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Homeless valedictorian Chelsea Fearce: Don't give up

Posted By Kristen Butler, UPI.com   |   May 24, 2013 at 8:07 AM   |   Comments

May 24 (UPI) -- Georgia teen Chelsea Fearce graduated at the top of her Charles Drew High School class despite being homeless for most of her high school career.

“I just told myself to keep working, because the future will not be like this anymore,” Fearce told WSB-TV.

Her family of five occasionally shared an apartment, but those times were brief. “Ended up back in another shelter because I got laid off from my job maybe about four or five times,” Fearce’s mother, Reenita Shephard said.

Fearce would at times live out of her mother's car. “I just did what I had to do,” Fearce said. "Worry about being a little hungry sometimes, go hungry sometimes. You just have to deal with it. You eat what you can, when you can.”

Fearce scored a 1900 on the SAT and took all college courses during her last two years of high school, graduating as valedictorian with a 4.466 GPA. She will enter Spelman College as a junior in the fall.

Fearce’s sister is graduating this year as salutatorian from George Washington Carver High School in Atlanta. Their mother said "I read to them a lot. Everything was a learning experience."

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