40 years of service and a few thousand students later

Posted: October 1, 2019
Rod Appleby, Caronport Mayor Dan Buck, and the Caronport Volunteer Fire Fighters

If you've been in Caronport over the last 40 years, there is a good chance you've been blessed by Rod Appleby. A long-time citizen of Caronport, teacher at Briercrest Christian Academy (formerly CHS), and volunteer fire chief, Rod exemplifies a life of service. This June, he was recognized by the South Central District Athletic Association for 40 years of coaching, an award that BCA Vice President Derek Zacharias said was "a privilege to present."

When Rod started high school in Caronport, his world expanded. His highlights included meeting people from all over the world and having the chance to play football and hockey. It was also here that Rod saw Christian service modelled by many mentors, including Dr. John Barkman. In Rod's words, "I don't know of anybody in the history of our institution that has ever helped more people move than John Barkman."

After finishing college at Briercrest, Rod found himself back in John Barkman's office with a job offer to teach in the high school, which he gladly accepted. In his first year of teaching, he was head coach of the boys' soccer team, volunteer fire fighter, high school Sunday school leader, and assistant coach of the Clipper hockey team. His love and passion for coaching continues to be driven by a love for sport, a love for people, and a heart to give young people the chance to be part of a team. Rod is deeply connected to the mission of Briercrest, which continues to propel his involvement here. Not only is he concerned with training Christian leaders, but he also sees the importance of training Christian servants. "Service," he says, "is a part of God's will and the bulk of God's will can be found in the day to day obedience to the Scriptures."

Rod feels very rich knowing that his former students are all over the world doing amazing things. He feels like he is in the "harvest time" of his life, seeing the fruits of many hours spent teaching and coaching. Rod is thankful for the calling God has placed on his life. Having taught professional musicians, highly sought-after surgeons, and missionaries, Rod is glad to have known many inspiring people over his 40 years in Caronport. "We don't want to become complacent, but there are not too many people in the world I would trade places with," he says. "Contentment consists not of great wealth but of few wants, and to echo the psalmist, The lines have fallen unto me in pleasant places, yea I have a goodly inheritance."

Thank you, Rod, for your years of hard work and selfless service to the students and community members that cross your path!