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Worth Repeating: Claudia Becomes A Target

Pablo Navarro

Claudia Cuento found out the hard way that she was different. And for so long she hadn't been.

For so long she had been just another student, navigating the sometimes troubled waters of public school. 

That was, until 9/11.

On that day, her teacher would tell them about how when he was their age, President John Kennedy was assassinated. Now, he had to tell them about towers filled with Americans falling to the ground.

"And in the same hour I learned what the towers were, I learned they were no longer," she explains. 

Then, suddenly, she discovered she was something else to some of her classmates-- an outsider. Her Lebanese heritage was now part of her school identity. And all it took was for the kid "who smelled like wet crackers" to bring the fact home. 

This story was recorded 9.3.19 at Brick as part of Texas Public Radio's live storytelling program Worth Repeating. If you have a story Worth Repeating email WorthRepeating@tpr.org.

Paul Flahive can be reached at Paul@tpr.org and on Twitter at @paulflahive