Teachers in Alabama came to the aid of a high school football coach in a big way when he ran out of paid time off while caring for his baby daughter, who was diagnosed with cancer last year.
According to Good Morning America, 1-year-old Kinsley Green was diagnosed in October 2018 with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, a cancer of the blood and bone marrow that gets worse if it isn’t treated quickly.
Kinsley’s father David Green — a coach and history teacher at Mae Jemison High School in Huntsville — soon ran out of paid time off as his daughter underwent surgery, spinal taps and chemotherapy to fight the aggressive disease.
While Kinsley’s mother, Megan Green, took temporary leave to stay at the hospital, 31-year-old David had to return to work or risk losing his health insurance. Knowing how desperate her husband was to be with their daughter every step of the way, Megan turned to Facebook to ask other teachers for help.
“David is officially out of sick days at work,” Megan, 29, wrote in a Facebook post on March 20. “We want him to continue to be able to be with us at the hospital while Kinsley is getting Chemotherapy so if you are a teacher in the State of Alabama and are in a position to donate a sick day we would greatly appreciate it!”
“Kinsley is the biggest daddy’s girl and needs him to be here as often as he can,” the post continued, “so she would be so thankful for any donated days so she can spend time with her daddy.”
Megan’s emotional post struck a chord throughout Alabama, and because the state allows teachers to donate to a sick leave bank to help others, according to WTHR, David was given 110 days of time off to spend with his daughter — all thanks to dozens of kindhearted educators who donated their own days to relieve some of the pressure that was mounting on the family.
“Thank you for allowing us to be a family,” Megan told GMA of the donated days. “Thank you for the little bit of normalcy these days have provided. Thank you for giving so selflessly. It honestly is a bigger blessing than I can put into words.”
The family also started a GoFundMe page to help pay for medical expenses and others needs, and have raised more than $41,000 from hundreds of donors so far.
Mae Jemison High School’s principal, Rachael McDaniel, praised David for having a “positive attitude” throughout the ordeal.
“Coach Green is a dedicated educator and coach,” McDaniel told GMA. “Even though he has been balancing the needs of his family, he has not neglected his duties at work at all.”
“He still comes to work with a positive attitude, encouraging students and colleagues,” she continued. “His is optimism and attitude are felt by all around him. He is an inspiration to me and the rest of Jemison’s faculty.”
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