She quietly declined a paycheck for 35 years; school establishes fund in her name

Above: Laurel Walsh with Congressman Greg Murphy, her son Brian Walsh, daughter-in-law Amy Walsh, grandson Davis Walsh and Ava Walsh, granddaughter.

Congressman Greg Murphy visited St. Peter Catholic School in Greenville recently to present a copy of his Extension of Remarks for Laurel Walsh.

On Friday, Feb. 10, Murphy spoke about Walsh on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives, praising her 35 years of unpaid service to the school.

With the exception of a few in leadership roles, people associated with St. Peter School assumed Walsh was a full-time employee. However, by her choosing, she never took a paycheck. The secret was revealed in December when the school established a fund for school improvements in her name.

Walsh received multiple standing ovations from the student body, which includes two of her grandchildren, during the ceremony.

The congressman’s remarks included:

“Madam Speaker, I rise to pay tribute to Laurel Walsh of Greenville, North Carolina. For more than 35 years, she has been the first face people would see at St. Peter Catholic School. She answered the phone, led tours, maintained enrollment records, helped handle billing, and also served as the school nurse.

For 20 years, she even served as athletic director. Not only that, but for all those jobs, and for all those years, she never once brought home a paycheck.

Although a few people in leadership were aware, most in the St. Peter family thought Mrs. Walsh was a paid employee. Her secret was safe until about two months ago when the school established an endowment in her honor. In announcing the creation of the Laurel Walsh Fund, school officials revealed that this longtime employee was, in fact, a volunteer. A volunteer who gave selflessly of her time because of her love for children and her Catholic faith.

Teacher Joe Hughes, who has worked with Walsh for three decades, said: “She’s just so kind to everyone. She’s just a fine person, just a good example of what a human being should be, what Christ called us to be.”

Madam Speaker, please join me in honoring this incredible volunteer, but more importantly, a wonderfully faithful servant of our Lord Jesus Christ, and my personal friend Laurel Walsh.