Hoots, hollers and even a cowbell rang out from the packed bleachers of the Elizabeth High School football field as 172 seniors received their diplomas May 13 before a sea of supportive family and friends.
The weather treated everyone to a near-perfect day, with ample sunshine and a temperature of 69 degrees when the two-hour event began at 9 a.m.
The ceremony opened with music by the Elizabeth High Chamber Choir singing “The Star-Spangled Banner,” with the senior class officers acting as the masters of ceremony.
Principal Bret McClendon provided concise remarks to the class during his valedictorian presentation, providing two pieces of advice.
“Vote,” he said. “Roughly two-thirds of the seniors registered to vote this year, which is outstanding. Use your influence to affect the regulations and laws of our country.”
“Own your mistakes,” he added. “Don't make excuses, don't try to justify it to yourself or to others.”
The 12 valedictorians each gave a short speech in turn. Several alluded to their faith and referenced scriptures from the Bible. Abbey Maben spoke of a Latter-day Saints sister's words of wisdom.
The last valedictorian to take the podium, Amelia Lindsey, used the opportunity to convey her message that we should strive to seek happiness in the small things by singing John Denver's classic “Sunshine on My Shoulders” with guitar accompaniment.