GoodGrandma℠ would like to introduce to you a very special Grandma. This Grandma is a Grandma who has looked after thousands of teenagers over 20 years of service. She is no ordinary grandma, she cared for, loved, protected, taught, disciplined, and laughed with (and at) all the kids at the local high school for two decades. She did all this in such a way that the kids loved her, just about as much as she loved them! Becky, also know as G. Ma, worked as campus security, but more importantly filled the role of Grandma and friend to many of students.
I personally met Becky or G. Ma through my daughter, who bonded with Becky became her best friends with her junior and senior years of high school. At first, I thought Becky was another student she was always talking about, but then realized “Becky” was an adult who worked at the school! We had moved from Las Vegas and Madison didn’t know anyone at the school. Becky went out of her way to befriend Madison, and I will forever be grateful for G. Ma’s love and attention she showed my daughter. The amazing part of the story is that Madison wasn’t the only student who felt Becky was her best friend. Becky had a way of reaching out to each and ever student. Becky could bond with the toughest kids and make them feel safe and secure. She was always looking out, as campus security, but also for any student who might need a little extra TLC. Whether by her calm caring personality or the humorous fun-loving Becky, G. Ma was able to create long-lasting relationships that truly impacted the lives of the students.
To everyone’s sorrow, Becky retired in spring 2017. It was a sad day for everyone, including Becky herself. She truly misses the kids and they miss her! Becky was awarded the Peak Award in 2014 as well as on an earlier date before the award was given the official name. Her service and love has not gone unrecognized. We love you, Becky! Thank you for being the best G. Ma a high school could ever ask for.
We have some additional sweet notes from colleagues and friends of Becky we would like to share.
Becky is a great example of what an open heart and open hand can do to influence people. Becky worked at the high school in the security department. She had the unique ability to tell a student to shape up and change their behavior and they would laugh and smile and love her for it. She was the “Kid Whisperer” at our school. The students knew without question that Becky loved them just as they are. She succeeded in encouraging them to change behaviors that were hurting their lives by loving them. She usually did this by telling them the hard truth and sometimes with some tough love. She could get away with saying things that most of us could not. The students loved her for it. They knew her heart, because it was open and they accepted her words. I have seen her change the lives of many of our students. Some graduated because Becky believed in them and helped them believe in themselves. She stayed informed about their lives even after they graduated. Often they would come back to visit her, years after graduating. She remembered them and welcomed them with open arms. It wasn’t just the kids at our school that she influenced. I know of times that she would witness behavior by kids out in the community and go out of her way to talk to them, put her arms around them and help them to see what they were doing was not the best for them. Becky never met a person that wasn’t her friend and everyone who knows her, feels like she is their good friend. Our school is not the same since Becky retired. We all miss her happy smile, bubbly personality, loud voice in the halls and her love of all of us. ~ Diana
I had the privilege of working with Becky at Spanish Fork High school for 14 years. She soon became a great friend and I looked forward to her coming by my office every day. She brought a smile to everyone as she walked by. Her laugh is the best! I know that the students also looked forward to seeing her every day. She had a wonderful connection with the students. They loved and respected her even when she would have a difficult conversations with them. She had a “grandma way” about her that even if they were in trouble, she made them feel like everything would be OK. There were many situations where she went above and beyond to help a student. She would check on students that she knew were struggling with various issues just to make sure they knew they had a friend. I’m sure there has to be countless students that would not have graduated if it wasn’t for her “guiding” them in the right directions. We miss her sweet smile and contagious laugh. I feel bad that the new students will not get to experience a year with Becky roaming the halls. They are really missing out on an opportunity to know a very special, one of a kind lady. ~ Teri
I LOVE Becky Otteson and I’m sure that 99.9 percent of every student that’s ever attending SFHS over her time here would say the exact same thing. Becky has the natural personality and ability to make people feel good and know that she cares about them. The Grandma to SFHS is a perfect description of Becky. She did a little of everything for us at the school. She was a counselor, gave tickets, rushed students off to class, gave band aids to cut fingers, was a every game, roamed the halls always with a smile, and the list goes on for pages. One thing is for sure, she changed lives and her legacy will remain in the lives of then kids and now adults! I’ll and we’ll Love her Forrreeeevvvveeeeerrrr!!! ~ Dave