Shining Star: Aimee Carroll

Aimee Carroll’s youngest student is three months old. The oldest is 72.

The Follansbee woman shows us you can make music no matter your age or ability.

Aimee admits that before she started teaching music, she was afraid she wouldn't be able to connect with her students. She came to find that couldn't be any further from the truth.

Sweet sounds from Aimee’s flute echo through the Center for Music and Art in Wintersville.

“There are so many things that music can actually make you feel,” Aimee said.

Aimee teaches private lessons. The walls of her office are filled with proof of her passion.

But her music is on the move. She teaches special needs children at the School of Bright Promise in Jefferson County

“Just seeing them use their imaginations and actually starting to learn what a beat is, having that beginning elementary development of the music was wonderful,” Aimee said.

From these mini marchers on to the high school kind. Aimee is also the assistant band director at Indian Creek.

Music sometimes takes up 12 hours of her day.

“It really is the kids that keep me going,” Aimee said. “So I would leave to go there afternoon, practice as well and after school practice, then come back here and teach all the way to 8 o'clock privately.”

9-year-old Braden Blackburn is benefiting from that one-on-one time.

Aimee first met Braden at the School of Bright Promise.

“She has the patience of an angel,” said Braden’s mother, Kathy Blackburn. “She has been great with him and it was hard because we always knew he had potential with music. Anything musical he was there.”

“Even as we just saw Braden just go to town on the piano, to him, that's musical,” Aimee said. “He's happy as can be and he could be hearing something in his head that we don't hear, you don't know, but to him, it’s complete joy and you can't take that away, and to me that's what music does. It gives them a chance to have that joy whatever that they feel inside of them.”

“For her to sit here and make him do what he does, it's pretty awesome, it really is,” Kathy said. “I'm pretty happy and I think he is too.”

No matter the challenge, Aimee reminds herself to take deep breaths. That's the key to her lessons and her life.

“I do what I do because I absolutely love it,” Aimee said. “And I want to share it.”

This weeks' Shining Star is sharing her love of music and striking a chord with her students. Aimee says the most rewarding part of her job is helping out with the Christmas and end-of-year programs at the School of Bright Promise. She says that's where the kids truly shine.

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