Daughters remember Rutherford County Schools custodian who died after battle with COVID-19

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RUTHERFORD COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – Rutherford County Schools are mourning the loss of a beloved custodian who passed away after a battle with COVID-19. The pain is almost unbearable for Angela Crook’s family.

“She was our rock definitely all of our best friends,” said Ashley Randolph, Crook’s daughter. “It was very, very hard to watch her go through it.”

49-year-old Angela Crook has worked in education for decades. She’s been with Rutherford County Schools for two years, working at La Vergne, Blackman and Riverdale high schools before taking a job at Walter Hill Elementary. She was there for just one week before being diagnosed with the virus.

Crook first tested positive on September 26th. She went to a Vanderbilt Clinic in Lebanon with a high fever, but was sent home. Her condition grew worse over the next several days and she went to an emergency room in Mt. Juliet. Then, she was admitted to TriStar Skyline Medical Center on October 5th. Crook was able to wave and communicate briefly before taking a turn. She was on a ventilator for several days and passed away on October 18th.

“COVID is real no matter how healthy or whatever age you are,” Randolph said. “It can take your life and I want people to take it seriously.”

While Angela was in the hospital, it was Custodian Appreciation Week at Walter Hill. Her daughter Amber Jacobs says all of the kids made cards for her and thanked her for keeping their classrooms clean and safe.

“She was always there for me,” Jacobs said. “I have a daughter and the one thing that is special to me is the weekend she got sick, my daughter was with her and that was her last good memory.”

Crook’s youngest daughter, Karleigh Crook, will cherish all of the trips her family took. They recently spent time in the Smoky Mountains and Hillsboro Marina.

“If I was being mean, she was there for me good day or bad day,” Crook said. “Without her is going to be one of the hardest things I think for all of us. She was always there guiding you, so it’s weird.”

Rutherford County Schools posted about Crook saying their “deepest sympathies” are with her family. This year, the district has lost at least 3 staff members from the virus.

Angela’s family held a memorial service for her on October 22nd. You can read more about her HERE.

A GoFundMe has been established to help the family with funeral expenses. Click here to read more.

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