Velma Buck has been selected as the 2021 Cumberland County High School Hall of Fame inductee.
Buck graduated from Crossville High School in 1959. She earned two degrees from Vanderbilt University and continued work toward her doctorate at Nashville Business College.
She began teaching at CCHS in 1965 and retired at the end of the 2020-’21 school year.
Buck was married to Larry Buck who was also a lifelong educator in Cumberland County. He taught at Cline Elementary and then served as teacher/principal at Pine View Elementary until his retirement. Velma and Larry were blessed with three children, Tina, Ricky and C.W.; granddaughters, Madison and Ainsley; and grandson, Trip. Larry passed away in 2011.
Among the myriad of accolades received by Buck was being named an Outstanding Educator Honoree by her alma mater, Vanderbilt University, and was among three state finalists for the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching, a two-time honoree as Teacher of the Year, and a Career Level III teacher. One of her greatest accomplishments was spending 56 ½ years in the classroom where she was a positive role model to hundreds of students.
Buck is quick to tell you that students are the best part of teaching. Many former students are also quick to tell you that she made learning math fun and she gave them the courage to step out of their box to learn math. Jon Hall, current principal at CCHS, who taught math before becoming an administrator, said he found his college calculus class was a repeat of his high school course. If there were a topic he needed a refresher on, he would take off early from Tennessee Tech and return to Crossville.
“I would come home and ask for help from the absolute best math teacher ever,” Hall said.
A reception celebrating Buck will be held Oct. 21 at 4:45 p.m.
Buck will serve as grand marshal of the Homecoming parade, which will begin after the induction ceremony. The parade starts from CCHS and travels to Main St. on Stanley St.
CCHS will host Jackson County High School for its Homecoming game Friday, Oct. 22, with kick-off at 7 p.m.