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Midvale Journal

History teacher remembered for positive energy, excitement to help students learn

Oct 04, 2021 01:27PM ● By Julie Slama

Eight days into the school year, Midvale Middle School social studies teacher Jonah Glenn died after an alleged drunk driver pulled out in front of his motorcycle. (Photo courtesy of Canyons School District)

By Julie Slama | [email protected]

According to the U. S. Department of Transportation, in 2019 there were more than 5,000 motorcyclist fatalities. That number hit home recently to the Midvale Middle School community as a seventh-grade history teacher died on his bike.

Jonah Glenn, 24, was killed Aug. 25, eight days after the school year had begun, when an alleged drunk driver pulled out in front of Glenn on his motorcycle. Glenn had taught for Canyons School District since 2020.

Midvale Middle Principal Mindy Robison reached out to students’ parents in a letter:

“I am writing with great sadness to inform you that one of our seventh-grade social studies teachers, Mr. Jonah Glenn, has died from injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident. Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this difficult time. As so many of his students will tell you, Mr. Glenn was a wonderful teacher. I also knew him to be a trusted colleague and great friend. The Midvale Middle community will miss him so much.”

Her letter also addresses the availability of counseling staff to assist students with experiencing the loss and expressing their sorrow.

The middle school held a memorial tribute to their teacher for students, staff and faculty.  

Mihn Liew’s son, Dillon, is in the Salta (accelerated) social studies class that was being taught by Glenn.

“My husband and I met Mr. Glenn, Dillon's seventh-grade social studies teacher on back-to-school night at Midvale,” she said. “He sounded sincerely excited and (was) looking forward to teaching his next group of students.”

When Liew inquired about needing to obtain books for his class, she was told he had textbooks they would refer to, but he’d also use “teaching materials from current events as it would be more relevant for the students. He said there will be lots of discussions in class.”

Glenn promised her that her son would “have fun and be contributing excitedly in class discussions.”

Her son had reported to his parents in those first few days of the school year that Glenn was a good teacher.

“Mr. Glenn's genuine excitement and positive energy left both my husband and I feeling happy that he was going to be one of Dillon's teachers for this school year,” she said.

Several families and friends posted their thoughts and tributes of their beloved teacher on the neighborhood Facebook page.