Junior high student again spells way to championship
An appearance at the state spelling bee is getting to be old hat for a Fort Leavenworth junior high school student.
Patton Junior High School student Zachary O'Bea won the Leavenworth County Spelling Bee for a third-straight year on Friday. Marita Meyer, a Lansing Middle School sixth-grader, was runner-up. Chelsea Harrington, a Lansing Middle School eighth-grader, finished in third place.
O'Bea, who received a $100 savings bond, qualified for the state competition on March 26 at Washburn University in Topeka.
He's finished as high as 11th place in his earlier appearances at the state bee.
"This is his third year and we're excited," said Rebecca O'Bea, Zachary's mother.
Meyer received a $50 savings bond, and Harrington received a dictionary.
Words in the county competition ranged from "miscellaneous" and "hierarchy" to "potpourri" and "buffet."
Afterward Meyer recalled the word she misspelled.
"I missed 'synopsis,'" she said, frowning.
Her error left the door open for O'Bea to correct the mistake and then accurately spell "tangerine" to win.
Tonganoxie Junior High School student Haley Field was among the final nine contestants, all of whom received medallions. All participants received gift packets that included restaurant coupons, pens, pencils and notepads. Other Lansing and Tonganoxie students at the bee included Mika Cummins, Lansing Intermediate School; Josh Martin, Lansing Middle School; Kelsey Dunning and Rachel Wood, Tonganoxie Elementary School; and T.J. Dohle, Tonganoxie Junior High School.