Beloved Texas Kindergarten Teacher Dies Of COVID-19

by Julie Scagell
Go Fund Me

Goetschius was just 60 years old when she died

The community of Beaumont, Texas is mourning the loss of a longtime teacher who taught in the district for more than 26 years. She was the latest teacher to die from complications of COVID-19.

Diane Goetschius died at just 60 years of age after battling COVID-induced pneumonia for more than a month. She is survived by her husband of 40 years who she began dating at just 15 years old, as well as her mother, four daughters, and several grandchildren. At the time of her death, she was teaching at a local elementary school called Fletcher Elementary.

Her greatest worry, friends said, was being exposed to the virus. “Her biggest fear was contracting this virus. She was so careful she was the most careful person I’ve come across,” longtime friend Debbie Pierson said.

Goetschius is being remembered by those who loved her as a dedicated and caring woman. “She was such a great teacher, she impacted so many students and so much lives. She was honestly an amazing teacher,” former student Sandra Sifuentes told KIII TV.

Goetschius contracted COVID19 in late October 2020. According to the Go Fund Me set up by her friend to help with medical and funeral costs, Goetschius “had severe asthma, which contributed to the severity of the COVID induced pneumonia that ravaged her body, taking her life at only 60 years old.” She was in the hospital for 38 days, and in ICU on a ventilator for weeks before she died. “The financial toll of a 38 day stay in a hospital, even with insurance, is an expense most average people would struggle to pay,” the GFM page continued. “With unexpected funeral expenses the cost is unbearable.”

In her obituary, family were understandably horrified that her life could be taken away from them so soon by this pandemic. “The loss of such an amazing and beloved person whose life was cut short by a vicious virus will forever leave a hole in our hearts. She will be missed,” it read in part. “She loved with her whole heart her Lord, family, friends, and especially the kids she taught at school. Truly an exceptional woman.”

For her family, and especially her grandchildren, her life was taken far too soon. “Her grandchildren became her passion,” her obituary reads. “She never showed up for a visit without a new book for them, and one of her greatest pleasures was reading to them.”

Currently, there are over 16 million people who have the virus in the United States and over 301,000 have died, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. Beaumont ISD, where Goetschius taught, announced a district transition to remote learning on November 30-December 4, following the Thanksgiving break but returned to on-campus learning on December 7.