Junior grew up in circus environment until age 9


Marcos Valetin standing his grandfather and a clown.

Courtney Russell, Reporter

Growing up, Junior Marcos Valentin is proud to say he had a unique childhood. He had the thrill of having parents that were a part of the “Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Traveling Elephants.”

“What I really liked about living in the circus was just traveling and…having a childhood that no one’s ever experienced,” Valentin said.

His father was working on lights and other odds and ends around the circus when he met his future wife. Not too long after the couple was together, Valentin’s mother became a seamstress for the men’s wardrobe, and she also helped out in the nursery. Eventually, Marcos Valentin was born into the family, and would grow up to be proud of his childhood.

“It’s made me more…open-minded to… interesting things as well as more focused on one thing as well as just being a kindhearted person,” Valentine said.

Valentin enjoyed the traveling aspect of living alongside the Ringling Bros. In total he has traveled to 44 states.

With all the traveling, it was necessary for Valentin to be homeschooled, which he says did not affect him growing up. The circus provided a private teacher for the children from kindergarten until eighth grade. He was homeschooled until he was nine years old when his family separated from the circus

Another thing Valentine says that he enjoyed was being able to see the backstage productions of the circus such as watching the rehearsals and seeing where the animals were caged. He made friends with the other kids being homeschooled, and Valentine says that they would have adventures after school.

“We would always…go around…we would always have these…small field trips,” Valentine said. “We would always go and like see some of  the performers practice.”