Despite the struggles with teaching during a pandemic so many students are celebrating their achievements this summer and should rightfully feel proud of themselves for navigating their way through challenging times.
But one student decided to honor his parents for all they sacrificed so he could succeed.
In a post that has since gone viral, Erick Juárez, who recently graduated from Medical School, paid tribute to his farmworker parents and the risks they took so he could succeed in life.
The 29-year-old, who graduated from the Medical College of George at Augusta University, decided to go back to the farm where his father Loreto and mother Maricela Juárez worked.
According to the resident physician, his parents immigrated to the United States from Mexico in the 1980s with nothing but the clothes they had on and a dream for a better life.
They worked tirelessly and with very little reward to pay for Erick’s education, from plucking oranges in South Florida to working on tomato fields near Bainbridge.
Not only did they pay for their successful son’s education but also that of their other four children.
‘Serving the communities I represent’
After becoming the first Hispanic valedictorian at Bainbridge High School, Erick attended the United States Military Academy at West Point and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in neurobiology.
The 29-year-old is currently a neurology resident at UCLA Health.
“I stand ready to become the first person in family history to earn a white-collar job and to begin serving the various communities I represent, especially the unsung heroes of the pandemic — farmworkers,” he said.
Erick posted photos of himself with his parents at his graduation graciously sharing the success he has had with his parents and how proud he was of his parents.
“My graduation from medical school was one small step for me, one giant leap for fam-kind. It’s as much, if not more, a victory lap for them as it is for me. And I couldn’t be prouder of them.”
He explained that his parents didn’t even have the chance to finish elementary school.
Erick also highlighted the comparison between the opportunities he was given in life with those his mother had writing: “I’ve always said: had my mother been blessed with the (few) opportunities I’ve had, paired with that incomparable work ethic, she’d be miles ahead of me on the road to success! .”
So many have rightfully congratulated Erick’s parents on raising a son so humble and wise.
I don’t think there are many students who credit their parents with their academic successes. It’s only if they become parents themselves do they fully understand the sacrifices parents make for their children and in Erick’s parents’ case some more than others.
Help us congratulate this inspiring family by sharing this story.
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