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Gavin Parsley emerges from spelling bee as champion

Gavin Parsley spelled his way to the top at the Warren County District Spelling Bee Tuesday night.

The Irving College fifth-grader out-spelled the school district’s other top spellers to win a Chromebook. Parsley made it to this competition after first becoming Irving College’s spelling bee winner in December. Parsley prepped for the District Spelling Bee by practicing over 450 spelling words. 

Nine middle and elementary school students from across the county competed at the Warren County Middle School Tuesday night in an attempt to claim the top prize. The third round saw three contestants get eliminated. Seventh grader at Morrison Elementary School Willow Meade placed third and fifth-grader at West Elementary School Anslee Jones placed second. 

Jones and Parsley went back and forth for a few rounds before they had to spell the word “carillon,” which means a set of bells in a tower, played using a keyboard or by automatic mechanism similar to a piano roll. Jones misspelled the word and Parsley spelled it correctly along with “antigen” to become the new District Spelling Bee champion. 

Parsley will be representing Irving College as well as the Warren County School District in Knoxville at the regional Spelling Bee.