8th Grader Wins Johnston County Spelling Bee

From left are the top finishers in the 2018 Johnston County Spelling Bee: Hannah Villamar, third place; Cameron Glogower, champion; and Raymond Brown, second place.

Cameron Glowgower, an eighth grader at Southside Christian School, outlasted seventh grader Raymond Brown in a marathon duel to win the Johnston County Spelling Bee last Thursday. Glowgower advances to the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C. to be held in May.

Words like  “asthmogenic,” “waterzooi,” “kovsh,” “contrapuntal” and “Wagnerian” challenged the two spellers, but could not get the best of them. Finally after nearly three hours and 63 rounds the confident and steely Glowgower emerged the winner.

Middle school students from 16 Johnston County schools gathered on the Selma Elementary School Auditorium stage to compete for the opportunity to join other spellers from across the nation at the national bee.

Hannah Villamar, an eighth grader at Clayton Middle School, finished third. Brown, representing the Johnston County Home School Association, was making his second appearance at the county bee so it’s likely the young man will be back next year for his third attempt to make the nationals.

Other school champions who competed include: Drake Robertson, Archer Lodge Middle; Hannah Christensen, Benson Middle; Andrew Bianchi, Cleveland Middle; Courtney Lassiter, Four Oaks Middle; Lucas Medlin, McGee’s Crossroads Middle; Claire Massengill, Meadow School; John LePage, Neuse Charter; Tyler Gronendyke, North Johnston Middle; Zander McKay, Princeton Middle; Sophia Urzi, Riverwood Middle; Miranda Galindo-Martinez, Selma Middle; Jason Villanueva Lopez, Smithfield Middle; and Olivia Garvey, Swift Creek Middle.

This was the 10th consecutive year that the winner of the local bee earned an expense paid trip to Washington, D.C. The News and Observer is the major sponsor of the Johnston County Spelling Bee.

Other sponsors who make the trip Washington possible for the winner and his family are UNC Johnston Health, the Clayton Rotary Club, KS Bank, Four Oaks Bank/United Community Bank, the YMCA of Johnston County, the Johnston County Economic Development office, Hudson’s Hardware and Outdoor Power Equipment, the Clayton Chamber of Commerce, Chick-fil-A of Smithfield and Blackley’s Printing.