A longtime custodian had quite the surprise at the Alabama elementary school where he works.
Third-grade students and teachers at Moody Elementary School, located about 20 miles east of Birmingham, decided to have an assembly in his honor on National Custodial Workers Recognition Day.
Mr. Eugene, as the students affectionately call him, often gives fist bumps to children walking down the hall, and he asks every teacher how their day is going, WIAT-TV reported.
Teacher Andrea Orr told Mr. Eugene about a big mess in the gym that had to be taken care of right away. She captured the moment on her phone as he walked in the gym to cheering children, realizing it was an assembly to recognize him.
“I totally lost it. I wasn’t expecting it at all,” Mr. Eugene told Right This Minute. “I was expecting something much worse.”
The father of five said he’s just himself at school and interacts with everyone.
At the assembly, children gave him cards, gifts and made a giant poster that read, “Thanks, Mr. Eugene, for always lending a helping hand,” that featured dozens of little hand cutouts. After composing himself, he responded with many high-fives.
The video Orr posted to Facebook has been viewed more than 87,000 times as of Thursday morning.
“He is so deserving of this,” Orr said. “We love him and are lucky to have.