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Middle school tutor continues to inspire youngsters at 90

Daniel Caron presents his mentor Rudy Mayko with a cake that he had baked for him. The Seabiscuit Club celebrated Mayko’s 90th birthday Wednesday. - Michaela Marx Wheatley / The Record
Daniel Caron presents his mentor Rudy Mayko with a cake that he had baked for him. The Seabiscuit Club celebrated Mayko’s 90th birthday Wednesday.
— image credit: Michaela Marx Wheatley / The Record

LANGLEY — Rudy Mayko has a lifetime of experience that helps him tutor Langley Middle School students in math and sciences.

More than 47 million minutes of experience, to be exact.

Mayko turned 90 Monday and the students of the Seabiscuit Club, a club founded by Mayko and fellow-senior Dolores Fresh, celebrated his birthday Wednesday. The Seabiscuit Club helps students achieve their goals through mentoring.

“Give me a R. Give me a U. Give me a D. Give me a Y. What does that spell?” the Cougar Spirit Team shouted over the school intercom.

“Rudy!” the answer echoed from all the class rooms at Langley Middle School.

Mayko was then named “Cougar of the Week” and principal Rod Merrell presented him with a Cougar sweatshirt and other keepsakes.

Later, at the Seabiscuit Club’s headquarters — also known as math teacher Sandy Gilbert’s classroom — students and fellow tutors had cake and shared their appreciation.

“You’re here, you’re volunteering. None of us ever dreamed you were 90,” Gilbert said. “Hopefully you’re still here at 100.”

The students agreed.

“It’s insane that you’re still here at school,” Daniel Caron said.

Other students had solved a math problem in honor of the birthday boy.

“Me and Nora were done with work in class yesterday and we figured out how many days you’ve been on this earth — 32,851 days,” Cassandra Marcial said. “You’ve been alive for 47,304,000 minutes.”

“And 28,382,440,000 seconds,” Daniel added after Cassandra gave up on the very large number.

Mayko was impressed.

“This is so fabulous,” he said.

Steuart Williams pondered about all the things that people do in 90 years.

“I don’t think I want to live till I’m 90,” he said.

“I would get bored after a while, but you’re out here partying all the time,” he added.

“Rock on, Rudy.”

Then the students wanted to know what Mayko’s secrets are for staying so fit and healthy at age 90.

“I just take it one day at the time,” Mayko said.

“And of course it helps being with Dolores. She’s the reason,” he said.

After the party, Gilbert handed out the students’ grade reports. Many had improved significantly since they had begun working with Mayko and the Seabiscuit program.

“That’s the best gift,” Mayko said.

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