Grace Christian School alumnus Ryan Sheldon is the “stand in” for President Donald Trump, as Belmont University in Nashville prepares the stage for the presidential debate that kicks off at 5 pm Alaska Time on Thursday.
Sheldon, well known for his extraordinary vocal chords, is a senior at the university, and was asked by the Commission of Presidential Debates to stand at the podium while the lighting, microphones and set was finalized. Must Read Alaska has learned he will also be helping to prepare the debate moderator, Kristen Welker, by answering questions ad-lib before the debate begins.
Sheldon is 6’5″ (Trump is 6’3″), weighs 275 pounds, and throws hammer and discus in Division 1; he is on a track and field scholarship at Belmont University, where he majors in entrepreneurial business, and minors in voice. He can sing in nine languages, has studied opera, and has a noted stage presence. Sheldon has sung the National Anthem and the Alaska Flag Song at Alaska Republican Party conventions and meetings.
While only 80 people will be allowed in the debate room, Ryan will be among those 80 on Thursday night. His parents are Robert and Marne Sheldon of Talkeetna and Anchorage and his grandparents include Frank and Jeanne McQueary of Anchorage and Dave and Barb Kolesky of Anchorage.
At Grace Christian High, under head coach Marc Coulombe, he was state champion in discus and runner-up in shot put in 2017. He was named team captain as a senior and also lettered in basketball.