When the greatest joys are unexpected

with passages by Jessie Starbuck

COLUMBIA, Mo 02/19/15 (Profile) -- Meet Jon Dinter, his wife Jayme, and -- beside their love for one another -- the two most wonderful gifts imaginable: 
their twin sons, August and Bowie

Eager to see mom and dad in time for Christmas, the brothers arrived just before the big holiday last year -- and quite a bit earlier than expected. 

Born prematurely at
just 23 weeks and less than 2 lbs each, they have yet to spend a night at home -- or time with each other.   August and Bowie have been living at separate hospitals in separate cities to meet their unique health needs

Mom and dad spend every hour outside work driving between both boys.  

Dad Jon has been a public school teacher for the past nine years.   "I teach Woodworking, Theater Tech, and Consumer Car Care," Jon explains, on his page at the Battle High School website.   

He also coaches football for the Battle Spartans. 

"We value the meaningful work he does for the young people of our community," says Jessie Starbuck, a fellow teacher, on a GoFundMe page created to help with medical expenses.  "Ask any of his students and you will hear hundreds of stories about how Jon -- a 2006 Mizzou grad -- is a role model, a dedicated educator, a jokester, even a father figure."   

Teachers and students at Battle held a Valentines Day fundraiser for Coach Dinter, with all proceeds from sales of chocolate-covered treats going to help his two boys.   

Mom Jayme received a cosmetology
degree from the Cosmetology Concepts Institute in Columbia the same year her husband received his education degree.   She has been a stylist at The Look Salon in Columbia, where friends have been holding a fundraiser for the twins since January. 

"Many of our clients have been asking how they can help," the salon's staff explains on their Facebook page.  "Whether it be with your time, financially, or simply with prayer, it is all welcomed and definitely appreciated."  

Although it's difficult to cover all the expenses that come with August's and Bowie's medical care, Jon and Jayme are no strangers to adversity.  Jon overcame a recent battle with brain cancer. 

At Battle High, Jon teaches young people how to overcome adversity, too.  One of the first adversities many encounter is car trouble:  repairs, costs -- even accidents, which the proper maintenance Jon teaches can reduce.  

In his Consumer Car Care Course, Jon's students study everything from how to buy a car to the way "each system" works, from the brakes to the tires to complicated electronics. 

"Your sleeves must be rolled up," he explains in the course description.    It's that same can-do Spartan spirit
Jon and Jayme share with August and Bowie, two little champs who are more than ready to come home.

Let’s roll our sleeves up and help their family.

Please consider donating to The Dinter Boys fundraiser at GoFundMe.   Click the link or visit:  


-- GoFundMe passages in this story by Jessie Starbuck, an artist and teacher who recently led an effort to finish the mural on the historic Heibel-March building in Columbia.