Morgan Arledge is an outstanding student who hasn’t let Systemic Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis slow her down. The seventh grader plays on the Junior High Basketball team at Doyle High, plays flute in the band and is a member of most of the clubs in her school. She also participates in numerous fundraisers including a book drive after Hurricane Katrina that collected 60 boxes of books from around the country. She also has donated her hair to Locks of Love and helps promote the Krewe of St. Amant which benefits Dreams Come True. Morgan also tutors her cousin. View (Windows Media).
Seventh grader Mary-Brent Brown of Covington is an outstanding student who formed a non-profit organization with her sister called Kids Wanna Help to give children an opportunity to raise funds for non-profit groups helping sick children while helping build the self-esteem of the participants. A Kids Wanna Help fundraiser for pediatric leukemia raised $11,000. She is also president of the Kehoe-France Northshore Student Council, captain of the cheerleaders and participates in gymnastics and volleyball, is a published author and was selected as one of five “Angels Among Us” by Inside Northside Magazine. View (Windows Media).
Hartman Brunt, a senior at Catholic High of Baton Rouge, was a promising football and basketball player before he suffered a severe knee injury that severed the primary nerve to his feet. A 4.0 student, he has received a long list of academic honors while donating his time to the Baton Rouge Food Bank, raising money for hurricane relief and other causes, serving as a student minister, taking part in a Catholic mission to Madagascar and tutoring middle school students. View (Windows Media).
Liam Doyle is a quadriplegic who has the use of one hand. It hasn’t stopped him from being an outstanding student, a member of the honor choir for three years and performing at state and local music festivals for the last seven years. He volunteers and helps fund raise for Camp Bon Coeur, a camp for children with heart defects. He also volunteers with the Acadiana Therapeutic Riding program for children with special needs and inspires everyone he meets with his determination and enthusiasm. View (Windows Media).
Glen Oaks High senior Jeremy Herbert’s life changed forever in June of 2007 when his mother was shot in a murder-suicide involving her boyfriend. In aftermath of this tragedy, Jeremy developed a positive group called Young Educated Young Males Against Drugs and Violence to serve as positive role models for freshmen. In addition to all his volunteer efforts, Herbert served as a captain on the football team and runs track while maintaining a 3.6 average. He has served as a student member of the East Baton Rouge Parish’s Strategic Planning Committee. View (Windows Media).
Dubach High junior Vantez Martin has faced more than his share of adversity during his 17 years. Abandoned by his biological parents, the grandmother who raised him died last year, leaving Vantez and his sisters homeless after they couldn’t pay the bills. Despite his hardships, Vantez is an honor roll student and a leader at his school where he is vice-president of the student council, plays baseball, basketball and track and has received numerous honors including an invitation participate in the National Young Leaders Conference in Washington, D.C. View (Windows Media).
Hope McFarland of Keithville was born prematurely and weighed only a little over a pound. After a life and death fight in her early years, she has rebounded to become an energetic volunteer, The girl known as the "Keithville Cowgirl" created her own program to encourage young people to explore the wonder of books. This enthusiastic senior at Caddo Magnet entertains at libraries, children’s hospitals and homeless shelters in the Shreveport area, ending her show with a song on the fiddle. She also developed Helpful Hints from Hope, a speaking tour about safety for seniors, a self-esteem program for young girls called A.B.C's of Self-Esteem, organized a neighborhood food drive and an Easter Egg Hunt for the children at homeless shelter, a book drive for Katrina victims and a drive to provide goodie bags for the patients at the Caddo Veteran's Hospital. She has been honored with President's Volunteer Service Award from the President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation and a finalist for the 2007 Prudential Spirit of Community Awards. View (Windows Media).
Kaitlin Truxillo was diagnosed with a form of leukemia in 2002 and was in a life and death struggle that included congestive heart failure, liver problems and numerous infections while receiving chemotherapy. In March of 2006, her cancer went into remission. Even during her battle with leukemia, she was able to participate in fundraising activities. She painted three pictures for a hospital fundraiser that netted $1,000, paintings for the Children’s Hospital Holiday Kid Card fundraiser, and recently painted a picture for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. View (Windows Media).