TROY — Swooping in with skills that would wow the most scholarly of academics, fifth-grader Abraham Cherian of Concord Elementary took home the championship trophy for the Troy District Spelling Bee on Thursday at Troy High School.
Serving as judges were Amy Long of Troy City Schools, Katy Cullis of Miami Montessori School, Katy Miller of St. Patrick School, and Nancy Johnson and John Gibbons, who are both retired from Troy City Schools.
Michael Rasey served as pronouncer, delivering words to each contestant with accompanying origin, definition, and usage in a sentence upon request of the participant.
In rounds nine, ten, and eleven, Abraham Cherian went head-to-head with sixth-grader Jude Wright of Van Cleve Elementary, spelling words like “miracle, “contagious”, “alacrity”, “orchids”, and “calamine”. It was only in Wright’s slight stumble on the word “despondency” that allowed Cherian a chance at a championship word – “azalea”.
It was the first Troy District Spelling Bee victory for Cherian, and the fifth-grader expressed great joy in his triumphant win.
“I’m very happy,” said Cherian. “I give most of the glory to God, and I also want to thank my Mom for helping me study the words.”
“I’ve done the bee before, but this is the first year I’ve won,” said Wright, who received first runner-up. “I feel glad, but the attention is overwhelming. I’m happy to get second place to give another person a chance to shine.”
Other competing participants, listed alphabetically, included Bilal Cheema (Miami Montessori School), Reagan Duff (Kyle Elementary), Olivia Johnston (Troy Junior High), Joseph Pannapara (St. Patrick School), Deanna Rohlfs (Forest Elementary), Alexandra Schieltz (Cookson Elementary), Rozlyn Schilling (Heywood Elementary), Dane Schlagetter (Hook Elementary), Sadie Stout (Troy Christian Elementary), and Carys Williams (Troy Junior High).
“The winner of tonight’s Spelling Bee is our city champion,” announced Mayor Mike Beamish, who served as emcee at the event. “Each of our district winners participating tonight will have the opportunity to take a 50-word test to advance to the next level of the Dayton-area Spelling Bee. Between Jan. 20 and Feb. 5, every one of them can enter in that.”
A date and location for the next bee is yet to be determined, and will be announced at a future date.
For more information on local school events, visit www.troy.k12.oh.us.