Students surprise school janitor with money to visit newborn grandson in Italy

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By Eun Kyung Kim

A high school janitor in Kentucky got a surprise when he was called in to clean up a spill at the gym on the last day of school.

Instead of a mess, Ricky Spaulding found a touching gesture.

The school raised $1,900 to help send Spaulding and his wife to Italy, where their son, who recently had a new baby, is stationed. The school handed Spaulding the money in a trash can full of cash during a pep rally partially held as a cover for the surprise.

"Ricky is such a great guy," Anderson County High School Principal Chris Glass told NBC affiliate LEX 18, who first reported on the story. "It's hard not to give to his cause."

The surprise donations began earlier this year when students and staff members learned that Spaulding had yet to meet his new grandson.

"Words can't describe the joy that I feel right now," he said.