Hillsboro VFW Post 9094 awarded $450 in prize money, along with recognition certificates, to six Highland County students who had winning essays in the annual “Voice of Democracy” and “Patriot’s Pen” competitions.
The ceremony honoring the six students and their families took place Friday evening at the VFW post in Hillsboro.
Shirley Wilkin, committee chair for VFW Auxiliary 9094, told The Times-Gazette the Patriot’s Pen essay contest was for students in grades 6-8, with Brianna Hill, an eighth-grader from Whiteoak Jr./Sr. High School winning first place. Second and third place honors went to Kyle Hoskins and Emma Robb, both from Hillsboro Christian Academy and in the seventh and eighth grades, respectively.
In the Voice of Democracy competition, designed for high school students, first place went to Anne Throckmorton, a junior at Hillsboro High School; placing second and third were Jackson Lee Boggess and Charles Crusie, a sophomore and junior, respectively, at the Hillsboro Christian Academy.
The first place winners in each competition were presented with a check for $100 from the local VFW, with second place winners receiving $75, and $50 for third place.
Wilkin said the 44 entries that were received were evaluated by six judges selected from the community by Highland County Veterans Services Office Outreach Coordinator Stephanie Roland, with Throckmorton’s and Hill’s essays then forwarded to the VFW District 4 auxiliary chairman for district judging.
District 4 alone contains 12 counties, she said, and from all of the districts in Ohio, each district winner is then sent to the state judging competition, and from there winning essays go to national judging.
According to the VFW website, the first place national winner in the Patriot’s Pen competition wins $5,000 and an all-expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C., with the Voice of Democracy first place winner receiving a $30,000 scholarship paid directly to the recipient’s American university, college or vocational/technical school where they will be attending.
As for plans for the future, Hill said that she was undecided but wanted to pursue something related to either animals or sports medicine.
Throckmorton said she was more definite in her future education plans, indicating she wants to go to college to earn a degree in physical therapy.
Reach Tim Colliver at 937-402-2571.