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B-UHS student organizes fundraiser to help teacher who lost possessions in fire

BUCKHANNON – Buckhannon and its residents – even some of the youngest ones – understand the meaning of being a good neighbor and coming together to help others in need.

That proved true when one Buckhannon-Upshur High School student, 16-year-old Sahsha Zickefoose, decided to lead an effort to raise funds for a B-UHS teacher who lost most of her possessions in a house fire.

On April 3, 2019, Buckhannon-Upshur High School agriculture teacher Allyson Lewis and her family lost their home and everything inside – including their beloved dogs – in a fire. When Lewis’s students learned of her loss, they banded together to do something to help.

Buckhannon-Upshur High School student Sahsha Zickefoose said Lewis spends so much time helping students and being “their mother at school,” that many of them decided to help with a fundraiser.

This Saturday, May 4, there will be a benefit dinner for Allyson Lewis and family. The event will feature baked ziti, salad and desserts and will be held from noon to 4 p.m. at the Buckhannon Moose Lodge, located at 25 N. Kanawha St. in Buckhannon.

“We are serving baked ziti prepared by the Pro-Start classes at the high school that will be paid for by the Red Cross Club,” Sahsha said. “Dinner will be served by the FFA students. There is no charge for the dinner, but we will be accepting donations for Allyson Lewis and her family, including husband Brady and Charitty.”

Sahsha said Lewis spends time helping others; she thought this fundraiser would be a good opportunity for the community to come together and help her, in turn, she said.

“Mrs. Lewis has impacted so many lives in many different ways,” Sahsha said. “She does whatever she can to help her students get to where they need to be and pushes us to the top of our potential. She always has a smile on her face, and her whole world came crashing down. She did not have insurance, and we will also be accepting donations such as money or household supplies.”

On Amazon, there is a site folks can go to purchase and donate items to the Lewis family; that site is https://www.amazon.com/hz/wishlist/ls/IZ3TRIR26RK2?ref_=wl_share&fbclid=IwAR0ErWZSA5OZF68EOK6jmyFvM_ZrAyu77pUXQatIAPhCV3iDZSZ7lJLlzwA.

Sahsha said despite what her instructor has been through in the past month, she still pushes forward and works to encourage her students each day.

“The day she came back from her leave, she told us what had happened,” Sahsha said. “She continues to offer other people words of wisdom, like, ‘don’t dwell on one thing that happens, because positive things are going to drown out the negative things.’

“We want to thank people ahead of time for coming and helping out this family,” Sahsha said.

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