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School systems all across America are celebrating Teacher Appreciation Week starting today and going through this Friday, May 7.

Some retailers have special prices for teachers this week and there are even a few restaurants trying to show some "teacher love" for the week.

But, have you ever told that teacher just how much they meant to you? It might have been a teacher that actually taught you or it could have been a teacher that taught one of your kids. If that person truly made a difference in your life, there is no time like the present to let them know just how they played an impactful role in your life. With the modern convenience of social media, it that person is still alive, it would be really easy to get them a message, and who knows, it might just be what that person needs to get them through a rough spot in their own life.

My story is somewhat pale compared to the stories of extremely troubled youth who've been rescued by caring teachers or coaches, but nonetheless impactful, if to no one else but me.

Mrs. Patsy Weldon was the high school math teacher at Trinity Heights Christian Academy. The small school no longer exists, but for kids from north Shreveport to Blanchard, Ida, Bossier, Benton and all surrounding areas, it was a sliver of Heaven on Earth.

While we didn't know it at the time, this school shaped the lives and hearts of many of today's finest citizens in Northwest Louisiana. From farmers to business owners, dentists, professors and even a couple of disc jockeys.

Mrs. Weldon was my Saint. I was never a bad kid, but with a burning desire to get another laugh, I managed to always find myself in hot water. Once, when I wasn't allowed to attend one of my science classes for a couple weeks, due to an accidental incident involving catching another student's hair on fire, Mrs. Weldon would actually come to the office during her down time, just to help me with my homework.

Her kind words and nurturing spirit helped me to realize there was a time and place for everything. Well, everything except catching another student's hair on fire.

I'm not the only person who would sing her praises as there are countless others who can testify to her compassionate and loving spirit. I've told her many times what she meant to me, but don't want to waste the chance to do it again! Thank you Mrs. Weldon! I can't imagine my life if you hadn't been in it. I love and appreciate you more than you'll ever know!

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