COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - Congratulations to all the recent high school graduates throughout our viewing area.
Your accomplishments set you up for success no matter your future plans.
And there is one graduate in particular that we think merits special recognition for getting his diploma.
His name is LeMarieous Franklin and he is the first person in his family to graduate from high school.
He told News Leader 9 that he almost dropped out of Central High in Phenix City, but he kept pushing himself and now he is on his way to attending the University of Alabama this fall, thanks to several scholarships, financial aid from the state and help from the community.
All along, his biggest supporter was his mom.
LeMarieous told us his mom often told him how proud she was of him, not just at his graduation, but for never giving up.
A parent's pride in their child and their constant encouragement is priceless.
LeMarieous was smart to graduate but even smarter for listening to his mom and believing in himself.
Now he's not just the first to graduate in his family, he's also a role model for his two younger brothers.
Congratulations to LeMarieous and all the other graduates like him who stayed focused on their goal even when it seemed out of reach.
When they walked up to the podium at graduation, they walked away with the first, most important credential for a successful life: a high school diploma.
General Manager Holly Steuart brings two editorials a week to WTVM. If you would like to respond to an editorial, e-mail your response to WTVM Editorial Committee or write to:
WTVM Editorial Committee
1909 Wynnton Road
Columbus, GA 31906