Biloxi Teacher Chosen To Spin The Wheel Of Fortune - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

08/12/05

Biloxi Teacher Chosen To Spin The Wheel Of Fortune

For contestants trying out for Wheel of Fortune, excitement was a key component. But for physical education teacher Bryant Gilbert it was no act.

"Well, they said be yourself and I think being yourself pays off," says Gilbert, a physical education teacher at Gorenflo Elementary School in Biloxi.  

The pay off for Gilbert arrived in the form of a phone call that he was one of a handful of local contestants chosen to appear on the show.

"I couldn't even hear the lady," says Gilbert. "I had to ask her to repeat several things cause I was just too excited, jumping up and down."

Friday morning, he shared his excitement with the whole school. As anxious as his students have been to hear the news, Gilbert says the teachers have been even worse.

"Oh by far the teachers every day. Have you heard anything. Have you heard anything."

"And I want first dibbs on the car too," says Kindergarten teacher Connie Moore. "If he wins a car I want his old one."

Too bad they weren't as confident as he was, that he would be chosen even before those initial tryouts.

"I think it was ironic that when I finally got up on stage to answer the puzzle it was 'All The World's A Stage.' And my mother just died laughing. She said, 'Well, that just fits you too much.'"

While congratulating him, students seemed concerned they might lose their teacher to Hollywood.  But Gilbert assured them, when he's done playing Wheel, he'd be back to play with them. 

"Where else in the world can you get paid to play," says Gilbert. "And this is exactly, you know, right up my alley."

by Don Culpepper

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