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When Cody Gabbert heard that Mason-Corinth Elementary was holding a penny drive to benefit the Grant County Relay for Life, he was interested in giving.
Gabbert had collected $119 and donated it all to the American Cancer Society.
“I wanted to help. I donated with pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters,” Gabbert said.
Gabbert is now a second grade student at Mason-Corinth Elementary.
When Marianne Smith, the school’s family resource center director, found out about Gabbert’s generosity, she contacted the American Cancer Society office in Fort Mitchell and organized a trip for him.
“I contacted them because I had been an ACS volunteer for the past 10 years and it’s always exciting to see young people have so much thought and concern for others,” Smith said. “I was on maternity leave when I found out. I had tears in my eyes because I’m so proud that one of our students cared about others. He did it with good intentions and because he wanted people who had cancer to have wigs.”
Gabbert and his family, along with his first grade teacher Heather Curd, visited the ACS office and he received a tour, but his main focus was on the wig room, because he donated his money with the intention of helping those who lost their hair to cancer.
“It was good. I learned lots of things about cancer,” Gabbert said. “I wanted to see the wig room because I wanted to see what the wigs felt like. They felt real hard, but they’re soft.”
Gabbert’s parents, Matthew and Deanna, were proud of their son for his donation, but were more impressed with the compassion he showed at such a young age.
“I’m proud of him. I know that he wanted to do that to help out and I was surprised, but I was also proud,” Matthew said. “We told him that he should put half of his money in, but he decided that he wanted to put it all in there. He’s been collecting change in his piggy bank for the last three or four years. He gets some of my change, but it took him a while to accumulate that.”
“The commercial came on for ‘My Sister’s Keeper’. He said he could help people like that,” Deanna said. “He knew what he was giving the money for. I walked away with a better experience of understanding. He wants to go to the youth camp next year and he wants to go to the Relay for Life. It’s surprising, but I’m grateful that he does care about other people. He thinks about other people and other families and I’m blessed to have a child like that.”