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Moultonborough Academy bids farewell to Class of 2019

Members of the Moultonborough Academy Class of 2019 display papers mounted underneath their chairs that spell out a special message. (Photo by Erin Plummer) (click for larger version)
June 20, 2019
MOULTONBOROUGH — The Moultonborough Academy Class of 2019 remembered some good times in their small community and received lessons on learning from experience during graduation.

Seniors took the stage of the MA auditorium in front of an audience of family, friends, and well-wishers for their graduation. This year's class consisted of 26 students and a few speakers reflected on the size of the class along with the size of their community.

Class president Jessica Lear said the district is unique and it is a town they have held close to their hearts. Most members of the class have grown up together from kindergarten through senior year.

Lear said the class showed its true colors this year, showing how hard working they are. She talked about a moment during this year's Winter Carnival when they were losing at Dodgeball, but a classmate hid in the corner and kept throwing balls at the other side.

"Let this memory, everything that you've accomplished at Moultonborough Academy be your foundation," Lear said.

She asked everyone onstage to look at the people sitting next to them and congratulate them.

"Moultonborough will always be here whenever you need to come home," Lear said. She later said, "We need to let the world know that the Class of 2019 will not be held back and we are going to make a difference."

She ended with some advice to her classmates on success and learning from failure.

"I hope you never forget to make every day the best day of your lives," Lear said.

Salutatorian Christian Marsh talked about how a curveball in his life taught him a lot.

"If you asked me a year ago if I had it all figured out, I would have had an answer before you finished asking the question," Marsh said.

He said he has always been an athlete, but at the end of junior year he tore his ACL and found himself in a much different position.

"I didn't have a clue as to what I was going to do," Marsh said.

He said every day of this year was a physical struggle and he said he lost track of what his purpose was. He said he learned that finding one's purpose and dealing with uncertainty is a perfectly normal situation.

"As much as it scares me I'm excited to be moving on," Marsh said.

He said he welcomes this stage of life as he realizes this process means letting go and saying goodbye.

Valedictorian Grace Blackadar said she learned that it's okay not to know exactly what to do. She said it's easy to start worrying about what will happen next and let fears spiral out of control.

"Make sure you love what you're doing, make time for your passions, and remember to have fun," Blackadar said.

Blackadar said for a long time she didn't exactly love high school. She said she was late almost everyday and said she overall had a hard time.

"I was nervous every day, and didn't think I was that important," Blackadar said.

She said she realized she needed a pattern and started working with a mentor who she said greatly helped her. She said because of this mentor the last month of high school was a lot more fun.

"I can now say this place and this class has granted me so much," Blackadar said.

She advised the members of her class to be kind, showing selfless generosity.

"Class of 2019, it's been real, it's been fun, it's been real fun," Blackadar said.

Kaitie DuBois announced the senior class gift would be a line of new spirit gear.

Principal Andy Coppinger reflected on this year's class and tried to come up with a definition for the seniors. He said the best idea was something he nearly tripped over and said it was the perfect symbol of the class. Coppinger held up a small jar of dirt collected off the floor from their shoes, saying he will keep this jar in his office to remember them by. He said this is a symbol of this class being humble

"What I do appreciate about this group of individuals is that they are all down to earth," Coppinger said. "The kind of people you wouldn't mind moving next door to."

This year's commencement speaker was teacher Shaw Smith.

"You are no ordinary class, members of the Class of 2019: you are an example of how the whole is so much more than the sum of its parts," Smith said.

He said it is certain that the class is full of givers, from accumulating a huge number of community service hours to giving huge smiles. Shaw told some stories, such as a group of students cutting down an 80 foot tree for a school Christmas tree, students giving their lunches to fellow classmates, and the little plastic plant the teachers received as a "senior thank."

Smith advised the seniors to remember what their parents taught them, try harder, smile more, and embracing voluntary simplicity.

"The world is a much better place now that your headed off into it," Smith said.

Smith asked the seniors to reach under their chairs and pull out a piece of paper. Displayed together the papers spelled "Thank You Everyone." members of the audience were also asked to reach under their seats and pull up pieces of paper. The papers spelled out a number of different phrases congratulating the class.

Varney Smith
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