In the classroom and in the community, Kyle Whittaker impacted everyone he met.

He passed away last week with friends by his side. He was a long-time high school math teacher for Palm Beach County schools and an ardent activist for philanthropic LGBT organizations.

Whittaker lived to help others. He was always at community events from Compass in Palm Beach County to making lunches for the homeless at United Church of Christ in Fort Lauderdale. Compass mourned his loss, posting, “Kyle lived his life in service and was always helping others through his volunteerism in the many causes he supported. We know in our hearts that Kyle would want us to continue to help and love others, to live authentically, and most of all, to be kind.”

He was a visibly active member of the Imperial Sun Court of All Florida, serving as Vice President. He was known for creating or participating in fundraisers for a variety of local causes.

Whittaker grew up in Niles, Michigan, and attended Central Michigan University before settling in South Florida. His mother said, “Our dear Kyle has been ill for so many years and just couldn’t fight it anymore. Typical Kyle though, he didn’t let anyone know his health was failing and never missed a step at work. We spent time with the Principal and admin of his school who couldn’t say enough! This Mom’s heart is full.”

His love of teaching and for his students was obvious every time he talked about his career. Whittaker’s eyes would light up and his passion shone through. A former colleague praised him in a post, saying, “Kyle was a wonderful human being and an excellent mathematics teacher. He had an extreme amount of patience and compassion for teaching our ESE students who are often marginalized by the educational system. He made learning fun and engaging for students who otherwise would be turned off by math. Kyle was highly intelligent, yet could teach students on their level and make math accessible. He cared greatly for his students, which they could sense, and he made them feel affirmed and accepted. He treated all students and staff with dignity.”

Whittaker was 34 years old.