After 14 years as principal of East Broadway Elementary School, Jeanmarie Wink did not expect her final school year before retirement to end with a global pandemic. The East Broadway PTA, Assistant Principal Milton Josephs, district administrators, board members, families and students wanted to give the beloved principal the farewell she deserved. Together, they participated in a surprise retirement parade on June 17 in front of Mrs. Wink's house in Seaford.
More than 100 cars lined the road at the front of East Broadway Elementary School to prepare for the event. Participants decorated their vehicles and made signs. The PTA organized a DJ to serve as the emcee and provide music for the parade in the front of Mrs. Wink's home. Members of the East Broadway community and Levittown Public Schools honked their horns as the DJ called Mrs. Wink outside for the big surprise. Her family members were right behind her and were in on the celebration.
As each car passed, parade participants wished Mrs. Wink best wishes on her retirement as they held up their signs and handed her cards, gifts and flowers. The high-energy parade lasted about 45 minutes and when it concluded, Mrs. Wink was overcome with emotions.
"It's been quite a journey," she said. "Thank you for this. I don't think I could be happier than right now."
Superintendent of Schools Dr. Tonie McDonald congratulated Mrs. Wink and told her how much she will be missed. In addition, East Broadway PTA members presented her with a gift and Mr. Josephs handed her binders filled with something special by each student in the school. It was a beautiful day celebrating a wonderful person.