The Twin Cities community is remembering Rachel Dean

NORMAL - The Normal West High School swim team is remembering their assistant coach.

Rachel Dean died in a car crash last week on I-74 in Bloomington. Her family is raising money for a dedication in Dean's memory. A bench and tree memorial will go outside the Normal West pool atrium. Normal West also plans to get a new starting block for lane 4, Rachel's favorite lane.

"She could always make everybody smile,” said Dawn Fudge, Head Swimming and Diving Coach at Normal West High School. “She was a great spirit. She had her wittiness and her sassiness, but that made everybody work hard. It made everybody love her."

Caroline Rhoda, a swimmer that Dean coached, reminisced with her teammates. She said, "It's been amazing. It's just the whole swim community in Bloomington-Normal has like, really come together and, I know we've gotten a lot of support from like, all of the other teams. And even from out of town. Everyone has just been there for us, and able to comfort us during this time."

Dean was also a physical education teacher at Glen Oak Primary School in Peoria. Her students say Dean was not only a mentor, but a friend.


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