“…there's nothing in the world that my niece ever have to want for.”
From Marray Lasenby Corliss High School

Hi, my name is Marray, and I’m telling a story about my niece. Her name is Tiana Latrice Edwards. She was born December 4th, 2008, and she is now four years old. She’s a person I really care about. There’s nothing in the world I wouldn’t do for her. And this story’s important because it shows that I care about my niece because she was the first baby that I really really got attached to when she was born. I have other nieces and nephews, I have a niece older than her named Navea and she isn’t sick like Tiana. Tiana has sickle cell, so she needs all the attention and babying that she can have, and that’s why I show more attention to Tiana than Navea.

One thing that would help me show that I really care about my niece and love her is that I support her and I support her mom. I help her with things, I help her be healthy and eat and it’s nothing my niece had to ever want for, because if my niece cried over my cousin’s doll that she wanted, I went and got money from my mom, that was my allowance, and went and bought the same doll for my niece because she cry for it. That’s how you know that I love my niece because I took my time to walk all the way to the mall to get the same doll that my niece wanted that my cousin wouldn’t share and made her cry for.

So there’s nothing in the world that my niece ever have to want for, because when my sister went on the streets, I made sure my niece had a place to go and eat. I took her to my mom’s house like she’s my daughter. When her mom went on the streets, I said no, you bring my niece to me, and she’ll stay at my house, and my mom will watch her while I go to school. And when I got home from school I watched her and I fed her and I put her to sleep and that was a daily routine. And that’s why I figured out that my niece is like my daughter, I stood there and she was mostly raised up on me, I raised her from day one, till she got big and my sister got a house to live in.

I do remember how soft her voice was when she talked. When she talked, you had to listen to her, like her mouth had to be by your ear to hear her. That’s how soft her voice was. But I do love all my nieces and nephews but I love Tiana the most. I’m not showing favoritism but it’s just, she’s a very sick baby, and she’s my baby and she’s like my daughter so I love her with all my heart and I care about her like I’ve never cared about anybody else.

Interview conducted in Chicago, IL.


scu_gatewaystem150x175 “I was kind of getting scared…what if my potential is not as high as theirs?”
scu_gatewaystem150x175 “…you never know how it feels getting back up if you never fall down.”
scu_gatewaystem150x175 “I never wanted this to happen.”
scu_gatewaystem150x175 “… a whole lot of people in St. Louis haven't been to the Arch.”
scu_gatewaystem150x175 “… after that I felt worthless, and like a coward.”
scu_gatewaystem150x175 “Some teenagers my age are not like me for one big and important reason…”
scu_gatewaystem150x175 “…it’s not all ice cream and cake.”
scu_gatewaystem150x175 “They just have to accept me for who I am.”
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