The winning word at the 2011 Union County Spelling Bee was ‘salami.’ A crowd of people gathered upstairs in the Union County Courthouse Monday night to hear the 21 contestants try their best to spell words that stem from all facets of life.
The winner was Austin Gafford, 12, a seventh grader at New Albany Middle School. Gafford is the son of Jeff and Rhonda Gafford. He will compete in the Mid-South Spelling Bee in Memphis, Tenn. in March 2011.
The second place winner was David Greer, 10, a fifth grader from West Union Attendance Center. He is the son of David and Amy Greer. The student who took third place was Charlsey Rowan, 10, a fifth grader from New Albany Elementary School. She is the daughter of Kevin and Kara Rowan.
The top five contestants were Jasmine Mosley, Briana Sweet, Charlsey Rowan, David Greer, and Austin Gafford.
The last nine words that the contestants had to spell were reticulated, cytoplasm, annexation, silhouette, pestilence, tempestuous, grotesqueness, regurgitate, and hermetically. Pat Kennedy was the pronouncer and the judges were Mellisa Broom, JoAnne Lesley, and Lecia Stubblefield.
After the spelling bee was over, Thurman Parrish and Mike Bennett from New Albany’s American Legion Auxiliary Potter-Henry-Lowery Post 72 and Unit 72 presented the first, second, and third place winners with savings bonds. Gafford received a $100 savings bond and Greer and Rowan each received a $50 savings bond.
The spelling bee participants are as follows: Kaleigh Carreon, Austin Gafford, Jack Hickey, Christopher Montgomery, Jasmine Mosley, Claireese Pannell, and Cameron Vandygriff, all of New Albany Middle School; Tucker Dees, Alan Elgin, and David Greer, all of West Union Attendance Center; Caroline Greer, Homer Stephens, and Vivian Taylor, all of Myrtle Attendance Center; Abbey Robbins, Briana Sweet, and Katelyn Thompson, all of Ingomar Attendance Center; Caroline Wigington and Colyn Wright, both of East Union Attendance Center. Not present were Alex Ball and Rometta Lombard, both of New Albany Middle School, and Kaitlyn Martin of East Union Attendance Center.
Sponsors for the 2011 Union County Spelling Bee were American Legion Auxiliary Potter-Henry-Lowery Post 72 and Unit 72, New Albany Junior Auxiliary, Something Special, Triple Play, BNA Bank. and BancorpSouth Bank.