"I come from a family of 8. I was the oldest. We all lived together in a garage," Luz says. "My father was very violent with everyone; we all walked on eggshells around him. We were beaten a lot. Guadalupe was a 1 1/2. My father just picked her up and threw her to the wall and that's when she died."
Her father buried Guadalupe in the forest and forced his family to help. He also killed her 5-year-old stepbrother, Ernesto. "My father was sentenced to the death penalty. My mom was in prison. She was deported. After everything happened, we were sent to live in a foster home. The county wanted to put the twins in adoption. I panicked."
At 11 years old, Luz obtained a lawyer and fought to keep her family together. She also took her plight to the media. "I moved a lot of people and they actually let me stay with the kids," she says.
Now 18, Luz wants to go away to college, but is unsure if she can handle being separated from her siblings. "Dr. Phil, what do I do about the guilt that I have about leaving my family behind and going to college?"
Telling Dr. Phil that she fears her family will be split up if she leaves, Luz says, "It's hard for me to let go and I don't know if I'm doing the right thing."
"Yes, I do," Luz replies.
"My opinion about that is that you absolutely have to do that," Dr. Phil urges, as the audience applauds. "You have to go to college and continue to develop, and that will give you the power in a professional career to continue to help them as well as to use your life in helping others. Does it make sense what I'm saying?"
Luz answers, "Yes, it does."
Dr. Lyons says, "Luz, you are a remarkable woman whose presence
Bringing Luz' support system on stage, Dr. Phil clarifies, "I want to be sure you heard everything here. You've been accepted to the university. They are granting you a four-year scholarship for room, board, tuition, books, fees " everything."
Dr. Phil has a final surprise for Luz, and walks her backstage to retrieve it: a 2004 Hyundai Accent.
As a crying Luz sits in her new car, Dr. Phil announces, "We want you to be able to get back and forth with all of your brothers and sisters ... and Shell Oil Company also wanted you to have $1,000 in free gas so you can get back and forth."
Since Luz doesn't have her driver's license yet, First Time Driver is going to give her driving lessons.
"Has there ever been a more deserving young woman than Luz?" Dr. Phil asks, and the audience applauds.