River Blank & 16 NRHS Students: Beth Webster Leading Lions

The February recipients of the Beth Webster Leading Lion Award are River Blank from Monroe Elementary School and a group of New Richmond High School students who helped the food service department when a freezer failed.

River Blank

River Blank receives Leading Lions awardAs the Cincinnati Bengals made history winning the AFC Championship and advancing to the Super Bowl, River Blank’s love for the football team earned him a lot of attention. Local media did stories on him and his family. Legendary football hero Ickey Woods paid River a visit at Monroe Elementary School. And then, River was surprised when Gold Star Chili and the Pepsi Co. teamed up and gifted him a trip to the Super Bowl.

While managing media attention is a challenge for most people, River handled it with style and grace. Principal Dr. Jamie Kunz met River well before the Bengals run for the Super Bowl. She recalled the first time she met him in 2019. River was playing football. He ran the ball for at least 40 yards, blocked by his teammates as everyone, including the opposing team, cheered wildly. It’s a pretty exciting kind of moment at any youth football game. The moment was especially poignant given that River has a rare condition known as infantile scoliosis and has endured five major surgeries and been cast over 30 times.

That’s when she said that she realized that there is nothing that could slow him down. For these reasons and many more, Dr. Kunz nominated River as a February Beth Weber Leading Lions.

NRHS Heroes

NRHS students receive Leading Lions AwardOccasionally, freezers fail for the Food Service Department. When this happens, Food Service Director Brenda Young needs help fast with moving food from one freezer to another. Often coming to her aid are New Richmond High School students, as was the case recently.

In appreciation of their help, Mrs. Young recognized the following as Beth Webster Leading Lions for February: Eli Brazeal, Gabe Delgado, Brody Dittman, Kaleb Frasure, Grant Harrison, Andrew Hawkins, Ben Isbell, Cohen Manning, Brady Merz, Sean Miller, Evan Moore, Cayden Napier, Colton Pope, Jack Thompson, Wyatt Thompson, and Tytus Wilson.

In addition to recognition as Leading Lions, the students also received community service hours for their effort.

You can see the presentations here: https://youtu.be/lBFO5ubHq5Y?t=83 

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