Utah Valley State of Success

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Watch out Jackie Chan, here comes Provo’s Eric Nixon. Eric has participated in Taekwondo since 2004 at the Competitive Taekwondo Club in Lindon. At state competition in March, Eric took first place in his division. He has won gold in sparring in the Grand Master Kim’s Tournament and in the ‘05 and ‘06 Wasatch Junior Tournament.

Spanish Fork High School’s softball team won the 5A State Title in May. They played the Timpanogos Timberwolves and won 4-0. This is the team’s first state win since 2000. The head coach Don Andrews was born and raised in Spanish Fork and has been coaching the team for nine years. Don says this was a special team playing for a special person, long-time Spanish Fork softball supporter Larry Gardner (a.k.a. Moochie), who passed away in February.

At this year’s Hershey Track meet in Provo, Fotu Tolutau, who just completed fourth grade, took first place in the 50- and 100-meter dash. He also placed first in the softball throw competition, and this summer he’ll be competing in regionals.

At student career day’s annual landscaping competition held at BYU, Brian Henrie and his partner took second place out of 41 schools in the construction/landscaping division. They were given plans on the spot to build a planter/bench and were allotted one hour and 50 minutes to complete the task. Their win was one of many that helped BYU take 1st place overall in the competition. Brian resides in Springville and studies landscape and urban horticulture at BYU.

Sashleigha Williams was recently crowned Miss Pleasant Grove. She competed against 18 other young women to win the title. She is graduating from Pleasant Grove High School this year and will attend UVSC in the fall. She will compete in the Miss Utah Pageant next year.

On June 10, John and Margaret Nicol celebrated 70 years of marriage. They were married June 26, 1936 in the Salt Lake City LDS Temple. John and Margaret have six sons and one daughter, 24 grandchildren, 40 great-grandchildren, and two great-great-grandchildren. They have lived in Orem for 45 years and have traveled all around the world, including road trips across the United States and summers spent in a Volkswagen van touring through Europe. They have served two LDS Missions.

On May 29, 2006, Lydia O. Kirkpatrick Hallsey celebrated her 90th birthday. Lydia grew up in an adobe house in American Fork but recently moved to Lehi. Lydia is a talented pianist. She taught music for many years, and she can read music but she usually “plays from the heart.” She has been surrounded by wonderful neighbors and says she’s had a wonderful and very full life.
Joshua Jefferies, a Provo 5th grader, was nominated by his teacher Mrs. Hatch for overcoming an obstacle in his life. At the beginning of the year Joshua struggled with understanding math, but by the end of the year, because of his dedication, he scored 97 percent on the end-of-year test. On top of such a great score, Mrs. Hatch says she’s never had a better student helper.

Caleb Morales won the gold medal, which is the highest honor one can receive, at the Writer’s Olympics at Wasatch Elementary in Provo. His story about “Belac” (the author’s name spelled backwards), received stunning reviews from the judges and everyone that has read it.

Joshua Urguigua, a Provo 5th grader, scored in the top 10 percent in every area on the National Stanford Achievement Test. This is a huge accomplishment for any student and Joshua’s teacher raved about his constant efforts throughout the year.

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