Jennifer Sherrill of Thorntown was crowned Mrs. Boone County and Mrs. Congeniality Saturday night, June 16, at Freedom Church in Lebanon.
“It was an honor to be asked, and I never in a million years thought that I would ever be asked, and I still can’t believe I won,” Sherrill said. She is only the fifth Mrs. Boone to win that title and Mrs. Congeniality in the pageant’s 54-year history. The most recent was Terri Batts last year. Other dual winners were Dawn McNair in 2008, Cindy Hume in 2002 and Corinne Arthur in 1987.
Sherrill, 41, of Thorntown, is a homemaker. She has been married to her husband, Bruce, for 20 years and they have two children, Kurt Alan, 14, and Lily Grace, 7. Chelsea Christine died in 2003 at age 1.
Chelsea was born with Down syndrome. Of her 13 months of life, four were spent at Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital. After Chelsea passed away, Sherrill and her husband learned about triplets born, one of whom had Down syndrome. Those parents left that baby at the hospital. After hearing about that situation, the Sherrills realized there are many others in need, so they adopted Lily Grace, who also has Down syndrome.
Bruce Sherrill said earlier that his wife should be crowned Mrs. Boone County because as a housewife, she doesn’t get to “win” often. For example, when she finally gets all the laundry done, there’s a new load waiting. And a meal she spends hours preparing is gone in 15 minutes.
“She never gets pay raises or promotions and, sadly, not enough thank-yous as she deserves,” Bruce said. “If she wins Mrs. Boone County, she will be able to look back on her life and say, that day, I won!”
The Sherrill family attends First Church of the Nazarene. Sherrill advocates for orphans with Down syndrome and participates in the annual “Buddy Walk” and picnic sponsored by Down Syndrome Indiana.
Sherrill was sponsored by Designer Cuts. “They encouraged me because they thought I would do a good job,” Sherrill said.
Mrs. Boone County presides over the Boone County Fourth of July festivities, and Sherrill looks forward to continuing the community’s proud tradition.
“I think the parade is going to be fun because one of my favorite things is when the flag comes down the street for the first time,” she said. “My dad was in the military, so that’s very special to me.” In fact, many of the Sherrills’ family traditions come from Jennifer’s experiences living in Germany while her father was stationed there in the U.S. Army from 1987 to 1989.
Other contestants were Tami Richardson, Davina Faye Evans, Jessica J. Fouts, Melanie Kay Keyes and Tammy Milliser.