Articles

Oak Grove dream one step closer for Honduran orphan

062917gabe getting visa

Photo courtesy of Heidi Rhoades

Gabriel Ruiz at the U.S. Embassy in Honduras June 21 where he received his student visa.

Andra Belknap, Ojai Valley News reporter
Gabriel Ruiz is spending his final weeks in a Honduran orphanage before he boards a plane to the United States Aug. 7. Ruiz, 16, is scheduled to begin his freshman year at the Oak Grove School Aug. 30.
Ruiz met Ojai couple Heidi and Larry Rhoades and their son, Nate, a Nordhoff High School junior, during the summer of 2015 while the trio volunteered at the orphanage Ruiz calls home.
Ruiz, who spent much of his childhood living on the streets of Honduras, made such an impression on the Rhoades family that they returned in 2016 for another volunteer trip. 
After hearing of Ruiz's dream of becoming a doctor one day, the trio offered him the opportunity to live in their home and study in the United States.
See also: "Teen hopes to make the journey from orphanage to Oak Grove" Ojai Valley News, Feb. 24, 2017.

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