If there’s one thing that Delaney Donzola has learned during her first 16 years on Earth, it’s to never give up. This is evidenced by Delaney’s determination to succeed after being diagnosed with Osteochondritis Dissecans at the age of 10. Delaney explained that this condition has affected her knees. “They were basically wearing away,” she said. “The doctors performed two surgeries to try and rebuild them with bone graphs.” Those two surgeries were followed by two more to remove hardware put in place during the earlier ones — and she’s not done yet.
This condition has forced me to make to some changes,” said Delaney. “I used to dance and loved to play soccer, but those activities aren’t possible now, at least not yet.” Instead, Delaney has immersed herself in her schoolwork, clubs and student government. “I’m an OLMA Ambassador and love helping to promote our school,” she said. “I’m also part of the Interact Club. I was in Interact in middle school and just continued it when I came to OLMA. It’s all about service, which is something I really enjoy.” Delaney has also taken on a leadership role by serving as Vice President of her class. As you can see, while she has spent a lot of time on crutches, she didn’t let them slow her down one bit.
Delaney found her way to OLMA through her older sister. “Devan is a year older than me and loved it here, so it was just natural that I’d want to see what it was all about,” she said. “I shadowed a few times and was really happy with what I saw and how the school made me feel. It was a pretty easy decision.” When asked about her favorite part of attending OLMA, Delaney didn’t hesitate for a minute. “I love the family environment here,” she said. “It’s small and always feels like home.”
Looking ahead, Delaney is hoping to slowly resume some athletic activity. “I can do more this year than I could last year, so you never know,” she said. You’re certainly right about that, Delaney, especially when it comes to someone as resilient and talented as you are. Thanks for sharing your story.