Gwinnett County cheerleader beating the odds

- On Friday nights in Lawrenceville, the Mountain View High School cheerleaders cheer on the Bears football team in the midst of the most successful season in school history. Meanwhile, one of the members of the varsity cheerleading squad has her own cheering section.

Senior Malerie Moulder was diagnosed with a brain tumor as an infant. After surgery, followed by complications which were followed by many more surgeries, Malerie's parents Mike and Marla Moulder were told their daughter would likely never walk, talk, or even survive without a feeding tube. 

Instead of focusing on the things that Malerie wasn't supposed to be able to do, Mike and Marla decided to support her and help her accomplish the things she could do. 

After years of hard work and intense occupational and physical therapy, Malerie began to thrive. She got rid of the walker and the feeding tube, and according to her family and friends she not only talks but is, at times, downright chatty. In other words, she has made a lifelong habit out of exceeding expectations.

So when the determined young lady that wasn't supposed to walk or talk decided that she wanted to be a varsity cheerleader at a large AAAAAA public high school in Gwinnett County, no one was surprised when she accomplished yet another goal. Malerie had competed and won awards in the Special Olympics for years. She had been a member of the junior varsity cheerleading squad for years as well, but the one accomplishment that was missing from her personal resume was earning a varsity letter. 

Once again, mission accomplished.

Her next goal after high school?  College. She would like to attend the University of Georgia, and hopes to one day cheer on the Bulldogs from the sidelines at Sanford Stadium. 

And if we've learned anything, we've learned not to doubt her.

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