'Inspirational' North Carolina Teacher Dies After Contracting COVID-19: She 'Was Truly a Blessing'

Stanly County Schools announced on Sept. 29 that third grade students at Norwood Elementary School were switching to remote learning after a staff member had tested positive for COVID-19

Julie Davis
Julie Davis. Photo: Facebook

A third grade teacher in North Carolina is dead after contracting the novel coronavirus, according to school officials.

Julie Davis, who taught at Norwood Elementary School in Stanly County, died after testing positive for COVID-19, NBC affiliate WCNC reported.

The school learned of Davis' diagnosis on Sept. 27, just two days after she started to experience symptoms and began to self-quarantine, according to the outlet.

"Stanly County Schools is deeply saddened and grieving the loss of Julie Davis, a third grade teacher at Norwood Elementary School," Vicki Calvert, the interim superintendent of Stanly County Schools, said in a statement.

"During her two years in service to the students of Norwood Elementary School, Mrs. Davis earned a well-deserved reputation as an inspirational teacher who was always seeking ways to support every student so that they were able to fulfill their potential," the statement continued. "She implemented creative ways of teaching and her high standards and expectations motivating others to achieve their best."

Calvert said that students "absolutely loved being taught by Mrs. Davis" and the teacher "brought joy into the lives of the students, staff, and community."

"We are extending our deepest condolences to Mrs. Davis’ family," Calvert added. "We were truly blessed by her professionalism and caring spirit."

Stanly County Schools confirmed on Sept. 29 that third grade students at Norwood Elementary School were switching to remote learning after a staff member had tested positive for COVID-19. In a letter addressed to families, school officials said that all students were to quarantine themselves and learn remotely from Sept. 30 through Oct. 9.

A representative for the school district told CNN that staff member was Davis, adding that none of the students have developed any symptoms or tested positive of coronavirus.

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In addition to teaching, Davis was also a caretaker for her 74-year-old mother and her 2-year-old grandson, WSCO reported.

"Julie Davis was a dedicated mother, sister, wife, friend, and teacher. Help us support her family at this time," a GoFundMe page set up in support of Davis' family read. "Julie was truly a blessing to everyone who knew her. She was always willing to step up and help in a time of need."

As of Monday, there have been more than 7,453,700 cases of COVID-19 in the United States, with at least 209,600 deaths from coronavirus-related illnesses, according to a New York Times database.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments. PEOPLE has partnered with GoFundMe to raise money for the COVID-19 Relief Fund, a GoFundMe.org fundraiser to support everything from frontline responders to families in need, as well as organizations helping communities. For more information or to donate, click here.

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