A memorial service is scheduled this (Monday) afternoon for the 30-year-old Aplington-Parkersburg High School teacher who collapsed and died just outside the school last Thursday. Amy Guldager’s was a popular English teacher and speech coach, and last Friday was a quiet day inside the high school. “It was way weird,” says student Mallory Harkin. “It was the quietest I’ve ever heard our school.” Another student, Ashlee Janssen, says everyone at school was sad. “She’s like one of the coolest teachers,” Janssen says. Kristy Schwark, another student says: “Everyone was just crying. It was very hard to get through the day.”
Teacher Nina Schmitz says “there would be moments of tears and loss and grieving.” The faculty and staff did all it could to comfort students, and held an assembly to explain to students what had happened. Jasmyne Green says students were told their teacher was walking out to her car when she collapsed and they tried to revive her and it didn’t work. Guldager left behind two young sons and a husband who just returned from Guard duty in Iraq. At the school, she left behind a lasting impression as a speech coach.
Nearly 40-percent of the Aplington-Parkersburg students participated in speech according to superintendent Pat Morgan. “The kids warmed up to her,” Morgan says. “She had a pretty good sense of humor and because of that I just think kids just naturally gravitate toward someone like that.” Guldager, a native of Sumner, started teaching at Aplington-Parkersburg in 2000. She married David Guldager in 1997 and the couple has two children — three-year-old Connor and Logan, who is 19 months old.