From 1990 thru 2015 Sharron McKethan Zachry was a fixture in the Midway School District- a moving fixture. She loved all things MIDWAY and was always on the move in pursuit of the best for her students, staff and teachers.
It all began while herself a student at Midway. Ms. Zachry participated and excelled at all she did – state champ Hall-of-Fame athlete, accomplished musician, cheerleader, Homecoming Queen, class favorite and honor graduate. She furthered her education with a bachelor’s degree from University of Houston and a master’s degree from Baylor University.
No crystal ball was required to foresee Mrs. Zachry would continue to strive for excellence in her chosen field of education.
When Ms. Zachry first interviewed for a physical education position at Hewitt Elementary in 1990, she never gave the selecting official a chance to say no. She took HIM on a tour of his facility and proceeded to tell HIM why and what was needed to upgrade the PE equipment and how she would accomplish it when she came on board. How could he NOT hire her? Being prepared and confident of her abilities remained one of her greatest strengths throughout her career.
This would later become one of the so many Sharron Zachry stories told around the district as she rose through the education ranks.
She received many honors and accolades through the years and Midway Superintendent George Kazanas called her a vanguard in terms of a woman administrator at a high school in the 1990s. Midway ISD has called her legacy in the Midway Family “unprecedented”. She encouraged teachers to apply for grants in order to go above and beyond for their students; she didn’t hibernate in her office but often walked the hallways and knew most of her students by name, which is tough in a high school with 1600 students. She was known as firm but fair.
One of Sharron’s favorite stories was when she was at Castleman Creek Elementary and she had to bring a small boy into her office for fighting. She sat down with him at a small table and gently tried to explain why fighting was wrong. After a few minutes he put his head down on the small table. She thought he was thinking over what she had said. After a few minutes she finally she asked him what he was doing. He gave a big sigh and said, “just waiting for you to stop talking.” Another Sharron Zachry story for the ages. And she loved it.
Colonel (ret.) Joe McKethan, Ms. Zachry’s brother who also taught at Midway High School, referred to her as the “best talent scout he knew” because she seemed to readily identify and hire the very best teachers. But she seemed to know who had that special something a teacher or principal needed to be successful.
“Just being in the same room with Sharron was a “GIFT”. She was sunlight on a dreary day. She was comedy on a sad day. She was loving and caring and amazing. She demonstrated with every act, compassion, love, honor and duty. And she did it effortlessly, “ Colonel McKethan said when asked to describe his younger sister.
Ms. Zachry retired in 2015 and planned to spend quality time with her family, including her greatest joys – her grandchildren. However, a tragic vehicle accident took her life a year later and the Midway community lost one of its greatest assets.
Sharron McKethan Zachry will be honored at the Distinguished Service Award ceremony and reception on Sunday, October 22nd at 2PM in the Midway Middle School Cafeteria at 800 N. Hewitt Drive. Other honorees include David Vardeman, Jerry and Sherilyn Lewis, and the late Glynn Dell and Bennie Ballew. Distinguished Alumnus Jim King, Class of ’75, will also be honored. This reception, sponsored by the Midway ISD Education Foundation, is free and open to the public.
To honor Sharron McKethan Zachry or any of the other service award recipients, donations and written tributes can be made online here.
I remember that Sharron and my brother David Jones were in the same class at Midway. I hope and pray that the Zachry family are doing well and coping with their loss.
In my office is a brick inscribed “Boonie Casmer.” It was a going away gift from Mrs. Zachry. The inscription was a spelling error that was made when the bricks were ordered with the names of the first teachers of Castleman Creek to be laid around the flagpole. Ms. Zachry and I laughed often over that mistake and some of the teachers, many years later, still call me “Boonie.” Sharon Zachry was an inspiration and brought cheer, laughter, and encouragement to her students and staff. I will always cherish my time with her… and my brick as a reminder of a great leader.