From left to right: Coach Latona Whitaker, Vice Principal Guthrie Fleischman, Marie Veale, Coach Kyle Whitmore, Delphine Smith (Mother) and Sylvester Wiggins (Father). Photo by Joe L Fisher, BAPAC.
Marie Veale, a Hercules High School senior, recently accepted a full Track Scholarship to attend California State University, Northridge in the fall of 2012.
Marie began running track in the spring of 2011 and has continuously improved with each because of all the time she spends practicing on the track. The events that Marie competes in track and field are the 100 meters, 200 meters, 4X100, 4X200 and 4X400 meter relays respectively.
Towards the end of the regular track season she was injured and was unable to compete in the Meet of the Champions in Berkeley. In the summer of 2011, Marie earned a spot on a travelling track club called the Flying Jaguars and the team made it to the Junior Olympics in New Orleans, Louisiana. She has ran at the Stanford Invitational Meet and competed against top athletes throughout Northern and Southern California and out of state.
During this past fall Marie beat her personal best in the 200 meters by running a 24.74 time and at her last league meet she beat her school record in the 200 meters by running a 26.01 in the 200 meters. Marie ended her senior year by qualifying in the Meet of the Champions in the 100 and 200 meter races and the 4X100 and 4X400 relays. She also placed in the State meet for 100 and 200 meters and both relays.
According to her track coach Kyle Whitmore, “She is a talented athlete with the potential to grow. Can’t wait to see what she does at the college level. I am glad she chose CSU Northridge, she always stated she wanted to live in Southern California.”
The official signing party was held at KC Bar-BQ, which is located in Berkeley. Marie was surrounded by family, friends and coaches that have always encouraged her to pursue her dreams. It was a night of reflection, good food, laughter and tears. Guthrie Fleishman Vice –Principal of Hercules Middle High School attended the event and stated, “I first met Marie as a freshman in high school and to see her now as a graduating senior on her way to college is a proud moment for me.”
This is another example of how extracurricular activities help children have positive attitudes and strive for something better in life.