“We have had a wonderful relationship with Liliana and think of her as our own daughter,” says Larry Randolph, who mentors with his wife Jeanne through the Shenandoah Community School District M.A.Y. mentoring program.
The Randolphs were matched with Liliana Rodriguez when Liliana was in second grade. When they met, Liliana did not speak much English. Larry and Jeanne helped build her language skills through conversation, homework help, and educational computer games.
“We were able to help her at an early age when she needed more attention,” said Larry, reflecting on their time together “Later, we helped with college and became a refuge for her to come home and hang out to study,” says Larry.
The Randolphs have always encouraged Liliana to be her best and to try new things.
“A fond childhood memory of mine is] getting the chance to go to Wabash Arts Camp, Jeanne was the one who signed me up every year,” says Liliana.
The Randolph’s have also used their time with Liliana to teach her important life lessons.
“ 'Patience Lili’ is something that comes to mind! When I was frustrated with any activity, they would remind me of the lesson I was learning and how I was growing from it,” says Liliana.
Because of their support, Liliana later graduated from Graceland University with a degree in Nursing.
Throughout their time together, The Randolph’s formed a deep lasting bond with Liliana. They now consider her a part of their family.
“Larry and Jeanne have been like the grandparents I never had,” says Liliana.
Larry and Jeanne have always been there for Liliana, and will continue to be available to her for the rest of her life.
Author: Michelle Jones