Friday, March 7, 2008

Untold Stories: Catholic school grants scholarship to 6 year old whose father is slain

St. Martin de Porres Interparochial School in Philadelphia has granted a scholarship to a boy whose father was recently slain. 

After the child's mother died, David Atkins took a job as a security guard at Temple University Hospital to afford the tuition for his son to attend the school.  Staff at the school saw him dropping his son, David, off every day, and knew how important it was to him that the boy attend school there.

Patrick McKenzie, director of campus ministry, said Atkins and his son were the first to arrive at a potluck dinner last week for a black history program. Atkins, he said, took great interest in his son's education and was involved with his studies as well as volunteer programs.

"He walked him to the door every morning, which I think really reflected how much he loved his son and wanted the best for him," McKenzie said. "He's a great kid, chock-full of positive energy."

Hillig and McKenzie both said David is interested in learning and doing well with his studies.

"When he's asked to do something, he does his best to do it right," [Sister Cheryl Ann] Hillig said. "He really is an amazing kid."