Viewpoint: Phillips is an inspiration

Over the past four months, a shy and soft-spoken, yet talented young man from Leesburg strummed and sang his way into our hearts.

He was humble and gracious, and delivered performances that brought the audience, and often the judges, to their feet.

But his impact reached far beyond the American Idol stage.

Phillip Phillips brought our community together.

We shared his dream and watched week after week as he achieved it.

We made signs, wore T-shirts, cheered and voted for him, and marveled at the national spotlight on our community, and the fine young man who put it there.

And Wednesday night, we beamed with pride when he won.

We thank you, Phillip Phillips, for allowing us to be a part of this exciting journey.

We wish you much success in your musical career.

And we congratulate you on becoming the new American Idol.