Inside a closet, tucked away at Lindale High School, you'll find a variety of clothing, shoes, jeans and a picture in a frame on the wall of a beautiful smiling red-headed girl named Andrea.
"She just came in with this beautiful smile, fiery red hair, and that earned her the nickname red," said Lindale High School teacher, Stacie Wheeler.
But, hidden behind her smile, the many struggles she faced over the years.
Mrs. Wheeler met Andrea in 2013, when Andrea was struggling with her schoolwork. Over time, she would realize that wasn't the only thing Andrea was struggling with.
"What became clear to me is that she until she was having her basic needs met at home, she wouldn't be able to function academically," says Wheeler.
Andrea was not only struggling with what 16% of East Texans struggle with every day, but health issues as well.
"Very quickly we realized that we need to come at this kid in a different way, and show love differently," says Wheeler.
A different love that Stacie grew to understand was something a lot of students were needing.
"I realized is there are needs all around us. There are kids that are coming to school hungry, cold, who don’t have adequate clothing," says Wheeler. "To me that’s not acceptable.”
In 2017, just a year after Andrea graduated, Stacie received news of her passing and wanted to do something in her honor.
So, she created "Andrea's Closet".
“A place where students can come who have a need for clothing, or for toiletries, for shoes." says Wheeler. "If a need is recognized by a teacher a student will be invited to come shop in the closet.”
Students will walk into "Andrea's Closet" and pick items to fill their needs - all because of one smiling, beautiful red-headed girl.
The items are donated by staff at Lindale High School, but Wheeler says anyone in the community can donate clothing or money to purchase clothing and other items.
If you'd like to help "Andrea's Closet" contact Lindale High School.