By Rick Sallinger

HIGHLANDS RANCH, Colo. (CBS4) – Anthony Wanjiru is from Kenya. From a life of poverty in the slums there, he has lived the American dream for the past eight years.

(credit: Anthony Wanjiru)

“It’s been amazing to come study here, live here, make friends here and also serve the community. That is the best gift one could ask for,” he told CBS4’s Rick Sallinger.

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CBS4’s Rick Sallinger interviews Anthony Wanjiru. (credit: CBS)

Anthony has been working at Valor Christian High School in Highlands Ranch in the information technology department. From students CBS4 talked with like Meghan O’Neal, he has been far more than just a computer specialist.

“He has changed people’s lives. He has helped me a lot,” she said.

(credit: CBS)

Anthony came to the U.S. on a work visa. He has now been denied an extension and, as he put it, “The opportunity to make this city, this state, this country even much better than I found it.”

He volunteers at the Denver Rescue Mission and with Issachar Youth Leadership program.

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Anthony Wanjiru (credit: CBS)

Now, students at Valor have taken up his cause with a plea to #saveanthonysvisa.

“He was denied a visa and hopefully we can get him back because he is definitely someone that we need,” said Annabele Mullen, a student.

“He’s never in bad mood, always in good mood, never negative, one of the most positive people I have ever met. He always has a good attitude, and Valor would be losing someone special if they lost him,” said Nalu Harbottle, a junior at Valor.

Anthony eloquently addressed the school body last week telling them he had 30 days to leave the country.

(credit: Anthony Wanjiru)

“Every one I talked to back home says don’t go back.”

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He wants to remain in Colorado and is hopeful the offices of Senators Michael Bennet and Cory Gardner will be able to help him stay.

Rick Sallinger