The teaching community has lost a "gracious and really beautiful person."
Chris Heron died on Sunday, September 5 aged 70 following a years-long battle with a brain tumour.
Mr Heron worked as a teacher in Orange from 1976 all the way up until his retirement at the end of 2010. He spent 30 years of that decades-long career at James Sheahan Catholic High School and was part of the original team in 1980 when the girls (Santa Maria College) and boys (De La Salle College) schools merged.
Part of that team in 1980 Margaret Bastick who still to this day does some casual teaching at James Sheahan.
She was friends with Mr Heron and wife Kaye for 45 years and said his death was a tremendous loss to the city.
"He was certainly a committed teacher, a very good teacher and was a man who was a perfect gentleman and always showed great respect to everybody," she said.
"He was genuinely concerned for his students and spent a good number of years as a year coordinator so had even more to do with quite a lot of the student body.
"I never ever heard him complain, not once. He was just such a gracious person who just accepted what life brought him."
Mr Heron mainly taught HSIE, but over his many years you could also find him giving students a lesson in commerce, ancient history and the odd junior religion class as well.
Current James Sheahan principal Peter Meers worked with Mr Heron between 2006 and 2010 and said he was a great person to be around.
"I would just reinforce the comments that he had wonderful humility, a gentle humour and he was just a very caring, compassionate and genuine teacher and man," he said.
"I saw that again and again with Chris. He was so respected as a really good teacher and a very caring and genuine teacher and I know his colleagues had respect for him because he was an absolute gentleman."
Mr Meers added how important it is for students to have someone to look up to.
"Obviously he was a teacher who was incredibly respected and his impact in the Orange community over some 35 years had an enormous impact on so many people who still live here now as adults," the principal added.
"He lived our values and was a person who was all about showing respect and compassion for others and giving everyone a fair go."
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