Caylor wins Coweta spelling bee, now a 2-time champ

The final three competitors out of 25 in the Jan. 9 Coweta County Spelling Bee are honored above by the bee’s organizers and sponsor. Pictured, from left, are Coweta County curriculum directors Therese Reddekopp and Karen Barker, along with 3rd place winner Tevyn Fudge (Arnall Middle School), 1st place winner Natalie Caylor (Madras Middle School), 2nd place winner Dynahsty James (Lee Middle School) and Garnett Reynolds of BB&T Bank of Newnan, which sponsored this year’s bee. Photo/Special.

Madras Middle School student Natalie Caylor last week became a two-time top speller in Coweta County when she won Coweta County’s 2014 district-wide spelling bee held at the Centre for Performing and Visual Arts.

An 8th grade student from Madras Middle School, Caylor became Coweta’s 2014 spelling bee champion in the 20th round of the annual competition, said school system spokesman Dean Jackson. Caylor and runner-up Dynahsty James, a Lee Middle School 7th grader, sparred for the title in a spell-off that ended with Caylor correctly spelling “insinuate” and then “leonine” for the win, Jackson said.

Jackson said this year’s spelling bee winner and runner-up each received a Kindle reader provided by spelling bee sponsor BB&T of Newnan and awarded Jan. 9 by Garnett Reynolds of BB&T. 

Caylor and James emerged from a competition that began with 25 students from grades 4-8 representing all of Coweta County’s 19 elementary schools and six middle schools, said Jackson.
“It was amazing,” said Caylor, describing Thursday’s competition. “I’m really glad I was able to do this in my last year at Madras.”

“I am so happy for Natalie,” said Madras Principal Lorraine Johnson. “She is a great student and a real leader at our school.”

Jackson said this was the second time that Caylor has won the county’s annual spelling bee. 

“She first became the county’s champion speller in 2011, as a 5th grader at Arbor Springs Elementary School,” said Jackson.

This year’s 3rd place winner Tevyn Fudge was similarly Coweta County’s 2012 winner, and the 2011 runner-up for the title, when he was a student at Welch Elementary School.

Mastery over words also seems to run in families.  Fudge’s little brother, 5th grader Tyrell Fudge, represented Jefferson Parkway Elementary as his school’s champion, and Caylor’s little sister, 5th grader Rebecca Caylor, competed as Arbor Springs Elementary School’s champion at this year’s county bee.

Principal Leigh Munson of Eastside Elementary School, Dr. Jan Franks, of Arnall Middle School, and Dr. Christi Hildebrand of Elm Street Elementary School served as judges and Jackson served as pronouncer, for Tuesday’s spelling bee.

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