A special teacher
February 21, 2002
My dear friend, longtime Aspen resident David Bentley, just e-mailed me that Hildur Anderson passed away. I have very fond memories of Hildur, beginning when she was my math teacher at Aspen Middle School in the sixth grade (1970-71).
Along with my mother and sister, I had just returned from five years in Africa to spend a year living in Aspen with my grandmother, Terese David. It was a year of tumultuous emotions and sometimes-difficult social adjustments.
Hildur’s math class, however, was an island of calm and support. Like Hildur, I loved math. However, in Africa I had attended local French-language schools, and been taught to do math the French way.
Many teachers would have told me I was doing my long division backwards. Hildur saw that I clearly understood what I was doing, and didn’t make me change a thing.
This is just a small example of what a wonderful teacher she was. My last memory of her is of the way she greeted me warmly when I hopped onto the float she was riding in a recent Fourth of July parade.
Mark S. Sherwin
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Professor of physics
Santa Barbara, Calif.