Cano gives back to old hometown

Slugger's RC24 Foundation hands out backpacks to Newark students
08/31/2012 1:56 PM ET
By Lou DiPietro

Robinson Cano poses with Newark Mayor Cory Booker and students from Marin School.(MVP Foundation)
While Robinson Cano will spend his weekend trying to help the Yankees extend their three-game lead over the Baltimore Orioles in the AL East, he spent his Friday morning helping hundreds of seventh and eighth-graders across the Hudson prepare for their own 2012-13 scholastic season.

Cano and his RC24 Foundation handed out 300 backpacks filled with school supplies to students at the Luis Munoz Marin School in Newark, N.J. as part of a “Home Runs for Homework” rally on Friday, and along with Newark Mayor Cory Booker and Marin's principal, Alejandro Echevarria, addressed the Marin students on the importance of education. Cano even used himself as an example, as he lived in Newark for three years as a teenager, and it was in Newark schools where he learned to speak English.

"I wanted to thank the city of Newark for giving me an education and helping me learn English," Cano said during the assembly, "and I want to thank the city for welcoming me back to give these back to school gifts to the students. I hope to one day see some of them on TV doing something great, and I hope they have a great school year."

The All-Star second baseman founded the RC24 Foundation in 2011 with the vision of helping as many people as he humanly could through his charitable endeavors, and earlier this year, he was honored prior to a Trenton Thunder game by Dr. Thomas Haveron and the MVP (Medicine Via Philanthropy) Foundation, who donated $50,000 to the RC24 Foundation - some of which was used to help the students in Newark - to help Cano achieve his mission.

And while both Cano and Mayor Booker were happy to share their views with the students, having the leader of his city and one of the leaders of the Yankees on hand to give his students these gifts was an experience Principal Echevarria found hard to put into words...but that's okay, as the smiles on everyone's faces - most notably the children of Marin school - said more than enough.

Follow Lou DiPietro on Twitter: @LouDiPietroYES comments