Overton student Rosalyn DMello wins district spelling bee

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, December 1, 2009

By Lee Ann Sides Garrett
Inane ó i-n-a-n-e: lacking sense, significance or ideas; silly, empty, void.
The Rowan-Salisbury School System Spelling Bee was far from inane, but Rosalyn DMello, a fifth-grader from Overton Elementary School, easily spelled the word to become the 2009 Spelling Bee Champion. Eli Bostian from Erwin Middle School placed second.
The bee, held Thursday in the Rowan-Cabarrus Community College teaching auditorium, progressed quickly, with 18 of the 27 participants falling out in the first three rounds. Complicated words like umlaut, igneous, etymology and fletcherism tripped up even the most confident spellers.
Third-place winner Augusta Shaver misspelled cachet in the eighth round, while DMello correctly spelled dyslexia and Bostian aced the word metaphor. Bostian struggled with eclectic in the ninth round. DMello correctly spelled the word and confidently spelled inane to win.
“I was pretty surprised,” DMello said. “I didn’t think I would get that far.”
DMello, who turns 11 on Saturday, said alderman was the word she struggled with the most.
Shaver, the third-place winner, attends Corriher-Lipe Middle School. Susannah Horton of Mount Ulla Elementary placed fourth.
All winners and participants received prize packs put together by the Rowan Business Alliance Association Foundation totalling over $3,100. As winner, DMello receives a $500 academic scholarship from the foundation, a $250 U.S. savings bond from the Rowan Business Alliance, a $100 donation to the school media center in her name, a one-year free membership to the YMCA and $50 cash.
Second, third and fourth places all received savings bonds, a donation to their schools’ media centers in their name and a one-year free membership to the YMCA.
Each participant received a trophy, a case of Cheerwine from Cheerwine Bottling Company, Chic-Fil-A savings coupons and a free miniature golf pass to Dan Nicholas Park.
Master of ceremonies Dr. Karl Hales, a retired Catawba College professor, praised the participants for their “hard work and determination.”
“They are all winners,” Hales said.
Susana DMello, Rosalyn’s mother, said she wasn’t too surprised at Rosalyn’s win.
“She seemed really confident and her confidence grew as the competition went on,” Susana said. “I am on top of the world.”
Despite her seemingly calm appearance, Rosalyn says she wasn’t at all.
“I was very nervous,” she said. “I was shaking.”
Susana, who works for the school system, said she hopes Rosalyn’s win will be an inspiration for all kids.
“I have been telling children the power of possibility is endless,” she said.
DMello will compete in the regional bee in Winston-Salem on March 22.