Message sent to the RE community from Interim Head of School Rachel Rodriguez on Dec. 22, 2022
It is with sadness that I share the passing of faculty emeritus George Kasyan, a science-teaching legend at Ransom Everglades for 40 years. He was 76. George arrived to RE in 1974, the year of the merger between the Ransom and Everglades schools, and soon became a favorite of students and faculty alike. He was a jovial man whose love of children and creativity in the classroom inspired generations of students to pursue careers in STEM fields.
George understood that in order for his students to thrive in his classroom, he first needed them to know that he cared about them as people. He devised innovative experiments that thoroughly engaged those in his classes. For a unit on electricity, students plugged a hot dog into an electrical outlet and then watched it cook before eating it. He organized a fire safety day known as "Fire Day" that taught middle students about the importance of understanding science as it related to their daily lives. His students also designed and launched rockets from the middle school field. Regardless of the activity incorporated into his instruction, for George, it was simply a venue to teach students to think critically and work cooperatively. Any student who had George as an advisor (or was a middle school faculty member) will fondly remember that George made waffles for his advisory holiday parties.
He won the Arthur Moses Faculty Award – the highest honor given to RE faculty – in 1996, and the middle school science award is named after him to this day. He was a devoted friend to many at Ransom Everglades, and he will be deeply missed. I share this quote from an article in the RE Alumni News in November 2021: "Developing and instituting student-centered learning activities was my passion throughout my teaching career," George wrote. "Even now I miss seeing all the smiles on my students’ faces when they had their “AHA” moments of understanding. I do, however, enjoy having control of my time and sleeping in past 5:30 a.m."
The visitation and funeral will be held Wednesday, December 28, at Wayside Baptist Church at 7701 SW 98th St, Kendall, FL 33156. The times are as follows:
11 a.m.: Visitation
12 p.m.: Service
1:30 p.m.: Burial at Miami Memorial Park Cemetery at 6200 SW 77th Ave, Miami, FL 33143
3-5 p.m.: Reception at Wayside Baptist Church
George is survived by Linda, his wife of more than 50 years (they were married at Wayside Baptist Church); children Pamela Kasyan-Howe '89 (James) and James Kasyan '93 (Meredith Hagedorn); and grandchildren Jacob, Aiden, Chase and Teagan. Until his final days, he enjoyed camping trips and exploring the natural world with his family and friends.
On behalf of the entire RE community, I share our deepest condolences with George's family.
Founded in 1903, Ransom Everglades School is a coeducational, college preparatory day school for grades 6 - 12 located on two campuses in Coconut Grove, Florida. Ransom Everglades School produces graduates who "believe that they are in the world not so much for what they can get out of it as for what they can put into it." The school provides rigorous college preparation that promotes the student's sense of identity, community, personal integrity and values for a productive and satisfying life, and prepares the student to lead and to contribute to society.