Ryan Williams sits for a portrait before he receives the citizenship award for South High School from the Laramie County Retired Educational Personnel on Monday, Nov. 4, 2019 at their meeting at the Red Lion Hotel. Nadav Soroker/Wyoming Tribune Eagle

CHEYENNE – Ryan Williams is the kind of kid parents dream about.

He gets good grades. He’s involved in numerous extracurricular activities. He’s even a Boy Scout, currently going through the process of getting his Eagle Scout award.

As a senior at Cheyenne’s South High, he already has plans to attend the University of Wyoming next fall and start in on a mechanical engineering degree.

So when Ryan was alerted to the fact that he would be receiving the Laramie County Retired Educational Personnel’s latest citizenship award Monday, his parents weren’t too surprised.

For his efforts, Williams received a certificate from the organization and a $100 award.

“We’re very honored and grateful that he’s getting this award, but we know this kid,” his mother, Dawn Williams, said. “It wasn’t that surprising when he told us he got it, no.”

Ryan was a little more shocked when he got the news, though.

“I didn’t really think I could even get something like this, so when I found out that I did, I really couldn’t believe it,” he said.

But Ryan is incredibly humble, which is why he deserved an award like this.

His counselor, Maribeth Ragle, gushed about the South student in her nomination form, praising his academic and social efforts.

“Ryan has been an active senior at South High since he stepped foot in South’s doors as a freshman,” she wrote. “He has challenged himself with honors and AP courses while earning a 4.1 GPA and has also made a strong impact on South’s community. He is an active member of the co-ed cheerleading team, participates in marching and jazz band year-round, volunteers with National Honor Society and is getting his Eagle Scout award through Boy Scouts of America.

“In addition, and most importantly, Ryan displays South’s Honorable, Enthusiastic, Responsible and Determined (HERD) values in his personal and scholastic adventures.”

His parents glowed when they heard the comments from Ragle, but Dawn Williams noted that Ryan has always been an overachiever.

“We’re so proud of him,” she said, with her husband and Ryan’s father, Ron Williams, readily agreeing.

Ellen Fike is a freelance writer living in Cheyenne. She can be reached at elfylucille@gmail.com. Follow her on Twitter at @EllenLFike.

Ellen Fike is the Wyoming Tribune Eagle’s features editor. She can be reached at efike@wyomingnews.com or 307-633-3135. Follow her on Twitter @EllenLFike

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