HALE COUNTY, Ala. (WIAT) — A longtime teacher at Hale County Middle School died over the weekend.

Christi Barger, an English teacher at the school, died Saturday after fighting a long-term illness, according to Superintendent Mike Ryans. She had been at Hale County Middle for five years and previously taught at Greensboro Middle School.

On Sept. 10, Barger made a post on her Facebook page about having been in the hospital for a week due to endocarditis, an infection around her heart. It is unclear whether this played a part in her death. Ryans has said her death was not connected to COVID-19.

“She will always be remembered for her passion for teaching and love for her students and co-workers,” the school posted in a statement on their Facebook page. We will share arrangements when they have been made. Please keep her family and our students and staff in your thoughts and prayers.

Hale County Principal Eric Perry that despite Barger recently facing several medical issues, she had done her best to come to school and teach. Perry said that Barger was loved and well-respected in the community and that the school is planning a way to honor her memory.