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New Pal students go the extra mile to help a fellow classmate

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Posted at 8:24 PM, May 12, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-12 20:24:13-04

NEW PALESTINE — The motto no student left behind rang true at New Pal Intermediate.

79 students rallied behind another after they were struggling to finish the mile in gym class.

The small act of kindness has made a big impact on Colin Hecker, 11.

Classmates and teachers said Colin Hecker has the kindest heart, and always gives so much to fellow classmates.

"He is a kid who just exudes excitement, enthusiasm, love for whoever is close to him, around him," Jessica Walker a 5th-grade teacher at New Pal Intermediate said.

Colin said he loves school and likes being there for others.

"I help a lot of people. If they like fall down, I help them back up," Hecker said.

But he wasn't the one helping others on the track Tuesday. Most of the students were getting ready to run the mile, and Colin had a doctor's note excusing him from it because he had been sick, but he decided to run anyway.

On the last lap of the mile, he was struggling.

"My shoulders were getting tired after like my third lap. I said I just want to quit. But no, I just never want to give up," Hecker said.

Hecker's mom, Ashley says that never give up attitude is what she tries to hone in at home.

"Something that we want to instill in our children is that never give up attitude," Ashley Hecker said. "Even it takes you a little bit longer, even if you have to find another way to do it, just do it until the end. Cross that finish line."

And Colin kept pushing but said he wouldn't have been able to finish if it weren't for his fellow classmates.

His classmates noticed he was struggling and returned the favor to a friend who is always helping them.

Every student went to where he was on the track and ran with him to the finish line.

Grady Nicholson, 11, was one of those students and said he thought, "What if it was me and no one was there?"

Walker said seeing the students help another made her smile.

"You hope that what you are teaching in the classroom will spread beyond the walls of our school and again it was shown 10-fold," Walker said.