Oak Harbor Middle School Assistant Principal Don Christie recently talked to someone in Oak Harbor who is related to Port Clinton Middle School 7th grade student Devin Kohlman, who was diagnosed in August with a brain tumor.
Mr. Christie’s daughter, Micheala, was diagnosed with leukemia a few years back, and the Christie understand the effect of this on their family. Also, several 7th graders in Oak Harbor knew Devin because he played football.
Don stated that the community went above and beyond to help their family during their daughter’s illness, and that someday he wanted to do the same for someone else. Don approached Oak Harbor Middle School Principal Mrs. Marie Wittman to ask if the school could do something for Devin’s family as they work through his illness.
Christie and Wittman decided they would organize a 7th grade benefit dance to raise money to help Devin’s family with gas and other costs resulting from Devin’s illness. Mrs. Wittman said, “We invited Port Clinton Middle School Principal Carrie Sanchez to spend about 15 minutes sharing Devin’s story with our 7th grade class in the auditorium. I know many were moved by the mere fact this was a peer and at that point it didn’t matter if Devin was from Port Clinton or Oak Harbor.”
Signs advertising the dance were put up in the hallways. Don and Guidance Counselor Beth Sugalski sold tickets before hand at the lunches. Wittman commented, “We even had some students who were not able to attend give us money. Other monies were donated by board members.”
Recently, representatives from Oak Harbor Middle School presented $1000 to Devin, along with a football signed by the 7th grade football team, at an assembly held at Port Clinton Middle School. Mr. Christie concluded, “I am sure Devin’s family will be very appreciative of the support from the Oak Harbor community.”