Archbold High School presented diplomas to members of the Class of 2017, Sunday, May 28.
The Class of 2017 is the 125th class to graduate from AHS.
Aaron Rex, superintendent, told the graduates the commencement exercise marks the end of one stage of life, and the start of a new one.
He said the class had been positively impacted by several people, and particularly recognized the parents of the graduates.
He asked the parents in the audience to stand, and for the members of the Class of 2017 to wave to them, thank them, and tell them how much they love them.
He also mentioned teachers and others, including bus drivers, custodians, administrators, and community volunteers.
“Class of 2017, when I think of all you’ve accomplished, I couldn’t be more proud. There are so many amazing talents in this class,” he said.
He also reminded the class to remember where they came from. “You’re an Archbold Blue Streak, and that means a great deal,” Rex said.
Royal Short, high school principal, reminded the class of their first day of school.
“Your mom was snapping pictures as quick as she could; your dad was acting like it didn’t bother him that his baby was growing up. You were dressed in your new outfit and eager to meet new friends,” he said.
On Graduation Day, essentially the same scene is repeated: mother snapping pictures, fathers trying not to let on their babies have grown up and are moving out.
He, too, singled out parents, noting that he hoped the graduates notice how they stood behind their children when they made bad choices, picked them up when they fell, cheered their successes, and bragged about their accomplishments.
“And they love you,” he said.
“Go out and make us proud. Use your talents to help better any community in which you might live.
“I have no doubt you are ready for the challenge.”
Malinda Lugbill was one of two class speakers.
In her address, Lugbill compared her class to Velcro.
“Did she just say Velcro?” she said.
If you look closely at Velcro, there are little hooks that attach to fabric. When pulled away from the fabric, little pieces of fabric are stuck to the hooks.
Her class, she said, had stuck together, and when pulled apart, little pieces of each other had stuck to them.
“Each and every one of us has a little piece of each other stuck to us,” she said, adding, “Nothing will take that little piece of Archbold away from us.”
Alex Short, the second class speaker, said not everything he learned came from the classroom. He said he learned much from his classmates.
He noted that he probably won’t see most of his classmates ever again, “and that’s pretty frightening.”
He talked about their first day as a freshman, not sure what was going to happen.
But he said, “Isn’t it amazing what a difference four years can make?
“If each of us can grow this much in four years, imagine what we can accomplish in the next four years… or the next 10 years.”
He asked for forgiveness from anyone he may have harmed, and reminded his classmates that in the future, they will say, “We came from Archbold, and I couldn’t be any prouder of that fact.”
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