Unforgettable Oprah Show Updates With Teens Who Overcame Adversity | Where Are They Now | OWN

Unforgettable Oprah Show Updates With Teens Who Overcame Adversity | Where Are They Now | OWN


In 1990, we met
10-year-old Robert Jones. He’d been visiting
his grandmother when he was caught in the
crossfire of gang violence. And a stray bullet left
him blind in both eyes. How have you adjusted,
Robert, to being blind? I feel real bad. ‘Cause sometimes
when I be waking up, I really think I can see,
’cause I’ll be asleep. And it be dark when I sleep. ‘Cause when I wake
up, I think I’ll be able to see light and stuff. And it made me afraid. This may sound like a
silly question to you. But it’s a thought that
just occurred to me. So forgive me if it’s a
stupid question, Robert. But can you see in your dreams? Yes. So– well, that’s, at
least, nice to know. OPRAH WINFREY (VOICEOVER):
We followed up with Robert when he was 18 years old. Hi, Oprah. It’s been eight years since
we’ve seen each other. And a lot has
happened since then. I learned a lot of
things over the years. And one of them is
to read braille. [PLAYING PIANO] And another thing, Oprah, I
learned was to play the piano. This fall, I started my
freshman year in college. I believe if this didn’t
happen to me, living in the environment I was
living in at the time, I would have been
trapped in, like, gangs, getting into certain drugs. Never once did I
feel like giving up. Never once did he
feel like giving up. And he’s here today.
Robert, stand up. Bravo. Bravo. Bravo. Bravo. Wow. Well, you are an inspiration. Do you still see in
your dreams, Robert? Oh, yes, I do. It’s very vivid. And I love dreaming,
because it reminds me of, like, what my family
members look like. Robert graduated from
Columbia College in 2003. Today, he’s living his
dreams as a singer, as a songwriter, and proud father
of his 12-year-old daughter, Cheyenne. In 1998, we met Liberty
Franklin, who, like Robert, overcame enormous adversity. Liberty Franklin Johnson
is a typical teen who adores softball,
worries about homework, and would just love
to date a nice guy. But she’s also faced
family challenges that are anything but ordinary. There’s been drug problems,
suicide, prostitution, alcohol addictions. OPRAH WINFREY (VOICEOVER):
One of five children, she was raised by a single mom
in this crime-ridden Washington housing project. I had to confront
my mom and tell her to stop using
drugs and alcohol, because nobody else would. Liberty said, Mom,
you know, if you can stop smoking and
drinking, then I’ll also get my life on the right track. And so together, we did it. OPRAH WINFREY (VOICEOVER):
Her mother, Joanne, says she’s been sober for
three years thanks to Liberty. But I had to stand up
for everybody in my family and hold them up and bring
them through everything that we were all going through. OPRAH WINFREY (VOICEOVER):
That same strength spurs Liberty to reach for her
own dream of going to college. She has a 3.95
grade average, even though for most of this year,
she worked three part-time jobs to help her family– three. You have to fight to quit. You have to do whatever you have
to to get where you want to be. OPRAH WINFREY: Great
story, Liberty. How proud are you of
yourself today, Liberty? I fought the
current, and I won. OPRAH WINFREY: Yeah. Liberty was one of 50 high
school students chosen to receive a $25,000
scholarship from our Angel Network, which
paid for her degree from the University
of Washington. Today, Liberty is 35. She has three children. And she’s a dentist
who provides care for underserved communities like
the one in which she grew up. Bravo to you, Liberty.

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