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Family mourning loss of Bryant teacher who died from COVID-19

Jamie Sheffield was a special education teacher and cheer coach, but most importantly, a grandmother who loved her grandchildren more than anything.

BRYANT, Ark. — As the Bryant community mourns the loss of a teacher, Jamie Sheffield, her five children sat down to share memories about their mother.

Sheffield died this week after battling COVID-19.

Her children says she is more than just a statistic, and that she left a legacy behind.

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“Mom was great for everything,” said Justin Heffner, Sheffield’s son.

Sheffield’s children said to know her is to love her and she had the same heart for many things, including teaching special education at Bethel Middle School, serving as the school’s cheer coach, but most importantly, she loved her grandchildren. They were her world.

“For eight years now, she’s been a grandma. And ever since then, that has been her pride and joy,” said Justin.

Sheffield’s family said she did everything right, but she ended up losing her battle to the virus.

Her children want others to know how critical it is to take the pandemic seriously.

“COVID-19 is real,” said Jacob Hefner, Sheffield’s son. “If you think it isn’t, you can look at us and see us as an example. We didn’t want to go through this, we didn’t expect to go through this.”

The pain of losing their mother will never get easier, but the Bryant community has shared many stories about who their mom was when she wasn’t at home.

She served the school district with much passion, even going above and beyond for her students during the pandemic so none of them would be left behind.

“We knew she was special, but the stories that are coming out about how she impacted these people, we can imagine, but getting to actually hear those has been truly amazing,” said Jeanna Bartelt, Sheffield’s daughter.

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While their mother will miss out on Christmas, her favorite holiday, traditions will live on.

“She would want us to say this, it was on her emails and it was just her thing, her life motto quote,” said Justin. “To the world, you might be one person, but to one person, you might be the world.”

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