College Wood Elementary honors head custodian, ‘Mr. Morris’

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College Wood Elementary students and staff members honor head custodian Morris Eubank on May 6 at a special ceremony. (Photo by Adam Aasen)

College Wood Elementary students and staff members honor head custodian Morris Eubank on May 6 at a special ceremony. (Photo by Adam Aasen)

Morris Eubank always comes to work with a smile. He’s been the head custodian at College Wood Elementary in Carmel for the past five years, and he often has to do the dirty jobs. Cleaning up messes. Emptying trash cans. Unclogging toilets.

But Eubank tries to be more than just a janitor. He tries to be a friend to the kids he encounters. He teases them and tells jokes. His catchphrase to the young children is, “You’re grounded!”

On May 6, he walked into a crowded gymnasium to find hundreds of grade-schoolers yelling, “You’re grounded!” back at him in a surprise ceremony to honor Eubank.

“There are just never enough ways to say thank you to Mr. Morris,” Principal Kathy Olssen said. “He often works shorthanded, long hours. He just takes care of everybody like they’re his own.”

The event was the idea of some of the parents. Students helped put up signs saying they love Mr. Morris and cut out posters of his picture. He was given gift cards as a token of appreciation and students read poems and essays they wrote for him.

“It’s in the way that he makes you smile, keeps our school clean and shows you what it means to be a true superhero,” read Ava Roan, an 11-year-old fifth grader.

Eubank was given a six-inch, three-ring binder full of notes written by children.

“He’s just always happy, and when he’s happy it makes me happy,” Roan said.

Eubank said he loves working at the school, and it’s a ceremony like this that makes him even more excited to go to work every day.

“I feel appreciated,” he said. “It’s all about the little kids. Working with them and enjoying be with them every day.”

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