-- MICHELLE --
MOST OF US - WHEN WE LOOK BACK - REMEMBER HAVING A
TEACHER WHO HELPED TO SHAPE OUR LIFE.
THERE IS ONE SUCH TEACHER WHO FOR THE LAST 38 YEARS
HAS BEEN MENTORING KIDS AT TOWNVIEW ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
AND AS NEWS 3 REPORTER DAVE DELOZIER TELLS US - IN
UTZIG'S CLASS THERE ARE MORE THAN A MILLION THINGS
TO LEARN - LITERALLY.
the kids definitely make the day for you.
WITHIN THE WALLS OF THIS CLASSROOM - THERE IS LEARNING
TO BE DONE.
lots of math, lots of reading.
AND YEARS AGO TEACHER RANDY UTZIG STARTED LOOKING
FOR A WAY TO MAKE ADDITION - SUBTRACTION AND PROBABILITIES
HE FOUND IT - IN A SIMPLE ALUMINUM POP TAB.
we're going to dump a few tabs on each of your desks
and have you count them.
KIDS IN MR.
UTZIG'S FIFTH GRADE CLASS STARTED COUNTING THEM ALMOST
A DECADE AGO
please make sure you get your number up on the board.
AND OVER THE YEARS THE NUMBERS GREW AND GREW.
as few as like 25 in a bag.
AND SO DID THE CHALLENGE OF KEEPING THEM ALL..
and i started with these two large containers at the
bottom and i thought oh, that will be enough.
THE KIDS HOWEVER - HAD DIFFERENT PLANS.
so we said, you know what would a million look like?
alright, lets see if we can find out.
IN TIME THEY FOUND OUT - WITH POP TAB IN BINS STORED
ALL OVER THE SCHOOL.
yeah, we have to keep them out of the janitors way
so they're not all over the floor everywhere.
AND TODAY - MR.
UTZIG'S POP TABS HAVE TAKEN ON A LIFE OF THEIR OWN.
so i'm guessing there's a million two hundred thousand
he was my fifth grade teacher.
JENNI KRUEGER LEARNED MORE THAN MATH IN MR.
i learned a lot about respect and what fifth geraders
YEARS LATER - WHEN JENNI GAVE BIRTH TO CORA - THOSE
LIFE LESSONS BECAME IMPORTANT.
day one and a half of life she started having periods
of synosis and apnia and that's known as turning purple.
she stopped breathing.
THEY BROUGHT CORA TO MADISON WHERE DOCTORS WORKED
TO SAVE HER LIFE.
HER FAMILY MOVED IN HERE - TO THE RONALD MCDONALD
it was an amazing place, was our home away from home.
THE FEAR WAS - WHETHER CORA WOULD EVER GO HOME.
i was scared, i cried, i really didn't know if we
were going to make it and we made it and so this day
happy birthday to you.
ON HER VERY FIRST BIRTHDAY - THERE IS NO PLACE MORE
FITTING TO CELEBRATE THAN WHERE THIS ALL STARTED FOR
happy birthday dear cora.
AND GUESS WHO SHOWED UP.
happy birthday to you applause.
AND FOR THIS SPECIAL BIRTHDAY - HE BROUGHT A VERY
HE'S DONATING THOSE ONE MILLION TWO HUNDRED THOUSAND
POP TABS TO THE RONALD MCDONALD HOUSE FOR CORA.
RECYCLED - THEY'RE WORTH MORE THAN A THOUSAND DOLLARS.
this is amazing.
AFTER 38 YEARS OF TEACHING - MR.
UTZIG IS RETIRING.
HE WON'T BE NEEDING ALL THOSE POP TABS ANY MORE.
everything has just been real special...real special.
SO MANY STUDENTS - FOR SO MANY YEARS HAVE LEARNED
LESSONS FROM MR.
UTZIG AND HIS POP TABS.
THIS FINAL LESSON - HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH MATH.
love...respect and pay it forward.
i've learned a lot from him.
A TEACHER WHO SAVED HIS MOST IMPORTANT LESSON FOR
i feel for the other students that are going to enter
fifth grade and can't have him because i'm very blessed
that i was able to have him.
IN MADISON, THIS IS DAVE DELOZIER, WISC - NEWS 3.
-- ERIC --
IN ADDITION TO THE ONE POINT TWO MILLION POP TABS
UTZIG DONATED TO THE RONALD MCDONALD HOUSE - CORA'S
MOM DONATED ABOUT A MILLION MORE.
SHE COLLECTED THEM OVER THE LAST YEAR FROM FRIENDS
-- MICHELLE --
ALL TOLL - ONCE RECYCLED - THE RONALD MCDONALD HOUSE
WILL RECEIVE ABOUT 25 HUNDRED DOLLARS.