A crowd of more than 250 people gathered at a funeral service for Mixon on Wednesday night at Winkenhofer Pine Ridge Funeral Home in Kennesaw, said his brother, Craig Mixon.
He said his brother Greg’s death was sudden, and a cause of death had yet to be determined Thursday. The family did not want to discuss further details about Mixon’s death.
Despite the low temperatures and canceled classes Monday and Tuesday, the high school’s theater was packed with more than 700 students, teachers, parents, family and Kennesaw residents Monday night for a candlelight vigil for Mixon.
“Mr. Mixon was so much more than just a teacher. He was my mentor and my friend, my No. 1 fan,” said Monica Ammerman, a former student of Mixon’s.
She spoke before the crowd about her former 10th grade AP World History and AP European History teacher, and described his colorful classroom, which was covered with flags from countries all over the world.
Ammerman, now a senior, read from a journal of hand-written notes, which listed how she had greeted her teacher every morning with, “Hey, Mixon,” and remembered seeing him at school early every day to plan his lessons and get a head start on grading papers.
“He was here all the time,” said the school principal, Kevin Daniel. “This really was his home away from home. If he wasn’t home, he was here.”
Mixon was hired to teach history at KMHS in 2002, and since then took on enormous amounts of responsibility within the school. He taught Saturday school, summer school, monitored detention and was responsible for coordinating the school yearbook.
He also served as the senior class sponsor and coordinated annual traditions, including the graduating class’ Hall of Fame. Mixon’s colleagues said he ran copies for them, volunteered to hang pictures in the school hallways and took students on study abroad trips during the summer.
“He was a dynamic presence on this campus who knew the entire faculty and staff and always had a funny story to tell or an extremely sarcastic comment to make,” said KMHS science teacher Joanne Jezequel.
As the school principal, Daniel repeatedly heard from Mixon’s students about how their teacher brought history to life and kept them engaged and interested in the topics he taught.
“He was so good at storytelling and teaching; he really could bring it to life,” Daniel said.
To teach his students trench warfare, Jezequel said Mixon would have students create and throw paper bombs across the classroom to each other. He had an affinity for Germany, and especially enjoyed everything about Berlin, she said.
Mixon enjoyed watching the History Channel and watching football and golf. He was passionate about traveling, and was constantly cooking elaborate meals for family, friends and students, Jezequel said.
She recalled visiting Mixon’s home one summer to drop off some books, and being surprised when he prepared a gourmet meal.
“He had made us a strawberry spinach salad with a homemade raspberry-walnut vinaigrette blue-cheese dressing, and grilled a couple of marinated chicken breasts to go along with it. It was delicious. He drank tea and I had water, but we sipped on our beverages out of Waterford Crystal glasses,” she read.
Mixon kept a full-size refrigerator in his classroom and kept it stocked with leftovers and food he would share with students, Jezequel said, including ribs and macaroni and cheese.
Mixon is survived by both parents, who live in Augusta, as well as his brother, Craig, who lives in Atlanta.