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Peck protégé found alive

Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune

MUSD Superintendent Todd Lile introduces Yolanda Martinez Williams to his executive cabinet.


Last week, The Madera Tribune learned that movie star Gregory Peck had once given a talk to students at Madera High School. The event took place in April 1964.

We also learned that Peck was highly impressed with the students, especially senior Yolanda Martinez. The Tribune went right to work investigating this phenomenon, and discovered that Peck was so taken with Martinez that he was still singing her praises six months later in speeches in other cities in California, like San Mateo.

This put the young Maderan, daughter of John Martinez, on our quest list, along with Peck. We wanted to know more about the young scholar who had represented Madera so admirably. Alas, word came that Yolanda was deceased. This, of course brought a heavy dose of disappointment, so we continued to explore Peck’s visit to MUHS.


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