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University of Maryland Eastern Shore

Mantra for graduates of troubled Baltimore high school: 'You can make it'

Mantra for graduates of troubled Baltimore high school: 'You can make it'

Corey Witherspoon cradled a senior who had just been stabbed in the heart at Renaissance Academy High School. The boy's mentor tried to stop the bleeding with his hands. He screamed: "Fight! You can make it! You'd better keep breathing!"

Those words in the hallway may have been among the last that 17-year-old Ananias Jolley understood. He lost consciousness on the way to the hospital in November and died a month later.

In the weeks and months that followed, Witherspoon found himself saying those same phrases to other seniors. In a way, they became the unofficial mantra for Renaissance's Class of 2016, a group that endured so much trauma last year, perhaps the...

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