Florence native named Rhodes Scholar

Bernie Delinski
Times Daily

A 23-year-old Florence native and Shoals Christian High School graduate is the recipient of a prestigious Rhodes Scholarship.

Josh Carpenter, who graduated from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2010, learned the news Saturday after a day-long interview session.

He was among 14 people who interviewed Saturday from District 7, which includes Alabama, Florida and Tennessee. Afterward, the panel met for about 90 minutes before announcing the two recipients.

Carpenter said he was overcome with emotion when his name was announced first.

“I thrust my head into my hands as fast as I could,” he said. “I did my best to keep composed, but I think I failed miserably.”

He called his parents, David and Carolyn “Sissie” Carpenter. His mother was at a supermarket when he reached her.

“It was great,” Carpenter said. “I think mom scared the supermarket when I called her. She just erupted. I think my parents are still in the stratosphere somewhere. I’m still in euphoric disbelief, myself. It was one of the best days of my life.”

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