It takes a community to raise a high school graduate

Do you remember your high school commencement address or the name of the speaker?
That was the online poll question I came up with this week as we wanted to tie the question in with all of the graduations going on.
The short answer for me is no, mainly because my graduation occurred 100 years ago. I do remember my college speaker: Who could forget Carroll O’Connor, aka Archie Bunker?
I had an opportunity to sit behind LHS counselor Brent Edgmond Monday night at a ceremony recognizing high school student/athletes who have received scholarships to compete at the next level.
After joking about if he needed any advice for his speech, he kindly said no and added that the speech was done and he was to the point where he was rehearsing.
This is not his first commencement address – this will be his sixth. He admits to being nervous and challenged.
The honor is also not lost on him – the students decide every year who will give the speech.
In this Outlook, you will find a special edition. Not only do we have all available photos from the 163 LHS graduates, we also have graduates from Joliet and Park City.
As a bonus for reading this editorial, I want to let you know first that we have put all of the LHS senior photos on a sheet that fits into the LHS all class Yearsbook that we produced last year. If you have purchased a book or two, please drop by the Outlook office for the free sheet.
If you haven’t purchased the book, we still have a few remaining and of course you will receive the Class of 2017 photo page as well.
This is an impressive group of graduates. In Park City, it seems like every graduate received an athletic scholarship. In reality, six did – still a huge percentage.
Joliet’s grads are a mix of academic excellence and talent.
Being new to the area, I probably have more appreciation than some for the graduation traditions.
I loved the idea of The Owl giving a free breakfast for the seniors on Wednesday. The alcohol and drug free party for the graduates is most definitely a life saver. There is nothing – nothing – worse than learning that a recent graduate is killed in an accident. We all recognize that high school graduation is really just the beginning of a full life.
And how about MasterLube? That business was brimming with activity on Saturday. Although the total hasn’t been announced, the business donated 100 percent of the day’s receipts to the senior party. Seniors and their parents made a day of it with a barbecue and car wash.
I am also a fan of the student design on the west wall of the business. Again, a great idea.
Something else unique here is the huge amount of support graduates receive. Many businesses sponsored graduates in our special edition. We tried to help by donating money to the senior party fund every Silly Senior submission.
While people might not remember their high school commencement address or the speaker, what I hope is not lost is that feeling of closing a chapter of your life and remembering all of the folks who have supported you and are rooting for you. Nothing else in life really compares to high school graduation.
Here’s to the Class of 2017. Your fan club eagerly awaits your next success and it rooting you on to be a success.

All the best!

David Keyes is publisher of the Laurel Outlook.

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