Carol Woodard, age 75, died peacefully at home on October 23, 2020. She had been diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) in March 2019. The fourth of Robert Brown Sidner and Elisabeth Steinemann Sidner’s seven children, Carol was born December 22, 1944 and grew up in Sandusky, Ohio.
There she attended Sts. Peter and Paul Elementary and St. Mary’s High School followed by college study at the University of Dayton where she received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Education.
In 1966 following graduation she moved with friends to San Diego, where she was employed as an elementary school teacher. While there she met and married Arch Woodard, stationed there as a Navy Seal. They became the parents of two sons, Daniel Hastings in 1974 and Andrew Cable in 1975, while Arch was completing medical school. The family moved to Spruce Pine, North Carolina in 1977 where Arch joined the Bakersville Community Medical Clinic. Their third son, Michael Robert, was born in 1979.
The family enjoyed many trips to overseas locations—to such places as Turks and Caicos Is-lands, Haiti, and Australia where Arch substituted in hospitals for doctors on home leave in remote communities. During these periods Carol returned to teaching, homeschooling her boys and other children of hospital staff.
Carol joined the staff of the South Toe Preschool in 1985. The school moved to Burnsville in 1993 and became the Church Street Preschool. Carol served as teacher and director until her retirement in 2012. Her gentle, firm demeanor, combined with endless optimism and tireless commitment to excellence, earned her the respect and devotion of the school staff, students, and parents. Children flourished under her guidance, and the school quickly earned the reputation in the broader community of nurturing the most prepared and confident students entering the local schools.
Grandmother of seven, she de-lighted in family life. She relished gatherings of family and friends at the home she and Arch built in Gurley Holler. She loved to cook, and many savored the products of her well-tended garden and her well-stocked kitchen. In later years she took up writing and produced a sympathetic and compelling memoir of growing up in a small town in middle America.
She had a special artfulness and creative spirit - from her school classrooms, to her home, to her flower gardens, to the unique fabrics she chose in making clothes and neckties for family members. She was an avid photographer and chronicler of family events and trips.
Carol was amiable, open-hearted, and welcoming, and all felt at home in her presence.