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Hays Free Press
Kyle, Texas
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June 8, 2011     Hays Free Press
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GONE WITH THE WIND Local couple volunteers to help tornado- ravaged town. + - Page 1C J Hays Free Press June 8, 2011 ii D Hays High's Adam Rayo completes family sweep of excellence BY JIM OUUJEN news@haysfreepress.com W ucen it comes to ademic excellence, st-graduated Hays High School senior Adam Rayo knows the territory- and has a family tradition to back it up. Adam just re- ceived the Gates Millennium Scholarship, an award that carries a dollar value of up to $20,000 a year- for four years. He will put it to good use, having been accepted to the University of Texas Mc- Combs School of Business, majoring in accounting. Make no mistake about it, this story starts and ends with Adam's noteworthy accomplishment. He was, in fact, among the top 10 percent of the Rebel graduat- ing class and stood as the top Hispanic student of the Class of 2011. His enthusiasm for a challenge led the standout math student to take every advanced math class offered at Hays High School, hay- ing taken a summer Algebra 2 class so he could take the final Calculus BC course this year. Adam was an active member of the Rebel Math Club and, not to be confused with someone concerned only with his own pursuits, volunteered with other club members twice a month at the Texan Nursing and Rehab facility in San Marcos. There he spent time with elderly residents, playing games with them to brighten their days. He also spent time as a member of the school's UIL Accounting Team. He's obviously a pretty incredible guy- one who's been appropriately awarded a national-level scholar- ship to take him through his higher education goals. But The ever-smiling (for good reason) Rayo family celebrates its fourth Hays High than 400 of his friends. The Rayo family, including (left to right) sisters Eva represent an awe-inspiring story of dedication in the face of adversity. Adam's story has another amazing level, one that goes back to the family tradi- tion mentioned earlier. The lightning of perfectly-struck achievement has happened not once, nor twice, but in- credibly- three times before in the Rayo family, Adam's older brother Nick and sisters Eva and Diana having walked very similar paths in recent years. Eva, in fact, was a Hays High Class of 2006 ~aduate and also a Gates Millennium Scholarship winner. She just graduated from the Univer- sity of Texas in Austin and is headed for graduate school at UT-Pan American. Nick (HHS Class of 2005) and Diana (HHS Class of 2009), too, have enjoyed aca- demic success. Nick received his degree from the Universi- ty of Texas School of Business and works as a hospital audi- tor for the state. Diana is cur- rently pursuing her degree at Texas State University. The words "amazing" and "incredible" have already PHOTO BY JIM CULLEH School graduation, the final ceremony honoring Adam Rayo and more and Diana, 2011 HHS graduate Adam, room Nancy, and brother Nick, been used to describe the talented, hard-working Rayo siblings, the above only the tip of four very large icebergs of achievement. But give these four stellar brothers and sisters the chance and it will be their mother, Nancy Rayo, to whom they give the credit. Nancy Rayo, who just completed her first year working for the Elm Grove Elementary School Day Care facility (10 previous years having been served at the Buda Methodist Church Day Care), is a single working morn. She has been for 12 years. Looking back is hard for Nancy Rayo, as she recalls ' the time when, pulled from the comfort of a formerly middle-class existence, she faced the prospect of raising her four children alone - and without the accustomed ben- efit of the support of a solid bread-winner. To the naive question of See FAMILY TWWITION, pg. 4B HCISD Summer Free Lunch Schedule Any local child under the age of 18 is eligible for free breakfast or lunch under the Summer Food Service Program at several Hays CISD schools on the fol- lowing schedule: Wallace Middle School, weekdays, June 6-August 5; breakfast 8:00-8:30 a.m., lunch 11:30 a.m.-noon Neglay Elementary ~.,heol, week- days, June 6-August 5; breakfast 8:00- 8:30 a.m., lunch 11:30 a.m.-noon Hernphill elementary School, week- days, June 8-July 1; breakfast 7:00-7:30 a.m., lunch 10:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m. Tobias Elementary ~hool, week- days, June 8-June 30; breakfast 7:00- 7:30 a.m., lunch 10:45 a.m.-11:30 p:m. Simon Middle School, weekdays, June 8-July 1; breakfast, 8:45-9:15 a.m., lunch 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Lehman High School, weekdays, June 8-July 20; breakfast 7:35-8:15 a.m., lunch 11:30 a.m.-noon Parents are welcome to eat with their children and will be charged a nominal price for their meals. PIIOTO BY JIM CW.LEN Cougars collect food for Food Bank Communities in Schools students at Chapa Middle School coordinated a caml~us food drive recently that brought in approximately 550 items to be donated to the Hays County Food Bank as a community service project. Jan Niokells' advisory class won the campus competition for the drive. Cougar students helping with the community service p)roject included Alec Hemandez, Kayla Bryson, Leslie Ma do~ado Oriel Gallegos, Bryan Ciprian, Amanda Facundo, Jose Ramirez, SamanthaCisneros Aulora Garrett and Josh Rogers. BY JIM CULLEN news@haysfreepress.com Four of Hays High School's fin- ~=st join a long tradition of Rebel representation at Girls and Boys ~tate this summer. The select group aeaded for the intensive experience ncludes Tyler Cullen for Boys State md Victoria Volker, Peyton Perez, md Payten Spielberger for Blue- )onnet Girls State. Tyler has joined )ther men from across the state at he University of Texas at Austin this reek. Victoria, Peyton and Payten lead for Girls State at Texas Luther- m University ]une 12-18. Sponsored by the American Le- gion, Boys State will offer Tyler an experience complete with govern- ing bodies and elected public offi- cials. Program materials note that "rather than classroom lectures and textbook learning, we emphasize participation and personal experi- ence in a model state." The Rebel girls will find a similar week, sponsored by the American Legion Auxiliary, at Bluebonnet Girls State. The program describes its site as "a mythical 51st state where, for a week, participants organize their own various city, county and state offices." They will introduce and de- bate their own bills in a mock legis- See GIRLS, BOYS STATE, pg. 4B PHOTO BY JIM CULLEN Hays High School is sending four seniors to Gids and Boys State this year. The select group in- cludes (left to right) Peyton Perez, Tyler Cullen, Victoria Volker and Payten Splelberger. Page 3B ( ' SCHOOL BRIEFS Last chance for Reb ads It's the last chance for Rebel boosters to purchase ads for the 2011 football program. Theresa Spong reports that this Friday, lune 10, is the deadline. Parents traditionally buy ads for their students and to grab this season's+ last chance, they should contact Rebe Deville at 312-2814 or any Hays High School cheerleader. Local state soloists soar The final UIL competi- tion of the year, the Texas State Solo and Ensemble Contest (TSSEC), is always staged on Memorial Day weekend and a number of Hays CISD choir and band students qualified to compete earlier this spring. First in with a glowing report is Hays High School's retiring choir director, Nan- cy Cavendish, whose final group of soloists soared. Senior soloists Clay Cooper and Luke Lea- mons finished off their stellar high school careers by notching 1st Division ratings and grabbing gold medals. They were joined in the Hays gold medal circle by juniors Ashley Kadjar and Ashley Loosier and sophomores Natalie Lyon, Arianna Martinez and Sydney Rye. Juniors Peyton Perez and Cassidy Gotcher and sophomore Paris Uch grabbed silver medals. Director Cavendish skill- fully guided countless stu- dents to TSSEC medals, as well as district, region and state individual awards, and a collection of UIL Concert and Sightreading trophies. She said simply- and characteristically- of her last award-winning contingent, "I was so proud of all of theml" Word has also arrived from the Hays High School Band contingent, where five Rebs were Silver Medal- ists, including Will Poep- pelmeyer, Paul Olgnin, Tina Heinrich, Pedro Baldems and Eric Lopez. art camp set The final summer art camp at Lehman High School is set for next week, June 13-17, at Lehman High School. Titled "Holiday Traditions from Around theWorld," the camp will feature themes such as St. Patrick's Day, Dia de los Muertos, Mardi Gras and Chinese NewYear. The camp costs $70, with a reduced fee of $50 for a second student (or for a student enrolled in this week's "A Week at Universal Studios" camp). Registra- tion is limited. For more in- formation contact teacher Debra Flyrm at flyrmd@ hayscisd.net or call 268- 8454, ext. 7652. officers named Spring tryouts for the 2011-2012 Hays High School Highstepper officers produced the following results for the tradition-rich, award-win- ning group: Kelsi Eckhardt, Captain; Rachel Harvey, Lieutenant Captain; Bianca Barrera, Senior Lieutenant; Allison Bailey, Chyloe Fife, and Erin Wies- er, ]unior Lieutenants; and Emily Beyer, Sophomore Lieutenant.