NORMAN, Okla. - Marilyn and Mike Randol have a passion for keeping kids safe.
They worked as crossing guards for McKinley Elementary in Norman. Keeping their young charges out of harm’s way on busy Flood Street.
But then, Marilyn and Mike's world turned upside down.
Mike suddenly developed an infection in his knee. It became so critical, they had to amputate the leg.
That's when the family spirit at McKinley took over and came to the rescue.
“Food and prayers and bake sales and money and the giving never stopped,” says Marilyn. “They were there for me, you won't believe how much and I wouldn't have made it without them.”
So, Mike and Marilyn wanted to give back to the school that had paid it forward to them during their time of crisis, particularly McKinley Principal Carol Emerson.
We picked up the $400 Pay It 4Ward Award money from First Fidelity Bank Norman Branch Manager Anthony Wuestenfeld at Norman North High School where Carol was attending a teacher meeting.
We surprised her in a classroom full of other teachers.
Then the tears from Carol, Marilyn and Mike began to flow down their cheeks.
Marilyn told Carol, “You know, last year was a challenge. We wouldn't have made it without you and everybody in that school. And everybody associated with that school. I want to say and Mike wants to say thank you from the bottom of our hearts and we want you and that school to have a big party.”
Carol promised she and her staff and students would always look out for one another in times of need.
And while a family comes in many forms - the one at McKinley Elementary knows the value of paying it forward.
Pay it 4Ward is sponsored by First Fidelity Bank.