(Photo by Dan Whitney)
Eleven-year-old Brianna McGee was staying overnight at her friend Clara Wulfsen's house a couple of weeks ago, and the girls decided they wanted to write a letter to one of their favorite teachers, Jerry McDermott.
McDermott had not been in school since the Christmas break because he had been undergoing treatment for leukemia. As the girls got to talking (as girls sometimes do), they decided to make a bracelet for McDermott. This idea then expanded into the idea of making several bracelets, and selling them to raise funds to help McDermott and his family defray some of the expenses of his treatment.
McGee, daughter of Mike and Stacy McGee, and Wulfsen, daughter of Chuck and Natalie Wulfsen, began spending their evenings feverishly making an array of different colored bracelets, and then sold them at a table in the school cafeteria each day during a free period, for $1 a bracelet, a project heartily encouraged by Principal Larry Weede and other CMS staff.
Other classmates were eager to buy the bracelets, and also eager to help with the project. In addition to her Middle School classmates, Brianna sold a bracelet to her grandmother, and gave some to neighbor Kara Nelson, to sell at Washington High School, where she is a student. The girls have just ended their sales, and raised a grand total of $124.
Central Bank made a donation to get the final figure to an even $200, and a check was written and sent to Jerry McDermott this week in a get-well card .
McDermott is now back home, but is not able to get away from his house just yet. The girls sent him an e-mail several days ago,telling him about their project, but, McGee says, the teacher doesn't know how much money was actually raised.
I'm sure McDermott will be pleased when he opens the card, and realizes what an impact he has made on his students. Unselfish acts by students are always appreciated by educators, who are themselves certainly one of the most under-appreciated groups in the world.