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November 6, 2013

A Valiant senior class:

Part two of a in-depth look at Valwood’s 2013 senior class

HAHIRA — Marvin Dobson, Charlie Dunmon, and Carter Elliot make up part two of the series:

After moving to Valdosta from Hamilton County (Fla.), Valiant senior lineman Marvin Dobson has made his name as a threat to opposing offenses throughout the region.

Dobson only played one season with Valwood, but looking at the way he fits into the defensive scheme, as well as the impact that he has left with the team, one could never tell.

This season, he contributed a great deal to the Valiant defense, recording 18 tackles and two sacks.

What many may be unaware of, however, is Dobson’s talents away from the football field. 

“Marvin can play the piano,” Coach Henderson said.  “He is very well-versed musically. He knows it all…He’s not somebody that only follows one genre.”

With his love of music being so strong, his plan for the future makes perfect sense.

Dobson aspires to attend either the University of South Florida or Florida State University and major in audio production.

“I want to own a studio (in the future),” Dobson said. “Other than football, music is my passion. I want to be able to help other artists get their music to the world.”

Being new to the school, Marvin expected it to take time to become accustomed to his new environment. Looking back, he is eternally grateful for the camaraderie and friendship that he has received since his arrival.

“I’ll always be thankful for my experiences here (at Valwood),” Dobson said. “This school helps you build character. It has taught me to always give my all in everything that I do.”

Dobson is the youngest child of Marvin and Pam Dobson.  He has two older siblings, Kavin and Jasmine.

You may be able to take senior running back/linebacker Charlie Dunmon out of the fight, but you can never take the fight out of him.

A shoulder injury only a few weeks into the 2013 campaign sidelined Dunmon for the remainder of the season.

While the injury may have taken him off the field, it could never take him away from the team. During the season, Dunmon has belped the Valiants in numerous ways, including keeping track of plays during games for Coach Henderson.

“Charlie is a good kid,” Coach Henderson said. “Most guys that get hurt and miss time will sulk or shy away from the team. But he is here, day in and day out. Even injured, he’s still a hard worker.”

Dunmon is multi-talented athletically. During his 14 years at Valwood, he has also excelled as part of the basketball and soccer teams.

He may be slightly undersized for his position, but anyone that doubts the heart and willpower of Dunmon is simply wasting their time.

“Charlie is one of those guys that will always get the most out of everything,” Coach Henderson said. “The kid is a winner. He’s been a part of this program for a long time and I’m grateful for a player like him.”

Dunmon has been a key component of the rebuilding stages of the Valiant football program. Because of that, it is only fitting that his fondest memories lie in the final game of his junior year.

The 48-13 victory in the 2012 Class AA State Championship game over the Westwood Wildcats gave Valwood its first state title in over a decade.

“It was the best against the best,” Dunmon said. “Being able to play in a state championship game, and win, is something that will always stick with me.”

After graduation, Dunmon plans to attend Valdosta State University for two years.  Afterwards, he intends to transfer to Georgia Southern and pursue a degree in civil engineering.

Dunmon never underestimates the importance of his soon-to-be alma mater.

“Valwood has taught me the value of hard work,” Dunmon said.  “The school is a great builder of character.”

`Dunmon is the son of Chuck and Suzie Dunmon. He has one younger sibling (Danielle). Charlie’s father, Chuck, is the offensive line coach for the Valiants.

With eight seconds left in regulation against the Matadors of Memorial Day Academy, senior kicker Carter Elliott lined up from 42 yards out.

“I was nervous,” Elliott said. “Very nervous.”

In the end, nerves didn’t matter. Elliott managed to belt a game-winning field goal to move the Valiants to 3-0 on the season and keep the then 17-game win streak alive.

“As far as athletics are concerned, he’s everything,” Coach Henderson said. “The little things that he does…people may not realize just how blessed we are to have him. A lot of guys can’t put ‘team’ over ‘me’. He’s definitely the epitome of a team player.”

Elliott’s talents extend beyond the football field.  He is also a member of the varsity basketball and soccer teams. During his sophomore year he was selected as an All-State goalie.

His academics are right in line with his athletic ability.

“(Elliott) sports a 3.8 GPA,” Coach Henderson said. “He’s also a tremendous conversationalist. He can carry a conversation with anyone on this campus, from the Pre-K classes to the teachers and coaches. He’s going to be a winner at anything he chooses to do in life.”

Elliott is a lifelong Valiant. He has attended the school for 14 years, beginning with Pre-K.

“There’s a few people here that I’ve known basically my whole life,” Eliott said. “These are friendships that I will treasure my whole life.”

He is undecided on a major at this point, but Elliott would like to attend the University of Georgia after graduating from Valwood.

He credits his experiences as a Valiant in everything that he does.

“Valwood has always had a knack for preparing kids for college,” Elliott said. “The academics are top-notch and I’m glad I had the opportunity to attend the school.”

Elliott is the son of Jim and Susan Elliott.  He has two siblings (Gus and Alex).

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