Fernley High School Seniors Awarded Memorial Scholarship

FERNLEY, Nev. -- It's been almost a year since a deadly car accident which killed employees of the pioneer crossing casino. While they are gone, their legacy continues.

As seniors are preparing to graduate, some are being honored tonight. Two Fernley High School seniors were honored with the Pioneer Crossing Casino Scholarship in memory of Troy Sibson-Property, Michael Sodka and Jason Counterman.

A deadly crash on Highway-50 took the lives of three Pioneer Crossing Casino's team members.

"They were all so funny. Troy would always come in happy cheery in the morning and made sure we were all awake because he had to be awake. Mike was more of the quiet person that just kinda went through and did his job and just wanted to be left alone and Jason was just the life of the day," Jamie Simons-Justice, lead floor manager and co-worker said.

Their legacy lives on as the casino has set up a scholarship program in their memories.

"Everyone at pioneer crossing. We support children in anything they want to do and we try to donate as much as we can to charities that have to do with kids," Simons-Justice said.

The scholarship is need-based and as part of the application, students had to describe why they feel they deserve the thousand dollars.

"Troy with his leadership made us all want to do more for the community, just because of the person he was," Simons-Justice said. "We would have been proud to be honoring those students."

Melanie Beruman and Penny Kernes worked hard throughout high school to get to where they are now; their hard work will finally be paid off.

"I'm glad I'll be getting a lot of help with money now," Beruman said. "That was a big stresser finding how I'm going to pay for college."

She wants to be an orthodontist and Kernes wants to enlist in the army. They say they owe all of their success to community service.

"It's better to be a well-rounded student and get involved and volunteering has made a big impact in my high school career and I definitely plan to continue that throughout college and my career," Beruman said.

Pioneer Crossing Casino also awarded scholarships to two Dayton High School seniors.

Thanks to the scholarship, four students can continue their education and give back to the community Sibson-Property,Sodka and Counterman worked so hard to build.

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