Local 4-H delegate attends State 4-H Congress at Virginia Tech and earns blue ribbon

Published 4:35 pm Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Celia Brockway/Extension Agent

FRANKLIN—Carmyn Brown, a Southampton County 4-H Delegate, attended the 94th Virginia 4-H State Congress at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, from Monday, June 16 through Thursday, June 19.

Carmyn Brown, from Southampton County, represented 4-H as a delegate for the 94th Virginia 4-H State Congress at Virginia Tech. -- SUBMITTED

Carmyn Brown, from Southampton County, represented 4-H as a delegate for the 94th Virginia 4-H State Congress at Virginia Tech. — SUBMITTED

She received a blue ribbon for her presentation in the State 4-H Historical Competition. The theme of this year’s congress was “Celebrating the Past Making it Last: From a Short Course to a Long Path.” Carmyn was the only delegate representing Southampton County.

“4-H Congress was amazing,” she said. “I got to go to Virginia Tech in Blacksburg. This was pretty cool. It was my first year and I was the only delegate from Southampton County. I had the chance to stay in a dorm room and have the room to myself. I met a lot of new friends and learned so much! While walking around Virginia Tech, it reminded me a lot of medieval castles because of the stoned buildings.”

She was also excited to participate in the history competition.

“I competed in State 4-H History Competition where I presented living history about my grandfather, Retired Navy Chief Petty Officer Marshall E. Ray, Sr. a World War II Veteran who just celebrated his 90th birthday on July 8,” Carmyn said. “He was honored with a visit from sailors during Black History Month. These sailors, assigned to the aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) (Ike), gathered around Ray to listen to him tell his story about being a black Sailor serving in a racially segregated Navy during World War II. He discussed the Jimmy “Doolittle” Raids, the Battle of Midway, the Battle Of Santa Cruz and the Tinian Islands. My presentation talked about him serving in a racially segregated Navy and how far we’ve come as a Nation since 1948 where President Truman signed an executive order that officially ended segregation in the military.”

“The idea that somebody could go through such segregation and turmoil and still serve his country is astounding,” said Hospital Corpsman 1st Class Christian Lopez. “And for him to stay in the Navy as long as he did during those campaigns, risking his life all along is unbelievable. I think it’s an amazing feat.”(Navy.mil, 140213-N-RC063-102)

His complete story can be read at www.navy.mil story number 140213-N-RC063-102.

“We did a lot of activities like have a picnic, a ceremony to celebrate 4-H, and so much more! I had the opportunity to get up close to a horse and groom it,” Carmyn said. “My career path is in the Environmental Sciences. I was able to learn about different careers within Environmental Science at Virginia Tech. I have new goals to achieve for next year and I am very excited about it!

“I would like to thank Miss Celia Brockway, 4-H Exstention Agent for Southampton/Isle of Wight, who helped me prepare for my presentation and my parents Anthony Ray and Sonya Worrell-Ray for encouraging me to go to Congress,” she continued.

Carmyn is a rising 9th grader and will be attending Liberty University Online Academy in the Fall.

Virginia 4-H State Congress is the premier, statewide annual 4-H event for outstanding 4-H teens and adult volunteer leaders. It’s mission is to provide competitive and non-competitive educational experiences to Virginia teens and the adults who work with them, helping them to develop life skills and leadership abilities to become contributing citizens in their communities.

Virginia Cooperative Extension is an educational outreach program of Virginia’s land-grant universities: Virginia Tech and Virginia State University, and a part of the National Institute for Food and Agriculture, an agency of the United States Department of Agriculture.

For more information about 4-H, call Celia Brockway at 365-6258.