AP NEWS

Scott Baldwin wins Florence competition by shedding 62 pounds

March 29, 2019

FLORENCE, S.C. – Scott Baldwin was the big winner at the finale of the 2019 Florence’s Biggest Loser competition.

Baldwin received $500 courtesy of Health Facilities Federal Credit Union for being the contestant to lose the most weight in the competition. He lost 62 pounds.

“It means everything,” Baldwin said. “That was my goal when I got here. I accomplished my goal and then as a bonus I made a lot of friends. It was an overall great experience.”

Baldwin said his secret to weight loss was cutting out bad habits by drinking water only and eating grilled foods.

Romtorail “Rome” Spencer was the biggest loser by inches lost. Spencer lost 6 inches around his waist and 5 inches around his midsection.

“It means a lot,” Spencer said. “It means that I can continue my lifestyle change. It’s a great future for me. It’s changed my life.”

Spencer received $500 courtesy of Health Facilities Federal Credit Union.

Baldwin, Mary McLeod, William Echandy, and Nikki Haffner were the rest of the top 5 in inches lost.

The winner of the True Grit award was Stephen Cullen.

“I don’t have a good answer,” Cullen said. “I’d like to have something inspirational. This is my third year doing it. I tried just as hard this year as any other year.”

The True Grit award winner is nominated and voted on by the contestants.

Cullen’s wife, Katie, won the most inches lost in the 2018 Biggest Loser competition.

He received $100.

Also nominated were Stella Miller, Kim Pate, Romtorail Spencer, and Khadija Williams.

Ron Roberts won the Fan Favorite award. Roberts raised $701 to win the award.

The fan favorite award is one of the ways contestants raise money for the United Way. Each contestant raises money which counts as votes for the award. The fan favorite award raised $4,236 for United Way of Florence County, $800 more than last year.

Roberts won a six-month membership to the McLeod Health and Fitness Center.

Melinda Fuller, Williams, Nikki Haffner, and Spencer were the other top 5 fan favorites.

The overall Biggest Loser team was Tory’s Sunday Team with 143 points. Members were Scott Baldwin, Stephen Cullen, Melinda Fuller, Kenneth Lupo, Mary McLeod, Jolene Osorio and Kim Pate. They were trained by Tory Zwanziger.

The team received gift cards to the McLeod Health and Fitness Center.

The other two teams to be recognized were Rome’s Angels in second place with 141 points and The Breakfast Club with 131 points.

The 2019 competition ran from Jan. 15 to March 28. It featured the highest percentage of contestants who finished, 87 percent, or 40 out of 46 contestants. The contestants lost 881 pounds and 245 inches from around their waists in 2019.

In its sixth year, Florence’s Biggest Loser is a 10-week competition sponsored by the United Way of Florence County’s Burn and Learn Initiative providing fitness training, nutrition, accountability, and other fun activities to individuals who want to lose weight or make healthy lifestyle changes.