Friday, June 2, 2023

SHS Recognizes Top 10 Academic Students

Members of the Shelbyville High School Class of 2023 Top 10 and their families wait for the recognition program to begin on Wednesday.| photo by JACK BOYCE

Continuing an established tradition, students, their families and educators gathered Wednesday in the Shelbyville High School Golden Bear Room to recognize the Top 10 academic members of the Class of 2023 with a catered meal and speeches. The organization of this year’s event was spearheaded by assistant principals Bri Kompara and Jason Bass and treasurer Lori Creech, Principal Amy Dawson said. Superintendent Dr. Matt Vance and Assistant Superintendent Kathleen Miltz were also on hand, as were board members David Finkel and Curt Johnson, the latter pulling “double duty,” as Dawson termed it, in his roles as father of one of the honored students and board president.

Each of the 10 chose an influential teacher to speak on their behalf. The student introduced the teacher by explaining their positive influence, the teacher offered remarks, and both were given plaques.

Below is a list of each student, their honored educator in parentheses, and an excerpt of the educator’s comments.

10. Riley Lee (Educator: Katie Beyer, SHS counselor)

Beyer: “(Riley) was certainly one of my go-to students. I would consider her one of my quiet leaders. She had respect for her peers without being too pushy or demanding. What I love most about Miss Riley is how humble she is. She accepts compliments with grace and she's not boastful in her actions.”

9. William Haessig (Educator: Rebecca Elkins, SHS French teacher)

Elkins: “If you want what average people have, then you do what average people do, and you achieve what average people achieve. And if you want more than that, then you work like William…. William's family has stressed the importance of academics but more importantly, they have instilled morals and values in William that few high school students possess.”

8. Alyssa Matzke (Educator: Kristiaan Rawlings, SMS English teacher)

Rawlings: “(Alyssa’s mother, Stephanie) told me how impressed she has been watching Alyssa earn straight A’s while working four to five evenings a week and being on the cheer team. She said that - other than being worn out from watching your activities - you have made her job of raising you - and I quote - ‘easy peasy.’.... What impressed me about Alyssa is that she became a better student as the year went on, stronger as her career progressed. She reminds me of an Old Testament adage that says, ‘It’s not who puts on the armor who can boast, but who takes it off.’”

7. Ashlyn Clark (Educator: Doug Uehling, SHS English teacher)

Uehling: “One of the things I always stress in class is sincerity and thoughtfulness…. (Ashlyn is) a conscientious young lady, thoughtful, and an incredible writer…. She’s one of the best students, bar none, I’ve seen….and I could not be prouder of her.”

6. Jack Johnson (Educator: Jacob Shively, SHS Spanish teacher)

Shively: “Jack, I've really enjoyed many conversations with you and your siblings about your travels, ventures and even some humorous moments over the years ... .To be strong but humble, to have one foot in the community serving and the other exploring and learning about the world. To be well rounded, dependable and honest. To be strong in faith while practicing empathy for others and considering different ideas and perspectives. Strong but humble, whether it be on a soccer pitch or a volleyball court or any other sports field, Jack showed strength and determination.”

5. Jacob Childres (Graham Montgomery, SHS assistant band director)

Montgomery: “(Jacob is) a strong leader within our program by nature, and I don't know what we would do without him. He knows when it's time to have fun and be goofy, which he certainly can be, I’ve learned over the years, but he also knows when it's time to be serious and focused, and he leads by example to those around them….He has always been a leader regardless of his title, and does so without hesitation or seeking attention or recognition. He wants everyone to work hard and be concise and successful while still having fun in the process.”

4. Olivia Graham (Gregg Cory, SHS engineering and technology teacher)

Cory: (Olivia) always has a smile on her face. She tells me she had bad days, but I would have never known that; she's always smiling. I think Olivia is one of the young ladies who has helped encourage other young girls here in Shelbyville to get involved with our engineering program…. I know that the whole world is at your fingertips. You can accomplish anything you want to in life. I'm your biggest supporter, and I'm cheering for you every day.”

3. Emma Sandman (Rick Zimny, SHS math teacher)

Zimny: “Emma always shows dedication and desire in reaching goals that she sets for herself. She's very dependable and has a great deal of self-confidence. One of the things that impresses me most about Emma is not just her academics but all of her extracurricular activities that she does along with her academics…Emma is the real deal.”

2. Cooper Lay (Andrew Nance, SHS math teacher)

Nance: “Cooper absolutely loves learning, not just math, but all subjects, because he truly sees the value of knowledge. His critical thinking skills are top notch, especially in calculus. He's fast and efficient. And many times he comes up with different ways to find solutions that the rest of us hadn't even considered, and no matter how long it had been since we reviewed old concepts, his retention of the material was always incredible….I truly believe Cooper's joy is found in serving the needs of others before his own.”

1. Isabella Bradburn (Vince Bradburn, SHS social studies teacher)

V. Bradburn (aka, “Dadburn,” as Bella called him): “Being her father and her educator has been an honor and a special, special thing. And I don't take that for granted….Bella is humble, kind, sincere, organized, cautious, and compassionate. Her processing speed is incredible, and once something is learned or experienced, it is locked in forever. Even more impressively, she stores knowledge for the purpose of using and applying. I've been amazed at how well she can synthesize. Not only are her gifts and abilities exceptional and impressive, her desire to use them is commendable.”


  • The following building permits were filed in Shelbyville last month: new home construction on East Drive, Larkspur Lane and Breckenridge Way; new storage/maintenance building at Westar Mobile Home Park on Hale Road; and 10 new mobile homes with front and rear decks at 596 Chestnut St.
  • West Washington Street, from Harrison to Tompkins Street, will be closed this morning for Government Day and the Strawberry Festival on the Public Square. Both events begin at 11 a.m., with Government Day offering free hot dogs, chips and a drink, and Shelby Senior Services' annual Strawberry Festival offering strawberry shortcake and ice cream for $7. The Strawberry Festival will be held at W. Washington St. and the MHP Patio and drive-thru.
  • Shelbyville High School agriculture teacher Kaylene Huntsman was named one of 20 Indiana educators chosen to participante in a new Indiana Arts Commission program centered on bringing arts and creativity into the classroom. Huntsman will attend a series of sessions and receive immersive, hands-on training in connecting creativity to state standards, as well as an honorarium.
  • STATE NEWS: A new Indiana law requires welders of “structural steel” on public works projects to be certified by the American Welding Society, at least at the “base level,” known as the D1.1 certification. The requirement does not extend to welding done in the private sector. State agencies can set their own requirements for welders to work on their projects. The Indiana Department of Transportation often requires the D1.5 certification on its projects, which is a “step above” the D1.1, an INDOT official from told lawmakers during testimony earlier this year. (Indiana Public Media)

This Day in Shelby County History

2018: Shelbyville High School's Nick Brokering set the school squat record at 605 pounds. He credited the help of new strength and conditioning coach Royce Carlton.

2013: Shelbyville senior shortstop Chelsey Skipton and junior outfielder Allyson Conner were named to the 20-player Hoosier Heritage Conference's All-Conference Team.

Anna Juarez, 84, of Waldron, passed away. Juarez had taught junior high school language arts in Shelbyville for 25 years. She had held degrees from Franklin College and Indiana University.

2008: Loper Elementary was crowned city track and field champions, although Hendricks' Baily McComas was the only athlete to win four blue first-place ribbons. Loper's blue-ribbon winners were Kay Brokering (3), Gage Seaborn (2), Jorge Aranda (2), Miranda Wethington (2), Kaitlyn Borowitz (2), Katie Dodd and Betzy Suarez. Two records were broken at the event. Hendricks' 1,500-meter relay team of Alex Lubbe, Ericka Smith, Katie Lawson and Res Williams set a new mark and St. Joseph's Josh Kenkel broke the 400 record.

2003: Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Brown, of Elm St., celebrated 70 years of marriage. Mr. Brown had retired as general foreman at International Harvester Co. in Indianapolis. Mrs. Brown was a published poet. They were the parents of Kenny W. Brown and Marilyn Tungate. Mr. and Mrs. Keith Stickford celebrated 60 years of marriage. They were the parents of Linda Brandt and Calvin Stickford.

1998: Justin Berauer was named valedictorian of Waldron High School, with Lori Wisker earning salutatorian rank.

1993: Joshua Walton Sipes, 18, son of Anthony and Ann Sipes, was accepted to be a cadet at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y. Sipes had been recommended to the academy by U.S. Sen. Dan Coats and Richard Lugar as well as U.S. Rep. Phil Sharp.

1988: Bridges on both lanes of I-74 at State Road 44 had been closed for several months as construction crews rebuilt and widened the bridges and exit ramps.

Waldron Elementary sixth graders put on a "Hoosier Hospitality" program at elementary graduation. A newspaper photo showed students Anita Cunningham, Julie Harker, Adam Mahin, J.R. Ross, T.J. Edwards and Brian Buchanan driving a "race car" at the "Motor Speedway."

1983: Domino's Pizza announced plans to open a location in Shelbyville. Although they had plans for a 1,000 square foot block structure, they had yet to secure the land.

Despite multiple calls to the city expressing concern, the "funny-looking weeds growing along the ditches between McKay Road and McKinley Street are not, repeat, not, the kind which Cheech and Chong love," The Shelbyville News reported. Mayor Dan Theobald had confirmed the matter by having the plants taken to the state crime lab for inspection. "Despite quips made by some, city officials did not test the authenticity of the plants by smoking them themselves," the paper said.

1978: Mark Risley was appointed to the Shelbyville Central School board to succeed Betsy Stephan. Risley, 22, would be the youngest school board member. He had graduated in 1974, during which he served as senior class president. Risley was an advertising salesman and announcer at WSVL, vice president of the local Republican Club and the Shelby County representative for Senator Richard Lugar. Stephan had served since 1966. During her tenure, the high school had added a pool, a gym and auditorium, and two elementary schools had been built.

1973: Dr. Clarence Price, 81, Shelbyville chiropractor, died. A lifelong local resident, Price had been active in his practice until a recent illness.

Brick was added to the site of the new Salvation Army Citadel as construction progressed.

1968: Dr. Norman Willey, director of special education for the Shelbyville Central Schools system, accepted a position with Indiana Central College, to begin in the fall.

Sixteen local students received degrees from Indiana University, ranging from bachelor's degrees to doctorates: Joe Bernhardt, Dennis J. Bonner, Elizabeth Coulston, Patricia Branson Cromwell, Douglas Horton, Anita Junken Miller, Dorothy Miller, Larry Moberly, Dorothy Owens, Sandra Pherigo, William Pittman, Robert Silbert, Gail Sleeth, Ronald Weakley, Gary Creed, Sandra Shaw Howley, Douglas Hatton, Susan Hatton, Philip Hester and Gerald Solomon.

1963: Nelson Studio, which had opened the prior year at 10 E. Taylor St., added a gift shop to its portrait and commercial photography services.

W.S. Major Hospital's office received a certificate of merit award from the Indiana Blue Cross Hospital Service Plan for 100 percent accuracy in billing for the year. Accepting the award on behalf of the hospital were Betty Fuller, Mrs. Bill Holtel and Peggy DeMott. Only four out of 117 Indiana hospitals received the award.

1958: Jerry Bass, 17, a high-scoring guard on the Morristown Yellow Jacket basketball team, was named the No. 12 or alternate all-star for the Indiana high school team that would take on Kentucky. Bass had been the leading scorer in the county and for the conference two consecutive years.

1953: A Shelbyville News article featured Curtis Spaugh, who had started breeding, raising and selling "fancy chickens" 50 years prior, and had since expanded to offer antiques. Spaugh lived on Boggstown Road.

The old Methodist Protestant Church in Morristown was demolished to make way for a modern building. The oldest part of the church was 102 years old, with an addition that had been constructed in 1908. The massive floor beams to the church had been hewn from a single tree and shaped by hand. Marks of the tools used to shape the beams could still be seen. The building had not been used as a church for over 10 years and was owned by Walter Gillespie.

1948: The Dollar Market, a new grocery co-op owned by Don Fancher and Walter Christian, opened at the intersection of Amos Road and State Road 29. Members were allowed access for $1 per week.

1943: The parents of overseas Marine Corp soldier Cyrus Messmore became frantic after a call for them kept disconnecting and they were notified by police to come to the station for a telegram. The message turned out to be from their son, who was simply informing him he was back in the United States on furlough.

1938: Shelbyville High School senior Francis Cherry was awarded a special merit scholarship to Purdue University, renewable for four years if she maintained an A average.

Following repairs to Porter Pool, including caulking and installation of a filter system, the pool was slowly being filled for the summer. The city had also purchased 24 swimsuits of various sizes, available for rental.

1933: The largest local single claim on the record for damage done by dogs was filed in Shelby Township. Sixteen sheep had been killed and 18 injured on Frank Isley's farm. The loss was greater than the annual amount of dog tax collected.

1928: City Council announced the acceptance of bids for a new city hall, to replace the one that had burned down at the beginning of the year.

1923: The Federal System of Bakeries bought the business building at the northeast intersection of Harrison and Broadway Streets. The property was previously the location of the Ensminger and Schroeder Drug Store, and later Hoop Bros. Drug Store. It also once housed the Coza Theatre. The bakery would be managed by Robert Wright. He said a glass front would be installed along Harrison Street.


Robert Emerson Marshall, 91, of Shelbyville, passed away Tuesday, May 30, 2023, at Indiana University Health Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis. He was born August 29, 1931, in Shelbyville, the son of Lewis C. and Dorothy F. (Mahin) Marshall. On November 1, 1969, he married Karen Lou Keiter, and she survives. In addition to Karen, Robert is survived by his daughter, Mary D. Marshall of Valdosta, Georgia; and son, Matthew R. Marshall and wife, Rachel A. Cragun Marshall, of Valdosta; and grandchildren, Amelia Marshall, Colin Marshall and Adelaide Marshall. He was preceded in death by his parents.

In 1949, Robert graduated as the valedictorian of his senior class at Shelbyville High School. He obtained his undergraduate degree from Indiana University where he was a member of the Acacia Fraternity. Robert also attended Indiana University School of Law and received his Doctor of Jurisprudence degree in 1956. After graduation from Law School, he served as a Staff Judge Advocate in the U.S. Air Force for two years while stationed in Youngstown, OH. He returned to Shelbyville where he practiced law for over 50 years, retiring in 2009. Robert was a member of Lewis Creek Baptist Church, serving as Moderator and past Deacon, and a fifth generation Marshall to live in Shelby County. He also served in various roles within the Shelbyville Kiwanis Club, Shelbyville City Library Board, Elk's Club, and Murat Shrine Club. He was a member and past president of the Shelby County Bar Association; the Indiana State Bar Association where he served as past chairman of the publicity and public relations committees; the American Bar Association, Trial Lawyers Section; the American Association of Trial Lawyers; and the Indiana Trial Lawyers Association. He was a devout (and very vocal) fan of Indiana University Basketball as well as an avid golfer. He also leaves behind his granddogs, Paddington Bear and Foxx.

Visitation will be from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. Monday, June 5, 2023 at Freeman Family Funeral Homes and Crematory, Carmony-Ewing Chapel, 819 S. Harrison St. in Shelbyville. Funeral services will be at 11:30 a.m. Monday, at the funeral home, with Pastor Harvey Taylor officiating.Interment will be at Forest Hill Cemetery in Shelbyville. Memorial contributions may be made to the Lewis Creek Baptist Church, 1400 E 600 S, Waldron, Indiana 46182. Online condolences may be shared with Robert’s family at

Lawrence E. Rennekamp, 88, of Waldron, passed away Wednesday, May 31, 2023 at his residence. Born August 8, 1934 in Batesville, he was the son of Lawrence B. Rennekamp and RoseMarie Abplanalp. He married Joan M. (Andwan) Rennekamp on April 7, 1956 and she survives. Other survivors include five children: Daryl L. Rennekamp of Shelbyville, Donna (Tony) Smith of Morristown, Randal (Christina) Rennekamp of Pompano Beach, Florida, Susan (Joe) Wettrick of Shelbyville, Sandra (Randal) Grunkemeyer of Batesville; sister- Joan (Tom) Botts of Plainfield; 14 grandchildren, Christina Rennekamp, Karen Gates, Andrew Spurling, Dylan Smith, Heather Stark, Ryan Smith, Gregory Rennekamp, Leanna Rennekamp, Caleb Rennekamp, Jeffrey Rennekamp, Lisa Starost, Joni Wheeler, Ryan Grunkemeyer, Justin Grunkemeyer; and 12 great grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents and one brother, Jerome Rennekamp.

Mr. Rennekamp had lived in this area his entire lifetime and was a self-employed farmer and also worked for Ford Motor Company, retiring in 1992. He graduated from Batesville High School and was a member of the St. Vincent Catholic Church of Shelbyville. Lawrence enjoyed outdoor activities, including hunting, fishing, traveling, reading books, but most of all loved spending time with his family, especially his grandchildren.

Funeral services will be 10 a.m., Monday, June 5, 2023 at St. Vincent De Paul Catholic Church, with Father Paul Landwerlen officiating. Burial will be in St. Vincent De Paul Catholic Cemetery. Friends may call on Sunday eveningJune 4, 2023 from 4 - 8 p.m., with the rosary recited at 7 p.m., at Glenn E. George & Son Funeral Home, 437 Amos Road. Memorial donations can be made to the St. Vincent De Paul Catholic Church, in care of the funeral home. Online condolences may be shared at