‘We can do anything’

Annalyse Wharrie with her mom, Maxine Creamer Photo available for purchase

Annalyse Wharrie with her mom, Maxine Creamer

By DAVID ADLERSTEIN
Published: Thursday, June 13, 2013 at 08:16 AM.

From the moment it began, and athletic director Michael Sweatt had the audience in awe at his powerful rendition of the National Anthem, the sixth annual Franklin County High School commencement Friday evening was a moving expression of community pride and joy.

Principal George Oehlert and Superintendent Nina Marks presented diplomas to 59 graduates, the highlight of a ceremony that included both the tradition of presenting flowers to family members as well as the innovation of a giant slide presentation of the graduation seniors.

“To our teachers, thank you for so unselfishly sharing you time, talent and knowledge with us,” said Salutatorian Morgan Walker in her address. “You took the time to explain assignments, sometimes repeatedly because we weren't paying attention. You put in the effort to make lessons more interesting so we wouldn't just tune out. You demanded excellence from us whether or not we wanted to give it. You set the bar high and challenged us to live up to it.”

Walker expressed the gratitude of her classmates in her speech, thanking the whole spectrum of school district employees, from principals, coaches, office staff and advisors, to custodial staff and lunchroom attendants who cleaned up after everyone. “You know better than anyone else what slobs we've been,” she joked. “You actually deserve some kind of medal.”

Walker directed her thanks to the many parents who filled the gymnasium to capacity. “Thank you for supporting us in more ways than it's possible to count,” she said. “You dragged us out of bed each morning, made sure we were fed and clothed for school. You herded us out the door to the bus stop or drove us to school yourselves. You helped us with homework, paid our class fees, and listened to our complaints.

“You came to our plays, attended our sporting events, and chaperoned our dances. You commiserated over our daily dramas, but you tried to give us enough space to learn how to work things out for ourselves,” she said.

In her valedictory address, Stephanie Marxsen both thanked the many individuals who had a hand in educating the Class of 2013, as well as saluted the scholastic and athletic achievements of the school over the first five years that it has been opened. She cited the soccer teams, the Brain Bowl and Odyssey of the Mind teams and the band.



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