School employees donate time off for teacher with cancer

School employees donate time off for teacher with cancer

WEST PALM BEACH, FL (WPTV/CNN/RNN) – A teacher who posted a plea on Facebook asking for sick days to help in his battle with cancer got the days he needed to recover fully at home in less than a week.

Robert Goodman and Dawn McKeich recently met, but they have a lot in common. They're both teachers in Palm Beach Gardens and they've both been sick on the job.

They're now forever connected.

"There's this whole big family that we don't even know why we have," Goodman said. "I know for sure that we really have it."

The final numbers aren't in yet, but McKeich is one of dozens of teachers and other district workers who donated their sick time to Goodman.

"I think they probably needed a new fax machine," he said, joking about the school district's human resources fax machine.

For McKeich, her donation to Goodman completes a circle.

Three years ago, a week into the school year, her kidneys failed, and her peers stepped up with care and compassion when she was out of work.

"There is good in the world and I've also learned that life is short, you never know what's going to happen and I've also learned to live life to the fullest," McKeich said.

Robert begrudgingly posted on Facebook last month, asking for help.

"Doing chemo and wearing my pump on me several times a day during that treatment, I thought how am I going to do this?" Robert said about teaching and trying to heal at the same time.

Within a few days, he learned there were enough sick days donated so he would have enough time to heal without worry.

"When you help someone, you give something to someone. And it's that one-on-one and that's always very special but when there's a deluge of help in 4 days, it changes you," Goodman said.

Goodman said he'll likely be in chemo until Halloween. Any unused sick time, will be given back.

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