19Nick GalbanDr. Christopher Dague, baseball coach and advanced placement history teacher at Jack Britt High School, remembers Nick Galban as a hard-working student-athlete with a big heart.

“I always felt like no matter what Nick was doing he was going to exceed expectations in terms of work, effort and attitude,’’ Dague said. 

But Dague had no idea one of Galban’s first altruistic efforts would be to offer a hand to his former teacher and baseball coach. Galban, who studied engineering at N.C. State and is about to begin an internship at a firm in Wilmington, has created a GoFundMe page to help Dague and others.

Called the Dana and Dague Fund, it’s designed to raise money for 23 people in Fayetteville and Cumberland County that Galban hopes to help with educational expenses. His goal is to raise $10,200 by the start of school this fall and then distribute it to the people on his list.

The fund is named for Galban’s mother and Dague. He chose to honor his mom because of her role as a single parent raising Galban and his siblings. 

Galban said he picked Dague because he was the kind of teacher who stayed on top of his students. “He was always making sure you were doing the right thing, even when no one was looking,’’ Galban said. “He stressed that was the time you needed to be doing it right. He never gave up on me.’’

Dague said Galban was among a handful of players at Britt who played for him when he was both junior varsity and varsity baseball coach at the school. “He was a great kid who worked hard,’’ Dague said.

Galban’s decision to give back to education came as no surprise to Dague. “He sees the value of education,’’ Dague said. “It’s a cool thing to see a student who is reflective on his own life at that young an age.’’

Dague said any donation is appreciated by teachers these days. “Teachers are always being creative in trying to find new ways to engage students,’’ he said. “That takes money.’’

In addition to the money, Galban said he’s working with the Middle Creek High School girls’ soccer team to add an additional donation to the package. The soccer team has taken on Galban’s cause and will be collecting various school supplies and packing them in gift bags to give to a group of 13 students he’s identified to benefit from his charity.

“It’s selfless of them to contribute because they won’t reap the benefits,’’ he said.

If you’d like to donate to Galban’s GoFundMe project, the web address is www.gofundme.com/the-dana-dague-fund.

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