Florida Victim’s Impact Here

CHESTNUT HILL TOWNSHIP -- Chris Hixon is a graduate of Pleasant Valley, a veteran of the US Navy, and a dedicated educator who is remembered as a positive influence by his fellow PV Bears.

"When you're on the team with Chris, you're going to perform the best you can because you know that that's what everybody expects of each other. Chris was the kind of guy that talked the talk and walked the walk," says Rocco Seiler, a former teammate of Hixon's and current Pleasant Valley Middle School principal.

Seiler says back in the 1980s, he was a new student in the tenth grade, when Chris Hixon welcomed him with open arms.

"He was the first person to come up to me, talk to me and you know, basically, put me under his wing and started to introduce me to people and then I became part of, I started to become part of the school," remembers Seiler.

Principal Seiler tells Newswatch 16 it was the kindness he received from Hixon and the Pleasant Valley School District that inspired him to go into Education.

"All the lives he's touched in such a positive way it's wonderful that that had happened and that encouragement continues in this school district," adds Seiler.

Seiler says positive messages placed on lockers and on posters around the school encourages others to be kind like Chris.

John Gress was a teacher of Hixon's at Pleasant Valley and remembers his caring nature.

"He's the type of student when you're in the classroom or the hallway and maybe I'm having a bad day, he would say, 'Mr. Gress are you OK? How's it going?' I should be saying that to him that way, which you do, too, but that's a special kid," Gress tells Newswatch 16.

He says when his school faced a sad situation years ago, Hixon offered a helping hand.

"And he called because you know Pleasant Valley, he said, 'Do you need any help? You know, to come up and talk about setting anything up or whatever, talk to kids or whatever and I remember that you know that way he didn't have to do that," says Gress.