MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

October 12, 2013

Fort Gibson queen relishes excitement of event

All school queen says coronation plays second fiddle to state championship

By Cathy Spaulding
Phoenix Staff Writer

— FORT GIBSON — Excitement at being crowned Fort Gibson’s all school queen was one of many feelings Savannah Gray felt Friday.

And it was a long day.

“I woke up super early and did my hair, did my makeup,” Savannah said as friends crowded around her for congratulations. “The school kings and queens were dismissed from school.”

Savannah, daughter of Rodney and Denise Gray, was among 28 all school queen candidates, each representing a different high school organization.

Janet Freeling, a coordinator for Friday’s coronation, said this year had the most queen candidates ever.

“We added several new ones,” Freeling said, listing Special Olympics and Tiger Vision multimedia among the new entries.

Although each queen candidate rode in the parade and participated in the coronation, the all school queen was not announced until a ceremony before Friday night’s game against the Poteau Pirates.

Some other area schools announce their queen before the coronations.

Savannah, who represented basketball, said she likes the Fort Gibson version better.

“It’s more exciting,” she said. “I like it better than knowing ahead of time.”

Savannah said she especially liked riding in the town’s homecoming parade.

“It was exciting to see all the little kids cheering and waving,” she said. “It brought back memories.”

She felt different when she walked with her father down the middle of the football field Friday night.

“It was very sad,” she said. “I’m a senior, and I don’t want to leave home.”

Savannah’s father, Rodney Gray, admitted to similar feelings.

“I was a little nervous, to be honest,” he said. “I was kind of sad and proud at the same time.”

Even with all the day’s excitement, Savannah said the coronation was not the highlight of her high school career. She was a member of the 2013 state champion Fort Gibson Lady Tigers basketball team. She said she hopes to keep playing basketball, possibly at Oral Roberts University.

“This felt great,” Savannah said about the coronation. “But being state champion will always be number one.”

Reach Cathy Spaulding at (918) 684-2928 or cspaulding@muskogeephoenix.com.

Fort Gibson all school queen and court

• All school queen: Savannah Gray; escorts, Dakota Lashley and father, Rodney Gray.

• Yearbook: Alley Wimmer; escorts, Kevin Koel and brothers, Josh and Jake Wimmer.

• Wrestling: Cassidy Agee; escorts, Zac Peterson and father, Richard Agee.

• Winter guard: Courtney Williamson; escorts Stephen Edwards and father, Randy Williamson.

• Track: Shaye Hatchette; escorts Bennett Willis and father, Mike Hatchette.

• Tiger Vision multimedia and soccer: Ranya Januszewski and Sanya Januszewski; escorts Josh Pollard (Ranya), Wyatt Abbott, (Sanya) and their father, Adam Satterfield.

• Tiger Vision academy: Carlie Clark; escorts Caleb Cooper and father, Shawn Clark.

• Swimming: Leslie White; escorts, Brandon Walker and father, Adam White.

• Student council: Ashlee Barker; escorts Nick Burt and father, Jeff Skaggs.

• Special Olympics: Rileigh Stephens; escorts, Zach Sawyer and father, Tim Stephens.

• Softball: Fairon Beyers; escorts, Bubba Stone and father, Jeff Beyers.

• Select choir: Victoria Pearson; escorts, Matthew Springfield and father, John Pearson.

• National Honor Society: Erin Wilcox; escorts, Sheldon Smith and father, Gary Wilcox.

• National Art Honor Society: Madison Cook; escorts Hugo Ortiz and father, Steve Cook.

• History club: Katy Keane; escorts, Dalton Martin and father, Brian Keane.

• Golf: Kadrian Shelton; escorts, Wesley Jackson and father, Mike Shelton.

• Football: Gabrielle Little; escorts, Zach Drain and father, Glen Little.

• FFA: Morgan Craig; escorts, Markie Carmen and father, Bryan Craig.

• FCCLA: Savana Snyder; escorts, Micah Moles and father, Robert Snyder.

• Fastpitch: Brooke Benham; escorts, Daniel Mielnik and father, Jim Benham.

• Drama: Gracie Vanlandingham; escorts, Josh Daniel and father, Barrett Vanlandingham.

• Cross country: Kimber Goodwin; escorts Kade Rodgers and father, Clint Goodwin.

• Cheerleading: Ellen Cole; escorts, James Colb and father, Dr. Evan Cole.

• Baseball: Morgan Green; escorts, Tristan Johnson and father, Billy Green Jr.

• Band: Whitney Stroup; escorts, Cody Springfield and father, Mike Stroup.

• Alpha and Omega: Kala Morrison; escorts, Octavio Rodriguez and father, Jeff Morrison.

• APT: Ciera Steen; escorts, Pashoud VanZyl and father, Randal Steen.

• Flower girl: Emma Katherine Martin.

• Crown bearer: Dax Friend.