Kenton City Schools’ students from around the district are in the holiday spirit of giving on their final day before the winter break. The student-guided missions are raising funds set to benefit a peer, coach, friend, and inspiration who is battling cancer for the second time.
Mason Bloom graduated from Kenton High School in May of 2018, after winning a battle with cancer that claimed his left leg in 2017. After recovering from his treatments, Bloom returned to the pool, swimming for the Wildcats and helping to coach the Western Ohio Aquatic League’s “Kenton Stingrays.” Recently, Mason was diagnosed with cancer for a second time.
Inspired by Bloom’s fight and drive to continue doing what he loves, Kenton Elementary School’s “Prancer against Cancer” initiative couldn’t have fallen at a better time. The committee, comprised of students of Mrs. Tomi Cheney’s 4th Grade class, set out with a mission to raise funds for the Wildcat alumnus.
“This was 100% a student-led initiative,” said Kenton Elementary School Principal Mrs. Robin Bame, “they’ve collected over $1,000 already.”
Bame noted that the students were responsible for flier creation, in collaboration with the school’s art department, coordinating prizes from the school’s nutrition department, and outreach to Bloom and his family.
Inspired by their peer and friend’s drive, the Kenton High School student council, spearheaded by the senior representatives to the council, have hosted a bake sale over the past two days.
“He has impacted the school in a great way,” said senior class President Haley Hunt, “giving back to him really helps the morale of the school.”
Hunt said she thinks the students have responded well to the initiative.
In addition to those efforts, Kenton High School staff hold dress-down days periodically throughout the year, where staff members donate to a cause to dress casually. Several of those days have benefitted Bloom’s battle against cancer. Between the two campaigns, the high school also raised $1,000 for Bloom.
Mason said he is overwhelmed by the support he is receiving for the community.
“I had no idea how many people truly care about me,” he said. “The amount of support that I get is amazing. I live in a great community, and I’d just like to say thank you!”
Bloom is now a first-year student at the University of Toledo pursuing a major in Early Childhood Education.