Gorham Notes

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Trent Stevens, a Gorham Middle School eighth grader, reads his winning Madison Excellence in Writing essay to his great-grandfather, Oland Morton, a World War II veteran, in the lobby last week during the Gorham School Committee meeting.

Gorham Middle School Principal Robert Riley is flanked by Brady Smith and Grace Johnson,  runners-up in the James Madison Excellence in Writing contest sponsored by the Gorham Republican Committee in collaboration with the school.

Essay award winners

Winners of the 6th annual James Madison Excellence in Writing Award for middle school-aged students in Gorham were announced at last week’s School Committee meeting.

Eighth grader Trent Stevens was awarded $250 for first place; and Brady Smith and Grace Johnson each received $100 as the runners up.

The annual event is sponsored by the Gorham Republican Town Committee in conjunction with Gorham Middle School. This year’s essay topic was “If you lived when the Constitution was written, how would you have voted and why?”

Thirty-five students entered this year’s contest. Johnson and Smith read their essays at the School Committee meeting. Stevens was unavailable for the presentation, so Middle School Principal Robert Riley read his winning essay.

“All I can say is wow,” School Committee Chairman Darryl Wright said after listening to the essays.

After the official ceremony, Stevens read his essay in the lobby to his great-grandfather, Oland Morton, a 92-year-old World War II Navy veteran. Trent Stevens is the son of Greg and Dawn Stevens.

U.S. taxpayer debt

The Bureau of the Fiscal Service reported on Feb. 14 that the U.S. public debt was $22,015,608,446,497.27.