Alumni, current students say goodbye to Thunderbolt Elementary School

THUNDERBOLT, Ga (WSAV) – A lot of tears and memories as dozens of teachers and students say goodbye to a local school.

Thunderbolt Elementary will close at the final bell in May.

Whether it’s the class of 1957 or the one now of 2017, there’s a consensus that it was a community school and the memories shared there will surely be missed.

The history of Thunderbolt Elementary goes back to the late 1800’s.

“It’s bittersweet, the staff is all very nostalgic but we’ve enjoyed getting to know a lot of the Thunderbolt alumni that have come through this year that have shared different memories and things like that so it’s been a bittersweet time,” says current principal Susan Ambrose.

Alumni like Beth Toomer. A year before she was born, this school was built. For sixty years it has molded the minds of Thunderbolt and Chatham County children.

“I have very fond memories, I learned a lot, this was my ground for my education.”

The school will close this summer. All of the students will move into town to Low Elementary. That’s what makes this day unique for Camille O’Neil who saw over students at Thunderbolt and Low.

A community school Toomer still carries memories of working in the library or learning to play music in.

“I see myself walking these hallways everyday and it’s going to bring tears because it’s closing.”

It’s the closing of a chapter the school system and faculty agree needed to happen. The school may go, but its history and memories stay with people like Toomer and O’Neil.

“I think this school, we talked about this school closing twenty-five years ago, so I think it is time to close this school and move on to a new program and new school and new classes,” says O’Neil.

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