MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Working as a paperboy on a roadside corner is only a small part of Kevuntez King’s story. The graduating senior made a commitment to education, and he’s following through by going to Tennessee State University.
“Education – that’s the key to my success, that’s my way out,” King said.
Every Sunday for four years, rain or shine, King stood on the corner of Poplar Avenue and Estate Drive in Memphis selling newspapers.
“I came back the next week, I made $150,” King said. “I just kept doing it, kept doing it.”
What he continued to do was not only sell newspapers, but make an impression on the people who live close-by.
On May 22, Molly Laster snapped a photo of King, a recent graduate from Craigmont High School, in his graduation cap. That picture sparked a frenzy of positive words and posts from Sea Isle neighbors.
“He always had a smile, always had something nice and positive to say,” Laster said.
Along with his upbeat attitude, King also maintained a desire for success. While keeping his grades up, King competed in three sports: golf, baseball and bowling.
He said his motivation is his mother and aunt.
“Even when I’m at the point where I’m like it’s getting hard, she just pushed me, ‘Son you got it,’” King recalled.
As for the next phase of his life, King is headed to TSU to study Physical Therapy.
Dr. John Cade, TSU’s interim vice president for Enrollment Management and Student Support Services, said King has been admitted to TSU for the 2016 fall semester and that he will be participating in the university’s summer Academic Boot Camp.
“Kevuntez is to be commended for having persevered and for having set goals and objectives … to ensure that he goes to college,” Cade said.
King said it wasn’t easy staying out of trouble and focusing on his books, but he has a message for youngsters who feel like they are fighting against unbearable odds.
“Just chase your dreams,” King said.