Grammy Award-Winning Guitarist Surprises Elementary School Students with 208 Guitars

William Apostol, a/k/a “Billy Strings,” is clearly looking to inspire scores of upcoming guitarists-in-training with a generous donation of brand new guitars. The happy recipients were students at Twin Rivers Elementary School in Muir Michigan, and a total of 208 students received their very own guitar to keep.

Billy Strings hails from Muir himself and even attended this very same elementary school when he was a child; last year, Apostol was awarded the Grammy for Best Bluegrass Album, and is now 29 years old. The Ionia Sentinel-Standard covered the joyous celebration around this substantial gift of musical instruments, a matter which was reportedly kept strictly under wraps and emerged as a true surprise to the students when Apostol arrived with guitars in tow last Monday.

William Apostol, known professionally as Billy Strings, gifted guitars to students at Twin Rivers Elementary Schoo
William Apostol, known professionally as Billy Strings, gifted guitars to students at Twin Rivers Elementary Schoo

Additionally, the gifted guitars were sized for each student’s particular grade, ensuring that each had a special instrument designed just for them. The principal at the school was overjoyed, speaking highly of Apostol’s message and example set on this day: “He sat in the seats my students are sitting in right now… He’s gone on to have the kind of success he’s had. I think it opens up the possibility for the students here: ‘If I work hard toward my dreams, I can achieve those dreams.’ He exemplifies that.”

A Billy Strings plaque adorns the exterior wall of Twin Rivers Elementary, commemorating the musician, but it’s hard to believe that these 208 students will ever forget the man who once attended their school.

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