Winnebago HS celebrating Pay It Forward/Inspire Change week - – Rockford’s News Leader

Winnebago High School celebrating Pay It Forward/Inspire Change week


Winnebago High School students will have an action-packed week of learning, giving back, and celebrating, all in the memory of two classmates.

The second annual Pay it Forward/Inspire Change week kicked off on Monday. The week is held in honor of Class of 2015 students Ben Johnson and Cole Trusler. Johnson passed away in 2010 after a battle with Neuroblastoma, and Trusler passed away in December 2011 from injuries sustained in a car crash.

Students will sign a pledge to "Pay it Forward" and "Inspire Change" while using the hashtag #WHSInspireChange to share how they've been living up to their pledge. As a way to say thank you for being a good friend or helping them in school, students have been selling cake pops with kind messages included for classmates. The proceeds from the cake pops will go toward the BenInspired Foundation.

"It's kind of hard to describe in words, but everyone just kind of appreciates everyone more because of what we've been through, so this week is just to, like, support," WHS Sophomore Gracie Caltagerone said.

Sean Considine of the Super Bowl winning Baltimore Ravens will be the week's keynote speaker during a school assembly on Thursday. Considine will also host a meet and greet for a small group of students. In addition, a blood drive will be held Friday through the Rock River Valley Blood Center.

The week will also include theme days and dress up days to honor Ben, Cole, and the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.

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