Hope For Henry: The Importance of the School Community

Amanda Vogt, Staff Writer

Anthony Wayne Middle School (AWMS) is one of three middle schools in Wayne. Recently, the son of principal at AWMS, Mr. Aulenbach, has had some medical issues. Mr. Aulenbach’s son, Henry, was diagnosed with brain cancer and parts of the tumor had affected his spine. Henry successfully went through surgery but will now need undergo chemotherapy.

With the news of 7 year old Henry Aulenbach, people started fundraisers all around the AWMS school community and even beyond Wayne. Mr. Grimshaw, the Vice Principal at AWMS has been a huge part in keeping the school functioning while Mr. Aulenbach was with his family. “AWMS has sold #HopeForHenry bracelets over the past few weeks, and some of the elementary schools have sold them too,” Grimshaw stated. These bracelets are green that have the hashtag #HopeForHenry written in black letters. There are also music notes, since music is one of his hobbies. Throughout the AW halls, students are wearing these bracelets. The money raised from these bracelets are going directly to the Aulenbach family to help offset medical bills.

AWMS also had a blue out day. Blue is a color that represents pediatric cancer. All students were asked to wear blue to help bring awareness of all the cases of childhood cancer that are out there. In addition they had a green out day the following week, since that is Henry’s favorite color. Some AW families have gone the extra mile in dropping off toys to give to Henry.

Here at WVHS, a bake sale was held on January 16th and 17th to raise money for the Aulenbach family. It was organized by NHS member Alexia Hartkopf. “My reasoning for setting up the bake sale was because I know what it is like to be in that position,” Hartkopf explains. “When I heard about Henry, I figured that any amount of money that we raise could help their family as medical bills are extremely expensive.” The bake sale was a success of trying to “ease a pinch of the stress they’re experiencing now.” This NHS senior was able to raise 263 dollars that went right to the Aulenbach family. Wayne Valley is also pitching in by collecting donations from the staff.  

Fundraisers help ease the cost payments of any kind for the Aulenbachs. Randolph, Mr. Aulenbach former district, has set up a GoFundMe page on behalf of his family. So far there have been 60,000 dollars in donations on the page. A family friend has set up a gift card donation page as well. In addition, the church that they attend has set up a food train where meals are delivered to their home.

In times like these, the AW school community has helped bring a silver lining at the end of the tunnel. In addition, other people and schools stepped up with continued support to help the Aulenbach family. All that we can do now is to keep Henry and his family in our prayers for the next couple of weeks.