By Colleen S. Good
Times West Virginian
Eight-year old Rozaireo Jones goes to Jayenne Elementary School. The Fairmont third-grader has loved to sing since he was very small.
Last Thursday, he got to share that love with local representatives at the West Virginia State Capitol at the House of Delegates, when he was asked to sing there.
“He opened the floor with a hymn, ‘This Little Light of Mine,’” said Shannon Jones, his mother. “It was an awesome day.”
“It was exciting,” Rozaireo said. “It’s a big experience, a new experience.”
Rozaireo started getting into music at a young age.
“Even at 2 and 3 years old, he played the tambourine and got down with it. He’s always loved music,” Shannon said.
Shannon said the adult choir director at their church, Dr. Elizabeth Dooley-Newdill, has “really inspired him to follow his musical passion.”
When he was around 5 years old, he joined the youth choir at Morning Star Baptist Church, where his father, Tony Jones, also acts as an associate minister. The choir is called “God’s Angels,” and their director is Jackie Dooley, the adult choir director’s sister.
“Most of the time, they just do services at our church,” Shannon said. “The second Sunday of every month, we have a youth service, and the youth have the opportunity to sing a solo. He really enjoyed it. And we got him into piano lessons as well.”
The youth choir also performs at events, such as with Black History Month this year.
Majority Whip and Delegate Mike Caputo heard Rozaireo sing at some of those community events and asked him if he would like to sing at the state capitol.
Rozaireo said the experience was exciting, and he liked visiting the state capitol.
“I decided I was going to work there when I grow up too,” Rozaireo said.
While they were there, the Jones family also visited a museum and took a tour of the capitol building.
“It was really nice,” Shannon said. “They also had the National Guard there, and he took a couple of pictures with them, and they were showing him some of their stuff.”
Rozaireo said he loves to sing.
“It makes people happy, and I just like singing for God,” Rozaireo said.
And after singing, Rozaireo got another surprise.
“They asked him to come back next year,” Shannon said.
“I look forward to doing it again,” Rozaireo said. “I hope I can inspire other kids my age to do the same thing.”
Email Colleen S. Good at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow her on Twitter @CSGoodTWV.