By Arnie Leshin
Did you ever hear about an individual who it’s said it’s better that you don’t know all that much about him? Or her?
I have many times.sometimes it’s true, sometime it’s not, sometimes it’s about a family member. a forgotten relative, a neighbor, a close friend, an acquaintance, even a stranger and whoever else gets in the conversation.
In this case, I know the name, I’ve seen the individual compete in athletics, I’ve mentioned him in my sports stories, but never met him, probably wouldn’t know him if I passed by him.
Except that now I know much more about Pecos High School senior Devin Gonzales than I did before. Now I get to applaud and congratulate him for being named the recipient of the Santa Fe Knights of Columbus Scholarship award of $1,000.
It’s an award given to students excelling in athletics and academics, but they should have included activities, because he excels in that, too.
And from what I’ve learned, Devin Gonzales is quite an individual, that he has excels in student leadership, academics, and athletics, that he participates in extra co-curricular activities, that he is humble, disciplined, and silent leader, a strong role model in his academics, personal life, and social life.
He is ranked in the top five of every Pecos graduating class, is a distinguished member of the National Honor Society, and has been a member of the school’s Honor Roll for four years.
Says Patrick Ortiz, his head coach in cross country and track and field: “Devin was my fifth man his sophomore year in cross country, and he just worked to improve and now is my No. 1 runner who finished fifth at state, and placed at state ever year that’s he’s run it. In track and field, he’s placed at state in the 1,600, 3,200 and pole vault. In basketball, he starts in the back court and has been a valued member of the three-time state champions.”
And there’s noting wrong with working and playing well with others. Nothing wrong with mixing academics, athletics and activities. For Gonzales, that’s his school life and he handles it with pride.
Adds Ortiz, “Devin has been awarded the overall scholar athlete and all-around athlete award in the 2018-19 school year.”
To which I’m thinking, not only does this rate a story that deals in everything favorable, but this young man is no doubt worthy of it.
He wins this Santa Fe Knights of Columbus scholarship and is certainly not a stranger to this storied organization, devoting his time to the community, and also working with this branch of the K of C by attending meetings, church events, assisting with cleanups, helping with the local food pantry. Yes, a true value to his community.
Academically, he never fails to obtain a favorable grade point average (GPA), he studies for each class, favors math, and his desire is to major in mechanical engineering at New Mexico State University in Las Cruces. He also takes pride in problem solving, and is an extremely hard worker who is determined to achieve his goal aspirations.
None of this has been made up, it has all been achieved by Devin Gonzales, and I certainly agree with Coach Ortiz that the gifted youngster is an excellent candidate for the scholarship program. His positive consideration for this scholarship honor will assist him with the financial burden that exists for many students who need financial aid.
No doubt Gonzales has chosen the right road to continue his academics, and why not include a little recreational running and shooting some hoops, maybe even at NMSU.