Murray County High School Alumni Association to add six people to Hall of Fame | Local News

On Sunday afternoon, November 20, the Murray County High School Alumni Association (MCHS) will add six to its prestigious Hall of Fame. The ceremony will begin at 2 p.m. in the meeting room of the Murray County Schools Pickering Administrative Center (Rock Building) on ​​Green Road.

The Hall of Fame was established in 1993 to honor former students and staff members who have achieved great success in chosen professions and/or have made outstanding contributions to the community. The 2022 inductees are Ethan Calhoun, Lamarr Henry, Blake Jackson, Jody Ridley, Arthur Jewell Vest and Toby Westmoreland.

Ethan Calhoun

Calhoun entered Murray County High School in 2005 and graduated four years later. While a student at Murray, he belonged to FFA, Beta Club and Drama. Today, he attributes much of his ability and confidence as a public speaker to the skills he honed under the guidance of Melissa Adams during the MCHS production of “Bus Stop” in a one-act competition. While in high school, he also worked as a tour guide and all-weather man at Chief Vann House.

He is currently employed as Deputy Director of Planning at the Northwest Georgia Regional Commission in Rome. He was hired in 2015, quickly earned promotions and captured the attention of people across the state for his work helping small towns achieve their economic development and planning goals with limited resources.

In 2021, he was selected as one of Georgia’s “Best 40 Under 40” by Georgia Trend magazine, which honors the state’s best and brightest young leaders. He feels lucky to be able to stay in Northwest Georgia and play a role in the development of so many communities.

He now resides at Lake Weiss in Center, Alabama, but is a trustee of Friends of Vann House. Important family members to him are parents Wayne and Petra Calhoun; grandparents Edward and Willie Calhoun and Tommie Headrick; uncles and aunts Chuck and Connie Stafford, Jack and Yvette Franklin, and Robert and Loryo Calhoun. Two friends and mentors are Tim Howard and Jeff Stancil.

Henry Lamar

Henry graduated from MCHS in 1960. He was employed in the Murray County Schools system for many years and retired as principal of Spring Place Elementary. He was an outstanding basketball player at MCHS. The team won the state championship its senior year. He received a scholarship to Auburn University and played there for four years, graduating in 1964.

Her parents, Dane and Daisy Henry, were the most influential people of her formative years. Others were MCHS basketball coach Kenneth Ross and agriculture professor GI Maddox along with Auburn basketball coach Joel Eaves. Special friends in high school who were also influential on him included Greg Springfield, Wayne Graves and Selwyn Cochran.

Close family members are his wife Betty, his children Kevin and Lisa and his grandsons Henry and Charlie. Today, Lamarr and Betty live on the Henry Farm in northwest Murray County.

Blake Jackson

Jackson attended Murray County High School from 1995 until graduation in 1999. He is the son of Collian and Kay Jackson of Chatsworth and currently resides in Chelsea, Massachusetts, a suburb of the Boston metro area.

While at Murray High, he participated in many activities. Music was a big part of his life and he spent four years in brass bands and symphony orchestras. play the clarinet. He was in the orchestra during the production of “Brigadoon” and he was active in the Beta Club, National Honor Society, student government, and VOCA while holding a part-time job. He said: “Nothing compares to Friday football at Chatsworth, playing in the band and dancing after the game.”

Since leaving Murray, he has been amazed at the quality of the education he received at school. His teachers really cared and were passionate about what they were teaching. The most notable teachers are Linda Lunsford (English), Dean Donehoo (History), Fred Sylvester III (Music), Rick Chapman (Writing) and Jerry Ryan (Spanish). These and more made his time at Murray High memorable.

He is an award-winning architect, famous for his “green” designs. He is Director of Sustainable Development at NORR, an integrated architecture and engineering firm headquartered in Toronto.

Jody Riley

Ridley, another 1960 graduate of Murray County High School, is the son of Murphy and Irene Ridley. Married to his late wife Margaret for 59 years, he is the father of Anthony (Janice) Ridley and Kim (Shane) Craven. They also have three grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

He had a 36-year career in stock car racing. He was an outstanding pilot and received many awards and honors during this time and since. He was the 1980 NASCAR Rookie of the Year for the Winston Cup and winner of the NASCAR Winston Cup and Mason-Dixon 500 in 1981. He was a six-time NASCAR All-Pro National Champion (1987-89 and 1991-93 ). He was also NASCAR All-Pro’s most popular driver three times and the Hooters Pro Cup’s most popular driver in 1996. He has 580 wins in 17 states across the country. He was inducted into the Georgia Racing Hall of Fame in 2007.

He had quite a career. Now retired, he enjoys cruising, restoring old cars and playing with the greats.

Arthur Jewell Vest

Vest attended Murray County High School from 1949 to 1954. After graduating in 1954, he joined the United States Air Force and served for 20 years. After retiring from the Air Force, he spent 16 years as a civilian Air Force employee, serving at the Pentagon and the Colorado Air Force Academy. He also taught at Park University and Del City High School, both in Oklahoma City.

In high school, he participated in many activities, including the Beta Club, the debate team, and college baseball. Three important teachers he remembers most fondly are CW Bradley, Mrs. Hill Jones and Lynn Daniel.

Vest earned three college degrees while serving his country: a Bachelor of Science in Social Studies from Southern Colorado in 1973 and a Master of Arts in Political Science from Oklahoma State in 1980, then a Ph.D. as well.

His immediate family consists of his wife Janice, two daughters, grandchildren and three sisters. He is now retired and lives in Weatherford, Texas.

Toby Westmoreland

Westmoreland attended MCHS from 1987 to 1991. Son of Tut and Linda Westmoreland, he has four siblings and has lived his entire life in Murray County.

While attending Murray High, he was involved in many activities, especially music and drama. He was in choir for all four years and competed in a one-act play competition his junior and senior male solo years. He appeared in several high school drama presentations such as “Little Shop of Horrors”, “The Music Man”, and “The Curious Savage”. He received the Best Actor and Most Talented Awards as well as the MCHS Faculty Scholarship for a Future Teacher.

He began his career in education as a paraprofessional while pursuing a college education. In 1997 he started teaching at Bagley Middle School and remained there for several years and also taught at Murray County High School twice. He served as vice-principal at Woodlawn Elementary from 2014-2016 and retired as an English teacher at Northwest Whitfield High School in 2018. He now teaches professional learning classes for Northwest Georgia RESA as well as other agencies and he was also an instructor for doctoral students. at Liberty University.

He also continued to use and share his musical talents with people across the region. Still active at Mount Carmel Baptist Church, he sang with traveling gospel groups and also organized community singing events to raise money for the MCHS Alumni Scholarship Fund, Linda Lunsford Scholarship and Friends of North Scholarship. Murray.

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