Homeless PSL student gets unexpected surprise - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Homeless PSL student gets unexpected surprise

PORT ST. LUCIE, FL (WFLX) - Imagine finding yourself homeless and turning to your friends for help. Now imagine it happening to you when you're only in high school. That's just what happened to a Port Saint Lucie teen; however, now his school and Port Saint Lucie Police are giving him a reason to smile.

Andrew Miller is the kind of student educators dream about. "He's that good kid. That student who's well rounded, participates in school, applies himself, and never had any discipline issues," explained Port Saint Lucie High School Assistant Principal Brooke Wigginton. "He's somebody when you meet him, you don't forget him."

Andrew is also a natural athlete and a real leader. As a high school junior, he's a second lieutenant and platoon leader in the JROTC, responsible for 30 cadets.

"He has this commanding presence. He has such great poise about him that when he gets out in front of a group of people they just tend to listen to him," said Major Richard Thompson with Port Saint Lucie High School's JROTC program. "He's also very nice. He's not overbearing."

They're remarkable qualities for any high school student, but even more so when you learn Andrew is homeless. Andrew doesn't like to talk about the tough circumstances that left him without a place to go back in September. Friends took him in and he's found help at school that's allowed him to thrive.

"I'm thinking, "I'm on my own" and no one is going to be able to help me and for school to come and help me, I was surprised and thankful," he said.

Every year, Port Saint Lucie Police works with the county's public schools and Walmart to give $100 gift cards to students in need. Andrew was very surprised when he was chosen.

"He's had a lot of circumstances that he's gone through and how he's handled them and himself," said Port Saint Lucie School Resource Officer Erik Wilson. "He's looking to the future and making plans and it's very positive to see."

"At first, I was going to buy clothes with it and they said, "no, we can help you" and they ended up getting me clothes," explained Andrew, "and so now they want me to buy something I really want with it and I'm not even sure what that is yet."

As Andrew thinks about that and a future in the military and an accounting degree after high school, he's also thinking about the people who have done so much for him.

"I'd like to say thank you and I'm really grateful for the stuff you've done for me," he said, "and I love you all. Thank you."

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