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Vale High School senior rolls to victory in American Legion oratorical contest

VALE – Aliza Saunders decided to compete in the annual American Legion oratorical contest on a whim but the decision paid off for the Vale High School senior.

Saunders claimed first place at the American Legion state competition in Lebanon earlier this month. The win propels Saunders to Indianapolis, Indiana, on April 22 to compete in the national American Legion oratorical competition.

Saunders also won the advanced public speaking contest at the recent state Future Farmers of America convention.

For Saunders, the accolades are welcome but her success is firmly rooted in an interest in history.

“I’ve taken it upon myself to learn what I can about American history, from the Founding Fathers to how (President Ronald) Reagan impacted American economics,” said Saunders.

To compete in the contest, Saunders wrote, memorized and prepared to deliver five speeches that focused on the U.S. Constitution.

The Legion contest began at the . . .