Senior Spotlight – Frankie Rodriquez


Christina Rodriquez

Senior Frankie Rodriquez and his 7th grade sister Crista show off their certificates from Morton Secondary School for making all A honor roll.

Valeria Vigil, For The Tribe

You have probably seen a green ’93 Chevy pickup parked outside the school.  Or maybe you have seen it driving around town.  That truck belongs to senior Frankie Rodriquez.  It is his prized possession.

Frankie spends a lot of his time outside of class working on that truck and others that come into his dad’s shop.  Frankie’s dad owns Westward Auto Repair & Customs here in Morton.

“I love my baby,” Frankie said.  “I like to spend as much time as I can cruisin’ and showing it off.”

But working on his truck is not all that Frankie likes to do.  He also spends a lot of time drawing and watching tv.  And when he’s at school, he spends a lot of time in the shop working on a modified 18-foot car hauler in his AG Mechanics.

“It’s going to carry two generator welders and an oxyfuel rig,” Frankie said. “It’s for the trailer building competitions.”

Frankie says it has enough space for the welders, but it has extra space too.

“The leftover space can be used to bring home the trailer we build in the competition,” Frankie said.  “I like this project, it’s a bigger challenge than last year.”

Frankie Rodriquez workingnon his truck
Senior Frankie Rodriquez works on his truck outside his home. (Christina Rodriquez)

Frankie plans on going to college.  His sight is set on South Plains College for Automotive Collision Repair, just like his dad.

“I hope one day to have my own shop, just like my Dad,” Frankie said.

However, he is really enjoying his senior year here at Morton.

“It’s pretty awesome,” Frankie said.  “I don’t have to stress about anything at school.”

Frankie’s family has been going through a tough time lately.  His thirteen-year-old sister Crista was diagnosed last February with cancer.  The past year has been a full schedule of doctors, hospitals, therapy, and treatment.

“Most of our time is focused on Crista,” Frankie said. “But we still have time for each other.”

The Morton community has stepped up and shown support for his family and for Crista as well.  Her story has been an amazing one, even covered by the Levelland newspaper.

“At times I worry about Crista,” Frankie said.  “But I reassure myself that everything will be OK, she is tough and will pull through.”

Frankie is also competing in UIL again this year.  Last year, before the shutdown for COVID, Frankie earned a third-place medal at Texas Tech in Science and was on the 2nd place Current Events Team.  He will be competing in both events again this year.

“I’m excited to see how well I’ll do this year,” Frankie said.

Frankie Rodriquez and Zeth Kozak in the AG shop
Seniors Frankie Rodriquez and Zeth Kozak work on their trailer project in the Morton AG shop. (Dr. Brian Reed)

Frankie is also active in the National Honor Society in addition to UIL and FFA.  He will also graduate at the top of his senior class.

In ten years, Frankie sees himself living in a decent-sized house and having his two current truck projects completely done.

“I hope to have a great house, my two trucks, and a family of my own.”