Remembering and Honoring Mr. Wu

Remembering and Honoring Mr. Wu

Salvador Zamora, Entertainment Editor

The past year held many goodbyes and unfortunately Rancho Dominguez said goodbye to their own beloved teacher, faculty member, and friend, Mr. Wu. 

Richard Wu, known formally by his students and staff as Mr. Wu was a special education teacher and had been a faculty member since 2013. He taught English and Social Studies. He loved to play guitar and had participated as the lead guitarist in the faculty band in two talent shows. Everyone could see the passion and work he committed to his students and faculty members throughout the years. 

Students and faculty remember the fondest and most enduring moments with him including what he loved the most. 

Jose Reynoso, a senior who has known Mr. Wu since 7th grade had much to say regarding his beloved teacher and the impact he had in his learning. 

“He was a respectful man and loved helping people, he taught me to be a better student by accomplishing my goals and to take advantage of my free education. He was the person that was ready to work and never gave up on his students or his dreams too,” reminisced Reynoso.

Ms. Lopez, our music teacher, and Rancho Dominguez’s Band Director said, “Mr. Wu was always so laid back, so care-free. Despite his illnesses, or anything else going on throughout his day, he tried to keep a smile on his face.” 

In regards to what Mr. Wu loved, she said, “Mr. Wu was part of our teacher band Living la Vida Lobos; he was our lead guitarist. I loved that he loved music just as much as I did; he was an AMAZING guitar player! I’m grateful we got to share the stage a couple of times.” 

“He loved music, photography, his dogs, and working out. I think what I remember most were his sense of style and his hats. He always wore cool hats!” said Ms. Lopez.

 Another well-known fact about Mr. Wu was the love he had for his dogs. Mr. Park shares an incredible story Mr. Wu told him about one of his dogs.

“I remember having a conversation with Mr. Wu and I’m not sure how the story came about, but he told me a story about a fire at his house. Apparently, there was a fire downstairs and the only way out was to jump from the 2nd floor. Anyway, he wasn’t going to escape the fire until he found his dog. Mr. Wu somehow found his dog amidst the smoke and flames and jumped from the second floor. He broke both his legs, but all that mattered was his dog was safe. This shows his love of dogs and that he would do anything for his dog,” said Mr. Park.

There are so many memories to be shared, but if anyone has any trouble grieving and figuring out their thoughts, Ms. Lopez-Flores, our Psychiatric Social Worker (PSW) is available. On Schoology, hit the resources tab, your class (graduation) year, and a referral for her, as well as other information, can be found in the Student Mental Health Information Folder.  

Ms. Lopez-Flores wanted to share a message with the students regarding the passing of Mr. Wu. She said, “I would want to share with students the thoughts and feelings they are experiencing. From the responses I’ve been hearing, he was more than a teacher, he was also a friend who motivated them academically, and although I am new, I can see the great and positive impact he had on his friends, students, and family.”

“It is good to grieve, it is okay to grieve, although it can be a very vulnerable feeling, it is okay to grieve, and giving yourself the time to process is good; it is a timed and healing process. Some good coping methods are writing things down, being mindful and I’d recommend the Headspace app and Youtube videos; also practicing your breathing and taking a walk if it’s safe helps; of course I am here if any student needs me,” concluded Ms. Lopez-Flores.   

The life and legacy of Mr. Wu will be passed on through his family, friends, and students. He was a great and passionate man among many other wonderful things. He was a best friend and someone who could inspire others. Rancho will surely miss his light. Rest in peace, Mr. Wu.