Jake Ziegler has spent the previous 14 years devoting himself to Cedar City.

For greater than a decade, the Canyon View High School teacher has had a packed agenda, together with educating English complete time, training quite a lot of sports activities and educating driving force’s training categories. Yet he used to be at all times the teacher who would to find time to lend a hand a scholar with a paper or to chat with a former scholar he bumped into on the retailer.

But that every one modified when the 43-year-old married father used to be diagnosed with a Stage four glioblastoma brain tumor in January.

“I wasn’t feeling good the day before, and we decided to go out to lunch when I felt a little bit better,” he recounted. “Ten minutes to the restaurant and my jaw seized up, and I had a seizure for about 40 minutes.”

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He used to be rushed to the emergency room at Cedar City Hospital earlier than being transported to Dixie Regional Medical Center as docs struggled to decide the reason for the seizure.  

An MRI later published a rising tumor in his brain. A biopsy published the life-threatening cancer prognosis slightly 3 weeks after the preliminary incident. Days later, Ziegler used to be rushed into surgical treatment, and docs had been ready to take away 95 % of the tumor.

“We had to do it to try and buy him as much time as possible,” Jake Ziegler’s spouse, Heather, defined.

Coming in combination to lend a hand a teacher

As Jake Ziegler recovered within the sanatorium in St. George, the Cedar City neighborhood used to be abruptly planning to lend a hand the cherished teacher. A GoFundMe account used to be introduced inside days. The web page has already raised greater than $15,000.

It didn’t prevent there, although. Donation buckets had been handed round at each Canyon View and Cedar high-school basketball video games. Student song performances had been devoted to him. And the excess finances from the Steve Hodson Cancer Classic had been donated to the Ziegler circle of relatives to lend a hand with the rising scientific bills.

“Jake and Heather Ziegler are an integral part of our Iron County School District family,” Iron County School District Superintendent Shannon Dulaney stated. “We love them, recognize them and are dedicated to supporting them as they face the demanding situations forward.

Jake Ziegler used to be beaten through the numerous fundraisers and occasions. He had at all times been so keen to lend a hand others, which made being the recipient of such type gestures much more tough. 

“It’s simply humbling,” he informed The Spectrum & Daily News on Monday. “I don’t know to say thank you. I can’t believe it.”

Pancakes and reward

On Saturday, a lot of Cedar City packed into Brad’s Food Hut for a pancake-breakfast fundraiser reaping benefits the circle of relatives. Brad Larson, proprietor of the native favourite, had coached baseball along Jake Ziegler for almost a decade. The massive turnout exceeded his expectancies, however he wasn’t stunned, figuring out how in style his fellow trainer had at all times been. 

“He’s just a loving teddy bear,” he stated. “Life is just great for him and that’s how he portrays it with everybody. He’s just a loving, caring guy that just likes everybody. He’s the type that makes you feel like you’re special.”

Although Ziegler couldn’t be there due to the well being chance as a result of he had simply began chemotherapy, his circle of relatives used to be awestruck through the massive turnout. 

Shauna Ziegler wasn’t stunned through the super reaction making an allowance for the have an effect on her brother-in-law has had on numerous scholars and oldsters.

“His first senior class is 31 now,” she stated. “That’s the bulk of our community here. They’re not just saying he was a teacher, they’re saying he was their favorite teacher and they learned so much from him.”

“We tell him all the time, ‘This is because you’re such an incredible guy,’ but he just doesn’t believe it,” Heather Ziegler stated. “He can’t see how many lives he has had a positive effect on.”

The GoFundMe web page described the extremely competitive type of brain cancer as “incurable,” however that isn’t preventing Jake Ziegler from combating it as exhausting as he can. He has six weeks of chemo and radiation remedies forward earlier than docs assess his standing. He and his spouse are taking day off from paintings to center of attention on his remedy and spend time with circle of relatives.

“I think they’ve already paid me back 100 times over now,” he stated of the neighborhood. “I’m overwhelmed with joy, love and appreciation.”

Donations will also be made on GoFundMe at gofundme.com/help-jacob-ziegler-with-medical-exp.

Bree Burkitt is the Cedar City reporter for The Spectrum & Daily News. Follow her on Twitter at @BreeBurkitt, or name her at 435-218-2241.

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