School Rallies Behind Sick Teacher

Waverly, S.D.- “Someone goes down, something happens to someone.  And the snap of a finger, everyone’s together to make it right, and help that person get back on their feet,” says Assistant Track Coach Nathan Lamb.

In September of 2017, Waverly South Shore teacher and track coach Ryon Gross was diagnosed with Stage Four Lung Cancer.

Students at the K-12 school sprung into action to help their sick teacher.

One way to spread the word was a video showing Waverly students and faculty wishing their best to Coach Gross and keeping him in their prayers.

The student who made the video, Tegan Ronke says Coach Gross has had a major impact on her and her fellow classmates.

“I can’t like explain into words.  He’s incredible to me, especially in track and everything he’s done for me, he’s awesome,” says Ronke.

School Superintendent Jon Meyer says seeing the student population come together for Coach Gross is what being a Coyote is all about.

“It’s an incredible feeling, it really hammers home something we talk a lot about here, we are a big family.  It doesn’t matter how old our students are, whether they’re senior, preschool, what their background is.  Once you’re here, you’re part of our Coyote family, and seeing the kids do this really hammers home that whole family aspect that we have,” Meyer tell us.

The students have raised almost 28-thousand dollars for Coach Gross.

They hosted a silent auction and also raised money through an apparel sale started by the Gross family, selling “Apprehend Cancer, Destroy Cancer” sweatshirts.

Students and staff just want to support their teacher, coach and friend any way they can.

Faculty at the school have also created a Go Fund Me page to help offset medical costs for coach gross and his family.

You can find that link here.

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