Late Columbia mayor honored at Russell Boulevard Elementary

COLUMBIA - Russell Boulevard Elementary School will host a ceremony Wednesday honoring the life of a Columbia mayor who died earlier this year.

Mayor Darwin Hindman will be honored at the school with a kindness tree and bench in the shape of a butterfly. The dedication is Wednesday at 2 p.m. at Russell Boulevard Elementary School in Columbia.

The dedication coincides with World Kindness Day on November 13th.

Peter Stiepleman is the superintendent of Columbia Public Schools. He said Hindman meant a lot to the community and Russell Boulevard.

"As you know, Mayor Hindman was beloved by our community, meant so much to our community," Stiepleman said. "Russell Boulevard is a special place for him and his family because his children went to this school. His wife, Axie, actually started her teaching career here at Russell."

Stiepleman said the bench will serve not only as a reminder for Hindman, but as a spot for kids in need.

"The bench is a big butterfly bench, it's just beautiful. It's a great place for children to congregate or come together should they need a friend," Stiepleman said.

Stiepleman said Columbia Public Schools works to prepare kids for the future. He said this display supports that mission.

"Our third graders will be entertaining us [with song], or reminding us of what our purpose is. Because it's our job to prepare kids for an ever-changing world, and we do know that this world is getting more and more complicated," Stiepleman said. "But there is one thing that is universal; that's kindness."

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