Teacher recognizes student paying her way through high school - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

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Teacher recognizes student paying her way through high school

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PHOENIX (CBS5) -

An Arizona girl has faced many unique challenges along the way, but she didn't let any of them stop her.

Candace Blair has been such an inspiration to those around her that when she fell a little short on money needed for high school graduation there was not shortage of people who wanted to help.

"She brings a smile to everybody's face. She could be having the worst day... but it doesn't matter," Blair's teacher Megan Kolsrud said.

Blair was born with a slight intellectual disability that makes tasks we take for granted more of a challenge.

When she was 11, her mother was diagnosed with brain cancer and died the same year, leaving Blair to basically raise her young sister and, at times, financially support her whole family.

"I had to grow up, you know, I couldn't be a kid anymore," Blair said.

Blair is on track to graduate from high school this year and already has a job at Arbor Rose Senior Care Center.

She is trying to save enough money to pay for her own graduation announcements and senior pictures.

Kolsrud through CBS 5 News' Pay It Forward program awarded Blair with $500.

"When you lose family or anything like that, you just need to be strong and take pride and keep going forward and don't let your fears go down," Blair said.

Blair said once she graduates, she's looking to get her own place, get her driver's license and she hasn't ruled out college.

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