Shantrice Danielly is nervously practicing the speech she will give this Friday at the Northeast High School commencement ceremony. Not only is she graduating at the top of her class, but she's one of the first in her family to graduate from high school.
"Thinking about how my mother's past was when she didn't get a complete education, it kind of made me work even harder to make something of my family name since not many people in my family have graduated with a diploma."
This was the motivation behind her accomplishment, but the road to success was bumpy. Shantrice is the oldest of 5 children. Her mother Samantha is a single parent. And in the past 4 years she's changed schools, 3 times. A move Samantha says, she wishes she could take back.
"The change of schools, it hurt her a lot, it dropped her GPA a lot because we changed schools so many times throughout the year due to moving. But she's overcome those obstacles," says Samantha Danielly.
Shantrice overcame the obstacles and is now deciding which college she will attend in the fall. She was accepted to Macon State, Young-Harris, and Catawba College in North Carolina.
This week is National Police Week, and the Bibb County Sheriff's Office held a special ceremony today to honor those who have died in the line of duty.
The names of heroes who have died serving, are etched in stone at the Law Enforcement Memorial in front of the Macon Centreplex. The latest name reads 'Chad McDonald. Chad was a Bibb County Sheriff's officer, and was killed while on duty, one week before Christmas in 2007.
Tracy McDonald and his family were at the ceremony to remember Chad, Tracy's brother.
"He was larger than life," Tracy remembers. "He had a big heart, if he liked you, there was nothing Chad wouldn't do for you."
The memorial is place where people can read the names of middle Georgia armed service members who died fighting, as well as police and sheriff's officers, and firefighters.
McDonald says, he is grateful to see his brother's name etched in the polished stone, and hopes no more names are added.
"People don't understand, when they (officers) leave their house, they may not return back home that night to their wives, to their son, to their mother or father."