Today, we think of Chris Stapleton as one of the best vocalists in country music. Heck, some would argue he’s got one of the best voices in music today, regardless of genre. Those might just be opinions, but Stapleton has a case full of trophies to prove his accolades. So far, he’s taken home multiple ACM, CMA, and Grammy Awards. Additionally, his cover of “Tennessee Whiskey” is certified Diamond by the RIAA. The guy is a superstar, no doubt about it. However, before any of that, Chris Stapleton was a Golden Eagle at Johnson Central High School in Paintsville, Kentucky. Stapleton hasn’t forgotten his roots.
Recently, Chris Stapleton gave back to his high school in a big way. He offered the entire Johnson Central class of 2022 free tickets to his show at Lexington, Kentucky’s Kroger Field. Additionally, the award-winning singer-songwriter covered transportation costs for the students as well as chaperones.
The Johnson Central High School students celebrated their accomplishments with Chris Stapleton, Willie Nelson, and Sheryl Crow on April 23rd. This comes after the senior class lost most of their sophomore and junior years to the pandemic.
Johnson Central High School Reacts to Chris Stapleton’s Gift
Local news station WYMT visited Chris Stapleton’s old high school to talk to some of the students and faculty about the generous offer. Sydney May, a Senior at JCHS said, “Our class missed out a lot because of COVID and this is like, one of the big things we can do as a class. I feel like this will be something we can, like, cherish together and really remember forever.”
Justin Arms, Principal of Johnson Central High School, taught Stapleton. Arms remembers the singer as a good student. Now, he sees Stapleton – with his success and generosity – as a role model for the next generation of JCHS students. About the offer, Arms said, “It’s just a huge, generous gesture on his behalf.”
Arms went on to say that students signed up for the concert quickly. “It was within 30 minutes that we had over half of our senior class signed up for that.” However, students weren’t the only ones in Johnson Central High School to jump on the chance to see Chris Stapleton. “I opened it up for chaperones and I really think that may be one of the fastest response times, too, for some of our faculty and staff to volunteer. Again, we’re just celebrating the accomplishments and we’re so thankful that he’s thought about us.”
Stapleton Has a History of Remembering His Alma Mater
This isn’t the first time that Chris Stapleton has given a generous gift to students at his old high school. Back in 2016, he donated $50,000 for musical instruments and offered a free concert for JCHS students as well as the community of Johnson County, Kentucky.
Principal Arms spoke about Stapleton’s past generosity. “People often think that when people go away and become successful or they reach the top of their profession that they forget where they came from. Not with Chris. He’s always been there on the frontlines with us. Anything that we’ve ever needed, he’s insured that we’ve got.”
With a track record like this, Chris Stapleton could be a role model for more than just the students who attend his old high school. He’s setting an example we can all follow.