POMEROY — The Meigs Alumni Association made quite a splash over the weekend at its “Reunion on the River” with recognition of distinguished alumni, band participation at the Meigs-Wellston game Friday night, marching in Saturday’s downtown parade, and taking their fun for kids to the parking lot all afternoon.
Following a tradition of the last three years, the Association recognized the accomplishments of outstanding Marauders. The ceremony was held pre-game before a packed grandstand. This year’s honorees recognized and presented large “M” emblems were Mike Chancey, Toney Dingess, Mary Holman Funk, Jennifer Buck Mouat, Scott Powell, and Milisa Rizer. Their achievements were announced as each one stepped forward in recognition of being selected as distinguished alumni.
Chancey, class of 1986, graduated as one of the greatest athletes in Meigs history with multiple individual records and team championships in football, basketball, and track. His success earned him a full scholarship to play football at Ohio State where he obtained his Bachelor’s Degree in Education. After working as graduate assistant football coach at Ohio University, Mike returned in 1993 to become the head football coach at Meigs High School and build on the foundation established by his father, Coach Charles Chancey. After 19 years, he retired from the position at Meigs High School this past year. Because of his loyalty to Meigs Local, success on the field, and the positive example of class and sportsmanship that his teams represented, the MLAA honored him as a one of the six Distinguished Alumnus.
Dingess was recognized for his distinguished service to Meigs Local. He is currently in his 25th year as the director of instrumental music for Meigs Local Schools. Under his direction, the Meigs Band has been consistently chosen to appear at OMEA State Finals for the last 22 years and, in 1996 the Meigs Band was a Top 10 finalist in “The Bands of America” Regional Championship. He has served as a conductor, adjudicator and a clinician throughout Ohio, West Virginia and Kentucky, one of the founding directors of the Big Bend Community Band. In t2010 Dingess was a guest conductor and clinician for the Marshall University Honors Band.
The late Mary Holman Funk, Class of 1969, was represented by her brother, Jim Holman, son Shawn Funk,and granddaughters Shelby and Bailey, for community service. She was credited with a strong work ethic and compassion for others, and was recognized during her residency in Columbus by Mayor Michael Coleman for founding the Harrison West Society, a community improvement organization. Since her death a playground has been developed there in her memory named by Mayor Coleman “Funkytown.”
Jennifer Buck Mouat, Class of 1990, received her Bachelor’s of Science in Communications from Ohio University in 1994. She currently serves as Vice President in Retail, Branch Administration, for JP Morgan Chase in Columbus. In 2006, Jenny’s life significantly changed when her daughter Gwen was diagnosed with Proponic Acidemia or PA - a rare metabolic disorder in which protein is only partially processed by the body. Jennifer chose to be proactive by establishing a fundraising program for PA named “Gwen for a Cure,” and has raised nearly $215,000 to help fund PA research. Through Gwen’s ongoing struggles, strength and courage, Jenny has been shown the true meaning of life.
Scott Powell, Class of 1987, received his Bachelor’s in Business Administration from Ohio University in 1991 and his Juris Doctor from the University of Detroit School of Law in 1994. Since 2003, he has served as the Meigs County Juvenile/Probate Judge and has taken a proactive approach in each Meigs County school district to improve attendance and curb drug use. He participates in the local Prayer Task Force and Opiate Task Force that sponsor public awareness programs. He received the Southeast Ohio IMPACT Person of the Year in 2011 for his efforts in drug prevention and awareness in our region. He currently serves on the Board of Directors at Hocking Valley Community Residential Center, a southeast Ohio youth facility serving 14 counties.
Milisa Rizer, Class of 1972, is an Associate Professor of Family Medicine at Ohio State and has served as lead physician of the Family Medicine Department. She was also instrumental in the implementation of electronic medical records there. Her accomplished efforts in this area earned her the position of first Chief Medical Information Officer at The Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center earlier this year. Milisa’s accomplishments in the medical field have been widely recognized as she has received numerous teaching and patient care awards and is a frequent presenter at medical conventions.
Making the presentations of distinguished alumni and service awards were Meigs Local Superintendent, Rusty Bookman; Meigs High School Principal, Steve Ohlinger; and Meigs Local Alumni Association Officers, Dru Reed, Jennifer Bartrum, Amy Blake and Erin Krawsczyn.
On Saturday the Marauder celebration moved to Pomeroy where alumni band members joined the field commanders, flag bearers, and instrumentalists to march in the downtown parade. There was a special social time on Court Street which was blocked from traffic, and exhibit and food booths on the parking lot along with inflatables for the children to enjoy.