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WMRHS graduates 92 in Class of 2010

WMRHS seniors Kyle Bouthillier and Mary Cliche, proudly wearing their caps and gowns, are the second pair of students on Saturday to march down the center aisle into a gym packed to overflowing with family, friends, and faculty, all eager to see the Class of 2010 graduate. (Photo by Edith Tucker) (click for larger version)
June 16, 2010
WHITEFIELD — White Mountains Regional High School seniors looked back and spoke of the memories they had made even while they were looking forward to the beginning of the journeys that lie ahead at Saturday's graduation ceremony.

Valedictorian Mitchell Galasyn said that since the words "justice and virtue have little meaning" today "there is much in the world that requires our reflection. People have turned passenger jets into guided missiles. Students have turned schools into firing ranges. Suicide bombers have turned their own lives into instruments of death." Yet, he said, "There is goodness more intense than the hatred and ignorance which challenge it." Mr. Galasyn pointed to this goodness can be seen in police officers, firefighters, and emergency personnel, the men and women of the military, the WMRHS teachers and faculty, and the families and loved ones who encouraged the Class of 2010 throughout high school, and, he said, "we see it in ourselves."

The valedictorian, who is heading this fall to UNH, said, "In a time of uncertainty and change, we have been given the opportunity to do good in the world. We are called to go forth from here today, not to cut out our slice of life from the world, but to share that slice with the people around us."

Salutatorian Danielle Ennis spoke of students' progress and growth from freshmen year — "the year of choosing a pathway for the journey of high school" — to senior year — "the year of independence and the future." She said, "We are no longer children anymore. We are adults. We must make our own decisions and figure out what we will do with our future."

Ms. Ennis, who is also heading to UNH, urged her classmates to "always live life to the fullest" and "not be afraid to take chances and follow your dreams."

Honors speaker Brianna Sabourin, who is heading to Rivier College, quoted First Lady and newspaper columnist Eleanor Roosevelt: "The purpose of life, after all, is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experiences." But even as she and her classmates reach out to new experiences that "will change our lives forever," Ms. Sabourin said she knew for certain "that we will always have the memories we shared at White Mountains together. Who could forget a place that is so beautiful where you know everyone in town?"

"It's a great day to be a Spartan!" declared WMRHS principal Erik Anderson in his welcoming remarks, despite the rain that began that began two-and-a-half hours before the 10 a.m. exercises, requiring custodians and maintenance staffers to move scores of folding chairs into the gym that had already been set up outside.

Class president Kellie Merner, who led the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance, pointed to both the memories and the opportunities that characterized their years in high school and urged her classmates to follow their hearts.

The 2010 commencement began with the WMRHS band playing Elgar's "Pomp and Circumstance," under the baton of Director Michael Martins, with the colors presented by four JROTC Spartan unit cadets: Cody Brownell, Joshua Shoemaker, Dakota Walsh, and Brieanna McKeage.

Graduating senior Erica Patterson sang "The Star-Spangled Banner."

The WMRHS Chorus sang "For Good" by Wicked.

The WMRHS band also played a rousing rendition of James Swearington's "Invicta."

SAU #36 Interim Superintendent Dr. Harry Fensom introduced the four school board members on hand: chairman Greg Odell of Dalton; vice chairman Randy Boggess and Rep. Herb Richardson, both of Lancaster; and Catherine Warren of Carroll.

CTE Director Lori Lane called out the seniors' names, one by one, and Dr. Fensom handed each student a diploma, pausing long enough for photographs to be taken. Each happy new graduate shook hands with Mr. Odell and Mr. Anderson.

The principal then formally presented the Class of 2010, and, as is traditional, students exuberantly tossed their caps into the air, before marching out of the gym and into their futures.

Martin Lord Osman
Brewster Academy
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