Our Top 10 Countdown: The Top Stories of the Year

Published: May 6, 2016

Throughout the year, staffers throughout all of the hours in FHN Media have produced award-winning content, bringing in an amount of traffic that some authors never expected to see before. We looked back throughout the whole year to recap the best, most-viewed and most engaging posts.

The top post of the year will display on May 19, 2016.

10. A Freshman Quarterback on Varsity

Credit to Michal Basford

10. A Freshman Quarterback on Varsity

It’s the week before homecoming, and the game against Central looms in the air. Head Coach Brandon Gregory receives a call from Connor Gallagher’s mother on the Thursday night before they played the Homecoming game. She had taken Connor, their sophomore starting quarterback, to the Emergency Room due to back problems. Gregory calls Aidan McDaniel, a freshman. Gregory plays a joke on Aidan to see if he is ready for the position, and based on his response, he decides to put Aidan in the position of starting quarterback. Aidan officially takes the position after Gregory talks with the other coaches about it. This is the first time in Gregory’s 13 years of coaching the team has a freshman starting quarterback.

Read the full story here.

9. Heart Surgery Strengthens a Father-Daughter Bond

9. Heart Surgery Strengthens a Father-Daughter Bond

It was just an ordinary day. Well, as ordinary as it can get when you’re walking around with a major heart problem and you’re not even aware of it. When senior Abby Rapplean’s dad, Denny Rapplean, went into urgent care thinking he was suffering Pneumonia, he had no idea his world was about to be turned upside down.

To see the rest, click here.

8.  Alumni Hannah Chowning Shaves Head For St. Baldrick’s

8. Alumni Hannah Chowning Shaves Head For St. Baldrick’s

On March fifth, St. Baldrick’s held an event at Helen Fitzgerald’s, where people can volunteer to shave a head or have their head shaven in awareness of childhood cancer. Alumni, Hannah Chowning, was one of the many participants at the event.

7. Head Football and Track Coach Gregory Leaves FHN

Coach Gregory leads a team meeting in a 2014 game against FHC

7. Head Football and Track Coach Gregory Leaves FHN

As of this past Friday, Nov. 13, FHN is without a head football and track coach, as coach Brandon Gregory has decided to leave the school after his fourth season ended with a third consecutive 3-6 regular season record.

“At the end of the day, the game of football is going to end sooner or later,” Gregory said, “just like it did for me, but they [the players] are all going to go on in the real world, so you just hope that everything you were able to teach them through the game of football can help them become better men in life. With that being said, I think me and my staff have done a great job, and we have made strides to make these better young men. I love these kids like they’re my own, and I’m glad I’m leaving in good standing with everyone.”

You can see why Gregory left by clicking here.

6. To Be Chosen and Loved

6. To Be Chosen and Loved

“She’s going to die, why waste our time?” Maria Michalski remembers her doctor saying while she was sick with Leukemia, a cancer of the blood. She was living as an orphan in Vladivostok, Russia, and she wasn’t expected to survive under her circumstances. On the other side of the world, Brent and Christine Michalski heard about her from some friends in a letter and knew they needed to do something to help.

“We had some friends in Russia in the process of adoption, and they posted a picture of Maria on their blog and I read her story and I cried and I knew right then what I needed to do,” Maria’s mom Christine Michalski said.

Before living in an orphanage, Maria was abused and taken advantage of by her step-father. When her mother could no longer care for her she brought her to an orphanage with the promise of returning for her. Maria soon became ill and began seeing doctors. She was moved to 11 different hospitals and three different orphanages during this time. It seemed that as soon as she began to get to know and trust someone she was moved away from them.

To see the rest of Michalski’s story, click here.

5. The Libertarian Party Needs to Rise to Prominence in the Current Election Cycle

5. The Libertarian Party Needs to Rise to Prominence in the Current Election Cycle

Donald Trump versus Hillary Clinton. This possible general election matchup has left the main two political parties fractured to the point that many won’t be voting for their respective party, with former Democratic Sen. Jim Webb and about 14 percent of other Democrats saying that they won’t vote for Hillary Clinton, according to Huffington Post, and Republican Sen. Ben Sasse and about 42 percent of non-Trump supporting Republicans saying that they won’t vote for Donald Trump, according to US News. This has led to an opportunity for third party candidates to rise to the occasion, and the Libertarian Party is the one with the most to gain.

Read more here.

4. FHN Bets Future on Past

4. FHN Bets Future on Past

A crucial wager on the FHN football team was made on Feb. 19. While not the most fiscally costly, upon this deal, made by Athletic Director Mike Janes, hinges the team’s future. The Knights are betting their future on their past with Brett Bevill.

“We wanted to bring back the Howell North family,” Janes said. “We want to make games community events. We want to showcase our kids and how well they’re doing. We want to up some of the work ethic. One of [Bevill’s] biggest attributes is his passion. He’s walked the halls; he’s put on that football helmet; he’s been in the same locker rooms. He can really relate to Francis Howell North.”

To read the rest of Jacob’s story, click here.

3. See How Bob the Janitor Interacts with Students

3. See How Bob the Janitor Interacts with Students

Bob Gruettemeyer is a janitor here at FHN. He works to keep the school clean. His main focus is helping with lunch clean up and is designated to clean a certain area of the school. While juggling these tasks he also makes it a priority to maintain a relationship with the students at FHN.

See the original post here.

2. FHN Student Presented Award, Honored for Bravery

2. FHN Student Presented Award, Honored for Bravery

In times of crisis, many people shy away from acts of bravery. Freshman Malachi Fedderson stepped up to the plate when a stranger’s life was in danger. On Oct. 9, 2015 during the Varsity Football game against Fort Zumwalt West, a parent from the opposing team collapsed near the concession stand and started wheezing for air. Malachi was standing nearby and noticed that the man was in need of help.

“I knew that I had to do something to help when I saw that he had stopped breathing,” said Fedderson. “I don’t remember what happened because it was all a blur, but I remember lots of people hugging me after it was over.”

Read Top Story number two by clicking here.

1. Tyler Hanes, a Student with Autism, Makes 3-Pointer in His First Basketball Game of the Year

1. Tyler Hanes, a Student with Autism, Makes 3-Pointer in His First Basketball Game of the Year

Editor’s Note: Originally debuting on FHNtoday’s Facebook page, Autumn Todd produced this video of Tyler Hanes shooting a 3-pointer in his first basketball game. With over 60,000 views across social media, this is FHNtoday’s Top Story Number One.

On Friday, Feb. 19, varsity boys basketball manager Tyler Hanes suited up for his first game with the JV team. Hanes was put in the last minute of the first quarter in the game against Fort Zumwalt West. The goal of the team was to get Hanes to score. Hanes shot two times and North got both rebounds and kicked it out to Hanes. As time was winding down, Hanes shot a three-pointer and it went in right at the buzzer. Both JV and Varsity teams raced on the court and celebrated with Hanes. The Knights won 59-57.

See the original post on our site here.

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