RCHS graduates encouraged to chase opportunity
REED CITY — As they prepared to embark on new journeys and end a chapter in their lives at Friday's graduation ceremony, Kendra Repo told her classmates at Reed City High School to embrace their fears as they continue on.
As she listed some of the most common fears, such as public speaking, death and spiders, Repo declared fear should not hold anyone back.
"Everyone fears something, whether it's the fear of missing a free throw at a basketball game, talking on the phone or speaking at your high school graduation in front of hundreds of people," Repo said. "Decide that you want it more than you are afraid of it. Be afraid but do it anyway."
RCHS graduated 100 students Friday, surrounding by family, friends and faculty members.
Wyatt Meese also delivered a senior speech and encouraged students to follow their own path.
Repo and Meese were two of the five Senior Scholars recognized by RCHS. The other three were Breanne Guiles, Shawna Riley and Derek Lodholtz.
Superintendent Tim Webster recalled some of the special memories he has of the Class of 2014, as he got to know them from his time as the middle school principal.
"I can remember when they came in from fifth grade visitation from the elementary to visit the middle school to prepare for sixth grade and they were about that tall," he said holding his hand about waist-high. "The eighth graders said, 'We were never that small were we?'"
Webster recalled honors breakfasts, playing lunchtime games, class trips and the "fight club," which he laughed and said was not one of his fonder memories.
Distinguished Alumni Award recipient Brad Bookwalter, who works for the Federal Bureau of Investigations in Indianapolis, Ind. investigating public corruption, told the Class of 2014 to be passionate about their careers, family, faith and community.
"Be interested in making decisions about their future," he said.
After receiving their diplomas, Principal Monty Price advised the new graduates to have high threshold for frustration.
"The doors of opportunity will slam in your face," he said. "Inevitably, you will you fail. Pick yourself up, stand tall and knock on those doors until your hands bleed."
For graduate Brandon Stoner, it was astonishing to think he had finally reached this milestone.
"I'm pretty stoked to graduate," Stoner said. "It feels surreal. I'm just surprised it happened this quickly."