Climbing Without Stumbling Stones


Astrid Hurtarte with her parents.

We often fail to realize that the most important people in our lives are those who have been with us since the very beginning. Astrid Hurtarte, one phenomenal 17 year old Hondurian, has a story to be told. She has not only learned to keep climbing to reach her goals, but to step over her obstacles and use never ending strength to cope with one shocking occurrence.

Although her father was present, he was unsupportive and never showed his love in the proper manner. This left Astrid to lean on her mom for support and grow a deep and inspiring relationship with her. It is only due to a shortage of money that she has not been able to visit her mother’s home, Honduras, and meet the rest of her family.

After having to resist constant bullying through her middle school years due to her grades, Astrid remained determined to reach for her dream of being successful. She is known for her perseverance, and entered Coral Gables Senior High with outstanding grades and determination to reach for her and her mom’s dream. AP classes were not her only challenge as she entered the International Baccalaureate (IB) program as well. So far, Astrid has taken more than 10 AP and IB classes and is learning another language. Among all this stress and dedication, she also manages to devote her time to the main source of strength in her life. At the age of 13, Astrid gave her life to God, and since then has been “attempting to be like Jesus in every way.”

She claims, “Without God, I am nothing.”

She found her life stable, but one bit of striking news changed it forever. At age 52, her mom was diagnosed with stomach cancer. Not long after, her death followed on May 26, 2011. She was not taken to the hospital, but instead died in Astrid’s arms. All Astrid could do at the time was tell her mom how much she loved her and goodbye. She was then left with her father to depend on and the dream of being successful that her mother had planted in her heart. By that point she had lost her mother, lacked a relationship with her father, entered financial crisis, and had nearly fallen into a depression due to all the stress IB was causing her. Her solution was to surrender her problem to God.

One year later, Astrid is now a senior, and walks the halls of Gables reaching out to others with her impacting story. She is still in IB where she has not only passed her classes with a superb GPA, but has also learned how to speak French and develop her hobby for fashion design. Additionally, she is now proud to be a nominee to receive a scholarship for college. Her wish to make her mom proud is definitely becoming true.