Girl Hopes for Better Days

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Diyaa Shah, 11, models with Amy Vanderoef at the Children’s Cancer Fund Gala. (Courtesy VGS Marketing)

Diyaa Shah was taken by ambulance to Children’s Medical Center of Dallas on June 2, 2016, where she spent the night in the ICU being poked and prodded while undergoing a battery of emergency tests.

It also happened to be her 11th birthday.

A couple of days later, the University Park girl and her family learned she had acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), a cancer of the blood and bone marrow.

“I didn’t look scared, but on the inside I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, I have cancer,’ so I was scared,” Diyaa (pronounced Dee-ya) recalled.


Rejebian Joins New Coldwell Banker Office

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Coldwell Banker opened a new Preston Center office in April.

Dawn Rejebian has joined the Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage’s global luxury office in Preston Center. She will serve as one of the branch office’s founding sales associates.

Rejebian previously worked with Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate for nearly 20 years, and specializes in luxury residential sales in and around Dallas.


Bush’s Warrior Open to Join AT&T Byron Nelson in Getting a New Home in 2018

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President George W. Bush hits the greens during the Warrior Open. (Photos by Grant Miller for the George W. Bush Presidential Center)

Next year, the George W. Bush Presidential Center's Warrior Open golf tournament will join the Salesmanship Club of Dallas’s AT&T Byron Nelson tournament in moving to the Trinity Forest Golf Club in Dallas.

The two-day Warrior Open will occur on the Monday and Tuesday following the AT&T Byron Nelson and will include a Pro-Am.

"One way to better serve post-9/11 veterans as they transition from military to civilian life is to address the challenges they face when they come home," said President Bush.


Armstrong Troop 5404 Earns Bronze Award

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Courtesy Armstrong Troop 5404

After a year of planning, organizing, and managing, Girl Scout Troop 5404 earned their Bronze award with a Fun Run Club.

May 5 marked the last day of this troop's hard work, which was topped off with juices provided by The Juice Bar and swag bags from Ivivva.

All participants started off the beautiful morning with a new Fun Run Club t-shirt then followed with stretching, running, games, and breakfast. The day was a huge success and all who participated jump started their day off feeling healthy.


Making His Pitch

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“I chose baseball,” says Matt Milburn, who’s delaying graduate school. (Photo: Scott Shutz)

Last summer, Matt Milburn was preparing to pursue his master’s degree at Wake Forest when he got the call. He’d been chosen in the 29th round of the minor league baseball draft by the Oakland Athletics.

Suddenly his education went to the backburner in favor of a life filled with long bus rides to destinations such as Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and Fort Wayne, Indiana, plus a one-bathroom apartment he shares with three roommates.

Indeed, it’s his passion for baseball that has led Milburn down a different path from the average Highland Park High School graduate. In April, Milburn began pitching for the Beloit Snappers, a Class A minor league franchise in southern Wisconsin.


Roden, Scots Claim State Title on Links

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Highland Park won the 5A state title on Tuesday in Bastrop, with freshman Scott Roden earning an individual co-championship.

By Alonso Tacanga / Special Contributor

BASTROP — Two days and 36 holes weren’t enough to decide the best Class 5A boys golfer in the state.

But after three playoff holes on Tuesday evening could not separate Highland Park freshman Scott Roden from Mac Meissner of San Antonio Alamo Heights, an unexpected guest suddenly announced the boys would just have to share the honor.

In doing so, Mother Nature perhaps provided the fairest outcome after a long day was extended in thrilling fashion.

“I wish we could have gotten out there and finished,” said Roden, who along with Meissner was declared an individual co-champion. “But I’m satisfied with the way it ended.”

Roden took home more hardware, as the Scots claimed the team championship by shooting a 591 over two rounds at Wolfdancer Golf Club, which was 13 shots better than second-place Cedar Park.


CFT Announces First Hughes Award Winner

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Jack Kinnebrew (center) celebrates his award with Monica Egert Smith and Dave Scullin (Courtesy Communities Foundation of Texas)

Communities Foundation of Texas (CFT) announced that Jack M. Kinnebrew of Strasburger & Price, LLP has been selected as the 2017 recipient of the first Vester Hughes Award, which was established to honor individuals who most embody the spirit of the late, respected tax lawyer, Vester T. Hughes, Jr.

CFT works with families, companies, and nonprofits to strengthen the community through a variety of charitable funds and strategic grant making initiatives.


Two UP Scouts Earn Eagle Honors

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Ethan Lilly

Boy Scout Troop 70 recently awarded UP resident and Highland Park High School junior Ethan K. Lilly the rank of Eagle Scout.

For his Eagle project, Lilly collaborated with the Red Cross and the Visiting Nurses Association to replace and install smoke alarms in 15 homes of Elderly Meals on Wheels clients. He and his team installed over 45 smoke alarms. Lilly also raised money to give each household a new and safe portable heater.

Adam Johnson

Troop 70 also awarded University Park’s Adam M. Johnson the highest rank scouting offers. Johnson, who is a member of the Order of the Arrow, attends Highland Park High School as well. He is the son of Kristin and Mike Johnson and brother of Emily Johnson and Drew Johnson, also a Boy Scout.

For his Eagle Project, Johnson designed, built, and installed two bookcases for Incarnation House, which serves the needs of at-risk high school students with after-school programming that helps to develop essential life skills.  He created a library dedicated to Blake Anderson, a former Eagle Scout and member of the Church of the Incarnation.


Congressman Visits Shelton School

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Congressman Jeb Hensarling and son Travis (center) with fellow students and history teacher LuAnn Dolly.

Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R – Dallas) recently took to a different style podium. Instead of one used in Washington, D.C. as Chairman of the House Finances Committee, he stood behind the podium at Shelton School and presented a lesson on the United States Constitution to seventh grade students.

Hensarling was introduced by his son Travis, a Shelton seventh-grader. ]Travis led the introduction by enlisting a round of applause for teachers present in the audience.

Hensarling spoke with students about the Constitution, the Constitutional Convention, the Declaration of Independence and Articles of the Confederation. “You should get an ‘A’ in this course,” he told one student who correctly answered many questions about how an idea becomes a law.

Not all student questions were serious ones. Students queried Hensarling with “Have you ridden on Air Force One,” “Where do you live,” and “Do you have a pen used by the President to sign laws?” Hensarling, who’s been a congressman for 14 years, described his everyday schedule to students, his D.C. living quarters, and his travel arrangements. He cautioned students to help him track his time, with the admonition that “politicians can be known for talking too long.”

“We were pleased to have the congressman on our campus. And I’m proud of the way our students conversed candidly with him” middle school history teacher LuAnn Dolly said. “This makes history come alive for our students.”