Cookson lunch ladies lifelong friends


Scaggs and Dankworth help students in the cafeteria

Anthony Weber | Troy Daily News Doris Dankworth helps kindergarten students including her grandson, Nathan Barth, left, during lunch at Cookson Elementary School Friday in Troy. Doris Dankworth and Ruth Ann Scaggs said they met each other in the second grade while attending school in Sidney. Both visit Cookson regularly to volunteer during lunch.


Anthony Weber | Troy Daily News Ruth Ann Scaggs helps kindergarten students including her granddaughter, Isabella Scaggs, center, during lunch at Cookson Elementary School Friday in Troy. Ruth Ann Scaggs and her life-long friend Doris Dankworth said they met each other in the second grade while attending school in Sidney. Both visit Cookson regularly to volunteer during lunch. “I love coming up here to help these kids - I just love it,” Scaggs said.


TROY — Their friendship started in the classroom and 63 years later, Doris Dankworth and Ruth Ann Scaggs are still hanging out at school together.

The friends volunteered at Cookson when their children went to elementary school and now as grandparents, the pair volunteers as lunch room helpers.

“We are still cutting things up!” Dankworth said.

The duo volunteers to help children with their lunches, cleaning spills, opening packages and keeping food fights at bay.

“We’ve never been mad at each other. We’ve been friends since second grade until I went to Troy in junior high. My husband introduced her to her husband and they ended up moving to Troy,” Scaggs said. “We went to church together in Sidney. We’ve just been friends ever since. I’ve had lots of friends but none like (Doris). She’s hilarious. She keeps me laughing.”

Scaggs recruited Dankworth to volunteer at the school after her granddaughter Isabelle began kindergarten. Dankworth’s grandson, Nathan Barth, is also a kindergarten student as well.

“We’ve been babysitting Isabelle since she was six weeks old. And when she started school, I missed her so much I couldn’t stand it. The days were so lonesome and her first day I drove around the school just so I could see her,” Scaggs shared. “So one day, I came just to see her at lunch and they said I could help…and I’ve been here ever since every day!”

The pair began their six decades of friendship in the second grade in Sidney. Scaggs and her husband Jim even set Dankworth up on what she claims was “a very blind date” with her husband Gary.

“She just started coming up every day and she asked me if I wanted to help her,” Dankworth said. “We started school together and we’re still in school!”

Dankworth volunteers several times a week while Scaggs comes nearly every day to help.

“They really are wonderful and such an asset to our school, especially during this busy time of day,” said Cookson Elementary Principal Stephanie Johnson. “They spread such joy and love to each of our students. The kids love and appreciate them!”

All four of Dankworth’s children went to Cookson and all nine of her grandchildren attended the elementary school at one point.

“They are all Cookson Tigers!” Dankworth shared.

Anthony Weber | Troy Daily News Doris Dankworth helps kindergarten students including her grandson, Nathan Barth, left, during lunch at Cookson Elementary School Friday in Troy. Doris Dankworth and Ruth Ann Scaggs said they met each other in the second grade while attending school in Sidney. Both visit Cookson regularly to volunteer during lunch.
http://tdn-net.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/web1_170127aw_Cookson_Doris.jpgAnthony Weber | Troy Daily News Doris Dankworth helps kindergarten students including her grandson, Nathan Barth, left, during lunch at Cookson Elementary School Friday in Troy. Doris Dankworth and Ruth Ann Scaggs said they met each other in the second grade while attending school in Sidney. Both visit Cookson regularly to volunteer during lunch.

Anthony Weber | Troy Daily News Ruth Ann Scaggs helps kindergarten students including her granddaughter, Isabella Scaggs, center, during lunch at Cookson Elementary School Friday in Troy. Ruth Ann Scaggs and her life-long friend Doris Dankworth said they met each other in the second grade while attending school in Sidney. Both visit Cookson regularly to volunteer during lunch. “I love coming up here to help these kids – I just love it,” Scaggs said.
http://tdn-net.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/web1_170127aw_Cookson_RuthAnn.jpgAnthony Weber | Troy Daily News Ruth Ann Scaggs helps kindergarten students including her granddaughter, Isabella Scaggs, center, during lunch at Cookson Elementary School Friday in Troy. Ruth Ann Scaggs and her life-long friend Doris Dankworth said they met each other in the second grade while attending school in Sidney. Both visit Cookson regularly to volunteer during lunch. “I love coming up here to help these kids – I just love it,” Scaggs said.
Scaggs and Dankworth help students in the cafeteria

Follow Melanie Yingst on Twitter @Troydailynews

Follow Melanie Yingst on Twitter @Troydailynews

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