Jaydn Diaz, a senior at Ukiah High School and a player on the Girl’s Varsity Basketball team, recently received a nationally known award called Jersey Mike’s Naismith High School Basketball Courage Award.
Out of thousands of kids from the United States who applied for this award, Ukiah High School Jaydn Diaz was the young woman chosen to receive it. UHS News spoke to Diaz about her reaction to receiving this award.
In February 2023 a film crew came to Ukiah High to film a video about Diaz and celebrate her accomplishment. “It was pretty crazy to have a film crew come all the way to little Ukiah to film this video about me.” Daiz beamed, “These kinds of things never happen to people I know, let alone me.”
When the video was published, many of Diaz’s peers and community found out that she has a long-term illness that affects her bones called multiple hereditary exostoses and has received many surgeries over the past couple of years to combat this illness. Diaz also lost her mom a couple of years back to cancer. The documentary describes the hardships she has faced and how she has gotten through them and still plays basketball.
Diaz described receiving “a lot of questions about my condition and challenges I’ve faced when dealing with the loss of my mom.”
When asked how she would use the cash prize received with this award, Diaz decided to put it towards her college tuition in the fall.
With all the hardships and struggles that Diaz has faced, she continues to strive and play the game she loves.
Watch the documentary film about her below: