Drug-abuse activist, rapper, motivational speaker: Find your passion

Cary Ashby • Updated Apr 29, 2018 at 10:00 PM

AVERY — Milan resident Antonio Lopez shared three things with EHOVE Career Center students that he wished someone told him when he was in high school.

Lopez encouraged the students to find their passion, embrace their potential and practice. The 2009 Edison graduate and drug-abuse activist defined passion as “something that fires you up,” but may be embarrassing to admit to other people — just as rap music is one of his passions.

Also known as the rapper T Lo, Lopez was the motivational speaker Friday for the Breakfast of Champions, a regular EHOVE event which honors students of the nine weeks. Lopez played football in the eighth grade for assistant director Matt Ehrhardt.

“He is on a mission,” said Ehrhardt while introducing Lopez, who also was one of his students at Edison.

Lopez told the students they shouldn’t be afraid to discuss mental health — not something that was done much when he was younger. He said he kept a diary with his personal thoughts, but he didn’t want his mother to read it.

When Lopez moved from Sandusky to attend school in Edison during middle school, he suffered from depression.

Instead of getting out it, he said “I spiraled out of control.” At the age of 17, Lopez said he considered committing suicide and obtained a pistol with a plan to shoot himself in the head.

Lopez encouraged the EHOVE students to look at themselves objectively in order to see where their potential is.

“Potential is so important because it’s infinite,” he said. “You can build on it. … If you’re good at something, be proud of it.

“Right now you’re practicing for a job. You’re practicing (for) life … for all the moments that matter in everything you do.”

Right now, no matter the situation, Lopez said students are learning skills which they can use later when it matters.

“Fall in love with the process. Fall in love with your passion,” he added.

After Lopez finished his brief talk, Ehrhardt said “that’s probably one of the best speakers we’ve had here.”

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