Summer no vacation for one man

Published 12:16 am Monday, June 16, 2008

NATCHEZ — While the students of Adams County Christian School are busy vacationing, one man is busy preparing the school for their return.

Frank Chatman, head of the school’s janitorial department, said the summer is his busiest time.

“I have to get all the rooms ready,” he said when The Dart fell near his school last week.

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And readying those rooms is a tedious task.

Chatman said during the quiet summer months he goes to each classroom on the school’s campus for an evaluation.

“It might need paint or wax or just to be cleaned,” he said. “There’s no telling until you get in there and take a look.”

After his evaluation Chatman gets to work.

He said most rooms in the school do need a fresh coat of paint on the wall and new wax on the floor.

“It’s hard work,” he said.

One wing of the school Chatman was recently working on looked like a full-scale restoration project.

Gallons of paint lined the halls, mop buckets sat in several rooms and all the furniture in each room was piled in one corner.

“There’s a lot to do,” he said.

To help Chatman in his work he has just two helpers.

“We just go from room to room,” he said.

After Chatman buffs the floors and paints the walls he moves on the next room.

“It’s just one after the other,” he said.

And, while the summer work at the school may sound monotonous and difficult, Chatman said he enjoys it.

“It keeps me moving,” he said. “And when you get to be my age you have to keep moving.”

Chatman, now 62, has been working at the school for more than a decade.

While Chatman gets his exercise at work he said he knows the children are benefiting from his labor also.

“They come back and everything is shinning and it’s great,” he said. “And everybody is happy.”