It has been a year since this student’s two best friends died, killed while trying to commit a robbery. When he realizes that, in the time since these deaths, the younger children in the barrio have come to look up to him and his friend as role models, he realizes that he wants to be a positive model to other people and help his community. His neighbors now adore him, but he still feels sadness at knowing that it took two people’s deaths for him to change so drastically. He realizes that he is lucky to have been given the opportunity to change.
Despite the negative influence of the violence in his neighborhood, this student is buoyed by the expectation that he be a role model to young children. This demonstrates this student’s ability to learn from the past in order not to repeat others’ mistakes—precisely the message that Holocaust survivor Renee Firestone has sought to spread.