Mad for…Larry

Be grateful for small things, big things, and everything in between. Be grateful for today and never take anything or anyone for granted. Life is a blessing.

He’s an unsung hero working to make sure the children and his co-workers are safe. I have been watching him for the better part of two decades as he stands guard, often wearing many layers of clothing, topped with his signature bright orange coat. He hustles dozens of cars filled with little children in an out of the parking lot each day, genuinely concerned for the safety of each child. He does it everyday, in pouring rain…and also in frigid cold like today.

Meet Larry Banther. It’s currently 9 degrees here in Central Indiana. That’s actually several degrees WARMER than it was when he was managing the morning carpool, as always, at St. Louis de Montfort Catholic School in Fishers. He’s the man in charge of building maintenance at my son’s school. However, Larry is much more than that. How many building maintenance guys at schools across the state who you suppose are also certified school safety specialists? I don’t know the answer, but I’d be surprised if there were many others. He’s literally taken the time to be fully trained to know how to make the parish he works for as safe as it can possibly be. THAT is cool and inspiring.

Larry’s not a fancy guy, but he’s a steady and vital contributor every single day. Also, I learned some time ago he’s a big fan of Mountain Dew– so consider the Taco Bell gift card and keep the McDonald’s one for someone else. I’ve watched him deal patiently with rude, obnoxious and difficult people. They serve as important reminders of how NOT to be. Mostly, I really do think he is appreciated and loved by the folks around him. However, sometimes I’ve wanted to raise my voice and yell “Don’t be condescending to Larry. Try his job for half a day first.” This guy scoops snow, spreads salt, and climbs up to check out a leaky roof. He mops up a lunch room floor covered in spilled milk and smashed grapes. He’s called in when someone had the stomach flu and the 3rd grade room is essentially uninhabitable. He’s a jack of all trades, he’s reliable, and he’s kind. He also has a great smile and a really terrific laugh.

In the midst of the everyday chaos, Larry is treasure to many for his steadfast care and helpfulness. THANK YOU, LARRY for keeping my 3 boys safe, warm, and dry these last 16 years. I truly appreciate you!!

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