Homeless First Coast High School student Griffin Furlong named valedictorian

Griffin Furlong was named valedictorian at First Coast High School in Jacksonville.
By Evan Bleier Follow @itishowitis Contact the Author   |   May 27, 2014 at 12:00 PM

JACKSONVILLE, Fla., May 27 (UPI) -- Griffin Furlong didn't let being homeless stop him from being named class valedictorian at a Jacksonville high school.

The homeless student was named valedictorian at First Coast High School in Florida after he ended up with a 4.65 GPA despite not having a home to study in.

Furlong lost his mother to leukemia when he was 6 and has spent time living in shelters and the homes of friends and relatives.

The 18-year-old is set to graduate in June and he hopes to study civil engineering at Florida State University.

"I wrote him a letter of recommendation, and I said he was the hardest working, most-motivated student I have ever had," Jennifer Stover, his calculus teacher, told First Coast News.

Furlong plans to discuss his family's plight in his valedictorian address.

"At some point I wanted to quit. It was horrible." Furlong said. "A kid should not have to go through that. I know that I have everything to lose. So I just push myself. School is all I have, family is all I have. I am doing it all for me and what I have been through. I am doing it for my mom."

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