HARRIS' HEROES

Harris' Heroes: Virginia McLaurin

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At the Melvin Sharpe Health School in northwest D.C., the students and the staff all call her "Grandma."

For the last 20 years, Virginia McLaurin has been volunteering as a foster grandparent to these children with special needs.

“I love the kids,” she says. “You ought to hear them in the morning when I come in and they say, 'grandma! Grandma!' and I say, 'I'm here, I'm here.'”

The kids here depend on McLaurin to help teach them, feed them and raise them.

Richelle Sherrod, a teacher, calls her a blessing to the staff. She says McLaurin is beloved by the students and the staff alike.

Born in 1909, McLaurin is a walking history book.

And when things get tough, as they sometimes do, grandma McLaurin is the one who lifts everyone up.

So, how much longer will McLaurin volunteer as a foster grandparent?

“As long as they let me,” she says.

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