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Thunder outside, diplomas inside

Profile graduates 37

“Their future’s so bright they have to wear shades.” Members of Profile’s Class of 2012 don sunglasses during their graduation that were taped to the bottom of their seats. Art McGrath/Littleton Courier. (click for larger version)
June 13, 2012
BETHLEHEM—Mother Nature was the commencement speaker at Profile High School last week.

As speakers tried to make themselves heard, rain pounded on the roof of the school gym and thunder crashed all around. At one point, Principal Mike Kelley, whose son John is graduating with the class, stopped his welcome address as thunder nearly drowned out his words.

As things settled down outside, the speakers got down to the business of saying farewell to their classmates and reflecting over the previous year.

Class President Paige Roberts addressed the packed auditorium, noting, "the members of the class of 2012 have a charismatic energy" and are a close, yet diverse group of people. Even if they never see each other again the connections and memories they made will last a lifetime.

"It's been an unforgettable six years and I just want to thank you all for making my time at Profile so worth it. It's been a pleasure growing up with you," Roberts said.

Salutatorian Allison Baker reflected on how quickly time has gone by and on things that happened "yesterday," some of which were years ago. Now it was over.

"It's difficult to stomach that after tonight, the students here will officially be alumni," Baker said.

Reflecting over the people who have made an impact on her over the years, Baker singled out her father for some gentle ribbing, quoting the old expression that girls look for men like their fathers.

"…so if I ever find a man who cries at the end of Cheaper by the Dozen, I'll know he's a keeper."

Baker advised her classmates to remember how fast time went by over the previous six years, "because life will have a similar effect."

Valedictorian Tiffany Thompson echoed similar themes of reflection and thanks. Going through a number of people who have influenced her she thanked the class advisors, Josh Lawton and Kerry Riley.

"…you gave us the opportunity to unite an unruly group of individuals into a formidable class that managed to become two-time Winter Carnival champions," Thompson said.

Thompson ended with a quote, noting the appropriateness because of the weather.

"'Those who say sunshine brings happiness have never danced in the rain," Thompson said.

Both Lawton and Riley briefly addressed the students and their well wishers.

Lawton reflected on their long road and said that he was sure some of the students thought they would never graduate.

"So did I," he chuckled.

He advised each student to "get a wingman and become a wingman," noting it is important for one's growth to help someone and to have someone helping you.

Riley joked that she had been asked to speak because people knew she would cry on stage. She said the class of 2012 was a group of 37 unique individuals and she hoped they would remain so and make their own decisions.

"Do not let others define you," Riley said. She told them uncertainty never goes away, the trick is to make it a friend. She told them to look under their seats. Taped underneath each seat was a pair of sunglasses.

"Their future's so bright they have to wear shades," she told a cheering and laughing crowd.

Diplomas were quickly handed out, tassels turned and the students became graduates. Throughout the halls of the school and outside the graduates received congratulations while a red sunset that could have been painted by Monet shone over the scene.

Martin Lord & Osman
Brewster Academy
Varney Smith
Littleeton Eye
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