By Chris Kieffer/NEMS Daily Journal
NETTLETON – A motivational speaker told Nettleton’s sixth- to eighth-grade students on Friday that they were all champions.
Hozay Hausley was the featured speaker at Nettleton Junior High’s celebration of the first six weeks of the school year. The Amory native gave the students lessons from his new book, “Turning Point,” which chronicles his life and the success he has had after growing up poor without a father figure.
“I want you to understand there is a champion on the inside of you, and I want you to start walking like a champion,” said Hausley, who is currently a manager at Renasant Bank in Aberdeen.
“I take my childhood experiences, and I want to share them with this generation,” he said. “I feel they could use my motivation and inspiration.”
Hausley’s book, which was released two months ago, tells of several turning points in his life. One story he shared with the students was a time when he was in eighth grade and asked his mother if he could buy a pair of Nike tennis shoes.
His mother cried and told him she could not afford those shoes but could buy him a pair of Winner’s Choice tennis shoes from Walmart.
“She told me, ‘With me giving you these tennis shoes, I am letting you know that you are a winner, but it is your choice,'” Hausley said. “‘It doesn’t matter that you have no father figure, and it doesn’t matter that you are living in poverty. What matters most is if you can have a winning attitude in this situation, it can take you a long way in life.'”
Hausley spoke during a program in which the school honored its students for accomplishments during the early part of the school year.
“I wanted to bring someone who made it and has a success story,” Nettleton Junior High Principal Melissa Thomas said.