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5/27/2010 6:29:00 AM
Diploma proves to students they can overcome life's hurdles
Jerry J. Herrmann/The Daily Courier
Danyielle Grimes and Juan Martinez both have overcome major hurdles to get their high school diploma at Chino Valley High School.
Jerry J. Herrmann/The Daily Courier
Danyielle Grimes and Juan Martinez both have overcome major hurdles to get their high school diploma at Chino Valley High School.

Jerry Herrmann
Special to Review

"This (receiving my high school diploma) proves no matter where you are in life, you can come back and achieve your goal," Juan Martinez, Chino Valley High School Student Body president for the past two years, said Wednesday.

For Danyielle Grimes, 18, who transferred into CVHS this year from Baker County High School in Glen St. Mary, Fla., receiving her diploma means "anyone can do what they want to do if you push yourself and become what you want to be."

Martinez and Grimes were two of the 129 members of CVHS's Class of 2010 who graduated Wednesday night.

The native of Guadalajara, Mexico, has attended schools in the Chino Valley Unified School District since 1998. "My family ran into trouble in Mexico so we moved to be near my uncle, who lived in Chino Valley," Martinez said.

Wednesday's achievement is a high one for Martinez's family as he becomes only the second one to receive a high school diploma. His sister, Anna, received one when she graduated in 2009. His brother, Daniel, is a sophomore.

Martinez said the first hurdle he had to overcome when he enrolled in Del Rio Elementary School was to learn to speak English. "I couldn't speak a word of English," he said.

He said his favorite class was Gary Kinsey's Honors United States and Arizona History class.

In high school, Martinez was a member of the track and cross country team all four years. On the Student Council, he was the freshman and sophomore president and president of the council the past two years. He also has been a mediator for two years and on the Teen Court for one year.

"High school taught me to come out of my shell and take advantage of the courses," he said.

Martinez plans to attend Arizona State University this fall and major in business administration. After graduating, he hopes to go into business with his father, Isidro Martinez, who lives in Mexico.

Grimes said she came to Chino Valley in January with her fiancé, Christopher Jarrell, who has a construction job at the Drake Cement Plant. The move didn't stop her from getting her high school diploma, either. "I wanted it. I was going to get it regardless what it took," she said.

Also, the move to Chino Valley taught her "it is hard to live on your own and it makes you grow up," Grimes said.

Grimes' favorite class at CVHS was culinary arts. Next fall she plans to attend Lake City Community College in Florida and major in nursing. "I've cooked my entire life, so I want to try something I want to do," she said.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Wednesday, May 14, 2014
Article comment by: ana martinez

I just wanted to comment on this article. Juan did end up going to ASU, he overcame one of the biggest hurdles that life can throw at you which is the loss of a loved one, our father. Today though, it's a big day for all of us especially Juan, he graduates from ASU. We are all so proud of you Juan Pablo Martinez.

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