LATHROP (CBS13) – A beloved Lathrop school janitor diagnosed with brain cancer is no longer able to work. So some of the students wanted to show how much he impacted their lives.
If you attend Mossdale Elementary School, then chances are you know Ronnie Lemay’s face.
“He’s nice. He cleans up our school,” said one student.
To the kids, he’s Mr. Ronnie.
“Every child honestly knows this head custodian on my campus,” said Principal Susan Sanders.
“We loved our custodian. He was awesome to us. He always helped us when we needed,” said another student.
But Ronnie hasn’t been seen around the halls the past year.
“I was so sad when I found out, I wanted to cry,” the student said.
Ronnie had to resign. After three years of battling brain cancer, it was too difficult to continue to perform the job he loves.
“I would have chemo every other weekend, and every time I would do chemo and back to work, it was very tough,” said Ronnie.
“Our hearts have been aching and hurting and we knew we needed to extend love to him,” said Sanders.
So some students got together and began making rainbow loom bracelets, selling them to raise money.
“They’ve raised $150. So, that’s 150 bracelets,” said Sanders.
The outpouring continued with other fundraisers. So far, $12,000 has been raised for Ronnie’s family.
“Very overwhelming,” said Ronnie.
He has a long road ahead with two more cycles of chemo, but he says it’s not getting him down.
“I’m just going to keep fighting,” said Ronnie.
He’s found strength, and through so many others who look up to him.
“When I watch him fight this battle with cancer, I find him to be my hero,” said Sanders.
The act of kindness is being recognized by a local business. Boomers Amusement Park in Lathrop gave the kids a free day of play.
Meanwhile, another fundraiser for Ronnie is scheduled for later this month.