Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Local News

October 22, 2013

An unlikely journey

Balloon honoring Western first-grader floats 945 miles to Boston-area school

(Continued)

Fulgoni passed the story on to teachers who then shared it with students. Soon all 500 people at the school knew who Mason was. They knew the 7-year-old was a charmer who called all girls “princesses.” They knew he liked soccer and motorcycles.

And they knew he died too soon after losing his fight with brain cancer. That made his story extra special for everyone at Hunking, Fulgoni said.

Several years ago, the night janitor at the school lost his 8-year-old son to brain cancer. And a student at the middle school recently died of cancer.

Students and teachers at the school grieved for a long time after that — just like Mason’s classmates and teachers are grieving now.

“So for us to have had this balloon float down to us was a powerful experience,” Fulgoni said. “It had given its all to make it here. It was weathered and beaten. It was in pretty rough shape.”

The story, Fulgoni said, has given them another reason to smile, just as Mason would have wanted.

Western Primary School Principal Steve Arthur was surprised when staff at the Massachusetts school reached out to him Monday to recount the story of the white balloon.

Teachers in Russiaville will talk to their young children about the balloon’s journey. They’re using it as an educational opportunity and another way to honor Mason.

“He loved coming to school,” Arthur said. “He loved to learn. He would be excited to find out where the balloons ended up. We hope to use this in a positive way.”

The experience could involve the students at Fulgoni’s school. The middle school principal said he wants his students to write letters to the children at Western Primary. He wants the two schools to stay connected now that Mason brought them together.

“Part of Mason made it here to us,” he said. “I want to connect our schools around the life of this young man.”

Lindsey Ziliak, Tribune education reporter, can be reached at 765-454-8585 or at lindsey.ziliak@kokomotribune.com

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • EHS Renovations 04 Eastern's $14 million renovation project nearing completion GREENTOWN – As Eastern Howard School Corp. nears the end of a two-year construction project, the majority of the $14 million renovation is not readily apparent.Much of the work has centered on replacing the heating, ventilation and air conditioning s

    August 20, 2014 4 Photos

  • SECOND UPDATE: Teen to face adult charges in Monday shooting A 17-year-old arrested for attempted murder Monday evening will face the charge as an adult.Treshon Banks is accused of involvement in a shooting incident near Studebaker Park off East Jefferson Street.A Kokomo Police Department custody report stated

    August 20, 2014

  • NWS KT 082014 Rick Rhodes Kokomo man wins Hoosier Millionaire Championship INDIANAPOLIS — Kokomo man Rick Rhodes took the top spot on Saturday night's 25th Anniversary Championship Hoosier Millionaire Show at the Indiana State Fair. Rhodes stopped short of becoming the Hoosier Millionaire Show's 192nd millionaire, but he wa

    August 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Data breach affects Dukes Memorial Hospital PERU — Dukes Memorial Hospital was one of nine Indiana hospitals affected by Monday's data breach at Community Health Systems. Community Health Systems — which is not affiliated with Community Health Network, the Indianapolis-based healthcare provide

    August 19, 2014

  • Smoking ordinance mostly unchanged heading to first reading The draft of an ordinance that would eliminate smoking in all enclosed public places largely went untouched during committee review as it heads for a first reading before the Kokomo Common Council on Monday. The ordinance didn’t come without its fair

    August 19, 2014

  • Central Indiana reservoir foes back river trails DALEVILLE, Ind. (AP) — Environmental groups are proposing a system of trails to promote use of the White River in central Indiana rather than damming it for a planned seven-mile-long reservoir. Tim Maloney of the Hoosier Environmental Council says t

    August 19, 2014

  • Daniels clarifies remarks about Purdue regional campuses FORT WAYNE, Ind. (AP) — President Mitch Daniels said Purdue University's regional campuses should conduct research specific to their missions, clarifying recent remarks on the topic in a letter to four Fort Wayne faculty members Monday. The four mem

    August 19, 2014

  • Taylor to consider redistricting for upcoming school board election With a Friday deadline looming for potential candidates to file for the local school board election, Taylor Community School Corp. will redefine its school board districts at a special meeting today.Taylor’s board of education is made up of two board

    August 19, 2014

  • Prairie Acres residents take plan commission decision to court TIPTON — Residents of Prairie Acres subdivision are taking their fight to prevent Functional Devices’ expansion to court. Four residents — Robert Keesling, Ronald Owsley, Jim Mullins and John Stieglitz — filed a petition for judicial review Friday af

    August 19, 2014

  • Police: 3 abandon vehicle after crashing into Center Road house Kokomo police are still looking for the people who left a vehicle after hitting a house on Center Road Sunday morning.Two females and one male exited the 2002 silver Dodge Durango that hit Chris Dunlap’s house in the 900 block of East Center Road at

    August 19, 2014

Latest news
Featured Ads
Only on our website
AP Video
Raw: IDF Footage Said to Show Airstrikes Police: Ferguson More Peaceful Raw: Aftermath of Airstrike in Gaza Raw: Thousands March on Pakistani Parliament Raw: World's Oldest Man Lives in Japan Fire Crews Tame Yosemite Fire Raw: Police Weapon Drawn Near Protesters, Media Raw: Deadly Landslides in Japan Raw: Explosions in Gaza As Airstrikes Resume Arrests Witnessed in Ferguson Charter Schools Alter Post-Katrina Landscape Texas Gov. Perry: Indictment 'a Political Act' US Officials: Video Shows American's Beheading Video Shows Ferguson Cop Months Before Shooting Heavy Rains Flood Arizona Roads US Trying to Verify Video of American's Killing FBI Director Addresses Ferguson Shooting in Utah Raw: Police at Scene of St. Louis Shooting Police: 2 Calif. Boys Planned School Shooting NOLA Police Chief Retires Amid Violent Crimes
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Obituaries