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Greg Hoover - Educator enjoys working with youth

April 23, 2006|By BONNIE H. BRECHBILL

GREENCASTLE, Pa. - A brain aneurysm put Hoover in Hershey (Pa.) Medical Center for 16 days in June 2005.

He remembers nothing of the first four days in Hershey. The bleeding into his brain blocked his sight, but surgery restored it two months later.

Doctors repaired the aneurysm with a small coil.

"I have no permanent brain damage," said Hoover, 50. "That's not the norm for this type of problem. Fifty (percent) to 75 percent of patients with this type of aneurysm die, and 50 percent of the survivors have brain damage."

Hoover returned to work part time after Labor Day, then full time in October.

"I was on prayer chains all over Greencastle," he said. "That's the blessing of living in a small town."

Hoover has lived in that small town all his life except while attending Shepherd College in Shepherdstown, W.Va. His wife, Susan, also was born and raised in Greencastle, and his mother and parents-in-law still live there. Their four children are growing up in Greencastle.

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Many of the activities that make Greencastle unique happen with Hoover's help. He's involved with the July 4 celebration, Old Home Week, the fire department's Minstrel Show, the board of the Jerome King playground and the Greencastle-Antrim Youth Basketball Association.

"I see parents and community members all the time," Hoover said. "We talk about the school. Parents are very supportive here. ..."

"Greencastle was a neat place to grow up," he added. "My motivating factor for being involved in so many local activities is to provide the same opportunities for kids today that I had growing up."

He said it is no sacrifice for him to participate in his community.

"There's a whole lot of fun for me in it," he said. "I get to work with kids - my kids and other people's kids. I enjoy it."

Hoover has coached cross country, track and field and basketball, taught health and physical education at the high school, been its assistant principal, and served as principal and assistant principal at the middle school. While his current job as director of elementary education for the Greencastle-Antrim district does not allow him as much student contact as he would like, he still can make a difference in students' lives.

He's in charge of curriculum, professional development and professional assessment, federal programs, state grants and PSSA testing for the district.

P. Duff Rearick, superintendent of Greencastle-Antrim schools, said, "He's Greg; he's just a nice guy. He has one of those kid-magnet personalities."

Hoover works closely with the principals at all the schools, and "impacts children every day by the decisions he makes," Rearick said.

Name - Greg Hoover

Address - Greencastle

Date of Birth - Oct. 31, 1955

Occupation - Director of Elementary Education in the Greencastle-Antrim School District

Most notable achievement - My most notable achievements deal with the many teams that I have been associated with. I have had the privilege of coaching many young individuals who came together as teams to win state championships in cross country. I have also worked as a team with many individuals in the Greencastle-Antrim community to put together the most recent Old Home Week celebration. And perhaps the biggest endeavor has been working as a team with many dedicated people to improve the Greencastle-Antrim School District.

Your proudest moment - I have four separate "proudest moments" and they would be the birth of our four children.

Who is the person you most admire and why? - I have had many significant people touch my life, from teachers and coaches in elementary, middle school, high school and college as well as current colleagues. I have had many family members and friends that I truly admire, but the person I admire most is my mother. She ran a household, owned and operated a small clothing store, suffered through two serious illnesses, took care of her mother and husband simultaneously as they both suffered fatal diseases and raised my sister and me full time. She sacrificed so that I had the opportunity to go to college. Even today, at 88, she still lives by herself and has maintained her great sense of humor, despite the trials and tribulations of growing old.

What is the best piece of advice you ever received?

Who gave it to you? - Borrowing from Henry David Thoreau, Dr. P. Duff Rearick (Superintendent of the Greencastle-Antrim School District) has repeatedly advised me to "simplify my life" in everything I do. One of these days, I'm going to listen to his advice.

What is the next goal you would like to achieve? - I would like to finish my dissertation and complete my doctoral studies - soon.

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