FULTON – Lanigan Elementary School has facilitated more than just academic and behavioral successes during the 2016-17 school year, as an unbroken bond and a forever friendship recently blossomed between a current and former student.
The on-a-whim meeting occurred during a recent visit to a doctor’s office where former Lanigan student Tim Conners passed Lanigan first grader Liam Kent.
Kent recognized Conners for his tall stature and accompanying guide dog, Lang.
It was in Kerrie Schremp’s first grade classroom that Kent learned about Conners’ MounTimPossible mission: with the help of the K2 Adventures Foundation and several supporters, Conners aimed to share his story of hope as a blind cancer survivor making his way to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, Africa.
From that classroom mini lesson, Kent was inspired to be just like Conners, who he viewed as a real-life super hero. Kent’s parents said he would climb up a dirt pile in his backyard, claiming he was Conners reaching the summit of Kilimanjaro.
When Kent saw his hero in front of him at the doctor’s office an instant connection was made. Conners thanked him for his support and invited Kent and his parents to be special guests during a recent community event where Conners was a featured speaker.
Conners then traveled back to his former elementary school to speak with the Lanigan student body about his 7,556-mile journey.
He spoke of his Leukemia diagnosis at age 15, the loss of his vision shortly thereafter and how he has lived life to the fullest ever since.
His message of overcoming challenges and using ingenuity offered Lanigan students these three secrets: go outside of your comfort zone, everyone is a part of the same team so help each other out, and people will fail but it’s important to learn from mistakes.
Climbing the mountain, he said, is outside of his comfort zone but he has aimed to share his story in hopes of raising $500,000 for the charities and people who helped him on his journey to be a healthier individual who has reached much success.
As the greater Fulton community and Kent cheer Conners on, they also may follow his travels by visiting www.Facebook.com/connerstim.
Schremp’s students, and several others at Lanigan, wrote well wishes, which Conners took on his journey as words of encouragement and inspiration.
While he arrived in Africa on May 23, Conners and his team of supporters will post daily updates so people can virtually join him on the climb.