ROCKSPRINGS — The Meigs High School Class of 2019 is a record-setting one with a total of eight valedictorians topping the graduating class.
Valedictorians are Cole Dillon Durst, Lydia Elise Edwards, Madison Lynn Fields, Allison Grace Hanstine, Evan Edward Hennington, Hayley Gabrielle Lathey, Shalynn Marie Dawn Mitchell, and Marissa Lynn Noble.
The Salutatorian is Matthew James Jackson.
This is believed to be the most valedictorians for any graduating class at Meigs High School.
As part of the graduation ceremony, Class of 2002 Meigs graduate Evan Shaw has been working with the valedictorians and salutatorian on a special project which will be unveiled during the ceremony.
The close knit group of students explained that they had known that there were several at the top of the class for a while and that they encouraged one another to continue their hard work moving throughout their senior year.
“If you want to go fast go alone; If you want to go far go together,” said Mitchell, quoting an African Proverb.
“I am thankful to share this experience with everyone else,” said Hanstine. “We are a close group and hold each other accountable.”
Noble echoed those sentiments, stating, ” I am thankful to have been given this opportunity and experience with close friends, teachers and guidance counselors.”
The students were not only thankful for those who have been on this journey with them, but those who have helped along the way.
“I am thankful that I got to experience this, it has been fun,” said Edwards. “I am thankful for the teachers who have shaped us to be the hard working individuals that brought us here today.”
Hennington added, that he is “thankful for the people I meet and spent time with through activities. Don’t be afraid to participate in things and put yourself out there.”
Fields added, “I am thankful for the teachers, my parents and everyone who helped me to be who I am.”
“Remember the people — closest friends, teachers, guidance counselors, staff — they are the ones that make school great,” said Durst of what makes his time at Meigs memorable.
“What is most memorable about Meigs is the people I have had the opportunity to grow up with,” said Lathey. “I am thankful for close friends and teachers who have helped shape who I have become.”
“This (Meigs) is where we met our closest friends. I will remember everyone and hope we stay in touch,” said Fields.
Jackson shared some words of wisdom for those coming behind the Class of 2019. “Nothing in life is ever given to you it is all earned through hard work and dedication,” said the salutatorian.
Durst, of Middleport, is the son of Jimmy Durst and Pam Trussell. He plans to attend Ohio University to become a Nurse Practitioner. Durst is the recipient of the OHIO Signature Award and the Susan Park Scholarship. He was the American Legion Americanism and Government Test State Winner and the American Legion Constitutional Oratorical second place state winner. He has been involved in National Honor Society, Class President, Student Council President and Northbend Students Worship Leader.
Edwards, of Syracuse, is the daughter of Heather Fry-Bentley and John Bentley. She plans to attend Ohio Dominican University to major in Biomedical Engineering. Edwards is the recipient of the Ohio Dominican Honors Program Scholarship for four years full tuition. She has attended the OASC/iBelieve Leadership Camp and Regional Scholars Camp. Edwards has been involved in the National Honor Society, Student Council (vice president), class treasurer, Rough Riders 4-H Club (President), Meigs County Junior Fair Board, Animal Care Club and New Beginnings Youth Group.
Fields, of Pomeroy, is the daughter of Terry and Jodi Fields. She plans to attend the University of Rio Grande to major in diagnostic medical sonography. Fields is the recipient of the Jake Bapst two year full tuition scholarship and the Bernard V. Fultz Scholarship. She has been involved in basketball, volleyball, track and field and National Honor Society.
Hanstine, of Pomeroy, is the daughter of Thomas and Sally Hanstine. She plans to attend Marietta College and major in sports medicine. Hanstine is the recipient of the Holzer Science Award ($500), 1835 Founders Scholarship ($25,000), Foundation for Appalachian Ohio Scholarship ($500) and the Educational Talent Search Scholarship ($3,000). She has been involved in track and field, National Honor Society and the Carmel Sutton United Methodist Church Youth Group.
Hennington, of Langsville, is the son of Billie and Scott Hennington. He plans to attend Ohio State University and major in political science. Hennington is the recipient of the Land Grant (full tuition) Scholarship. He is a former class officer, National Honor Society President, a member of Quiz Bowl and the Drama Club.
Lathey, of Vinton, is the daughter of Greg and Elizabeth Lathey. She plans to attend Capital University to major in education. Lathey is the recipient of the $24,000 Presidential Scholarship from Capital University. She has been involved in band, drama and the Rodney Pike Church of God.
Mitchell, of Rutland, is the daughter of Misty and David Mitchell. She plans to attend Mount St. Joseph for nursing and business. Mitchell is the recipient of the Mount St. Joseph Scholarship in the amount of $18,000 per year. She has been involved in student council, prom committee, National Honor Society, volunteering at the Mulberry Community Center, Farmers Bank Junior Board of Directors, New Beginnings United Methodist Church, softball and golf.
Noble, of Shade, is the daughter of Jeff and Lana Noble. She plans to attend Ohio University to major in nursing. Noble is the recipient of the Ohio Distinction, Ohio Success and Ohio Pathway scholarships. She has been involved in basketball, volleyball, cross country and the Carmel-Sutton United Methodist Church Youth Group.
Jackson, of Pomeroy, is the son of David Jackson and Tricia Adams. He plans to attend Mount Vernon Nazarene University to major in accounting for his Bachelor’s Degree and earn a Master’s in Business Administration. He is the recipient of the $15,000 Heritage Scholarship and the 1967 Brownell Avenue Graduate Scholarship. He has been involved in track and field, National Honor Society, NOLA Mission Trip and New Life Lutheran Church.
Meigs High School Senior Awards will be held at 8 a.m. on Wednesday, May 22 with graduation to take place at 8 p.m. on Friday, May 24.
Sarah Hawley is the managing editor of The Daily Sentinel