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I have a two-sentence long segment which I cannot make into a comprehensive and stylistically acceptable piece. I know what I want to say, but it reads very awkward. Can a native speaker help me transform these sentences so they read naturally? The segment is the following:

"Among these students, I found a young, red-headed man rather peculiar. His name was Ryan, and he caught my attention on account of his appearance: he did not wear shoes!"
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Among these students, I found a red-headed, rather peculiar, young man. His name was Ryan, and his appearance caught my attention: he was wearing no shoes!
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Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
Thank you! Would this also be okay:

"Among these students, I found a red-headed, young man rather peculiar. His name was Ryan, and he caught my attention because, much to my surprise, he was not wearing shoes!"
No. I have already fixed it for you.