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The Red 'n' Green

The Student News Site of Berlin High School

The Red 'n' Green

The Student News Site of Berlin High School

The Red 'n' Green

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Students, staff, and community members rally for local teacher

The+high+school+faculty+wore+red+in+support+for+special+education+teacher+Ray+Mlada+on+Friday+Feb.+2.+The+staff+also+did+a+jean+fundraiser%2C+raising+%24940+for+his+cause.
Laura Dominguez
The high school faculty wore red in support for special education teacher Ray Mlada on Friday Feb. 2. The staff also did a jean fundraiser, raising $940 for his cause.

Athletes, colleagues, and community members come together to support special education teacher Ray Mlada, who was diagnosed with cancer and is currently on leave to focus on recovering. 

Mlada was diagnosed with stage four squamous cell carcinoma back in Dec. This form of cancer affects the squamous cells that make up the middle and outer skin layers, causing growths. This cancer is a fairly common skin cancer. Mlada is currently recovering from a third surgery, which he will follow up with seven weeks of radiation. 

“The initial surgery included removal of his jaw bone, where he had a tumor and lymph nodes in his neck,” Mlada’s daughter Brooke Bornemann said. “We are still waiting on the pathology report to confirm whether or not they got all his cancer removed.”

Mlada is also the head coach of the varsity girls basketball team. While Mlada is recovering with his family by his side, his basketball team put together a fundraiser on Jan. 22 to raise money for his cause. 

We had a raffle for a puppy that was owned by the Kurczeks. We also did a 50/50 raffle and sold baked goods and t-shirts,” senior Emma Boegh said. 

The girls went against Ripon at home, and the Ripon team showed lots of sportsmanship and kindness by wearing ‘Rally for Ray’ shirts in support of Mlada.

The girls basketball team isn’t the only group raising funds. The Berlin High School staff put together a jean day to help Mlada and his family. Surrounding communities as well as Berlin have also been coming together in support of Mlada.

There is a benefit fund set up at Farmers and Merchants Bank in Berlin which people have been donating to,” Bornemann said. “The surrounding communities of Ripon, Winneconne and Omro have also contributed support in different ways for him as well, including purchasing ‘Rally for Ray’ t-shirts and doing fundraisers of their own.

While Mlada recovers, retired math teacher Dave Kramer is substituting for his classroom.

“I am the full time substitute until he returns, but it helps that I know all of the students from teaching them at the middle school,” Kramer said. “I have to get to know the classroom routine and make sure I am doing what Mr. Mlada is expecting of me, but the entire staff has been very supportive.”

While Kramer helps in the classroom, Mlada’s family wants to give a reminder to his students and athletes. 

I want his students and athletes to know how important it is to him to get back to teaching and coaching as soon as he can,” Bornemann said. “I also want the faculty to know how appreciative he is of everyone’s support and prayers.”

Mlada is now recovering at home from his surgery.

“I’m certainly feeling better now that I am home and not in Milwaukee,” Mlada said. “Our school administration, faculty, students, and the entire Berlin community have been so supportive. All of the prayers, texts, e-mails, cards, and fundraisers infuse hope, inspiration and energy with far more intensity than anything cancer can muster up.”

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About the Contributor
Greyson Blaauw
Greyson Blaauw, Business Manager
Greyson Blaauw is a Berlin High School junior. He enjoys writing for the Red ‘n’ Green, and is excited to spend his last two years of high school reporting. He loves Pokémon and participating in the yearly musical.