Duncan ‘the perfect kid’ to win Dieffenbach GM vehicle

By Kevin Spradlin
PeeDeePost.com

Video – The drawing

ROCKINGHAM — Ever wondered how to get a gymnasium full of high school students to quiet down quickly? Just give away a free car — that’ll get their attention.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Jeff Dieffenbach, right, congratulations Richmond Senior High School junior Charles Duncan on winning the 10th annual Dieffenbach GM Superstore drawing for a free car.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Jeff Dieffenbach, right, congratulations Richmond Senior High School junior Charles Duncan on winning the 10th annual Dieffenbach GM Superstore drawing for a free car.

That’s exactly what happened Thursday afternoon at Richmond Senior High School, as Jeff Dieffenbach, of Dieffenbach GM Superstore in Rockingham, drew a winning name from hundreds of eligible entries. The students were loud and excited at the chance of having their name called. Things quieted down when it was time to announce the name of the student whose name had been drawn.

The winner? Charles Duncan, 16.

Charles said he doesn’t even have his learner’s permit yet — though that item quickly moved up his priority list at about 3 p.m. after Dieffenbach drew his name, allowing him to select between a brand new Chevrolet Cruz, Sonic or Speed. Charles chose the white, four-door Cruz, valued at approximately $19,000.

“I’m about to get it,” said Charles, adding he had recently been focusing on improving his grades.

There was some confusion within the gymnasium after second-year Principal Keith McKenzie called Duncan’s name. Charles Duncan let his seat in the bleachers and walked a few timid steps across the gym floor but then quickly returned to his seat.

“I didn’t think it was me,” he said.

After what seemed like much longer than a couple of minutes, Charles again left his seat and made his way to the center of the basketball court. School officials checked his student identification to verify that Charles Duncan was, in fact, Charles Duncan.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Richmond Senior High School accounting teacher Donna Tedder hugs Charles Duncan after Charles, a 16-year-old junior, selects the Chevy Cruz after his name was drawn to win a free car from Dieffenbeck GM Superstore in Rockingham.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Richmond Senior High School accounting teacher Donna Tedder hugs Charles Duncan after Charles, a 16-year-old junior, selects the Chevy Cruz after his name was drawn to win a free car from Dieffenbeck GM Superstore in Rockingham.

McKenzie explained that in order to be eligible for the drawing, a student had to have maintained an 85 percent average or higher for the first five six-week academic periods this year, not have missed more than one day of school in each of the five periods and not have received disciplinary action at any point this year.

McKenzie praised Dieffenbach, who has remained loyal to the program he started 10 years ago despite difficult economic times. He didn’t have to do it, McKenzie said.

Dieffenbach disagreed. He said it was a natural way to help students improve both attendance and grades.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com RSHS junior Charles Duncan selected the Cruz (left) over the Speed (middle) or Sonic because, he said, it was white and a four-door sedan.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
RSHS junior Charles Duncan selected the Cruz (left) over the Speed (middle) or Sonic because, he said, it was white and a four-door sedan.

“The attendance was dropping drastically every year,” said Dieffenbach, correlating low attendance rates to lower grades.

The chance for a free car got the students’ attention. All they had to do was show up to class, behave and maintain good grades.

“It’s our duty to give back’ Dieffenbach said. “I still feel like we can have an impact.”

With the rules in place, “you’ve got to have a good group of kids. It makes you feel like you’re doing it for the right reasons.”

 

 

 

Filed in: Business, Education, Featured News, Latest Headlines, News

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