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Funeral Arrangements Set for Longtime Kanawha BOE Member

By: Anna Baxter, Michael Clouse Email
By: Anna Baxter, Michael Clouse Email

UPDATE 11/27/13 @ 10:40 a.m.
KANAWHA COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Family and friends will come together and honor the life of a leader in education.

William "Bill" Raglin, died earlier this week after complications following a surgery. Raglin served more than 19 years on the Kanawha County School Board. He was first elected in 1994.

Funeral services are planned for Saturday, November 30 at 11 a.m. at Sacred Heart Cathedral in Charleston. A viewing will be held at 9:30 a.m.

Raglin is known for his push for better vocational education and safety in schools.



UPDATE @ 9 p.m.
KANAWHA COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Every day, hundreds of students walk through the doors of Ben Franklin Career Center in Dunbar. They go there to gain a grasp on the basics.

"Students could come here, learn the academic skills plus the hands-on skill," said construction teacher Louis Mynes.

Many like Wes Tully come in clueless.

"Not knowing a single thing about construction whatsoever," said Tully, a former student.

However, the hard work pays off.

"I work for the Carpenters {union} 1207," Tully said.

While all students learn a lot there, one thing these kids likely won't learn is who pushed for this type of training.

On Monday morning, long-time Kanawha County School Board member Bill Raglin died.

"After 20 years of dedication to the school system, that doesn't easily go away," Kanawha County Superintendent Ron Duerring said.

Raglin was a sizable supporter of hands-on education.

"Growing up in the industry, I think he knew what students needed to have to be able to make it," Mynes said.

"Bill was very in touch with his people," fellow board member Pete Thaw said.

Even those who didn't always agree with his policies respected his passion.

"We could be on opposite sides, we could have strong discussion, but in the end, we're all walking away with the idea that we were still friends and board members working together for the good of the kids," Duerring said.

"He said that's the best investment you can make. He said, 'Invest in your grandchildren,' " Thaw said.

While Raglin's voice is silent, leaving with it some big shoes to fill, his investment in Kanawha County schools will live on through students like Tully.

"It's a lot better today than when he started, and that's because of Bill," Thaw said.



UPDATE @ 9:30 a.m.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Flags are flying at half staff in Kanawha County in honor of longtime Board of Education member Bill Raglin.

Raglin died early Monday morning at a local hospital. Raglin has been in the hospital for couple of weeks. School Board President Pete Thaw says Raglin recently had knee surgery and there were other complications.

Commissioners requested the flags to be lowered just hours after learning about Raglin's death.

“Bill Raglin was the epitome of a school board member. He wanted to make sure all students received a quality education," Commission President Kent Carper said. "He was interested in giving all students the best opportunities to succeed in life, whether they were college-bound or not.”

Raglin was elected to Kanawha County School Board in 1994. Raglin was currently the longest serving board member, with 19 years of service.

Thaw says Raglin was also a "big champion for vocational education." Raglin will also be remembered for his push to improve safety in our schools, for both teachers and students, Thaw, school board president said.

Commissioners say Raglin was a powerful advocate for students in the valley, especially in the Dunbar and Institute areas.

“Bill Raglin was a selfless individual and he was a great ambassador for the Kanawha County School System," Commissioner Dave Hardy said. "He made a positive impact on Kanawha County in many ways and he will be greatly missed.”

Commissioner Carper added, “It will be very hard for me to know I will never be able to call on Bill Raglin for his advice or his wisdom and his expertise on school matters. He was a tremendous person who was always so giving of his time and talents. He was a great role model for all public servants.”

No funeral arrangements have been made at this time.

Keep clicking on WSAZ.com for the latest information.



ORIGINAL STORY
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Kanawha County Schools are mourning the loss of a man who spent decades trying to improve education in the Kanawha Valley.

A spokesperson with Kanawha County Schools tells WSAZ.com School Board Member William "Bill" Raglin passed away early Monday morning at a local hospital.

Raglin has been in the hospital for couple of weeks. School Board President Pete Thaw says Raglin recently had knee surgery and there were other complications.

Raglin was elected to Kanawha County School Board in 1994. Raglin was currently the longest serving board member, with 19 years of service.

Thaw says Raglin was a "big champion for vocational education." Raglin will also be remembered for his push to improve safety in our schools, for both teachers and students, Thaw said.

According to the county's webpage, Raglin was retired from Union Carbide.

Keep clicking on WSAZ.com for the latest information.


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