Melissa Smithey, an Italy High School senior, was presented the Kayrene Uehlinger Memorial Scholarship on April 17, 2011 at Central Baptist Church. Smithey is the daughter of Michael and Rita Smithey of Italy.
Melissa has participated in the Science Club, Volleyball, Basketball and Tennis. She qualified for the UIL regional meet three times in Prose Interpretation and Literary Criticism. She is a member of the Student Council and National Honor Society. Upon graduation, Melissa plans to attend Tarlton State University.
Ronnie Clanton, a 1968 graduate of Italy High School, presented the scholarship during the morning worship at Central Baptist Church. Clanton was a friend and classmate of Uehlinger.
Kayrene Thompson Uehlinger attended Italy schools from grades 1-12, graduating in 1968. She belonged to Central Baptist Church in Italy where she was an active member and Sunday School teacher.
On August 9, 2007, Kayrene lost a valiant 13 year battle against cancer. Her bravery and faith were a true testament to her character and her legacy.
The Kayrene Uehlinger Scholarship was established in 2008 by the Italy High School Class of 1968 and includes funds from classmates, family, church members and friends. It was established as a memorial to Kayrene to assist a graduating senior and active member from Central Baptist Church to further his/her education. Kayrene was active in Central Baptist Church and was committed to the youth of the church and the Italy community.
In 2009, a $1,000 scholarship was presented to J.R. Hill. Tyler Boyd was awarded a $1,000 scholarship in 2010. This year’s scholarship is also $1,000.