S-U-C-C-E-S-S: Magnolia teen coached 3 of 8 national spelling bee champs in 2019

Tuesday, June 4, 2019
Seventeen-year-old spelling bee champ turns into a championship coach
Instead of taking her own linguistic skills to the national level, this 17-year-old spelling wiz from Magnolia uses her talent to coach others to victory in spelling bees.

MAGNOLIA, Texas (KTRK) -- Seventeen-year-old Grace Walters can't shoo off the spelling bee bug. She's an accomplished coach.

Most recently, she coached three of the eight 2019 Scripps National Spelling Bee winners.

"I never ever pictured myself being there, let alone standing on that stage with champions. It's truly incredible how life works out," said Walters.

She also coached last year's champion and the runner-up for the year before.

Walters got into spelling in the third grade. She never made it to the national level, but, instead, she turned her skills into teaching others.

Walters says, "I never envisioned myself making it here."

Her family couldn't be more proud.

"We never would've dreamed of this," said Grace's mom, Pamela Walters. "Sometimes, we laugh about if we had told her eighth-grade self that she would be coaching champions, how would we ever believe that?"

Grace is heading off to Georgetown University in the fall to study linguistics. She plans to continue to coach.

"The kids keep me sane!" said Grace.

She's also hopeful for another round of spelling bee winners.

"Work hard. If you work hard and believe in yourself anything is possible," she said.

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