Demetria Bannister was diagnosed with the virus on Friday and died on Monday. The 28-year-old had taught elementary school in Windsor, Colombia for five years, CNN affiliate WIS reported. She began her third year of teaching third graders virtually on August 31.
In addition to teaching, Bannister was passionate about music, and worked with the school choir on various projects. She also ran a student club for aspiring singers.
“Known as the songbird of Windsor, Ms. Bannister used her musical talents to bring great joy to our school,” said Denise Quickel, Principal of Windsor Elementary School.
At a school attendance event last year, she wrote a song about the importance of not missing class to the tune of “Old Town Road,” the popular song by rapper Lil Nas X.
“The song and the video were a big hit with the family at our school,” said Quickel. “Ms. Bannister loved her students and never missed an opportunity to advocate on behalf of students and public education. ”
She was at school on August 28
The school district was informed that she had tested positive for the coronavirus on Friday. He followed the procedures for disinfection, contact tracing and notification of close contacts.
The contact tracing and notification was based on when she was last in elementary school, Aug. 28, the school district said. She started the school year three days later, teaching her students virtually from home.
“Although we are gone too soon, Ms. Bannister’s legacy lives on in the lives of the students she taught during her five years as a dedicated educator,” said Baron R. Davis, Principal from Richland School District two.
School district officials said her parents allowed them to share the information to remind others of the risks of coronavirus. Windsor Elementary School staff and students benefit from counseling services.
Since January, health authorities have identified more than 6.3 million cases of Covid-19 and more than 191,000 deaths in the United States. South Carolina has had over 126,000 infections and more than 2,900 deaths.