Vincent Zamarripa

Last updated: 2015

Vincent Zamarripa

2015 Beat the Odds Honoree

Vincent Zamarripa's story is one of fearlessness. Born as Dora, his memories of early childhood are traumatic. He was beaten with a belt, suffered countless bloody noses and was held under water to the point blacking out, all at the hands of his abusive mother. Today, Vincent cites the abuse as the catalyst that drives him to succeed in school and in life.

As long as Vincent can remember, his family has struggled to get by financially. At age 14, Vincent's parents separated, his mother took his siblings with her and left Vincent to live with his father. While his father worked long hours to make ends meet, Vincent had to take on the responsibilities of the household. After about a year, Vincent's siblings were taken away from his mother and reunited with Vincent and his father.

Vincent worked hard to find the strength to open up about his gender identity with his close friends and siblings. But his father struggled to understand. Set in his ways with opinions about gender and sexual orientation, Vincent's father believes women should be feminine and take on traditional female roles.

As Vincent continues to work through the trauma he experienced with his mother, he is strong and determined to succeed. He is a highly con dent, openly transgender senior in high school. Vincent says it has taken him years to get to a happy place. Today his peers, teachers and family, including is father all support him. Vincent remains focused to achieving academic excellence and aspires to be a social worker to help children and families.