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Youth Spotlight: Melayna Medina Eaton

Updated: Apr 1, 2022

Written by Michele Zoller, Operations Manager

Identity can be an interesting path to explore for anyone, especially adolescents. Melayna Medina Eaton has grown up in Gypsum and is a freshman at Eagle Valley High School. To Melayna, family comes first and her family is rich in heritage, coming from both Mexican and Cherokee descent. She has two brothers- a senior at Eagle Valley High School and another at Gypsum Creek Middle School. She is very interested in exploring her Cherokee background through her grandmother and ancestors who started a museum in Oklahoma.

Melayna is teaching herself the Cherokee language as well as taking Spanish in her high school classes. She looks to her grandmother Deena as a mentor and her biggest supporter. Melayna is taking this knowledge from her grandmother and trying to figure out who she is, who she wants to become, and what she wants to do in her community and her future career.

Melayna is tremendously well-rounded in her extracurricular activities playing basketball, cross country, and track as well. She embraces a deep interest in the creative arts and music, playing the electric and acoustic guitar and teaching herself the Cherokee Flute. Her love of the arts has pointed her in the direction of pursuing a future career in Digital Design.

In the community, Melayna is involved with Young Life as well as Valley’s Voice thru Mountain Youth. She loves being involved and making new connections; this makes her the happiest. She really hopes the Gypsum community comes together to continue to create opportunities for more events and to get to know more people. Melayna has an interest in Trauma Based Therapy and would love to get more training in helping others that have experienced trauma. This training has sparked a new idea for Melayna. She has conceptualized a Valley’s Voice passion project of starting a peer group where those who have experienced trauma have a safe space among peers to talk and form a community where no one has a feeling of being alone.

Melayna is a bright hard-working student with a great future ahead of her and a heart to help others along the way. We are proud of you and cannot wait to follow your path!

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