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Man reunites with former teacher with dementia at care home, gives him back the gift of music

The teacher was known to have a profound effect on the man's professional growth.

Man reunites with former teacher with dementia at care home, gives him back the gift of music
Representative Image Source: Getty Images/Cavan Images

Teachers are an essential part of all of our lives. They impart wisdom and teach us to believe in ourselves. The life lessons they provide come in handy throughout our lives. A senior care home general manager was recently reunited with his teacher and gave him the ultimate gift to try to repay for his teachings. When David Brown, 83, moved into the care facility for which Neil Gandecha, 40, serves as general manager in Hitchin, U.K., they met again, reports The Independent



He moved to the facility in 2021 a year after he was diagnosed with dementia. Brown had taught English and French to Gandecha at the town's Kingshott School and was described as an "inspiring figure" in his professional growth. Brown was the head teacher for English but he is always known to have a passion for music. Even after his diagnosis, Gandecha arranged for him to play the violin using dementia therapy tools and a reunion with a fellow musical acquaintance, Kingshott School's head of music Alison Eales.  

Brown recalled playing with Miss Eales earlier, prompting him to perform "something he hadn't been able to do in years" that is play an "unforgettable" and stunning rendition of Bruce Springsteen's "When The Saints Go Marching In." He was given the ultimate gift of music by his student, Gandecha.



Gandecha explained, "To see Mr. Brown and Miss Eales reconnect over lunch and perform a rendition together, especially from a former pupil’s perspective, was a proud moment for me and my sister – who also works at Foxholes." He added, "To pay back our teachers a little, with a moment of reminiscence and happiness, was unforgettable."

Brown was extremely happy to be able to play the violin again and he insisted Gandecha call him "David." The 40-year-old was delighted to hear his violin as beautifully as he did when Gandecha was just 10 years old. He hopes that this story will "remind people that friendships can blossom and withstand the test of time at any age, any time, and anywhere."



In another instance of students surprising their teachers, Julio Castro, a math teacher was gifted a car by his students as he commuted four hours every day to school. The students orchestrated a months-long fundraising campaign to raise $30,000 for a car and one year of insurance and gas. They gave him the car on the second day of school, in an elaborate ruse that Castro mistook for a teacher appreciation assembly. He was taken aback when it was quickly discovered that it was all a ploy to surprise him with a certified pre-owned dark blue 2019 Mazda 3 hatchback with a 2.4-liter engine, inline front-wheel drive, leather seats, a Bose system, a sunroof and barely 30,000 miles.

Castro said that he was completely surprised as he knew that the students were aware of his commute but didn't expect them to take action. He said, "I always told them: When life doesn't go your way, what do you do? Don't cry about it. Don't whine about it. Just be grateful for what you already have, and then move on. And one day some good things will happen." 

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