Start your day with a smile.

Sign up for Morning Smile to get good news in your inbox daily!

Sign Up Now!

Kids Dub Beloved Janitor “King For A Day” In Sweetest Retirement Celebration.

For the past 12 years, John Lockett has graced Georgia’s Sand Hill Elementary School with his positive presence and infectious smile, serving as the school’s honorary grandfather.

Nobody adores the beloved janitor more than the children who affectionately call him “Mr. John.” And the feeling is mutual; the school has always been so much more to John than an employer. He calls everyone there family.

But, as the saying goes, all good things must come to an end, and this year, the 83-year-old is retiring to spend more time with his wife and grandchildren. So in May, staff, teachers, and students teamed up to throw John a farewell party fit for a king.

mr john wife
Facebook

Hundreds of students lined the hallways to celebrate John’s final day at school, which they’d dubbed “Mr. John Day.”

mr john day retirement
Facebook

And they went all out, holding up signs and cards with messages of love for John. They also made him a king for the day, presenting him with a crown and cape to wear as he walked the halls one last time with his wife. Even news crews came to document the sweet send-off!

king john send off
Facebook

John broke down in tears when he first saw what they’d done for him. “What is going on? Ya’ll gonna make me cry,” he said. But Principal Carla Meigs says it’s the least they could do for him.

mr john day retirement
Facebook

“He’s at work every day no matter how bad he feels with a smile on his face,” Carla said. She had actually encouraged John to retire in 2018 so he could focus on his health, but the dedicated janitor insisted on finishing out the school year with the kids.

mr john day retirement
Facebook

To thank John for all his years of hard work, the school presented him with a special plaque, triggering another flood of tears. It reads, “You have made a difference in the lives of so many.”

mr john day retirement
Facebook

It was more than John could have ever asked for. He didn’t know anyone when he first came to the school, but when he left, his heart was bursting with love. He’ll always cherish the precious memories created there.

“These kids mean the world to me, the school is definitely a family to me,” John said.

mr john day retirement
Facebook

Happy retirement, Mr. John! You deserve to finally kick back and relax, though we know you’ll miss your friends at the school. We’re sure they wouldn’t mind at all, though, if he popped in for a visit from time to time.

Check out John’s kingly procession in the short clip below, and share so others can join in on the celebration!

Mr. John Day ~ We ❤️ Mr. John!

Posted by Sand Hill Elementary School on Friday, May 17, 2019


Share your story & inspire the world.
If you have an uplifting story we would love to hear about it! Share it with us here.

Report Post

Want more good news like this in your inbox? Sign up for Morning Smile to start your day with news that will make you smile.