By Allison Brooks ‘22
Every day students go to school focusing on their academics but don’t always think about the people that help them throughout the day. Principals, teachers, aids, and crossing guards are just a few examples. Do you ever wonder what goes on in their daily lives?
Many students pass Keith Lockhart, one of Ridley High School’s crossing guards, while entering the school at the entrance on Morton Avenue.
He decided to be a crossing guard to earn some extra money for Christmas. Even though it sounds easy, being a crossing guard can be very difficult at times.
“Some of the high schoolers, they’ll be playing on their cell phones and they’re not even looking at the traffic. They’re not looking at me or anything like that. It’s the speeders, that’s the main thing. Even with the 15 mph speed limit sign, I still have people speed and I’ve got to run out there and yell at them,” explained Mr. Lockhart.
Mr. Lockart is very familiar with the community. He has lived on the same street in Ridley for 68 years.
Not only is Mr.Lockhart a crossing guard, but he is also a local historian of Delaware County. He first got interested in local history in his early 20s. Years later in 1975, the township asked him to write a small, paperbound book on the area. This is how his career as a historian first began.
He soon started interviewing people, doing research, and compiling pictures of Delaware County. He now has a vast collection of over 4,000 images which can be found on his website delawarecountyhistory.com.
Mr. Lockhart’s website informs people about Delaware County with facts, photographs, maps, resources, and links. If someone has questions, or is interested in specific photos, Mr. Lockhart provides his email for help.
Today Mr. Lockhart still does talks and speeches everywhere. Years ago, he used to present at Ridley High School where he talked before the history classes.
As a local historian, Mr. Lockhart believes it important to hear what different generations have to say about the community.
“I think that interviewing people that have lived here all their lives and listening to them talk about what life was like now one-hundred years ago is just really interesting and fascinating,” said Lockhart.
Mr. Lockhart is not only a local historian but does many other things to keep himself busy.
“I was a Ridley Township police officer and I retired 11 years ago. Then, I worked as a part-time police officer, and at a car dealership. Now, I work for the Phillies during the summer and as a crossing guard in the winter. I try to keep busy. I mean, some people my age, they just sit around and do nothing all day. I’m on the go. I’m always doing something.”
Mr.Lockhart should be recognized for all that he has done throughout Ridley, Delaware county, and even Philadelphia.