motto not only the school but the whole town lives by.
CBS 7 spoke exclusively with two ladies today who knew Pope, as they shared their memories of her.
Although her death has been tragic, it’s also instilled in the community a pride for living in a small town.
“And he just said, ‘mama, so she's not gonna be our teacher no more?’” Timarie Massie, a lifelong Iraan resident said. She now has to explain to her five-year-old son why his teacher won’t return to class Monday.
Liz Pope was not only the cheerleaders’ sponsor, but she also taught a computer lab class for elementary students.
Iraan residents say she impacted so many lives.
“She loves the kids. She works hard for them,” Kay Davis, who taught with Pope for years, said.
“My biggest thing was my daughter who goes to her class every day, and it just—it completely caught me by surprise,” Davis said.
But a glimmer of joy and solidarity comes from the darkness; Iraan has had an overwhelming outpouring of support from other small Texas towns.
“We're rivals on so many different levels, but that they care for us and they're supporting us is just inspiring,” Davis said.
“A lot of people don't like small towns. But it's just awesome to see everyone rally. It's also the whole West Texas,” Massie said.
Community members are planning various candle light vigils for Pope, and at next Friday’s game, the team will be honoring her memory.