Colleen Fontenot, ORWFD President; Bob Botto, 5K Run/Walk Race Manager; Mayor Joe Landry, Mayor of Old River-Winfree; Katelyn Kelly, Winner of the Pfc Wesley R. Riggs Memorial Scholarship Award; Bob Allen, Senior Vice-President, Barbers Hill Bank a Branch of Anahuac National Bank; Madison Kelly, sister of Katelyn; Darrla Kelly, Mother of Katelyn; Tim Kelly, Father of Katelyn; and Jeanette Green, ORWFD Bakeoff Chairman.

Old River-Winfree Founders Day, sponsored by the City of Old River-Winfree is proud to announce Katelyn Kelly as the winner of the Pfc. Wesley R. Riggs Memorial Scholarship Award given to a graduating senior at Barbers Hill High School.

One of the items required in the Application for this scholarship was an Essay on the Legacy of Pfc Wesley R. Riggs. Katelyn’s Essay was on “The Importance of Volunteerism”. This essay hit right on the sacrifice made by our Military and their families. Katelyn shows a maturity and understanding of our First Line of Defense Volunteers that is far beyond her years.

An excerpt from Kelly’s essay will help you understand why she was chosen.

“What if no one answered the call to protect our country and the freedom that so many people take for granted. Pfc. Wesley R. Riggs answered that call to volunteer to serve in the United States Army. I am sure it was a proud day when he joined and when he graduated boot camp. I bet there was no fanfare or recognition outside of his and his family’s pride and sense of accomplishment.

Unfortunately, it has taken an attack on American soil and two wars for Americans to appreciate this country’s first responders and our volunteer military. After the September 11th attacks on the World Trade Towers, when we watched the brave men and women of the NYFD rush into those towers as everyone was running away, Americans have appreciated the bravery and celebrated our first responders all across our country. After the call by our President to these attacks and to defend our way of life, thousands of young Americans bravely answered the call to volunteer and fight to defend our freedom. No one volunteers to die, whether it is fighting a fire, answering a police call or serving in the Military in a hostile country. These brave men and women, like Pfc Riggs, have all been doing a job, a job they were genuinely proud of, and doing it to the best of their ability. God has a plan for all of us and he uses our lives for a greter purpose. I am thankful that men and women like Pfc Riggs have volunteered to serve in our Military, and while far too many have died in service to our country, I believe that they all served a special purpose under God’s guidance. I am sure Pfc. Riggs’ family all understand what his purpose was, and while they miss him each and every day, they are proud of his accomplishments and his service to our country.”

Katelyn plans to attend Lee College where she will aim toward a Career in Medicine as an Emergency Room Nurse.

Katelyn was awarded $1,160 toward her tuition, books, etc. The Scholarship Award is derived from the Old River-Winfree Founders Day 5K Run/Walk, sponsored by Barbers Hill Bank and the Auction of Pies, Cake, and Cupcakes from the Bakeoff Contest sponsored by Carnes Engineering.