Matt Thornton – American Fork Junior High

Oct 27, 2022, 3:52 PM | Updated: Feb 8, 2024, 2:05 pm

...

Updated nomination: October 2022

“He is the best and he is amazing and he is great and he is awesome and he is inspiring and he is cool and he is really nice and he is really kind and he teaches well.”

-Logan Thornton

Original nomination: September 2016

Mr. Thornton is the Choir Teacher at AF Jr High for over a decade. During this time he has inspired, motivated thousands of students to learn to appreciate the power of music. He’s taken the time to recognize the musical gifts in all the students that have come to his classes. He’s been able to inspire these young people to use their talents not just to enjoy or make others happy but also to use their voices to help those in need.

After the tragic events of September 11, 2001 the students under the direction of Mrs. Taylor organized a Benefit Concert to raise money for the Red Cross. Since then Mrs. Taylor moved away and Mr. Thornton has continued this annual tradition. They have raised over $45,000 to help multiple organizations and families. Each year the students have voted on who they want to do the concert for. This year students nominated 10-12 families and our family was selected.

My husband Ben had a kidney transplant in 2001 and in December 2012 this transplanted kidney also failed. Since then my husband has been receiving dialysis treatments three times a week. These treatments last four hours each time and they’re hard on his body and he’s been struggling a lot. Due to his poor health he lost his job last year and now he’s on disability. I’m not able to work outside of the home because I take care of my husband, my son Jacob who is an amazing 21 yr. old boy who has Down syndrome and I also take care of my 86 yr. old mother. In the last year and a half my mom had to be hospitalized three times. Jacob once and Ben several times. My husband is getting ready to have a transplant since my brother was found to be compatible. However, Ben went into cardiac arrest in April and two days ago they found cancer in his two original kidneys. Now he’s having double nephrectomy surgery to remove the cancer tomorrow May 9th. The money raised is going to help us pay medical bills.

Mr. Thornton asked us for pictures to show during one of the songs during the concert. He took the time to create a nice slide show. He was incredibly kind, patient and willing to help us feel comfortable. He kept thanking us for letting his students do the show for us. He emphasized his desires of helping the students see how they could help the needy with their musical abilities and how they could bless the lives of others. He expressed how one small voice could make a difference in the life of another human being. We understand how difficult it is to coordinate, plan and train more than 400 youth to do a concert like the one they did for us. For these reasons we feel he deserves to be recognized as a great teacher and motivator. We’re so thankful that educators like Mr. Thornton exist because they have helped and continue to help our youth to see how big of an impact one small voice can make in the life of a family.

–Thelma Sorensen

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Two horses on the loose bolt through the streets of London near Aldwych, on Wednesday April 24, 202...

Pan Pylas, Associated Press

Rush hour chaos in London as 5 military horses run amok after getting spooked during exercise

LONDON (AP) — Five military horses spooked by noise from a building site bolted during routine exercises on Wednesday near Buckingham Palace, threw off four riders and caused chaos as they galloped loose through central London streets and collided with vehicles during the busy morning rush hour. The commotion erupted when the horses from the […]

56 minutes ago

House Speaker Mike Johnson talks to the press after the House passed four foreign aid bills at the ...

Haley Talbot, Lauren Fox and Clare Foran, CNN

Johnson calls on Columbia University president to resign during tense news conference

House Speaker Mike Johnson called on Columbia University’s president to resign Wednesday during a tense news conference.

2 hours ago

Agriculture officials said the fire most likely started after a piece of equipment malfunctioned at...

Emma Keddington and Simone Seikaly

Equipment malfunction suspected after fire at Utah egg farm

A 21,000 square foot barn at Oakdell Egg Farms quickly caught fire when a power washer caught fire.

3 hours ago

FILE: An arson investigation is underway after several suspicious fires in Salt Lake City on Tuesda...

Britt Johnson

Salt Lake City Fire conduct arson investigation Tuesday morning

An arson investigation is underway after several suspicious fires in Salt Lake City on Tuesday.

4 hours ago

Wine bottles are pictured at a state liquor store in Salt Lake City on Friday, Oct. 23, 2020....

Jeff Caplan

Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: How people get drunk WITHOUT drinking

Try explaining this condition to a cop.

5 hours ago

Ahead of the NHL to Utah party on Wednesday, Utahns crowded the plaza of the Delta Center and waite...

Simone Seikaly, Eric Cabrera, Emma Keddington, Adam Small

Utahns showing up for the NHL in Utah

Ahead of the NHL to Utah party, Utahns crowded the plaza of the Delta Center and waited in long lines for the party to start.

6 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

a doctor putting her hand on the chest of her patient...

Intermountain Health

Intermountain nurse-midwives launch new gynecology access clinic

An access clinic launched by Intermountain nurse-midwives provides women with comprehensive gynecology care.

Young couple hugging while a realtor in a suit hands them keys in a new home...

Utah Association of Realtors

Buying a home this spring? Avoid these 5 costly pitfalls

By avoiding these pitfalls when buying a home this spring, you can ensure your investment will be long-lasting and secure.

a person dressed up as a nordic viking in a dragon boat resembling the bear lake monster...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

The Legend of the Bear Lake Monster

The Bear Lake monster has captivated people in the region for centuries, with tales that range from the believable to the bizarre.

...

Live Nation Concerts

All the artists coming to Utah First Credit Union Amphitheatre (formerly USANA Amp) this summer

Summer concerts are more than just entertainment; they’re a celebration of life, love, and connection.

Mother and cute toddler child in a little fancy wooden cottage, reading a book, drinking tea and en...

Visit Bear Lake

How to find the best winter lodging in Bear Lake, Utah

Winter lodging in Bear Lake can be more limited than in the summer, but with some careful planning you can easily book your next winter trip.

Happy family in winter clothing at the ski resort, winter time, watching at mountains in front of t...

Visit Bear Lake

Ski more for less: Affordable ski resorts near Bear Lake, Utah

Plan your perfect ski getaway in Bear Lake this winter, with pristine slopes, affordable tickets, and breathtaking scenery.

Matt Thornton – American Fork Junior High