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Student of Character: Daniel Dietz

NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WGGB) — Daniel Dietz was 11-years-old when he picked up a yo-yo and discovered he had a real knack for it. Dietz soon started performing at events and making money, a lot of it.

Dietz is now ranked number one in Massachusetts and fourth in the country for yo-yoing. He’s sponsored by the company, One Drop Design, has a yo-yo named after him, and he wants to start a yo-yo company of his own one day.

At this point, he’s made a total of $40, 000. But it hasn’t gone into his pocket. It’s gone to Smile Train. The organization fixes children’s cleft pallets all around the world for free. He found out about the group from a brochure in the mail.

“Everyone was like, you should put your tip jar out and you can make a lot of money every time¬† yo-yoing. And I’m like an 11, 12-year-old kid. I don’t really need like that much money. And I got the brochure around the same time. I kind of wanted to do yo-yoing for an organization. Then, I kind of saw the kids with cleft pallets and that really got to me.”

Guidance Counselor Fred Itterly was the one to nominate Dietz.

“This guy really is putting together yo-yo, community service, competition and the person who he is in a way that’s so unique for me,” said Itterly. “I’ve never seen anyone like this before.”

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